Shih Tzu Teeth – The full guide on how to care for them properly!

Shih Tzu, a small dog breed, also has small teeth, but they are all still heterodont sets, which means they have all types of teeth, canines, premolars, and molars.

Likewise other dog breeds and humans, Shih Tzu also are diphyodonts which means they also have two sets of teeth during their whole life span. The milky baby teeth at the feeding stage and adult teeth for the rest of their lives.

It is rightly said the way to a healthy stomach and health lies in a healthy mouth. So dental hygiene and oral care for your Shih Tzu teeth are as necessary as it is for you and me. Every pet owner must pay heed to their Shih Tzu teeth.

Shih Tzu is prone to oral diseases. There are several ways you can adopt to make your Shih Tzu safe from these health issues. Like brushing, cleansing, and dental sprays.

We will be discussing all of them in detail. If you want to learn more about the Shih Tzu teeth, the diseases they face, and how to overcome the teething face of Shih Tzu, stick with us until the end and keep reading.

Shih Tzu Teeth - The full guide on how to care for them properly!
Shih Tzu Teeth

Shih Tzu Teething

Teething in dogs and humans refers to the replacement of baby teeth by newly grown adult teeth. Shih Tzu also experiences the process of teething; adult teeth also replace their baby milk teeth.

Teething in Shih Tzu starts at 3-4 months and lasts up to 7-9 months until adult teeth replace all baby teeth.

In some conditions, the Shih Tzu might retain their milk teeth even after new adult teeth erupt; in this case, one has to visit his pet to a vet who will surely remove them.

Pet owners should be aware of the signs that show that Shih Tzu is undergoing teething. Some of the most common signs are as under.

  • Sore Gums
  • Flushed Cheeks
  • Disturbed Eating
  • Loss of Appetite and Excessive Chewing.
  • Mild Fever
  • Misaligned teeth
  • Crooked Teeth
  • Drooling more than usual
  • Behavioral changes

How Many Teeth Does Shih Tzu Have?

Likewise, other dog breeds, Shih Tzu, also have two sets of teeth, the milky teeth that appear at the age of three-six months of age. These first baby teeth are twenty-eight 28 in number.

These teeth feel like pins onto the skin. Puppy teeth usually consist of canines and premolars, and as at this stage, they are fed by their mother, they usually don’t have their molars developed.

After four months, these puppy teeth start to shed and are replaced by new adult teeth. This shedding period is referred to as teething, and obviously, it Is a bit of discomfort time for them. They will start biting on things around and even your fingers as it relieves them.

At the age of 7-9 months, you would notice that all the new adult teeth with canines, premolars, and molars erupted.

These adult teeth are usually 42 in number 12 incisors, four canines, 16 premolars, and 10 molars.

How To Get Pass Shih Tzu Teething Phase Easily?

How To Get Pass Shih Tzu Teething Phase Easily
How To Get Pass Shih Tzu Teething Phase Easily

The teething phase in Shih Tzu brings a lot of discomfort and itching. The intensity of toothing discomfort will depend on the type of teeth that is removed if it’s from canines, it won’t cause much pain and discomfort, but if it is a premolar, it will surely nib the Shih Tzu in the bud.

In some cases, your pup might disturb his eating routine. But the urge to chew will not stop him; he will keep chewing all available items as it relieves him.

The job of a pet owner here is to make the toothing face as comfortable as he can for their little friends. But with this, he also must take care of his house and accessories of house.

There are a few ways through which you can make the Shih Tzu teething Phase passes easier. Follow the steps below if you want to pass your Shih Tzu teething phase easily.

Chew Proof Your House:

A teething puppy will try to chew out each thing available in his vicinity, so the first step a pet owner can take is to remove all sorts of temptations and chew-proof the house.

For both reasons, to protect your house items and second, for the easiness of your Shih Tzu, place all the items like shoes, pillows, bags, and shirts out of his reach.

Restrict Access:

You might be thinking that puppies should be given the freedom to move into the house. But it’s not healthier and good for them in the teething phase. Confine your Shih Tzu to a room and keep an eye on him all the time.

Remove all the distractions and allow your puppy to be at your side; let him spend most of his time with you, as it will also be beneficial in building a stronger bond.

Provide Teething Toys:

Once you have stopped your pup from chewing out unnecessary objects, it’s now time to relieve his teething phase.

You can do this by giving your Shih Tzu an appropriate-size enticement toy to him. The toy should have a proper rocky scratching texture but with soft nibs so that it can relieve the discomfort of teething.

Your Positive Feedback:

If your puppy obeys and remains restricted from the things, you had defined for him it’s time to praise him for his good behavior with a reward. But do make sure not to reward him with any treatment that can lead to oral issues.

Moreover, if he hadn’t obeyed your command, you must be patient; you can only say a louder “No” to gain their attention and remind them that this was not to be done.

Afterwards, you can simply redirect their attention.

How To Clean Shih Tzu Teeth?

How To Clean Shih Tzu Teeth?
How To Clean Shih Tzu Teeth?

The best practice you can start for increasing the life span of your Shih Tzu is starting with taking proper care of their teeth cleaning.

Proper teeth cleaning routine will include some in-home dental care practices with periodic professional vet dental cleansings.

Without proper tooth cleansing, a Shih Tzu can suffer various terrible oral health consequences. The best practices to clean your Shih Tzu teeth include regular brushing, dental sprays, and Dental Chews.

We will discuss the professional vet dental cleaning routine here and the brushing and other alternatives.

