Chihuahua health issues, This breed requires expert veterinary attention in areas such as birthing and dental care. Dental care is a must for these small dogs, whose jaw size makes for weaker teeth. Although daily brushing provides the best preventive measure, feeding a dental diet or using dental chews for dogs is effective approach pet owners can take to help prevent and control the accumulation of plaque and tartar to avoid consequences of severe periodontal disease. The best physical characteristics of dog food to contribute to cleaning a dog’s teeth would be food that is large and dense, so more time is spent chewing, which leads to the surface of the teeth being cleaned.
Chihuahuas, and other toy breeds, can be affected by hydrocephalus. Chihuahua puppies with hydrocephalus have an abnormally large head, are lethargic, and do not grow at the same pace as their siblings. A true case of hydrocephalus can be diagnosed by a veterinarian, though the prognosis is grim.
Apple head Chihuahuas can have molars or a soft spot in their skulls, and they are the only breed of dog to be born with an incomplete skull. This is not a defect; it is a normal adaptation facilitating the passage through the birth canal and growth and development of the domed type of forehead. The molars are predominant in the apple heads and are present in nearly all Chihuahua puppies. The molars fill in with age, but great care needs to be taken during the first six months until the skull is fully formed.
Some moles do not close completely and require extra care to prevent injury.
Chihuahua puppies can be at risk for hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). Signs of hypoglycemia include lethargy, sleepiness, uncoordinated walking, unfocused eyes, spasms of the neck muscles or head pulling back or to the side, fainting, and seizures. Hypoglycemia can be avoided with adequate nutrition and frequent feedings, especially for Chihuahuas that are younger, smaller, or leaner. Chihuahua owners should have a simple sugar supplement on hand to use in emergencies, such as Nutri-Cal or corn syrup.
These supplements can be rubbed on the gums and roof of the mouth to rapidly raise the blood sugar level.
However, as with any dog, owners should take care not to overfeed their Chihuahua, since obesity can result in increased rates of joint injuries, tracheal collapse, chronic bronchitis, and shortened lifespan.
As in other breeds with large protruding eyes, Chihuahuas are prone to eye infections and eye injury. The eyes may water in response to dry air, dust, or airborne allergens.
Collapsed trachea is a health concern characteristic of the Chihuahua breed.
Chihuahuas may tremble or shiver when stressed, excited, or cold. These dogs, especially the short coat variety, are less tolerant of cold than larger breeds and require a sweater/coat and/or boots in cold weather. They seek warmth in the sunshine, under blankets, or on furniture, or human laps.
Some Chihuahuas may present separation anxiety as a result of being so close and loyal to their owners. This is a fairly common cause behind any pacing, excessive salivating, destructive chewing, or barking, howling, or whining in dogs. Many treatments and tips can help prevent separation anxiety in dogs.
Chihuahua health issues