Last Updated on December 3, 2021 by Ana P.
Older Yorkie health problems are not any different than in other breeds. Because of genetics, some issues are more noticeable than others.
Usually, when health problems occur in Yorkies, we focus on fixing them rather than thinking about what caused the issue.
Indeed, there are common health problems in older Yorkies, but many of them come with the unhealthy lifestyle of the Yorkie.
At What Age A Yorkie Is Old
When thinking of how old a dog should be to get categorized as old, you need to know the average life span of that breed. Yorkies and other toy breed dogs usually live the longest. It’s common for them to live up to 20 years. On the other hand, the average life span is around 13 to 16 years.
These numbers are high above the overall dog average, which is 10 to 13 years. A Yorkie is classified as old when it’s between 10- and 12-year-old.
Health issues occur more often as the dog gets older. Many of these tiny dog breeds have health problems that are only common for them.
When you see that your Yorkie coat is getting lighter spots or hearing and sight issues occur, you can start to treat your dog with higher healthwise precautions.
Common Old Yorkie Health Issues
As your Yorkie gets olds, some of the genetic issues come out. It’s crucial to understand these issues and help your dog with medication and examination.
For Yorkie, it’s common for them to experience hearing loss when they get older. If you acknowledge symptoms like lack of coordination or slow reactions, that is a sign leading to your Yorkie experiencing hearing loss.
Try to do a quick hearing test to confirm the hearing loss. Use a common phrase that your Yorkie is getting excited by, lower the tone and see the reaction threshold. If it previously was common for your Yorkie to react at a lower voice and currently is not, take that as a confirmational sign of hearing issues.
Another health issue can be loss of sight or cloudy eyes, as it is widely known. If your Yorkie is losing its way around the house or is getting encounters with objects that were not there previously, you can take that as a sign of sight issues in your Yorkie.
Bad breath can be a leading sign that your Yorkie is getting old. It’s not uncommon for a dog to have an unpleasant breath. However, if this occurs suddenly, it can be a leading issue toward old health issues.
Lastly, uncoordinated movement or slowed movement is something you shouldn’t foresee. If your Yorkie has issues with stairs, jumping on and off higher objects, or just getting up after a sleeping session, then it is getting old. The main leading sign should be a drop in the energy levels in your Yorkie.
Old Yorkie Diseases That You Need To Focus On
Several diseases occur as your Yorkie gets older. These diseases lower the quality of your dog life and need treatment, so they don’t induce health problems.
We will sum up the common diseases in this section and will give you the most common symptoms.
1. Luxating Patella And Arthritis
This disease is usually genetically based, and many tiny dog breed dogs are keen to have this disease. Symptoms that lead toward luxating patella can be skipping while walking, showing up a lazy leg, scared of jumping, and refusing to play around.
This disease needs medical examination, and you need to take your Yorkie to a vet appointment. Usually, patellar luxation needs surgery. When Yorkies are old, addition to this disease can be arthritis as well. Don’t hesitate to book a vet appointment if you acknowledge this disease.
It’s commons for dogs to have cancer as well. The percentage of cancer that occurs is nearly the same as in humans. Lack of appetite is the number one symptom of your Yorkie having cancer.
Cancer can occur in different organs so take your Yorkie to veterinarian checkups regularly when it gets older. Usually, X-rays scans can help with the diagnosis of black cancer spots. If your veterinarian acknowledges that, a specific further examination is necessary.
For older dogs, it’s common to develop bone cancer, lymphoma, melanoma, or mast cell tumors. You can spot the mast cell tumors as they show as lumps on the skin. If you spot them in the early stage, they can be easily extracted and stop further development.
Bone cancer symptoms are lack of movement, pain when your Yorkie is active, and bone fracture can occur.
3. Teeth Infections
Teeth infections, in many cases, are the main factor that is leading toward other diseases. Yorkies have tiny jaws so, that’s why they experience food jamming between their teeth. If you don’t clean their teeth regularly or get them to professional teeth cleaning, they can develop teeth infections.
When bacterias get around these teeth infections, and if not treated right, they can spread across other body organs.
In many cases, kidney and heart failure may occur cause of bacterial infections that came from these infections.
4. Heart Failure
Heart failure is the most common cause of death among Yorkies. Usually, the main factor that leads to this disease is an unhealthy lifestyle. As an owner, you must not feed fatty foods to your Yorkie, and you need to take them regularly on walks.
Do veterinarian checkups to see if your Yorkie has issues with the heart rhythm. In many cases, heart diagnosis is probable, and prescribing medication to save your dog’s life.
Managing Older Yorkie Health Problems
When managing Yorkie health problems at an older age, you need to remember three main precautions.
- Always remember to maintain a healthy diet and weight for your Yorkie. If your Yorkie is overweight, it has a greater chance do developing health issues. Cancer, arthritis, high blood pressure are all issues that can occur cause your Yorkie is overweight.
- Daily walks and activities, moderate amounts are crucial for a healthy Yorkie.
- Regular veterinary appointments are crucial to keeping up with the health of your Yorkie. Early diagnosis of many diseases can lead to a healthy and happy dog.
As people get older and need a healthier lifestyle, the same goes for Yorkies. Don’t hesitate to make changes in their day-to-day lifestyle. It’s pretty typical as dogs get older to experience many health issues, but it’s up to you to help them maintain a healthy life.
When you spot some of the signs that lead to your Yorkie getting old, focus on regular veterinarian checkups and track their wellbeing.
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