symptoms and signs of a sick chihuahua: know when to see a veterinarian!

famous chihuahua editor chihuahua facts, chihuahua health concerns 511 Comments

chihuahua veterinarian

your chihuahua can not explain its symptoms, so it’s your responsibility to keep him or her healthy and to determine whether or not they need veterinary care.  chihuahuas tend to want to hide their illness, so it is up to you to check your chihuahua for abnormalities.

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chihuahau health problems

be prepared: questions your veterinarian may ask

your veterinarian may ask additional questions to help localize or diagnose the problem.  it may help to be prepared to answer some of the following questions:

  • how long have you owned your chihuahua?
  • where did you get your chihuahua (adoption center, breeder, previous stray)?
  • what other type of pets do you have?
  • what is the age of your chihuahua?
  • has your chihuahua experienced any previous illnesses?
  • is your chihuahua currently under treatment for an illness or disease?
  • what preventative medications is your chihuahua currently taking?
  • does your chihuahua receive consistent flea treatment?
  • are any other pets ill?
  • has he/she been vaccinated? if so, when? which vaccines?
  • have there been any recent pet acquisitions?
  • have there been any recent activities such as boarding, grooming, trip to the park?
  • is a majority of your chihuahua’s time spent indoors or outdoors?
  • have there been any recent changes in diet or eating habits?
  • what brand of food, how much and how frequently does your chihuahua eat?
  • what type of table scraps are offered and how frequently?
  • what type of treats are offered and how frequently?
  • how much water does your chihuahua typically drink per day?
  • have there been any recent changes in water consumption?
  • have you noticed any coughing or sneezing?
  • have you noticed any lumps or bumps on your chihuahua?
  • is your chihuahua urinating normally?
  • Is your dog having normal bowel movements?
  • when is the last time he/she had a bowel movement?
  • have you noticed any recent weight loss or weight gain?

after answering some general questions, more specific questions need to be answered.  a brief cursory exam of your chihuahua at home can help you determine the answers.  these questions are also commonly asked when chihuahua owners are seeking help over the phone.

know when to take your chihuahua to see a veterinarian!

be prepared to answer the following questions, depending on the problem with your chihuahua:

regarding the eyes

  • have you noticed an increase or decrease in tear production?
  • do the eyes appear cloudy or red?
  • have you noticed any discharge coming from the eyes?
  • do the eyes appear bloodshot?
  • are the pupils the same size in both eyes?
  • have you noticed your chihuahua rubbing or pawing at the eyes?
  • is your chihuahua squinting?
  • do the eyes appear to be sunken or excessively protruding?

regarding the ears

  • do you notice any swelling or discharge from the ears?
  • are the ears drooping when they normally stand erect?
  • are the ears red and inflamed?
  • do you notice any odor to the ears?
  • is your chihuahua rubbing or pawing at the ears?
  • have you noticed a lot of head shaking?
  • have you noticed any pain or crying when you rub or scratch your chihuahua’s ears?

regarding the nose

  • have you noticed any congestion, sneezing or coughing?
  • have you noticed any blood coming from the nose?
  • have you noticed any nasal discharge?

regarding the mouth

  • have you noticed any swelling of the lips or tongue?
  • have you noticed any bleeding from the mouth?
  • what color are the gums – tissue just above the teeth?

looking inside the mouth

  • are there any foreign objects such as bones or sticks stuck on the roof of the mouth or around the teeth?
  • is your chihuahua able to open and close the mouth normally?
  • is there any pain involved in opening or closing the mouth?
  • have you noticed any excessive drooling or foaming at the mouth?
  • is your chihuahua able swallow food normally?

regarding the chest

  • is your chihuahua experiencing any difficulty breathing?
  • have you noticed excessive panting?
  • is there any pain when the chest area is petted?
  • have you noticed any recent coughing?
  • is the heartbeat steady and consistent?
  • what is the heart rate?

place your hand or your ear on the left side of your chihuahua’s chest, just behind the elbow.  you should be able to feel or hear the heartbeat. count how many beats the heart pumps in one minute.

regarding the abdomen/stomach area

  • has your chihuahua been having any diarrhea or vomiting?
  • is your chihuahua able to eat and drink normally?
  • does the abdomen/stomach area appear swollen or distended?
  • does your chihuahua appear to be in pain when the stomach area is petted?
  • is your chihuahua known to chew on non-food items such as clothing, towels, rocks, or other items?

regarding the urinary and reproductive systems

  • have you noticed any difference in urinating?
  • does your chihuahua seem to strain to urinate or cry in pain?
  • does your chihuahua repeatedly try to urinate with no urine produced?
  • is there any blood in the urine?
  • how frequently does your chihuahua urinate?
  • is your female chihuahua spayed?
  • has your female ever had puppies? if so, at what age?
  • if your female is not spayed, when was her last heat cycle and was she bred?
  • do you notice any discharge from the vaginal area?
  • is your male chihuahua neutered? if so, at what age?
  • do you notice any discharge from the penis?
  • if your chihuahua is not neutered, do you notice any swelling of the testicles?
  • have you noticed your chihuahua excessively licking or grooming the genital area?

regarding the musculoskeletal system – bones and joints

  • have you noticed any limping?
  • are any legs or joints swollen?
  • has your chihuahua been excessively licking at one area of his/her legs?
  • does your chihuahua show signs of pain when walking?
  • is your chihuahua able to walk normally?
  • does your chihuahua walk on his/her knuckles?
  • does your chihuahua drag any legs when walking?
  • does your chihuahua seem to be in pain when petting him or her?

by supplying the answers these questions, your veterinarian will be in a much better position to help your chihuahua.  additional tests may be necessary to find out what the problem is, but the answers to the above questions can greatly narrow the area of concern.

chihuahua with veterinarian

please note that famous chihuahua is providing this information to chihuahua owners as a guide so you know when to take your chihuahua to see your veterinarian.  if at any time your chihuahua is showing signs or symptoms of illness and discomfort, don’t wait, just go the vet!

