Is Your Shih Tzu Licking All The Time?

Tbelow could be among a number of factors for a shih tzu licking all the time to excess. Though this factor is much even more most likely to be a behavioral worry quite than a serious medical one, it is much better to be safe than sorry and to go via the possible clinical conditions first, if only to remove them from the list of possible factors. Any suspected clinical problems need to be viewed by a vet as easily as you deserve to.

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The medical problems that might encourage too much licking are:Gastroenteritis – or GI for short, and other stomach upsets may bring about the dog licking surdeals with and objects.While these are the problems that may bring about behavioral licking:Under these behavior conditions, the shih tzu may lick one or more of the following:

Why You Need To Prevent Excessive Licking

If your shih tzu is constantly licking himself tbelow is the risk of red raw sore patches and also thinning hair emerging in the areas of skin where the majority of of the licking occurs. This is known as lick granuloma and it leaves the influenced area open up to infection which, bereason dogs lick their wounds to release pain-numbing endorphins, then urges even more licking, producing a vicious circle.

Speaking on befifty percent of all shih tzu owners, I think we all choose an affectionate, loving lick, the canine version of the kiss, currently and also again yet persistent and consistent attempts to lick you at eexceptionally possibility can be overwhelming. Even if we are all set to put up with it, our household, friends and acquaintances more than likely aren’t. Plus, and I soptimal from first hand also endure right here, if you have an open wound and also your, albeit well-definition, shih tzu licks it, you then run the risk of a severe infection developing.

I will certainly now go into every one of the conditions under which a shih tzu might be licking excessively to aid you identify the factor why your dog is doing this and also, as soon as this reason is established, exactly how to remedy the instance.

Medical Conditions That May Cause Excessive Licking


As I said prior to, in the majority of situations the cause of excessive licking is behavioral but periodically it is for a clinical reason. If you suspect that you shih tzu does have actually a medical reason for excessive licking it is important that you have the diagnosis and also course of treatment shown by a vet. The adhering to notes in this section are designed just to serve as a guide.

You may additionally favor to see “Shih Tzu Typical Health Problems” likewise posted on this webwebsite.


By much, the most common medical factor for a shih tzu licking all the time is an allergy. If you have ruled out all other possibilities it nearly certainly is an allergy. Allergies have the right to affect the skin and also paws, making for an itchy and scratchy suffer. Allergies can make the eyes red and also watery and might likewise affect the ears where a reddish wax accumulates. If the wax is not cleared ameans via a proprietary pet ear cleaning fluid and also a cotton sphere it will certainly practically absolutely cause a yeastern or fungal infection that have the right to prove painful.

A shih tzu will certainly bite, scratch and also lick the influenced locations of skin leaving it damp and also open to fungal infections. These fungal infections give off a musty odor and also discolor the hair to a red rust shade.

If you suspect that your shih tzu is enduring from an allergy, take him to your vet that can arrange a skin test to uncover the specific triggers of the allergy. In particularly significant or persistent instances the vet may prescribe topical creams or lotions to treat the impacted areas and also antihistamines to suppress additionally development of the symptoms.

Preventative And Remedial Action You Can Take

Chemical additives, preservatives and also colorings added to food deserve to all be triggers, so just offer your shih tzu additive-cost-free, hypoallergenic food made via quality ingredients. It might expense a little more initially than massive brand also dog food but it will prove cost-reliable in the savings made on vet’s bills.

If you try this and the allergy still persists, then it may be that a protein is leading to the reaction. Experiment by rerelocating one protein at a time from your dog’s diet. For example, attempt a lamb cost-free diet for a spell. If it proves not to be that, re-present the lamb and remove one more protein, say, beef. Keep on trying out until you uncover the culprit. It may also prove to be the chicken.

Take a look at “Best Dog Food For A Shih Tzu? – Find Out Here” for more feeding advice.

