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Dr. Scott
Dr. Scott, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16725
Experience:  20 years of small animal, equine and pocket pet medicine and surgery.
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I have shitzu and he has a bloated belly, about a month or

Customer Question

I have shitzu and he has a bloated belly
JA: I'll do all I can to help. How long has the Shih Tzu had this bloating?
Customer: about a month or so
JA: When did the Shih Tzu last see a vet? Is he taking any medications?
Customer: not seem a vet in a long time and no medication
JA: And what's the Shih Tzu's name and age?
Customer: his name is ***** ***** he is 11
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know about Kobi?
Customer: he is urinating a lot and it has a strong owdar
Submitted: 8 days ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Scott replied 8 days ago.

Hello there! Welcome to JustAnswer. My name is***** and I am happy to assist you today. I have over 20 years of experience in the veterinary field. I am sorry to hear that you are having trouble with Kobi, I understand how stressful it can be. I will do my best to assist today. The more information I have the better. First, I will need to ask a few questions to help assess the situation. Does Kobi's belly feel firm to the touch when you squeeze it or softer like a fluid feel?

Customer: replied 8 days ago.
a bit
Expert:  Dr. Scott replied 8 days ago.

Ok. Has his breathing been affected at all? Panting more often, less active?

Customer: replied 8 days ago.
Customer: replied 8 days ago.
He is lying about a lot
Expert:  Dr. Scott replied 8 days ago.

Ok. Any increased thirst compared to a few months ago?

Customer: replied 8 days ago.
No it’s normal and his eating is normal to
Expert:  Dr. Scott replied 8 days ago.

Ok. Thank you for the information. Give me a few minutes to type a detailed response.

Expert:  Dr. Scott replied 8 days ago.

In a small dog this age a distended abdomen can be caused by several possible things. Heart problems are not uncommon with older Shih Tzus. If the heart is not working normally you can get fluid build up in abdomen as a result. These cases are treated with diuretics to push the fluid out and often a medication to help the heart function improve. The problem cannot be cured but managed. Diabetes can cause a bloated abdomen. Those cases usually require insulin treatment. There is usually weight loss and excessive water drinking as well. Cushing's disease is also possible in this breed. That is an adrenal gland problem that causes a pot-bellied appearance secondary to too much coritsol production in the body. Those cases can be managed but not cured with medication. Low blood protein can result in fluid build up in the abdomen. The cause for the low protein has to be identified. Treatment depends on the cause. Sometimes a low thyroid level can cause a bloated look. Those dogs are treated with medication to correct the problem. Often they have chronic skin and ear issues when the thyroid is low. Finally, tumors or growths in the abdomen itself can cause a bloated look. Some require surgery to remove them, some types cannot be treated. Usually we will take a radiograph of the whole dog first to look at heart size and if there is fluid in the belly or some type of mass. If there is fluid, you get a sample via a needle and analyze it to see which problem you are dealing with. The treatment options and prognosis then depend on what cause is found.

Expert:  Dr. Scott replied 7 days ago.
Thanks again for visiting JustAnswer.

Dr. Scott