10 Possible Causes Of My Shih Tzu Shaking & Helpful Hints

My Shih Tzu Shaking

If you wondering about Shih Tzu shaking, it could signify an underlying health issue. Learn top causes like hypoglycemia, anxiety, poisoning, and more. Discover helpful remedies to stop shaking and restore your dog’s comfort.

Shih Tzu dogs are known for their beautiful, flowing coats and charming personalities. However, if your Shih Tzu has started shaking, it can be concerning. Shaking or trembling in dogs can signify an underlying problem that requires veterinary attention. By understanding the possible causes and remedies, you can get your Shih Tzu the proper treatment and help relieve their discomfort.

Why is My Shih Tzu Shaking?

There are the following reasons for your Shih Tzu Shaking are below here,

Fear and Anxiety

One of the most common reasons a Shih Tzu may shake is fear or anxiety. Shih Tzus are sensitive dogs that can be startled by loud noises, unfamiliar people or animals, or new environments. The shaking is an involuntary response as adrenaline is released into the body. Try to minimize situations that create fear or anxiety. If it cannot be avoided, stay calm and comfort your Shih Tzu during the event. Proper socialization and training from a young age can help build confidence. Medications may be prescribed in extreme cases of anxiety.

Cold Temperatures

Shih Tzus have a single-layer coat, making them prone to chilliness. Pay attention to the ambient temperature. If your home is under 70°F, your Shih Tzu may need a sweater or jacket when indoors. Keep them away from drafts and direct air conditioning. Take shorter walks when it’s cold outside. Make sure bedding is warm and off of cold tile or cement floors. Keeping the temperature regulated will help your Shih Tzu maintain body heat.


Low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, can cause shaking in Shih Tzus, especially in puppies. This breed has a predisposition for hypoglycemia because they have a high metabolism. Signs include lethargy, tremors, seizures, and loss of consciousness. Feed your Shih Tzu quality food designed for small breed puppies under one year old. Divide daily portions over 3-4 meals. Do not exercise a Shih Tzu puppy right before or after eating. Keep nutritious snacks handy when away from home. Seek immediate vet care if you suspect hypoglycemia.

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Dogs instinctively hide the pain. If your Shih Tzu is hurting, shaking may be the only outward sign. Potential sources include dental problems, muscle pulls, arthritis, ear infections, and bladder stones. Try gently pressing on your dog’s body to see if they react. Check their mouth, ears, and abdomen. Older Shih Tzus with mobility issues may tremble when moving around. Have your vet examine your dog to determine the cause of pain so appropriate treatment can be started.


The ingestion of toxic substances like antifreeze, household chemicals, or human medications can cause shaking. It may be mild at first, leading to tremors or seizures as the toxin is absorbed. Immediately contact your vet or pet poison control helpline if you suspect poisoning. Depending on the substance, induced vomiting or hospitalization may be required. Prevention is key – make sure all chemical products, medicines, and toxic houseplants are kept out of your Shih Tzu’s reach.

Adverse Reaction to Medications

Though not common, your Shih Tzu could experience an adverse reaction to a medication, triggering tremors. Reactions are more likely with new medications. Closely observe behavior after starting anything new and notify your vet at the first sign of shaking. Make sure all medications are dosed properly for your Shih Tzu’s size to decrease risk. Write down medications, doses, and time given to help identify the source in the event of a reaction.


Canine distemper is an extremely contagious and life-threatening viral disease. Early symptoms include discharge from the eyes and nose, lethargy, reduced appetite, and trembling. As it progresses, seizures, behavioral changes, and partial paralysis occur. Distemper is often fatal. The distemper vaccination is part of a puppy’s core vaccine protocol. Booster shots are imperative for an adult dog. If distemper is suspected, aggressive supportive care under veterinary supervision is required.

Liver Disease

Liver dysfunction can lead to the accumulation of toxins in the bloodstream which affect motor function. Common causes of liver disease include infections, cancers, medications, and poor blood flow. Symptoms may include vomiting, diarrhea, jaundice, seizures, and shaking. Your vet will run tests such as bloodwork, imaging, biopsies, or special stains to determine the extent of damage and cause. Treatment focuses on addressing the underlying condition triggering liver issues.

Kidney Failure

The kidneys filter waste from the bloodstream. When they fail, shaking can occur as toxins build up. Kidney disease is common as dogs age. Contributing factors include urinary tract infections, kidney stones, cancer, amyloidosis, and Lyme disease. Blood tests help confirm if kidney function is impaired. Aggressive dehydration therapy and medications may help slow the progression of the disease. However, the kidneys have a limited ability to heal, making management key.

Neurological Disorders

A broad range of neurological conditions can induce tremors and unsteadiness. These include epilepsy, infection of the nervous system, brain tumors, meningitis, encephalitis, and intervertebral disc disease. Diagnosing the exact cause may require specialized testing like MRI scans, spinal fluid evaluation, and EEGs. Treatment is tailored to the specific illness. Medications, surgery, rehabilitation therapy, or chemotherapy may be incorporated. Though many conditions cannot be cured, progression may be substantially slowed.

If your Shih Tzu begins to shake, stay calm but take action. Look for any concurrent symptoms like vomiting, limping, or sniffles that provide clues. Try solving obvious problems first, like bundling them up if cold. Call your vet if the cause is uncertain, shaking persists or worsens, or is accompanied by other signs of illness. With proper treatment guided by your vet, your Shih Tzu will soon be back to their happy, lively self!

What To Do To Help My Shih Tzu Stop Shaking

  • Stay calm and gently soothe your Shih Tzu if they seem fearful. Speak softly and pet them lightly.
  • Wrap your Shih Tzu in a blanket or sweater if they seem chilled. Keep them away from drafts.
  • Offer a small meal if it’s close to their normal mealtime and hypoglycemia is possible. Have nutritious snacks on hand when away from home.
  • Check for signs of pain or illness. Contact your vet if the cause is uncertain.
  • If poisoning is suspected, immediately call your vet or pet poison helpline.
  • Monitor for medication reactions and notify your vet at the first sign of shaking.
  • Follow your vet’s advice for treatment if a specific medical condition is found.
  • Provide supportive care at home, like keeping them hydrated and comfortable.
  • Remain patient, as some problems will resolve on their own with time.

The key is determining the cause and taking appropriate action. Your vet can provide the necessary guidance to get your Shih Tzu shaking under control. Stay attentive to your dog’s needs and with proper treatment, your Shih Tzu should be back to normal soon.

The Benefits Of Stopping My Shih Tzu Shaking

  • Relieves discomfort and distress for your dog. Shaking is often a sign of an underlying problem.
  • Stops involuntary tremoring that can progress to seizures if left untreated.
  • Allows injuries or illnesses to be properly diagnosed and treated.
  • Restores healthy blood sugar levels if hypoglycemia is the cause.
  • Resolves adverse medication reactions before they worsen.
  • Provides pain relief from conditions like dental disease or arthritis.
  • Improves neurological function if a disorder is present.
  • Increases safety if shaking was due to poisoning or toxicity.
  • Promotes proper organ function if failure was contributing to tremors.
  • Prevents worsening of infectious diseases like distemper.
  • Avoids temperature-related injury from prolonged chilling.
  • Restores your dog’s normal mobility and activity levels.
  • Returns your Shih Tzu’s good temperament unhindered by discomfort.

Stopping the shaking helps your Shih Tzu feel their best again! Consult your veterinarian to pinpoint the reason and craft an effective treatment plan.

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