The Shih Tzu is a pretty “adult” breed. Its representatives are classified as centenarians due to the fact that they quite often live up to 15-17 years. This is explained by the fact that due to their small size, metabolic processes in their bodies are much slower. However, the Shih Tzu, like all other dogs, can get sick. We will find out with what complaints these pets are most often brought to veterinarians.
Shih Tzu Diseases
Most of the emerging pathologies in Shih Tzu are associated with the specifics of their anatomy and exterior. In addition, often problems arise with the skin and hair, heart, spine. Let’s consider the most common examples:
Diseases Associated with Coat
In case of improper care of the coat, the Shih Tzu increases the risk of developing:
Abscesses. It is very difficult to notice the initial stage of abscess development under the thick coat of these dogs. It can even form from a small wound or scratch into which the infection that caused the inflammation has penetrated. It is impossible to open an abscess at home. But if there is no way to go to the veterinarian, you can try to alleviate the suffering of the pet. To do this, the abscess is opened and the wound is washed with antiseptic solutions, peroxide. But to do without a doctor in this case still will not work.
Parasite infestation. A long luxurious Shih Tzu coat becomes a real bait for fleas and ticks. It is possible to avoid infection with parasites of this kind only with the help of special drops, shampoos, collars. Do not forget that bloodsuckers are considered carriers of dangerous diseases.
Dandruff. A similar problem can be triggered by improper nutrition or the use of inappropriate care products. It is easy to remove the manifestations of dandruff. It is enough to find and eliminate the provoking factor. If it continues, you can use special shampoos to help get rid of dandruff.
Ear diseases. Long hair grows inside the ears of these dogs. If you do not regularly clean your hearing organs and do not cut the regrown hairs, this can cause serious problems. Such as inflammation, infections, ulcers.
Regular grooming will help to avoid these problems. It can be carried out both at home and in the salon.
Diseases that Develop Due to the Peculiarities of the Structure of the Skull
The Shih Tzu, like most dogs of Chinese descent, has a flat muzzle. It looks very attractive, but it also brings a lot of problems. So, due to the unusual structure of the skull, Shih Tzu can face the following problems:
Diseases of the eyes. Quite often, representatives of this breed injure the eyes. Due to the fact that the eyeballs are located outside the cranium, they can also fall out. The Shih Tzu is more likely to develop conjunctivitis than other dogs. In addition, in these dogs, the tendency to eye diseases can be transmitted at the genetic level. These include cataracts, eversion of the eyelid, retinal atrophy.
Diseases of the teeth. Due to the short jaws and short nose, Shih Tzu’s teeth can fall out prematurely. Because of this, more stones are deposited on them, periodontitis develops more often.
To minimize the risks of problems with your pet’s eyes and teeth, careful handling, and regular preventive examinations will help.
Other Shih Tzu Health Problems
In addition to the above diseases, dogs of the Shih Tzu breed can face spinal injuries, heart disease. Both the first and the second problems can provoke the early death of a pet. Sometimes the dog may be left paralyzed due to injury. As for the heart, the weakening of its muscle may be the reason for surgery.
Atopy is also characteristic of the representatives of this breed. The tendency to this type of allergic reaction can be inherited. Food allergy manifests itself in the form of itching, flaking, redness of the skin.
It is impossible to avoid health problems without the attention and care of the owner. Shih Tzu will be able to live a long and healthy life only in the case of a careful and reverent attitude towards it.