As a Chow Chow owner, it is essential to understand the potential health conditions that can arise in this breed. In this article, we will explore five common health conditions that affect Chow Chows and provide some information on the treatment of these conditions.
Entropion is a common eye condition in Chow Chows where the eyelid(s) roll inward, causing the eyelashes to rub against the surface of the eye. This can cause irritation, pain, and even corneal ulcers or scarring, which may result in vision loss if left untreated.
The standard solution for Entropion in Chow Chows is a surgical procedure called eyelid surgery or Entropion repair. During this procedure, the surgeon will remove a small section of skin from the affected eyelid(s) to allow the eyelid to sit properly and prevent the eyelashes from rubbing against the eye. This surgery is typically done under general anesthesia, and most Chow Chows recover quickly and without complications.
Ectropion is a common eye condition in Chow Chows where the eyelid(s) roll outward (opposite to Entropion), leaving the eye exposed and vulnerable to irritation and infection. This can cause excessive tearing, redness, and discomfort for your Chow.
The remedy for ectropion in Chow Chows depends on the seriousness of the condition. For mild cases, treatment may involve regular cleaning of the affected area with specific dog eye wipes and the use of ointments or eye drops to reduce inflammation and keep the eye lubricated.
In more severe cases, surgery may be recommended to correct the underlying issue. The goal of the surgery is to reposition the affected eyelid(s) to their normal position and improve the Chow Chow’s comfort and eye health. This surgery is typically done under general anaesthesia – most Chow Chows recover quickly and without complications.
3. Hip Dysplasia
Hip dysplasia is a common condition in Chow Chows that affects the hip joint, causing it to develop abnormally. This can result in joint instability, pain, and mobility issues which can be very painful and uncomfortable for your Chow Chow.
The usual solution for hip dysplasia in Chow Chows depends on the severity of the condition. For mild cases, treatment may involve weight management, exercise modification, and medication to manage pain and inflammation. In more severe cases, surgery may be recommended to correct the underlying issue and provide pain relief.
There are several surgical options for hip dysplasia in Chow Chows, including total hip replacement and femoral head ostectomy. These procedures involve removing the damaged portion of the hip joint and either replacing it with an artificial joint or reshaping the bone to alleviate pressure on the joint.
It’s important to note that while hip dysplasia can be managed with treatment and surgery, there is no cure for the condition. With proper care and management, however, Chow Chows with hip dysplasia can still lead happy and comfortable lives.
4. Elbow Dysplasia
Elbow dysplasia is a common condition in Chow Chows where the elbow joint doesn’t develop properly, leading to pain and mobility issues. This can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetics and rapid growth during puppyhood.
The normal remedy for elbow dysplasia in Chow Chows depends on the severity of the condition. For mild cases, treatment may involve weight management, exercise modification, and medication to manage pain and inflammation. Physical therapy and joint supplements may also be recommended to improve joint mobility and function.
In more severe cases, surgery may be recommended to correct the underlying issue and provide pain relief. There are several surgical options for elbow dysplasia in Chow Chows, including arthroscopy, osteotomy, and joint replacement. These procedures involve removing or reshaping damaged bone and cartilage in the elbow joint to improve joint function and relieve pain.
5. Hot Spots
Hot spots, also known as acute moist dermatitis, are a common skin problem in Chow Chows. Hot spots are areas of the skin that become inflamed and infected, often due to scratching or licking. These areas can be painful, itchy, and can quickly worsen if not treated promptly.
The go-to solution for hot spots in Chow Chows involves cleaning the affected area, trimming the fur around the hot spot, and applying a medicated ointment or spray to the area. Your veterinarian may also prescribe antibiotics or steroids to help manage the infection and reduce inflammation.
It’s important to identify the underlying cause of hot spots in Chow Chows to prevent them from recurring. Hot spots can be caused by a variety of factors, including allergies, fleas, mites, or other skin irritants. Identifying and addressing the underlying cause is important to prevent further hot spots from developing.
To prevent hot spots in your Chow Chow, regular grooming and preventative care are key. This includes regular bathing and brushing, keeping your Chow’s living area clean, and checking your dog regularly for fleas, ticks, and other skin irritants. (Ensure to keep on top of your Chow’s flea and worming medication from the vet.) If you notice any signs of hot spots on your Chow Chow, seek veterinary care promptly to prevent the condition from worsening.
Our opinion from first-hand experience
It’s important to understand that Chow Chows are prone to a variety of health conditions, some of which can be serious and costly to treat. As responsible pet owners, it’s our responsibility to take care of our Chow Chows and provide them with the best possible care.
Regular check-ups with a vet, proper nutrition, and preventative care can help reduce the risk of health issues in Chow Chows. However, despite our best efforts, our furry friends may still require medical attention at some point in their lives.
For this reason, we strongly recommend investing in a good dog insurance policy. This can help alleviate the financial burden of unexpected health issues, making it easier to provide the necessary care for our beloved Chow Chows without breaking the bank.
Remember, early detection and treatment are key when it comes to managing health issues in Chow Chows. By staying informed, taking preventative measures, and investing in good dog insurance, we can help keep our furry friends healthy and happy for years to come.