The natural, moist nose of a dog is a perfect indication of its status of hydration. Whenever you take your pet to a veterinarian, he or she would primarily check your dog’s nose to assess the moisture level in your pet’s body. However, a Shih Tzu usually suffers from dry and cracked nose. Although there are innumerable reasons which cause this, it is best to aware of these reasons before you rush your Shih Tzu to the vet as there are remedial measures that you can take up at home to relieve it off its discomforts. Here are some tips which may come handy.
If you observe that your Shih Tzu’s nose is dry or sticky in the morning, do not push the panic button as it is completely normal. Dogs usually lick their nose to keep it moist and stimulate mucus production which in turn protects the nasal epithelium. This helps in trapping the scents which helps your pooch in processing its surrounding. Although licking is very important to keep the nose healthy, but when your Shih Tzu is asleep for long hours, it is unable to lick its nose which leads to a dry nose when it eventually wakes up. When your dog lies down near a fire place or any other source of heat and when its water intake becomes low, these two deadly combinations would definitely lead to dehydration in your dog. It is best to move your pooch far away from heat source, especially in the winter season and in turn provide it with pillows, blanket or a cage with thermoregulation facility in order to provide it the required warmth. Make sure that there is always a bowl of clean, distilled water in front of your dog and that the bowl is cleaned everyday without fail. Also you can leave ice cubes in the bowl as dogs prefer to consume higher volume of cold water than the water at normal temperature, just like us humans. There are dog nose chapsticks available which are extremely helpful, especially in the winter season when the cold and dry air causes your dog’s nose to dry out. These chapsticks can be used for keeping your Shih Tzu’s nose moist when you are exercising it or simply taking it for a walk. Applying petroleum jelly might also work but only in some cases. Using plastic bowls may also be harmful as the chemicals used in making these bowls can cause irritation on the skin. As the material is soaked in water throughout the day, the dogs tend to consume the harmful substances and these might stick to the skin or facial hair which can cause irritation, itching, scratching and might also lead to peeling of the upper layer of the skin. This is the reason why it is always preferred to use stainless steel bowls or use nipple drinkers which can be attached to the cage.
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