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zoe August 5th, 2004 09:18 AM

shih tzus' back problems
Hello all, I was wondering if anyone has a shih tzu that has experienced back problems, specifically some paralysis.
My dog was having trouble walking around, jumping and was just not herself for the last day or two. Upon taking her to the vet we were told (without having taken x-rays) that the dog either had some paralysis in her spine or had an enflamed joint on her left back side.
The vet also said that this was normal??? for shih tzus. I've searched all over the net and can't find a single thing about this.
Has anyone out there experienced something similar? If my dog's appetite is normal (better than ever, actually), she's wagging her tail constantly but is having a hard time walking, is this paralysis???
-please help...thanks!


sammiec August 5th, 2004 09:26 AM

I would consult another vet. During your visit the vet should have taken an x-ray to confirm their diagnosis. I could be wrong, but that doesn't seem very professional to me....

I have never heard of paralysis being "normal" for a shi-tzu!!

shihtzulover August 5th, 2004 09:50 AM

I have never read anything about that before. We did a ton of reading before we got our Shih Tzu puppy and no place ever said anything like that.

goldenblaze August 14th, 2004 01:33 PM

I have never heard of Shih Tzu with any problem like that. :confused: I have had two my Buster lived to be 12 he was a overweight boy that I rescued at 6 yrs of age even though he was large for this bred he never acted like that. My 4 yr old Jordie is fine aswell, if I were you I would again go to the Dr and get some real answers start with a X-ray that would really help. Let us know what you find out please :)

Miracle54 June 25th, 2009 03:17 PM

Back Problems with Shih-Tzus
I have had two of these babies with back issues. My vet performs a bit of chiropractic treatments, and Little Bob also gets pain killers when the problem is severe. He also takes a vitamin supplement that has helped A LOT. We are better at being able to notice when he is having an issue before it gets severe so we limit his activity by either crating or gating him in a room. He is NOT allowed to go up or down stairs at all anymore. Like your dog, he eats perfectly fine when this happens, so that isn't really an indicator of the problem. You can just tell by watching how he moves.

Good luck with your doggie. I wouldn't trade mine for the world, and would do anything to help him.


normlee April 5th, 2011 10:06 PM

Zoe. Yes my Shih tzu had back problem. She was 7 yrs old and loved to jump down off high places to meet the mailman etc. This past Monday she jumped once to often. She ruptured her spine middle of her back and became completely paralized from there back. It was such a sad sight, she put her head to the sky and begged for help. The vet said there was nothing we could do but put her to sleep. He said it is a weekness in that breed. She was a wonderful dog. If we did anything wrong, it may have been that we let her get a little overweight. So love your wonderful Shih Tzu and pray this never happens to it. normlee

Shaykeija April 5th, 2011 11:18 PM

I have three Shih's and have never had a problem. Then again, I do not let them do stairs, jump of couches or beds. And no they are not coddled, I just trained them to be safe.

I would go see another vet.

cell April 6th, 2011 07:05 AM

Shih Tzu also commonly get the same disease as Dachshund, IVDD. Basically their stature puts too much pressure on the spinal discs and things like jumping and stairs really don't help because of increased impact.
I do not know if they are prone to disc drying/ calcification like Dachshund.

If this IVDD then there is surgery. It is not cheap but it will help and will probably get him mobile again. If he is still using the back end some he probably didn't rupture a disc, but maybe herniated it. This may be difficult to see on X-ray. If you have a local veterinary school this might be the best place to go, they will have all the technology and knowledge to make a diagnosis and will be able to do surgery at the most affordable price.
ALso make sure he is a proper weight, being overweight increases many joint issues. Also no more jumping up and down, you might want to put in a ramp to the couch.

mikischo April 6th, 2011 08:01 AM

normlee, thank you for sharing your story. My condolences for the loss of your little girl. :grouphug:

:candle: Run free, little one. :candle:

hazelrunpack April 7th, 2011 12:49 PM

normlee, I'm so sorry for your loss :grouphug: My condolences to you and your family.


LittleLucky November 23rd, 2013 08:56 PM

Shih Tzu

I am found this post because I too am on a hunt to find out why my Shih Tzu has back problems!

First off, he is 7 years old and I acquired him from a friend of a friend that was going to put him in a pound because he has a boxer, a pit bull and young children! ??? I said, bring him to me and I will re home him.

Little did I know, he was handicapped! He waddled when he walked, he favored one leg so he was badly twisting to one side, as the cooler weather set in, he stopped walking all together and drug himself by his front legs, he'd end up peeing on himself, he stopped walking upstairs as it grew colder here in Chicago. I took him in for a grooming to have him shaved short so I could see just what was going on with his body stance. After he was shaved at my herbalist, I was told by him that the little guy was raw all over his body and yeast was coming out of all the raw areas on him.

This is what I did!
I feed all my dogs a very well balanced raw dog food diet, I started him on that from the day I got him. He was skin and bones, didn't gain any weight no matter how much I fed him, I also treated this yeast infection, which I later found out was in his ears and eyes! He was raw and bleeding in the folds under his eyes! So, what I did was use 1/2 warm water, 1/2 white vinegar in a large bowl and a rag and just kept squeezing it out of the rag and over his body, as much as 3 times a day! Within 2 weeks he was healed up. As for the raw diet, well, I took him in, in Oct and found as the cold weather set in and he was unable to walk, by Feb we were so cold, there was snow on the ground and he decided to take off running all around the back yard playing in the snow!!! He was also running up the stairs!

When he was examined by my herbalist, I was told that he could have been hit by a car or had some sort of genetic issues. That the vertebras in his spine were way to far apart and seemed to be fused together for some reason.

I do have a very good dog chiropractor that I will be taking him to see soon. He will have to have x rays and I am hoping that he can do some adjustments that will help him!

As of today, one year later, my little handicapped Shih Tzu can run, jump and play... Even when it's freezing outside. I WILL NEVER take him into a vet and allow them to put him on any medications at all!

His raw meat diet and supplements have seem to work wonders on him! He is very happy and healthy! And... He has found his forever home right here with me!

When I asked some professionals why they think he has had such a change they told me, the diet I have him on offers much more for him than the kibble ever could.

hazelrunpack November 24th, 2013 10:41 PM

Sounds like you've done wonders for your little one already, LittleLucky! :D Welcome to the board!

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