Do the Colors of the Shih Tzu's Coat Change Sometimes?

by Naomi Millburn, Demand Media
    "My puppy coat was a little darker than this."

    "My puppy coat was a little darker than this."

    Although most dogs usually have the same color fur for their entire lives, the same cannot necessarily be said about Shih Tzus, the uber-fluffy toy dogs from China. If your Shih Tzu puppy is a certain color on one given day, there's no assurance it'll stay the same the next.

    Maturity and Coat Color Change

    Shih Tzu coat changes usually don't occur at random. They typically occur when Shih Tzus are about to become adults -- around 12 months in age. It's common for their coats to become paler, and at the same time, it's also common for them to darken. Note, too, that this color change doesn't take place in any and all Shih Tzus. You could bring a bouncing Shih Tzu puppy home, expect his fur color to change -- only for it never to do so.

    No Change in Black and White

    Not all color schemes of young Shih Tzus change, however. Shih Tzus born with white and black fur are the sole exception in this situation. If a Shih Tzu enters the world with this specific coloration, he's going to stay that way for good.

    Shih Tzu Colors

    As far as the color spectrum goes, Shih Tzus pretty much run the gamut. Some Shih Tzus are entirely one color, while others are multi-colored. Some color schemes available in the breed are white and red, off-white, black, blue, golden, white and silver, gray, white and golden and reddish-brown. Certain colors, like blue, are a lot less common than others. With Shih Tzus, it's helpful to remember refrain from using fur coloring as a determining factor regarding which puppy you want to bring home. Remember, the puppy you select could start out black only to appear a lot more grayish in just a few short months.

    Coat Texture

    You can never be 100 percent sure about a young Shih Tzu's eventual "permanent" coloring, but you can usually be sure about one thing -- his future coat texture. With proper grooming and regular maintenance, Shih Tzus often possess lengthy, sumptuous and thick fur, either straight or a little wavy. It's crucial to comb or brush Shih Tzu coats every day, beginning during the puppy stage.

    About the Author

    Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

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