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Concerns in the Shar-Pei Breed

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== Overview ==
== Overview ==
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[[Image:Chinese Shar-Pei22.jpg]]
The [[Chinese Shar-Pei]] breed can suffer from a variety of perplexing health problems, including eyelid problems, ear infections, mouth problems, skin fold infections, respiratory problems, renal failure and many other ailments.
The [[Chinese Shar-Pei]] breed can suffer from a variety of perplexing health problems, including eyelid problems, ear infections, mouth problems, skin fold infections, respiratory problems, renal failure and many other ailments.

Revision as of 19:01, September 14, 2007

Contents

Overview

Chinese Shar-Pei22.jpg The Chinese Shar-Pei breed can suffer from a variety of perplexing health problems, including eyelid problems, ear infections, mouth problems, skin fold infections, respiratory problems, renal failure and many other ailments.


Eyelid Problems

Overview

Entropion. The Shar-Pei’s excessive facial wrinkles may cause an inversion or rolling of the eyelids.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

The eyelashes and/or the eyelids’ haired margin may abrade the cornea. Tearing or squinting may result. In severe cases, corneal ulceration and scarring that affects the vision may develop.

Treatment

Young puppies can undergo an eyelid tuck (eyelid tacking) that results in the eyelids being held back. As the lids no longer abrade the eyes, the cornea can heal.

Ear Infections

Overview

Malassezia Pachydermatis. The Shar-Pei’s small, triangular ears may be prone to ear problems. Poor air circulation to ear canals and problems treating and cleaning ears add the difficulties. Malassezia pachydermatis is present in the normal ear canal. However, heat, moisture, excessive sebum or cerumen production allows the organism to breed.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms include a bacterial ear infection and dirty ears.

Treatment

Treatment for chronic yeast overgrowth includes routine cleaning and prescribed glucocorticoids or antibiotics.

Mouth Problems

Overview

Tight lip and Lip Fold Pyoderma. The Shar-Pei may experience mouth problems in the form of tight lip or lip fold pyoderma.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Tight lip or ‘Labial curl” occurs when a curling lower lip reaches over the lower incisor teeth. The canine does not suffer great difficulties. Symptoms of Lip Fold Pyoderma include the accumulation of water, saliva and food particles that lead to a superficial infection. Symptoms include foul odor from the mouth. With the dog’s excessive lips, brushing teeth is difficult.

Treatment

In serious cases, Tight Lip and Lip Fold Pyoderma require surgical correction. In the latter, surgery will remove the infected tissue fold.

Skin Fold Infections

Overview

Demodectic Mange. Demodectic Mange is the Shar-Pei chief health concern. Within the first few days after birth, puppies may pick up mites while nursing. Mites normally live in hair follicles, yet may cause concern in certain canines.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms of localized Demodectic Mange include hair loss, scaly, reddened and inflamed skin lesions on face, trunk or forearms. Diagnosis may include skin scraping and finding mites. Symptoms of generalized Demodecosis include generalized and progressive skin disease that is incurable and life threatening. Secondary infections may complicate the disease.

Treatment

Canines may be able to resolve this localized mange without treatment. Sometimes an insecticide in ointment form or antibacterial gel may be applied. Treatment of generalized Demodecosis may include mitaban dips with mixed response. To avoid passing on this hereditary component, afflicted dogs should not breed.


Respiratory Ailments

Overview

Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome (BOAS). The many anatomical abnormalities of the Shar-Pei may lead to this respiratory ailment: stenotic snares (very pinched nostrils), elongated soft palate (may interfere with trachea) and hypoplastic trachea (smaller trachea). These abnormalities can decrease the dog’s respiratory reserve.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms of BOAS include snuffling, snorting, noisy breathing, coughing, gagging, fainting or collapsing. The Shar-Pei cannot tolerate heat stress or excessive physical exercise. Diagnosis can include assessing under light anaesthesia the soft palate with a long, straight bladed laryngoscope. The palate will obstruct the view of the larynx. A lateral ex-ray of the skull and cervical region can show the length of the airway and soft palate.

Treatment

Surgery can shorten the palate.


Kidney disease

Overview

Renal Amyloidosis. Amyloid deposition disrupts the kidneys. Kidney dysfunction occurs before one year of age; kidney failure by five years of age.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms of Renal Amyloidosis include minor weight loss, change in appetite and increased water consumption. Diagnosis is through a urine sample checked every three months. A test of the urine protein level that shows high protein levels may determine kidney disease.

The next level of diagnosis involves a complete blood count, health panel, immune panel, urine protein/creatinine ratio and abnormal x-rays.


Treatment

Treatment of Renal Amyloidosis includes dietary management to slow the progress. A low protein diet, restrictions on dietary phosphorous, and introduction of vitamin-mineral supplements can benefit. Fat will help maintain energy density. One cooked egg per day can be served. No cure exists as yet.

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