Common Chihuahua Health Problems


For the most part, Chihuahuas are a healthy breed, and your Chihuahua will live to be anywhere from 15 to 22 years of age. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t any health concerns that you must be aware of. As with any breed of dog, there are certain health risks associated with Chihuahuas, as well as genetic disorders that you should be aware of.

Hydrocephalus is one genetic disorder that Chihuahuas are subject to. This is essentially a condition where there is too much fluid on the brain, causing the head to be rather large. It is a fatal condition. Chihuahuas are also born with an incomplete skull, which creates a soft spot right on top of their heads. Getting hit in this spot could kill the dog. Some Chihuahua’s skulls will close over time, while others will never fully close.

Hypoglycemia is another health condition that you should be aware of, as it can lead to coma or death. Hypoglycemia is essentially low blood sugar. These dogs have an incredibly high metabolism, and if they are not fed properly – or often enough – they can suffer from low blood sugar.

Chihuahuas have protruding eyes, and this combined with the fact that they are so close to the ground leads to eye problems. These eye problems and infections are usually caused by foreign objects in the eye. Any sign of redness in the eyes should be thoroughly investigated, and veterinary care should be sought to avoid eye infections.

Obesity is another health concern. Proper nutrition is essential to the Chihuahua’s good health. Check with your veterinarian to ensure that you are not over feeding your Chihuahua, or feeding him foods that will lead to obesity.

Many new Chihuahua owners wonder about the trembling or shivering that they see in their Chihuahuas. This is seldom due to any health problems. In fact, in most cases, it means that the Chihuahua is full of energy that he needs to expend, or that he is simply cold.

When a Chihuahua is giving birth, professional health care should be sought. This is very important because these dogs are so small that losing the mother or the pups is not uncommon. Chihuahuas should never give birth unassisted.

Make absolutely sure that you and your Chihuahua visit your veterinarian at least twice a year for a checkup. This is the best way to prevent many health problems, and to detect other health problems in the early stages, so that successful treatment can take place. With proper care, your Chihuahua will live a long and healthy life.

27 Comments on "Common Chihuahua Health Problems"

  1. Stephen Frost | August 28, 2014 at 12:39 pm |

    A friend has a 4 year old Chihuahua who is overweight but still very active until the past few days when he just lies down all the time and has to be encouraged to move and even carried outside. He had something similar about 2 years ago in fact it was even worse and appeared to have had a stroke and didn’t appear to be able to move, he was nursed around the clock and had frequent visits to the vet and tests done and they could not find what was wrong. He was the runt of the litter when he was born and was given the kiss of live to revive him. He is very affectionate and always makes a fuss of me when i visit. His muscles seem very tight when touched and he trembles if picked up. Any idea’s anyone ?

  2. brandie foster | September 18, 2014 at 12:50 am |

    We have a chihuahua and her holds his head side ways and stumbles wat can u tel me a out that

  3. brandie foster | September 18, 2014 at 1:04 am |

    We found a stray

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  5. Your chihuahua could have an inner ear issue that is making it off balance.

  6. I have a 7 year old chihuahua she has never been bred . in the last couple days she has been producing milk .she is never around other dogs so she can’t be pregnant .is this normal and what causes this to happen

  7. I just went through this with my 10 year old chihuahua. It is called a pseudo-pregnancy. My vet told me to get her fixed because her hormones were out of balance and may lead to her getting pyomerta. But the false pregnancy is normal.

  8. My sisters chihuahua is overweight. Do they have cardiac problems?

  9. I’ve just become adopted nana for Chihuahua , but he appears to have a very smelly aroma we are bafiled to what is course ?

  10. Patricia you Chihuahua may need to ha e it’s anal glands emptied. When they get full sometimes they can not empty them on their own.

  11. My Chihuahua is almost 4 years old. He gets really excited and runs in circles and always goes counter clockwise. Is this healthy that he is always running in circles?? And his eyes are normal but sometimes they get really huge and look like there about to pop out.. should i go get him checked? There multi colored and sometime turn red also.

