Your Purebred Puppy, Honest Advice About Dogs and Dog Breeds

Sensible advice for raising your Japanese Chin puppy so he lives a long healthy life and seldom needs to visit the vet. Learn about the most common health problems and issues in Japanese Chins, the best dog food diet for feeding Japanese Chin puppies and adult dogs, the truth about vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and natural health care.


11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, my best-selling dog health book

Japanese Chin dog breed

Japanese Chin Health Problems and Raising a Japanese Chin Puppy to be Healthy

By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2013

Quiz – How Long Will Your Dog Live?
How To Raise a Healthy Dog
Feeding the Best Dog Food
Feeding the 2nd Best Dog Food
Vaccinations: Needed or Not?
Are You Sure Your Vet Is Good?

The most common health problems in Japanese Chins:

Japanese Chins are a deformed breed in two ways – their short legs and long back are chondrodysplastic, and their short pushed-in face is brachycephalic. Both of these syndromes can cause orthopedic problems and eye problems.

  • Eye diseases in Japanese Chins include corneal ulcers, cataracts, entropion, eyelash abnormalities, and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA).
  • The most common orthopedic disease is luxating patella (loose knees). An evaluation of 22 Chins resulted in 32% declared to have loose knees. Hip dysplasia also occurs in the breed. The Orthopedic Foundation of America evaluated the hip X-rays of 23 Japanese Chins and found 9% dysplastic. That's very high for such a small dog, and the true rate is even higher because most of the obviously bad X-rays were not sent in for official evaluation.

Heart disease (specifically, early-onset mitral valve disease) can severely shorten a Japanese Chin's normal 10-12 year lifespan to 4-6 years old.

Epilepsy is a growing concern in Japanese Chin.

Allergies cause itchy skin and often lead to bacterial skin infections (pyoderma). Ear infections are common due to all the hair in the ear canals.

Atlantoaxial subluxation is an inherited defect in the neck vertebrae that causes compression of the spinal cord, resulting in pain or paralysis. It occurs in young Japanese Chins (less than a year old). It's similar to Wobbler's syndrome and is treated much the same way.


Can you prevent health problems from happening to YOUR Japanese Chin?

Yes, often you can.

  1. Some health problems are genetic, which means inherited from parents. Genetic health issues are common in Japanese Chins today because of unwise breeding practices. My book, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, shows you how to find a Japanese Chin puppy who is genetically healthy.
  2. Other health problems are environmental – caused by the way you raise your dog. My best-selling dog health book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy shows you how to prevent environmental health problems by raising your Japanese Chin puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways.

Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy Japanese Chin puppy or adult dog:

Dog lifespan quiz How Long Will Your Dog Live? – Take This Quiz!
Based on your dog's breed and how you're raising him, this personalized quiz will help you understand how long your dog might live – and most importantly, how you can increase his life expectancy.


Obedience instructor and author Michele Welton Dog Health Care – The Sensible Way
Read my advice on daily health care so your Japanese Chin lives a long, healthy life and seldom needs to see the vet.


Real homemade dog food The Best Dog Food For Feeding Your Japanese Chin
The best diet for feeding your Japanese Chin is real food. Real chicken, turkey, beef, bison, venison, fish....This is not "people food" and I'll tell you why.


Natural dog foods for your Japanese Chin. The Second-Best Dog Food For Your Japanese Chin
If you can't feed homemade dog food, here are your next-best choices.


Information on booster shots for your Japanese Chin. Vaccinations and Booster Shots: Needed or Not?
How many vaccinations does your Japanese Chin puppy really need? Does your adult Japanese Chin need yearly booster shots? The vaccination guidelines have changed. Find out what many vets aren't telling you.


Information on choosing the best vet for your Japanese Chin. The Type of Veterinarian I Recommend
Is your veterinarian really the best choice for your dog? Learn about the differences between vets who practice conventional, holistic, and alternative veterinary medicine.


Information on spaying your Japanese Chin. Spaying Your Female Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of spaying your female Japanese Chin.


Information on neutering your male dog. Neutering Your Male Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of neutering your male dog.