When grooming your shih tzu, just use hypoallergenic, pet-specific, shampoos, conditioners and also sprays. If the areas of irritation have actually developed a fungal infection use commodities that also have antifungal and antibacterial properties.

Treat the sensitive locations that your dog is licking through medicated lotions and sprays that contain hydrocortisone to relieve itching and also other ingredients such as aloe vera, tea tree oil or chamomile to treat the dry skin.

Also view “How To Bathe A Shih Tzu Dog For Healthy Skin And Coat” for additionally information on grooming products.

It have the right to be tough to proccasion your shih tzu from licking off any kind of topical therapy that you have administered and also you might must use an Elizabethan collar to perform so. To prevent the paws from being licked you deserve to try putting on dog socks immediately after using the therapy. Choose a good top quality set of socks that are difficult for your shih tzu to rerelocate by himself and also that have actually grips on the soles to prevent him from slipping.

Around the house, if you have air conditioning ensure that you have a HEPA filter fitted. Vacuum the floor on a regular basis via a pet-friendly vacuum that additionally has actually a HEPA filter fitted. Eexceptionally time you enter the house with your dog, rub him down via hypoallergenic wipes, making certain that you additionally clean his paws well.


Lick Granuloma

Lick granuloma is not so much the initial factor why your shih tzu licks himself excessively, it’s more as a result of excessive licking for one more reason that encourages also even more licking. It starts as a tiny sore that spreads out as the shih tzu licks more and also more. As the sore spreads, the skin is subject to break in locations. Wbelow the skin is damaged it is subject to bacterial infection. This infection, subsequently, can spread to the skin follicles and also reason thinning of the hair and bald patches.

This problem, in minor instances where the skin isn’t broken, can be treated through proprietary lotions, creams and sprays. If the skin is damaged and tright here is bleeding or pus, then there is virtually certainly a bacterial infection that needs to be treated by a vet. The vet might prescribe antibiotics to treat the infection and also, in the instance of huge skin breaks, recommfinish surgical treatment.

Dry Skin

The shih tzu breed, with its double coat of hair instead of hair, is vulnerable to suffering from dry skin. The itching sensation resulted in by the dry skin outcomes in the shih tzu licking the affected location. The licking activity washes amethod any essential skin oils that reprimary, making the dry skin problem also worse.

Dry skin deserve to be resulted in by weather problems, such as the cold, dry winds of winter or as well much expocertain to the sun in summer. It deserve to be caused by making use of shampoos and also conditioners intfinished for human beings that are also strong for a shih tzu’s skin or by utilizing pet-friendly commodities yet making use of them too regularly. Both scenarios bring about vital hair and skin oils being fluburned ameans. Finally, if the shih tzu rolls about a lot on dry, abrasive surfaces, this have the right to additionally build dry skin.

What You Can Do

To help to clear dry skin difficulties and also prevent them from recurring, always, once bapoint your shih tzu, use quality, pet-friendly, hypoallergenic commodities and, to retain necessary skin and also hair oils, do not bathe your shih tzu more than eextremely four to six weeks. Keep him clean in the meantime through hypoallergenic wipes.

See “How Often Should You Bathe A Shih Tzu?’ for more on this.

Try to keep your home humidified. If you don’t have actually a humidifier use home plants and also bowls of water strategically put roughly the house to moisten the air rather.

Keep your shih tzu hydrated by making certain he always has access to fresh drinking water and also supplement his food with a couple of drops of omega-3 fish oil and also water-bearing enhancements such as blueberries and raspberries.

Urinary Tract Infection or UTI

This have the right to come to be a very serious problem, particularly if your shih tzu is not peeing at all when it must be treated as an emergency. If you suspect your shih tzu’s excessive licking is because or a UTI, consult your vet as quickly as possible.

Although if your dog is licking about the genitals does not necessarily expect a UTI is existing, it is just one of the indicators. Others are too a lot or too bit urine being produced, pain when peeing and peeing “accidents”.