The Most Common Vet “Full Dental” Cleaning Includes:

  • First Visual Oral Inspection is carried out to check for health issues.
  • X-rays of the oral cavity are taken to see the teeth, muscles, and surrounding bones.
  • X-rays are observed to see any signs of oral diseases.
  • Flushes are fed to kill bacteria, and then dental probes are inserted between the gums and teeth.
  • Using ultrasonic scalers, plaque and tartar between the teeth are removed.
  • A plaque guard agent is applied, and teeth are polished for future prevention.

The method is vulnerable and includes UV and X-rays exposure, so it is usually done to clean the oral region fully. It is usually done after every 2-3 years.

How To Brush Shih Tzu Teeth?

It is always better to start caring for your Shih Tzu teeth as soon as you take them to your home. Puppies at an early stage should be trained and familiar with showing their mouth and teeth and brushing them.

It will take time to make your Shih Tzu familiar with the brushing but once he starts getting comfortable with it, he would love it afterwards.

For brushing Shih Tzu teeth, never use human toothpaste as they have Fluorides and Xylitol, a tooth flavoring agent which is toxic to be used for dogs.

Dogs also swallow lots of toothpaste while brushing, so you must use a vet-recommended dog toothpaste to avoid any future problems.

What Would be Needed for Brushing Shih Tzu Teeth?

A regular toothbrush recommended by the vet can be a perfect choice. For the sake of simplicity, you can also use a rubber finger-fixtured brush that can easily fit over your index finger.

Do make sure that you buy a brush that has soft teeth, and normally dogs’ toothbrushes are smaller than that of humans.

You can also use gauze or a dental wipe wrapped around the finger for brushing your Shih Tzu teeth; these are not many effective methods.

A simple brushing kit for a Shih Tzu shall include a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental serum, and a finger brush.

Alternative of Toothbrush for Shih Tzu Teeth Care

Some Shih Tzu may not like toothbrushes and may put you in trouble while brushing their teeth. But still, in that regard, we can’t leave behind and deny the importance of dental hygiene.

Some owners scrap out their Shih Tzu teeth themselves, which helps keep them in great shape and prevent diseases. The second alternative is to use a dental plaque remover.

It gives a sudden jerk and can also cause pain, so it’s better to leave this alternative to be done by a vet or under his supervision specifically.

Using A Dental Spray:

Dental sprays are not as effective as brushing, but they can still clean out the Shih Tzu’s teeth. The dental spray has more accessibility to all different parts of the mouth and tongue, so they are good for oral health.

Dental sprays are additive cleaners sprayed directly onto the teeth, ideally once or twice daily. While choosing a dental spray, you must make sure your spray should contain Denta-C, which helps to kill bacteria and reduces plaque formation.

Use of Water Additives:

Water additives are liquid and don’t take much contact because of their fluidized nature, so the vet recommends them less. But are still used to clean Shih Tzu teeth.

Water additives are tasteless, so most Shih Tzu just accept them on their first go. These water additives are used in a proportion of 1 tablespoon for every 32 ounces of water.

Dental Chews:

Offering one dental chew every day to your pup can keep their teeth healthy and clean. These can treat a lot of gum and tooth discomfort. These dental chews remove away plaques due to their consistency and secondarily shape.

But their hard nature also needs your supervision; you must make sure your pup doesn’t break them or toss them out.

They are available in different sizes like teenie is for small dogs weighing 5-15 lbs, and petite is for larger dogs of weight up to 20lbs.

They are available in various refreshing and loving flavors and are also weight controller and gain-free dental chews. You can find them at the nearest vet store’s dental section.

How Often Should A Shih Tzu Get Teeth Clean?

A dog like Shih Tzu is more prone to dental and oral health issues like Yorkies and malocclusion, so to prevent and protect your Shih Tzu from getting affected by these diseases, we recommend proper tooth cleaning.

One should clean his Shih Tzu’s teeth every day at the end of meals with simple brushing. And it is necessary to clean after every week with grooming. If your pup has some oral disease, then contact your vet for the frequency of cleansing.

Besides that, regular oral care, brushing, and cleansing, if you opt for a full dental clean, is recommended after every 3-3 years.

Why Do Adult Shih Tzu Loose Teeth?

Puppies lose teeth during their teething stage. But the loss of teeth in adult Shih Tzu is a matter of concern. An adult Shih Tzu will lose his teeth if he is bad at dental health and is affected by severe health issues.

It might happen that the Shih Tzu has chewed some hard object because of which he lost his teeth. It is normal, but it is a major health concern if you start noticing excessive tooth loss.

Therefore, if your adult Shih Tzu is excessively losing his teeth, you must schedule an appointment with the vet. Shih Tzu might be affected by periodontal disease or some tooth decay. In both cases, poor dental hygiene serves as the main reason.

Final Words

Shih Tzu is one of the friendlier adorable lapdog breeds. The puppies also have milky teeth; they lose them and upgrade to adult teeth as they grow up.

The teething period is painful and brings discomfort; if your pups undergo the same, follow our strategy to make this process comfortable. Effective teeth cleansing can lead to good oral health and prevent your puppy from various diseases.

With proper brushing, you can ensure that whatever you feed your Shih Tzu, he enjoys it. That was all from our side on Shih Tzu Teeth. If you still have any questions, you can reach out to us; we would love to hear from you.


I am the owner of Shihtzuadvice.com and the proud parent of two black and one gold Shih Tzu's. I belive that the Shih Tzu is the best all-around dog for anyone and want to share with you as much valuable knowledge as possible about this great breed!

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