HERNIAS IN SHIH~TZU PUPPIES
surrounding tissue. There are numerous types of hernias, each type named after its affected area.
A hernia which can be pushed back into the abdomen is called reducible. Hernias which are not reducible are called
incarcerated. If the blood supply to an incarcerated hernia is pinched off, the hernia becomes strangulated.
A strangulated hernia is an emergency situation and must be brought to the attention of your veterinarian.
The most common types of hernias in Shih~Tzu puppies are: An umbilical hernia is the most common type of hernia
found in puppies. In case of umbilical hernias, a portion of fat or internal organs protrudes through an incompletely
closed umbilical ring.
Umbilical hernias may be present at birth, or may be acquired. The most common means of acquiring an umbilical
Is a result of the umbilical cord, being severed too close to the abdominal wall.
In most cases umbilical hernias are small and reduce as the puppy grows. Generally, by the time the pup is six
The umbilical hernia will shrink and disappear on its own. An inguinal hernia is the result of abdominal organs, fat or
tissue protruding through the inguinal ring. Inguinal hernias are presented as skin-covered bulges in the groin.
They can be bi-lateral, involving both sides and unilateral, involving only one side. Inguinal hernias are more common
in females than males, but do occur in both sexes. As with umbilical hernias, most inguinal hernias will shrink and
disappear as the puppy grows. Inguinal hernias can also occur in un-spaded, middle-aged female dogs. This may
occur as the result of stretching of abdominal tissue due to pregnancy. Pinched Nostrils: Shih~Tzu puppies often
have slightly pinched nostrils that generally open with time. The bubbly discharge from a Shih~Tzu puppy’s nose is
NOT serious. If the discharge is clear, watery, and the dog is otherwise thriving. This problem is most acute
during the teething stage. Even the nostrils of a dog that has difficulty simultaneously eating and breathing or is
lethargic at this time may open satisfactorily as the dog matures, but a few dogs this severely affected may
require surgery later. Pinched nostrils and teething go together.
Some puppies in this breed experience teething trouble. The noses swell and pinch off some and they may have a
little clear discharge. They make some snorting and snuffling sounds. They will usually outgrow this after the adult
teeth come in.
As long as they are playful and active and eating and drinking well, they are OK. If they can’t eat or drink well and
are lethargic or the discharge changes color, they may have developed infection and need to be checked and
Most Shih Tzu pups are fine after adult teeth have come in. As long as pups are eating and drinking well and can
play, they are fine. The official book of this breed recommends not letting any surgery, be done until after adult
teeth are in.
As most will then resolve. Many Shih~Tzu puppies nose’s will become tight during the teething phase.
It will often cause them to snort and mouth breath. This will go away usually around 12-16 weeks of age sometimes
It is very different than Steno tic Nacres (Pinched Nostrils) which is noticed from birth.