Thyroid Problems

A shih tzu might lick if there is a hormone deficiency of the thyroid. This is another condition where, if you suspect that this is the difficulty, you need to contact your vet as shortly as feasible.

Suspect a difficulty with the thyroid if your shih tzu is weak, slow and also lethargic via noticeable weight acquire or loss. The coat will certainly additionally lose its shine and tbelow will be thinning hair and bald patches.



Injuries, visible or internal, are another feasible reason of a shih tzu licking. The licking will certainly take area at the website of the injury in an attempt to alleviate the pain.

If your dog is limping or walking awkwardly and also constantly licking the same paw, then tright here might be a foreign object wedged between the paw pads. These international objects are normally quickly rerelocated.

Parasitic Infections

If a dog is playing host to fleas, ticks or mites, he might not just lick the areas wright here he is being bitten however may also chew, gnaw at or scrape to try and also free himself of his intruders.

If it is just a minor situation, you may be able to treat the condition with over the counter parasiticidal skin treatments, lotions and shampoos. For even more major situations your vet have the right to prescribe stronger medicated assets. Regular application of “spot-on” kind skin therapies will certainly assist proccasion parasitic invasions altogether.

Behavioral Conditions That May Cause Excessive Licking

Separation Anxiety

As the name says, separation stress is the stress a shih tzu may endure once the owner is away from the house for some time leaving the dog behind, though it have the right to likewise occur if the owner is tbelow but too busy to pay any type of attention to the dog. Licking either himself or objects is a method of trying to soothe amethod the loneliness. Aget, extreme self-licking will build sore spots that will cause also more licking.

A shih tzu can get approximately all kinds of strange and also sometimes damaging actions when left alone and enduring separation stress and anxiety but as quickly as you rerotate, apart from perhaps an over enthusiastic greeting, the unusual actions ends. If tbelow is no physical proof, that is, for example, pee or poo wright here it shouldn’t be or damaged furnishings, you would have no idea that your shih tzu has separation tension. The answer is to observe unnoticed through a window if you have the right to or install a pet electronic camera.

My write-up, “Shih Tzu Separation Anxiety – How To Cope” mirrors ways of taking care of and avoiding this difficulty.


Stress From An Over Busy House

This, if you like, is the specific opposite of separation stress in that the shih tzu is stressed out because there is as well much noise and also mayhem going on in the home. Aget, the shih tzu may attempt to soothe amethod the tension by self-licking through the very same compounded troubles of sore spots occurring as a result.

The answer is to create a little however sufficient room for the shih tzu in a quieter component of the house. Make it right into a space that he deserve to identify as his very own, what he will think of as his den. Include a warmth and comfortable bed and also make sure his favorite comfort playthings are tright here. Ensure that he also has adequate water to drink. If he typically sleeps in a crate, encompass this in the quiet location too.

Excessive Licking Of The Owner


Your shih tzu might start off licking you as a authorize of affection yet then he will quickly realize how a lot he likes the taste of the mineral salts left on your skin after any type of of your perspiration evaporates.

If you are not careful, this licking can come to be obsessive.

You have the right to break this halittle via some behavior training that is similar to my “no bark” training in one more article,

How To Train A Shih Tzu Puppy Not To Bark”.

With this training I sassist that to soptimal a shih tzu from barking, you have to teach him what you intend by “bark” in the first place. It adheres to, then, that in order to sheight your shih tzu licking you, you need to teach him what you intend by “lick” initially before you can ask him to sheight.

So, once your shih tzu does begin licking you, say “lick” in the very same voice that you would usage for a command also. Repeat this action for a few days eincredibly time that your shih tzu starts to lick you. By this time he need to currently have grasped what “lick” indicates.

He is now ready for the following phase. This time as he moves to lick you, relocate back just out of range and command “no lick”. When he doesn’t lick you on command, reward him initially using a tiny treat, then, as he starts to “gain it”, by diverting his attention via a favorite toy. Keep this up persistently for a few days or even more and also he will certainly inevitably understand also that he is not to lick you under the “no lick” command also.