  12. Candy Cook | March 1, 2017 at 4:38 pm |

    I have a long haired red coat Chihuahua who is allergic to fleas.She is a rescue dog, and believe that she is about 5 years old. We use frontline, and the vet gave us prednisone 5 mg tablets. she continues to chew on herself and on her back area she has chewed it so much it is naked. I have used
    aloe vera on her but she still chews. is there any other medication that we can purchase to help her stop chewing? We give her baths about two times a month. In our area (Pendleton, Oregon). this flea problem has gone rampant this year. We do have a cat, who is outside a lot, and we also use frontline for cats on her. This spring we have arranged to have our yard sprayed and hopefully that will resolve this issue… but right now our dog is uncomfortable.

  13. Karen Prior | March 2, 2017 at 3:12 pm |

    My 9 yr old chihauhau threw up 2 days ago at night, and next day wont eat walks strange and no bowel moment. She at little by hand liverwaurst and 2 hrs later threw it up and green bile. She is drinking. Is this serious?

  14. jeannette hale | March 5, 2017 at 11:32 pm |

    will not eat or drink. 8 yr. old Chihuahua. urine not yellow but clear with black flakes.

  15. jeannette hale | March 5, 2017 at 11:36 pm |

    very weak. bad smell to urine.

  16. AILEEN JIMENO | June 11, 2017 at 9:54 am |

    My precious Apple, 1 yr. old female chihuahua, died yesterday. Took her to a vet & got hospitalized for 3 days. CBC, fecalysis, blood chem, including parvo test were done but the doctor found nothing. She had been in so much pain. She had to hold her breath to stand the pain caused by diarhea. She wouldn’t eat nor drink. We are all still puzzled with what really the disease she had. I started blaming myself somehow. I really, really love Apple. I am broken-hearted beyond belief. There are other more things to say but what’s the point when she’s gone. Please take good care of you precious sweethearts.

  17. My 10 year old female chihuahua has stopped during her back legs she was limping on one took her the vets and they daid could be arthritis gave me pain killers and now both hind legs won’t work

  18. Can someone please tell me about my female Chihuahua. She has a head coming out of her nipple she is not in any pain and she acts normal and eats normally.. Can someone tell me what this is?

  19. Thomas Guttadauro | March 29, 2018 at 5:51 pm |

    my male Chihuahua has an enlarged heart and a mass in his lung near his trachea which makes him have a dry cough sometimes what can I do for him.

  20. why did my chihuahua pass in his sleep at 5 years old

  21. Wallace D.Peek | January 2, 2019 at 9:31 pm |

    Do Chiquahas have hip problems? We have a 12 year old male. For the past week,he has had problems with his right hind leg. We just came back home after visiting our daughter whose house has 2 fights of stairs. Our home does not have steps. Could this be a factor?

  22. Wallace D.Peek | January 2, 2019 at 10:19 pm |

    Spell check: Chihuahua not Chiquaha.

  23. @thomasguttadauro enlarged heart and dry cough is a sign of heart disease. I had a sheltie that had a dry cough which kept getting worse, took to vet and he had heart disease, pls get your baby checked right away cause it kills them fast, the cough was his lumgs filling up with fluid and blood

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  25. For the lady who lost Apple, sounds like the kidney failure my 4 1/2 years old Belle died from. Sometimes it’s hereditary.

  26. Use a harness on your Chihuahua. A leash when tugged hard enough will sometimes crush the windpipe or the neck May break, especially on a Teacup.

  27. I have a female pup chi she’s 9weeks old she shakes all the time she’s full ov energy so k make sure to have lots ov time for play walks ect she’s also very very needy and if 100% of my attention isn’t on her she will cry what can I do=?I let her sleep in my bed we’ll both go to sleep as soon as she wakes she crys I make sure she’s eaten drunk and exercise and still shel cry even when I’m watching TV I’ll have her on my lap stroking her but because I’m looking at the tv shel cry please help me what can I do???

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