Small dogs have become doggone popular; they are SO big on charm and personality, cute as buttons, and easily portable! However, you may not realize that small breeds can generally be more fragile than the big guys. Before adopting a small breed, it’s good to understand some of the health risks that come with them.

Breathing issues – small dogs with short noses and flat faces (like a Pug or Boston Terrier) have a tiny more compressed airway- so don’t demand too much from them. Strenuous exercise needs to be kept at a minimum especially in hot weather.

Patellar Luxation – or more simply put, a dislocated kneecap. This can occur in any breed, but it’s more common in small breeds.

Intervertebral Disk Disease – this happens when the cushion between the vertebra come into contact with the spinal cord. It can cause discomfort, nerve damage, or even some paralysis.

Pancreatitis – this problem can develop when the pancreas becomes inflamed and can occur for a variety of reasons, such as, obesity, infection, and sometimes just appears out of the blue.

Ectropion – this abnormality often affects short-nosed, flat-faced breeds. It causes the margin or the eyelid to roll outward which results in exposing the inner tissue of the eye and can lead to itchy eyes or frequent infections.

Oral Health Issues – Small breeds have small mouths, yet they still have 42 teeth like dogs of any size. This can lead to crooked teeth or an unusual bite and makes them a target for dental disease.

Don’t let this stop you from adopting a pint-sized pup, many have no health problems at all and if you know what to look for you can stay ahead of any petite pooch problems!


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