Like all pets, Tibetan Spaniels have their share of health problems. With proper breeding and nutrition, many of these problems can be avoided. It is always a good idea to ask the Tibetan Spaniel breeder what they test for prior to breeding. Finding a good veterinarian is also important.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA) has a wonderful website that should answer most of the questions you have about your pet’s health.
Among the less serious health problems a Tibetan Spaniel is susceptible to is allergies. This is not unique to Tibbies as allergies appear to be on the rise among all dogs. Things to be on the lookout for are very similar to human allergies symptoms such as watery eyes and scratching. Probably the number one allergic reaction among all dogs is to fleas. The dogs are allergic not to the bite, but the flea saliva. In most cases, allergies are is easily treatable with proper diet and flea prevention.
Isoflourane is probably one of the safest anesthesia available. The recovery time is very quick and there is almost no groggy after effects. Some vets feel Tibbies use very little anesthesia for their weights, hence their “sensitivity”. An overdose can be fatal. To minimize the risk of anesthesia, your vet can do tests to screen for potential problems prior to any surgery or procedure. Tips
Hip and elbow dysplasia are more commonly found in the large breed dogs. There have been a few rare incidents among Tibetan Spaniels. For more information, check with The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals, Inc. Check your dogs parents pedigrees for potential problems.
Poisonous Plants and Medicines
There are many plants and medications around your home that can be very toxic or even deadly to your pet. Plants such as oleander, azaleas, rhododendrons, poinsettias and Japanese yews are just a few of the common plants that can pose a threat to your dog’s health. It is a good idea to keep all medications, gardening supplies and questionable plants out of reach from your pet. Visit the Training Your Puppy page for tips on making your house safe for your pets.
A few members of the Tibetan Spaniel Global Village have been unfortunate enough to have their dog meet up with a skunk. Many agree that plain tomato juice will work.
One of the best methods to de-skunk your dog is to wash him/her with the following mixture:
- One quart hydrogen peroxide
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- Teaspoon of dishwashing detergent
Contributed by Jacki Scarborough
Many of your local pet stores as well as many of your online pet stores have products specifically aimed at taming some of the worst pet odors.
As our pets begin to age, they are affected by many of the same problems their owners face as they age. Articular cartilage plays an important role in optimal joint function. As they age, sometimes cartilage loses its ability to replenish itself. The most common supplement recommended is Cosequin.
A portosystemic shunt is an abnormal vessel that allows blood to bypass the liver. As a result the blood is not cleansed by one of the bodies filters: the liver. This condition is often referred to as a “liver shunt”.
What are the signs?
Most shunts cause recognizable by the time a dog is a young adult but once in a while one is diagnosed at a later time in life. Since the severity of the condition can vary widely depending on how much blood flow is diverted past the liver it is possible for a lot of variation in clinical signs & time of onset for the signs to occur. Often, this condition is recognized after a puppy fails to grow, making an early diagnosis pretty common.
- Abnormal behavior after eating
- Pacing and aimless wandering
- Pressing the head against the wall
- Episodes of apparent blindness
- Seizures Poor weight gain
- Stunted growth
- Excessive sleeping and lethargy
- Straining to urinate due to bladder stone formation
- Patient with a shunt may have many clinical signs and some have only a single clinical sign
- Some dogs do not show signs until they are older
For more detailed information please visit Vet Surgery Central, Inc.
Check your dogs parents pedigree to make sure there is not a history of Liver Shunt.
Progressive nephropathy (PNP) is a progressive renal disease (gr. nefros – kidney; pathos – suffering) caused by a congenital underdevelopment of the kidneys. Cases have been described in several breeds in different countries.
Dogs born with severe PNP begin showing signs of the disease at 2-6 months of age. Dogs with a less severe defect can sometimes live without symptoms for 4-6 years. Symptoms of kidney failure are increased thirst and urine output, reduced appetite and wasting. In later stages there will be urine poisoning with vomiting, diarrhea and dehydration. Renal impairment is diagnosed through blood and urine samples. PNP is suspected when an ultrasound examination of a dog with renal failure indicates abnormally small and bumpy kidneys. Positive diagnosis is made by microscopic examination of renal tissue.
Genetic studies of Shih Tzus have indicated a recessive inheritance. Breeding practices should follow the principles for elimination of a recessive predisposition. There have been verified cases in the Cocker Spaniel, Lhasa Apso, Shih Tzu, Tibetan Spaniel and Tibetan Terrier breeds by the Swedish Kennel Club (SKK).
More Information on PNP, visit Optigen.