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Sore chihuahua

Species: Dog
Breed: Chihuahua /terroir m
Age: 5-8 years
My dog Chevy has had some strange behavior for some time. For the past year or so he gets in these funks and he'll run around with his tail down like he is scared and whines. The vet couldn't give me an answer. Most recently, the past couple of months he has been doing the prayer position several times a day. He still eats and goes to the bathroom like normal but I'm wondering if this behavior is normal. Any advice you have would be greatly appreciated. Thank you


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Poor Chevy. It sounds like he is quite uncomfortable.

The first thing I think about when I see a dog who has his tail down a lot is an anal gland issue. Do you know if the vet has checked them? It would be interesting to have the vet express his glands and then see if the problem goes away for a while. If it comes back after a short while then he may possibly even have an infection in there.

However, this shouldn't cause the praying position. The praying position often means that there is abdominal pain. Sometimes we can see this in pets with pancreatitis. However, dogs with pancreatitis usually do vomit and don't want to eat well so this doesn't make sense.

Any time a chihuahua type dog has some type of pain behavior I wonder about a back problem. If this were my case I might want to try a prescription anti-inflammatory medication such as Metacam, Rimadyl, Previcox or Deramaxx to see if it makes a difference. If so, there may be a mild back issue there. If it hasn't gone away completely after the medication is stopped then I'd want to take xrays.

You could also ask your vet about giving some famotidine which is a drug that is available over the counter at the pharmacy. If there is some mild abdominal cramping from time to time then this could possibly help.

I wish I could give you a more definitive answer but I can say that this is not normal to see.

I hope things are better soon!


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.