PHYSIOLOGICAL PARAMETERS AND HEALTH
The normal body temperature is of 38.5°С, the heart rate — 100–130, the breath rhythm — 15–30 inhalations per minute, the blood flow duration — 3–5 minutes, daily urine production — 0,2–0,4 l. A healthy Chihuahua is hardly prone to any diseases if timely vaccinated and duly taken care of.
It requires much attention:
- during second dentition process (at 5–7 months), when milk teeth, especially the tushes, won’t fall by themselves and must be pulled out by a veterinary (dentist);
- if dental tartar appears, which must be removed at least 1–2 times a year;
- when claws grow too long and they must be cropped regularly, every 1–1.5 month (the latter can be done by the master himself after some practice).
Dogs are normally vaccinated depending on the name of the vaccine:
- for the first time at 1.5- 2 months
- then 3–4 weeks apart for the second time
- at 6 months
- at 1 year
- then once every year
Before the vaccination the expulsion of worms must be carried out (the medication must be mild and accurately dosed so that no poisoning should occur due to a strong worm ousting remedy). By the way, out of my personal experience, it’s reasonable to use helmint expulsion medication for kids instead of veterinary drugs. However when weaned the puppy’s immunity level decreases dramatically and it gets prone to infections. Unfortunately, no vaccine would help to protect a puppy less than 1.5 months old.
That’s why it’s necessary to let puppies feed from the female as long as possible (up to 40–45 days), at least one lactation a day. Moreover, one should inject the vaccines that are harmless for 1.5 months old puppies. The specific vaccination schedule should be elaborated by a doctor.
HOW TO IDENTIFY IF A CHIHUAHUA IS SICK?
There are no illness-resistant dog breeds. Some fall ill more often, some — less. But all dogs have one distinguishing characteristic — they are less sensitive to pain than humans, their nervous system is stronger and thus the symptoms may not show that obviously. In the whole, the seeming condition of a sick dog doesn’t fully convey the level of danger overhanging it. This is typical of Chihuahua. Besides, dogs as pack species are apt to conceal their disease till the last moment not to be expulsed from their pack.
The incursion of disease of a Chihuahua can be detected according to the following indicators: weird behavior (frustration, reluctance to feed), the external aspect and the content of its excrements.
By the way, yowling, whining and yelping are not characteristic of the Chihuahua due to their exclusive stamina, so one could hardly rely on these symptoms.
Therefore every day examine is important: cleaning the nose with Vaseline (in case there are crusts), wiping the eyes with wet cotton, cleaning them off slime collected at night (move from the inner corner towards the outer), wiping the earflaps with wet cotton, brushing the coat with a natural bristle brush.
Look attentively for any injures on the puppy’s body, check if there are any parasites (fleas, bugs, etc.) and particularly if any diseases’ symptoms show. Meantime don’t feel ashamed to examine the dog’s functions: feces, urine, vomiting, and salivation!
CALL THE DOCTOR IMMEDIATELY IF THE FOLLOWING SYMPTOMS OCCUR:
- considerable body temperature increase (above 39.5° С) or decrease (below 36.5° С);
- diarrhea combined with vomiting;
- diarrhea with fetid and specific brown or bloody-streaked excrements;
- reluctance to eat and refusal to approach the habitual feeding place;
- bloody, dark urine;
- muscular cramps and continuous shivering;
- infrequent respiration accompanied by air swallowing — below 12 movements per minute (should be estimated with the hand pressed against the dog’s chest).
Separately and, especially, in combination these symptoms evidence that your dog is seriously sick. The most common canine infectious diseases are plague, hepatitis and parvovirus infection. There clinical symptoms are so alike that the exact diagnosis can be made only by a doctor on the laboratory expertise basis.
Fortunately for the breed (and its masters), the Chihuahua if duly and timely vaccinated aren’t prone to these diseases, which are really the curse of dogs.