Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday some people surrendered a little shih-tzu puppy to me at work. Three of his litter mates died, and appeared to have had hydrocephaly. This little one appears to have it too, but it's very very mild right now. And even the initial head wobble has improved with regular feeding into pretty much non-existence. He just has a HYOOOJ head and a very large open fontenelle, both of which are classic signs of hydrocephaly. He's gonna get his head ultrasounded on wednesday, so we'll get a confirmation then if he has it.

If he does have the condition, he probably won't last more than a few weeks at this point. He's 8 weeks old and 7.5 ounces. However, he's a feisty little beast and currently howling his little heart out because it is FOOD TIEM NAO! He seems to be doing pretty well overall. He's playing, he's loving, and definitely does not seem in any discomfort. And while he stays that way, he stays with me. I wish you all could have seen his case of 5:30 am zoomies today. Definitely a happy puppy right now.

Because of his likely condition, I decided to name him "Lucky" just as a sort of bird to Murphy.


On to pictures of the tiny thing.











 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,437 Posts
Looks like hydrocephaly to me, I hope it is not but with his size and the way his head looks there is a high chance that it is. It is a shame that there are some unscrupulous breeders breeding for this size and consequently causing these puppies a lot of pain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
His "breeder" was basically "a woman with two shih-tzu" and we know how well that works out. She's going to get them fixed, because we told her that the mom will just throw more deformed puppies. She really does love the little puppies, and wasn't breeding for this size. Lucky here has two normal sized littermates; he's got a bit of a 'failure to thrive' going on because of competeing, we think, but is doin' pretty good, all told.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
350 Posts
God Bless you taking in this teeny tiny cutie. Keep positive thoughts and don't give up on this little guy. I'm a rescuer and one of the little guys I pulled from a shelter is a senior chihuahua who was ultimately diagnosed with hydrocephalus. The vet says he's lived with it since birth. Yes, he has some minor neurological issues and he's blind but he doesn't know it. His forever mom says he wakes up every morning hungry, full of love and raring to go see the world through his nose and ears. I've included pictures of him roaming the north forty and snoring next to his (also) blind sister. Miracles can happen and Brick is one of them. I'm praying that your little one is another miracle.

Brick in the yard.jpg Brick and Trinket.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Lucky is definitely improving every day. He's been a lot more playful after each meal today, he's whining about every 2 to 3 hours for formula now, and is doing better at eating the A/D.

Today I let Kumo finally meet him. Kumo's helped me with bottle baby kittens before, but this is the first puppy. He was... intrigued and delighted, up until the time Lucky tried to eat Kumo's foot. Then he decided it was obviously puppy cleaning time.





 

·
Registered
Joined
·
871 Posts
Oh, wow, I really hope he makes it.

He is so tiny, and sweet looking, it hurts my heart to think he might be in pain, or doomed to a very short life.

He looks so precious, really, you must just love laying with him in your lap. He looks very cuddle-able.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,240 Posts
He's a sweetheart! Kudos to you for taking in this little guy. He sure is lucky to have you taking care of.him. Hope he's an.exception to the hydrocephaly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the well wishes. I learned something new about his parentage: he's only half shih-tzu... His father was an applehead chihuahua. Anyone else NOT surprised now by the condition of his head?

With any luck (HA!) his main issue will be the head shape from the parentage and not actual hydrocephaly. We shall find out tomorrow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
So the ultrasound showed mild/moderate enlargement of the ventricles in his brain; he does have mild hydrocephaly. He's also completely deaf. Otherwise, neurologically, he's pretty normal. He's eating more, going longer between meals, and has added 25% to his initial body weight. He's now a whopping 10 ounces! He was terribly bored at work today, so I'm going to bring some small cat toys for him to maul.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Prognosis is pretty good at this point. He's active, fairly normal neurologically, and we've started him on pred, partially preemptively but also because he would do a smidge of circling. We are now up to 12 ounces. That is an increase in body weight of 50% in just over 1 week.

Picture update too!

I managed to take some (poor quality) photographs of his x-rays. They bring home just how HUGE his head is.

Lucky also just got to have a massive running zoom around the floor. So active that only one good picture came out.

X-ray #1, Positioned as if you were looking down on him. He's on his belly in this one.



X-ray #2, Positioned as if you are looking at him from the side. He was a squirmy monster for this view.




Lucky napping in his carry-box at work.




And this morning, being a super duper crazy puppy!

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Lucky is 10 weeks old now! He's also doing incredibly well on his steroid medication and can hear well enough that he wakes up if you make kissy noises.

He's also up to 1 lb 3 ounces! He's HUGE!....comparatively. *cough*

Sometimes when I look at him, I find it hard to believe there is chihuahua in this dog. But then today I gave him a bath and thoroughly washed his face. So let the 'drowned rat' pictures commence!






Lucky has also graduated to the playpen that my sister-in-law was using to house her kitten Kyubey. He is no longer Aquarium Dog... though I think that nickname will stick forever in this household.








"But Mommy, it's so hard to SEE you now!"


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,240 Posts
I'm glad that he's doing well! He is so cute! (I can't say that enough!)

You said that he circles a bit. You can train him by getting him to go in the other.direction or walking straight. Lead him by a treat. I believe you can retrain the brain and he's young so he will be adaptable.

Don't think I could stop hugging the little guy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,074 Posts
I just saw the good news about this most adorable little thing ever!!!! :) I hope he remains improving. You have done a wonderful thing for this little one. :)
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top