Shih Tzu Emergency: How to know?

Part of the responsibility of a pet owner is making to sure that the health of these pooches is well taken care of. They also have needs more than eating, exercising and playing. You need to attend to them whenever you feel like there is something wrong and make it a point to see the vet regularly. However, there are cases when sudden health issues arise and pet owners find themselves confused and in panic. It is important to differentiate whether it is an emergency or not – to be able to give your Shih Tzu the necessary first aid treatment, if needed. Here are the telltale signs and what you can do to ease the imminent discomfort of your pet.


Breathing difficulties are always an emergency. Such occurrences can suddenly lead to shock due to less oxygen supply to vital organs of the body – heart, lungs and brain. If you see the tongue going blue, gasping with heavy and fast pace breathing and grunting, go straight to the vet. Heatstroke is also considered an emergency situation usually seen during summer months and after strenuous activities like exercising and playing outside. If you see heavy panting, drooling and a body temperature of over 104 degrees Fahrenheit, place your Shih Tzu in a cool area, give cold water and wrap him around a damp, cold cloth. Remember that Shih Tzu are short snouted breeds and cannot easily tolerate extreme changes in body temperature. Moreover, should you observe any bleeding on any area on the body, place cold compress and wipe off the blood to control bleeding. Bleeding or bubbles from the mouth are usually seen in cases of poison or frog ingestion. Bring the poison container and show it to the vet for proper medication dosing. If ever there are accidents and bleeding is seen, do the same and upon on the ride to the vet, make sure that you will not induce additional damage to the muscles, nerves and bones by placing your Shih Tzu on a soft and padded crate, box or cage. Allergies, on the other hand are also considered emergency cases because sudden histamine release from the body needs to be controlled. If this is not monitored, it can be fatal to the dog. Usually seen in cases of bites or hives, antihistamine drugs must be instantly given and temperature of the dog must be supervised. Abdominal distension (usually with obvious pain and discomfort), bloody diarrhea and frequent and sudden vomiting with blood or yellow gastric juice all fall under the emergency category.

That is why it is very important to have a contact of an on call veterinarian.


Difficulty breathing,         – noisy respiration,
– blue tongue,
– gasping for breath.
– Bleeding that does not stop from any part of the body; apply pressure with a clean cloth and go! 
– Bloated or distended abdomen or swollen or painful abdomen with or without vomiting.
– Inability to urinate or move bowels but continues to try or has bloody stool or urine or painful defecation or urination.
– Heatstroke 
– heavy panting
– extreme weakness
– body temperature about 104 degrees Fahrenheit.
 Inability to deliver puppies or kittens
– labor contractions for longer than one hour or
– more than 15 minutes of labor with the fetus or membrane showing.
– Loss of balance or consciousness or seizure, including 
– tremors,
– coma,
– staggering,
– convulsions,
– sudden blindness,
– tilting of the head,
– biting at imaginary objects,
– sudden changes in disposition such as unusual withdrawal or out-of-character aggressiveness.
– Pain, severe or continuous. 
– Major trauma, injury, or shock from 
– falls,
– vehicle accidents,
– wounds,
– cuts,
– broken bones
– Shows signs of: 
– weakness,
– collapse,
– shallow breathing,
– rapid heartbeat,
– bewildered appearance,
– dilated pupils.
– Ingested poison; 
 bring the container or the commercial or chemical name of the product or a list of ingredients if you have it. 
– Penetrating wounds anyplace, but especially in the chest or abdomen.
– Vomiting or diarrhea with blood or violent episodes. 
– Lameness and cannot bear any weight on the leg.
– Any other signs that look serious, such as: 
– eye problems,
– severe itching with self-mutilation,
– severe hives