lhasa apso breed information

common health issues

Atopy refers to skin allergies caused by inhaled or contact allergens. Just like us, our dogs can be allergic to pollen, dander, grasses and trees. Their allergies result in itchiness that can be seasonal or year-round. Affected dogs are prone to ear and skin infections. The condition varies in severity but is usually lifelong and often requires constant medical management.
Keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), better known as "dry eye", is a deficiency in the water portion of the tear film of the eye. Without the water portion of tears, the cornea and conjunctiva become very dry and inflamed and are prone to infection. This uncomfortable condition requires costly topical treatment several times a day throughout the dog's life.
With intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) one or more of the discs that sit between vertebrae break down and their extruded contents bulge into the vertebral canal, pressing on the spinal cord. Symptoms range from mild back or neck pain to paralysis of the limbs. Mild IVDD can be managed medically, but severe IVDD cases require surgery to provide relief.
Cataracts describes the transparency of the lens in the eye.While cataracts are a common finding in older dogs, many breeds, including Cavaliers, have a genetic predisposition to juvenile cataracts, i.e., occurring in young animals. Hereditary cataracts can occur as early as six months of age and progress to complete loss of vision by two years old. The good news is that most affected lenses can be treated surgically. Cost of treatment: $1,500 to $3,000 per lens.
Brachycephalic Syndrome is a collection of conformational issues specific to short nosed pets, including narrowed nostrils, elongated soft palate, and a narrowed trachea, often resulting in respiratory problems. Clinical signs of this condition can be managed conservatively, but often surgery is needed to allow the dog to breathe easier.
A luxating patella is a knee cap that moves out of its groove � sometimes referred to as a "trick knee". It is usually caused by several inherited factors including a shallow patella groove. In individuals with moderate or severe disease, surgical correction in often recommended to prevent a progression that includes severe lameness, chronic pain and thickening of the knee.

The Lhasa Apso originated in the Himalayan Mountains. There, they functioned as guard dogs in the homes of Tibetan royalty and Buddhist monks, and were especially prevalent near the sacred city of Lhasa, from whence they get their name. Lhasa Apsos came to the United States in 1933, when they were given to us as a gift by the 13th Dalai Lama.

Because of their history of guarding temples, Lhasas can be suspicious of strangers. Properly socialized Lhasas are gentle and affectionate, and are appropriate choices for adults or families with children. Training is recommended for all dogs, but the Lhasa’s independent streak makes it particularly important in this breed. Lhasas come in many different colors, but one thing that is consistent is their long, flowing hair coats. Their luxurious coat requires daily brushing and frequent grooming.

Although they can be cautious around strangers, Lhasas are nonetheless prone to hereditary and congenital conditions that can adversely affect their health – not to mention your family budget. Some of the conditions and illnesses Lhasas are prone to includes eye problems such as keratoconjunctivitis sicca (dry eye) and cataracts; skin conditions such as atopy; respiratory issues such as brachycephalic syndrome; skeletal diseases such as intervertebral disc disease; and knee problems such as patellar luxation.

Thankfully, Petplan pet insurance covers all hereditary and chronic conditions as standard. Which means if your little temple guardian inherits more than just a suspicious attitude around strangers, you’re covered.

Use the condition checker tool to learn what common conditions your pet may have.

claim calculator

  • your share of the cost: $450
  • Petplan's reimbursement to you: $1,550
  • coverage remaining in policy period: Unlimited
    (full policy limits are reinstated upon renewal)