Compulsive Licking Of Furniture Or Objects

Shih tzu may lick furniture or objects for a number of reasons but it is likely to be one or even more of the following:


Although a shih tzu’s sense of smell is way behind that of a bloodhound, it is still way ahead of that of a huguy. Your shih tzu may be sniffing wbelow your perspiration has actually permeated the material of your sofa and starts licking for the exact same salty taste he experiences when licking you. This behavior can be associated via the next factor, which is:

Self Comforting

When a shih tzu licks away at a piece of furniture or object it can be because he finds it comforting and also calming, so a lot so that it may become a halittle bordering on obsessive-compulsive disorder. He might be licking to relieve the anxiety of separation tension or a noisy household. To assist regulate this anxiety, see formerly under the heading “Stress From An Over Busy House”, or my “Shih Tzu Separation Anxiety – How To Cope” post.


It simply may be that your shih tzu is licking furniture out of sheer boredom. To minimize this boredom, try to spfinish as much high quality time via your shih tzu as you can. Ideally, go for two walks per day, one of at leastern twenty minutes, the other between twenty minutes and one hour.

For more indevelopment on walks, view my short article “How Often Should You Walk A Shih Tzu?”.

Play constant games, such as “fetch the ball” or “chase and also catch the frisbee” through your shih tzu and also likewise offer him interenergetic playthings to store him amprovided. For instance, playthings where he hregarding work out just how to rerelocate a treat, playthings wbelow he has to occupational out a puzzle, toys that make noises or companion toys that have a simulated heartbeat.

See “Best Toys For A Shih Tzu – What To Look Out For” for additionally details.

You may likewise favor to attempt adding a 2nd shih tzu or various other breed of dog to your household as a living companion, though it can never be guaranteed that they will “hit it off” together, so beware as this one can be a little bit riskies. If you are going to execute this it’s best, if you have the right to, to have the two dogs spend some time together before actually adopting or buying.

Other Things To Try To End Excessive Licking

To finish off through, then, right here are a couple of various other things you can attempt to sheight your shih tzu licking all the time.

A shih tzu doesn’t need a lot of exercise, so stop overfeeding him, that method he doesn’t have the majority of excess power to burn off.

For even more guidance on feeding a shih tzu, view “How Much Food Should A Shih Tzu Eat?”.

To break your shih tzu’s licking halittle when he will not pay any kind of attention to you, try to divert his attention ameans from licking and provide him somepoint to occupy his mind. To gain his attention when he is experiencing from the standard shih tzu “schosen deafness”, try scrunching an empty, plastic water bottle. Or, you deserve to usage a “positive interrupter” which is a word of your choice that isn’t an unfavorable word such as “no”. Your positive interrupter must be a word that grabs your shih tzu’s attention. For instance, say “treat”, then give him the promised treat.

Once you have your shih tzu’s attention, offer him a toy to mouth rather of whatever before he was licking. Use a toy that is filled via treats or flavored, a great top quality, artificial bone, a speaking toy or a comfort toy. Once he accepts the toy, lavish him via praise to reinpressure this actions.


If you have the moment and also the commitment you might also try teaching your shih tzu tricks to keep his mind off of licking.

See more: He Takes Me For Granted: 9 Reasons Why Do Men Take Women For Granted ?

One probably worthwhile trick you can teach a shih tzu is to fetch a details toy or object and carry it to you. Keep the name of the toy or object to one or two syllables if you deserve to to make it easier to remember. You must market a reward eextremely time he gets it right and also brings whatever it is you asked for. Some shih tzu have actually been known to memorize approximately twenty toys or objects by name, through which time I am certain that they have forgained around licking!

If you have actually any type of inquiries or comments appropriate to this article, to this website or shih tzu in general, please leave a comment listed below or, if you favor, usage our call us create. You need to gain a response within 24 hours, though sometimes this might not be possible.