How To Help Your Shih Tzu Lose Weight

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As a concerned pet owner, you may wonder how you can help your Shih Tzu lose weight. Obesity is a significant problem among pets and can cause various health issues. Shih Tzus are prone to the problem of obesity, especially if they live a sedentary lifestyle, are overfed, or have underlying health issues.

If your Shih Tzu is overweight, it is essential to understand that you should not starve your dog to lose weight. Instead, you need to take a proactive approach that includes proper diet, increased physical activity, and regular veterinary checkups. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to help your Shih Tzu lose weight.


What is causing your Shih Tzu to gain weight?

There are several factors that can contribute to weight gain in dogs. One of the most common causes is overfeeding, where a dog is consuming more calories than they are burning off through exercise and daily activities. Feeding your Shih Tzu too much food or giving them too many treats can lead to weight gain over time.

Lack of exercise can also contribute to weight gain in dogs. If your Shih Tzu is not getting enough physical activity, they may not be burning off enough calories to maintain a healthy weight. Additionally, certain medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism or Cushing’s disease, can cause weight gain in dogs.

If you are concerned about your Shih Tzu’s weight, it’s a good idea to consult with a veterinarian. They can help you determine the underlying cause of your dog’s weight gain and recommend a diet and exercise plan to help your Shih Tzu reach and maintain a healthy weight.


How to identify if your Shih Tzu is overweight?

There are a few ways to identify if your Shih Tzu is overweight:

  1. Body Condition Score: One way to assess if your Shih Tzu is overweight is to use a body condition score chart, which rates a dog’s body condition on a scale of 1 to 9. A score of 4 or 5 is ideal, indicating that the dog has a healthy weight and body condition. If your Shih Tzu scores a 6 or higher, they may be overweight or obese.
  2. Visual assessment: You can also visually assess your Shih Tzu’s weight. You should be able to feel your dog’s ribs without pressing hard, and you should see a waistline when looking down at your dog from above. If your Shih Tzu appears round or oval-shaped, they may be overweight.
  3. Weighing your dog: Regularly weighing your Shih Tzu is another way to monitor their weight. If you notice a steady increase in their weight over time, they may be overweight.

If you are concerned about your Shih Tzu’s weight, it is always best to consult with your veterinarian. They can help you develop a plan to manage your dog’s weight and ensure they stay healthy.


What food does your Shih Tzu need?

The first step to getting your dog’s weight under control is to choose the right food. Shih Tzus, like other dogs, require a diet that is high in protein. They should also get a mix of vegetables and healthy carbs to provide them with the necessary nutrients. You should look for dog food that is low in carbs, has moderate fat, high in protein, and contains the necessary vitamins and minerals. Avoid table scraps, overfeeding, and high-calorie treats.


How to monitor your Shih Tzu’s food intake?

Keep track of how much food you are feeding your dog daily. Avoid free-feeding as it results in your dog eating too much food. Instead, establish a feeding routine, depending on your dog’s age, weight, and activity levels, and give them the recommended serving size. Water should always be available for your dog.


Can exercise help your Shih Tzu lose weight?

Physical exercise is vital for your Shih Tzu to lose weight. It helps your dog burn off calories and keep their muscles toned. Take your dog out for a walk daily and play with them. Engage your pooch in toys and puzzles to make them more active; for example, use an interactive treat ball rather than a food bowl.


How quickly can your Shih Tzu lose weight?

Shih Tzus can take weeks or even months to lose weight, depending on their current size, age, and metabolism. However, it is essential to be patient and strive for steady weight loss. Drastic weight loss can cause health issues, including malnutrition and loss of muscle mass. The target should be to lose 1% to 2% of a dog’s body weight per week until they reach their ideal weight.



In conclusion, helping your Shih Tzu lose weight requires patience, discipline, and commitment. Consult your vet on the best options for your dog, monitor their food intake, and maintain a regular exercise routine. Remember to keep your Shih Tzu motivated, treat them as part of the family, and provide them with an environment that encourages healthy habits. With a little love, attention, and effort, you can help your Shih Tzu lose weight and become healthier and happier.

Carol Jones

Carol Jones

Owner of the cutest shih tzu on earth

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