Solid Black Shih Tzu

Black Shih Tzu

According to the American Kennel Club, there are 8 different coat colors for the Shih Tzu, and the Black is definitely one of them alongside brindle, red, silver, liver, gold and white. On top of that, you have multiple color markings and combinations, bringing in a very distinct perspective. But is black a predominant color for a Shih Tzu? What leads to them having the solid black fur color? Let’s find out.

It all comes down to genetics

It’s important to keep in mind the fact that black is the regular eumelanin color. Normally when the dogs is not homozygous for dilution or liver will have black eumelanin. This is one of the main pigments that appear in dogs, and it will be very important when it comes to defining the color. The amount of black depends on the K locus. K(b) will be dominant black, K(br) will be brindle and K(y) will be recessive non-black. Basically, the solid Black Shih Tzu will have the K(b) locus most of the time.

Solid black is a rare color for Shih Tzu

One thing to note is that most Shih Tzu will have some black in their coat. You will see color combinations like white and black, gold toned colors and anything like that. Even black markings can be seen in the case of these dogs, especially those that have a very distinctive, predominant color. Seeing a fully Black Shih Tzu is a rare thing.

The interesting fact is the they will also have black paw pads, eye rims, nose and so on. Because of that, this type of dog stands out of the crowd just because it has such a distinctive and unique color. In most cases, the black color will lighten up while growing. That’s especially true when the Shih Tzu gets older.

It’s important to keep in mind that the Black Shih Tzu is one of those pets that shouldn’t be exposed to direct sunlight for a very long time. They are sensitive, and the black coloring is heavily affected by sunlight. That leads to the coat developing a reddish tone. Thankfully, you can correct it with the right color enhancing shampoo and conditioning.

Black Shih Tzu
Image Credit: @asherisawesome


The Black Shih Tzu is an amazing, rare dog breed that will impress you with its amazing coat coloring and extraordinary features. Yes, this is not your ordinary dog type, and it’s one of the rarest Shih Tzu coat colors out there. That being said, just like any other Shih Tzu they are very playful and a pleasure to be around. However, due to the very specific coat color, the pet can be very sensitive, so it’s important to keep him safe and away from direct sunlight exposure in the long run. In the end this is one of the most impressive Shih Tzu colors, and you will be very happy to own such an amazing animal!

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