“get solutions to chihuahua health problems in an ebook delivered right to your inbox!”

the amazing ebook, caring for chihuahuas made easy, breed information, health care and nutrition teaches you about common chihuahua health problems and how to properly care for your chihuahua!  it also teaches you the secret to making your chihuahua live longer!

below is a sample page from the section on chihuahua health!

signs and symptoms of a sick chihuahua


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Comments 511

  1. Gill

    Sesley Finley
    November 4, 2016 at 4:15 am “it started three days ago he’s been acting strange not like himself at all he’s having trouble walking and he seems as if it’s painful to lay he kinda just gets all stiff and he seems kinda lost and he won’t look at you when you call his name to him and he shakes but these symptoms only come in hourly episodes”

    Sesley, my old girl is experiencing very similar…yours is an older post. what was the outcome please

  2. Gill

    my old girl is 14, woke in the night screaming in pain, we rushed heer to the vets 4.30 am..they said she was constipated.. kept her in 24 hours ,, cleared her, meds for home.. Next day, whimpering on moment when she woke up so we took her back,, they said bloodwork ok.. pulse and temp ok.. she was fine.. today on waking, she was guarded , slow moving and cried a little.. once she got going she was ok… shes has had a usual two hour nap after food and woke up screaming again… only for short periods but its heartbreaking… we got her moving , took her outside to pee and she came in on her own but not walking properly. she doesn’t want cuddles, and she wants to just lay on a floor bed , not her usual be with mom 24/7 just called vets again.. no reason they said for that behavior unless we go MRI ive paid $1700 in three days..any clues from anyone what could be going on..I’ve had her two years, she was a rescue

  3. Kaleigh Deskins

    My miniature chihuahua is 4 years old and has started losing TONS of weight to the point where I can see her ribs and backbone also she is always drowsy / tired and sleeps all day and when she pops she screams to the top of her lungs but we don’t give her table scraps and she eats her food but it seems like no matter what I do she won’t get better and I am very worried that there is something wrong with her but her vet puts her on the same medication every time we take her

  4. Diane Bolton

    I have an 8 will old Toy Chihuahua, he plays around but not as often as he can. He pukes up clear like mucus and seems like he’s choking on it sometimes..then he just lays down afterwards. You can tell he’s not feeling well because he just whines and whimpers. Help, I don’t have money for vet..

  5. Steve

    Mickey is a 12 yo male who can’t seem to hold down food, vomits his food up within 1-2 hrs after eating causing weight loss. His vomit is always a greenish liquid with whatever he ate. HELP

  6. DeAnn Fykes

    Our 10 year old chihuahua stopped eating 2 1/2 days ago. She drank some water but it came back up in less than a minute. She has been throwing up yellow bile for the last two days and the first day it was more thick. Everything seems normal but she just lays around. She is an inside dog.

  7. Christine Ames

    I have an elderly chihuahua (18) she usually will walk outside with me ..but now out of the blue she cant walk..and is screaming in breathy sounds i know shes hurt bad..i took her to a vet and he wants to charge me 500 dollars to do x-rays..i just need to know if she snapped a bone ftom walking or WHAT could be the reason for her pain? She loves life and i dont want to put her to sleep ..i will if i need to though..because i love her so much..but before such drastic measures are taken i need to know what i can do to help her

  8. George

    Our 9 year old chihuahua stoped eating 2 1/2 days ago.She tried to drink some water but it
    Came up in about 2-3 minuets, also throwing up a yellow bile.
    Her chest seems to larger than normal, if we put outside now she will
    Just lay down, that’s all she is doing now. Breathing slow and shallow.

  9. Ramiza

    My 1 yr old chihuahua started acting weird 2 hours ago, i let him outside he pooped, came
    Back inside, he was ok for a minute, all of a sudden he got up from the couch moved to another spot, came back again and was just laying there, his eyes seemed tired, he kept them closed, he kept licking his lips and swallowing, he wasnt paying attention to anything i was saying? Does anyone know what this could be? Maybe he was nauseous? This lasted 10 mins and he passed out sleeping

  10. Tilda Butts

    My Chihuahua s eye is sowlen and he seams to want to Squeanch his eyes I can tell he not fillings to good cause he is just laying around I think he might have some fever I need help please

  11. Sue lawrence

    My chihuahua is 3 years old yesterday she started acting like she wants to cough something up. It stops awhile then up again..maybe its something stuck in mouth or. Lung?? Help what do i do?? Limited income..

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