Most common health problems in Lhasa Apsos, plus health care and feeding.


My Complete Health Care Program for your Lhasa Apso

If you want to AVOID health problems in your Lhasa Apso, you'll find my health care program very valuable.

It's called "11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy."

Raise your dog the RIGHT way, feed him the RIGHT food, give him the RIGHT vaccinations, avoid unnecessary veterinary expenses, and help him live a longer, happier, and more comfortable life.

If your Lhasa already HAS a health problem, I'm sorry to hear that. You should immediately begin my health care program, and you may be able to restore his good health – or at least make him much more comfortable. Let me help!

My best-selling dog health book


Lhasa Apso dog breed

Lhasa Apso Health Care & Feeding

By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2017


Quick list of Lhasa Apso health problems

Lhasa Apsos have deliberately been bred to be deformed in two ways – their short legs and long back are chondrodysplastic and their shortened face is brachycephalic (though fortunately not as bad as some breeds like Pugs or Shih Tzus). But both of these deformities are associated with increased health problems.

There are a lot of blind Lhasa Apsos, from cataracts or progressive retinal atrophy. Their prominent eyes are easily scratched, which can lead to corneal ulcers. A chronic eye disease called "dry eye" can require lifelong medication.

An inherited kidney disease, renal dysplasia, kills many young Lhasas.

Chronic allergies cause itchy skin and scratching that can lead to skin infections (hot spots). A more serious skin disease, sebaceous adenitis, is a concern in the breed. Ear infections can be recurring due to profuse hair in the ear canals.

The Lhasa Apso is prone to intervertebral disk disease and luxating patella (loose knee joints), both of which cause pain and lameness and can require expensive surgery.

(See more health problems below.)


Preventing health problems

Some health problems are inherited. For example, if both parents of your Lhasa Apso have certificates proving they were tested and cleared of hereditary eye diseases and luxating patella, your Lhasa Apso has less risk of developing those conditions.

Other health problems can be prevented, or partially prevented, by the ways you raise your dog. If you're serious about doing everything you can for your Lhasa Apso, my best-selling book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, shows you how to raise your Lhasa Apso puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways. It will help you be your dog's health care champion!


Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy Lhasa Apso puppy or adult dog:

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


Pet insurance Should You Buy Pet Insurance? An Honest Review
My advice on the pros and cons of pet insurance, and the best pet insurance company I've found.


Real homemade dog food The Best Dog Food For Feeding Your Lhasa Apso
Food is the #1 foundation for good health. The best diet for feeding your dog is real food. Real chicken, turkey, beef, fish....these are not just "people foods" and I'll tell you why.


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


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


Information on spaying your Lhasa Apso. Spaying Your Female Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of spaying your female dog.


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


Information on choosing the best vet for your Lhasa Apso. 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.


Assisi Loop Assisi Loop Review: How I Helped Treat Inflammation and Pain
Does your dog suffer from arthritis, hip dysplasia, disk disease, colitis, a skin wound? My honest review of a veterinary device you can use at home to help reduce inflammation and pain.


Complete list of Lhasa Apso health problems

Lhasa Apsos have deliberately been bred to be deformed in two ways – their short legs and long back are chondrodysplastic and their shortened face is brachycephalic (though fortunately not as bad as some breeds like Pugs or Shih Tzus). But both of these deformities are associated with increased health problems.

The most serious eye diseases in Lhasa Apsos are dry eye, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) appearing at 3-4 years old, and cataracts (appearing at 3-6 years old and often leading to blindness). Other eye diseases to watch for include corneal ulcers, cherry eye, eyelash abnormalities, corneal dystrophy, and lens luxation.

Renal dysplasia, an inherited kidney disease, can kill young Lhasas at 6-12 months old. Fortunately, a simple DNA test is available for renal dysplasia in Lhasa Apsos, so you can find out at any time whether your dog has the disease, carries the disease, or is completely clear of it.

Allergies cause itchy skin and can lead to bacterial skin infections (pyoderma). A more serious skin disease, sebaceous adenitis, is increasing in the breed.

Ear infections are common due to profuse hair in the ear canals.

Breeds with a long back, like the Lhasa, are more prone to intervertebral disk disease. Joints can be bad in Lhasas: luxating patella (loose knees) and hip dysplasia. The Orthopedic Foundation of America evaluated the hip X-rays of 800 Lhasa Apsos and found 6% dysplastic.

Other health issues in Lhasa Apsos include heart disease, hypothyroidism, urinary stones, blood-clotting disease (von Willebrand's), and pyloric stenosis.

Lissencephaly is a serious neurological disease that can appear in young Lhasas. Symptoms include seizures, vision problems, difficulty walking, and/or behavioral abnormalities, especially sudden aggression or unprovoked attacks.


To help you train and care for your dog

book cover To learn more about training your dog to be calm and well-behaved, my dog training book is Teach Your Dog 100 English Words. It's a unique Vocabulary and Respect Training Program that will teach your dog to listen to you and do whatever you ask.

book cover My dog buying guide, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, will teach you everything you need to know about finding a good-tempered, healthy dog.

book cover My dog health care book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, shows you how to help your dog live a longer life while avoiding health problems and unnecessary veterinary expenses.