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Gen B.
Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 2225
Experience:  Lhasa,Shih Tzu Breeder/ B.A.Neurophysiology & Animal Behavior/I use plain English!
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my eight month old shih-tzu started her first menstrual cycle

Resolved Question:

my eight month old shih-tzu started her first menstrual cycle last week and at the same time stopped eating her dog food. On saturday she bit on a christmas tree ornament but we removed the broken pieces out of her mouth. Yesterday we started feeding her boiled chicken and she is eating that now. Today she vomitted two times, yellow with some foam. She is not being herself. Is this due to her menstrual cycle or is she sick? Her nose is also dry.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Gen B. replied 5 years ago.
Was the ornament made of glass?

What color is her discharge?

Is her vulva swollen? Very tightly?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Yes, the ornament was glass. The menstrual period is red but her vomit was yellow with some foam in it. The vulva is swollen but i'm not sure how tight it should be. I mean it looks pretty tight.

Expert:  Gen B. replied 5 years ago.
Hello and thanks for researching this very important question!

Dogs and people have VERY different reproductive mechanisms.

Dogs do not "menstruate" as such...the blood that we see with dogs is only an overflow from a full uterus. The canine uterus does not completely empty, but the blood is actually reabsorbed into the body if pregnancy does not occur. (In the dog world, we speak of their Heat Cycle...the entire time that their hormones are working toward reproduction.)

The discharge should not be heavy, thick or containing any blood clots...all causes for concern if seen. A thin, watery drip is normal. It may be bright red, rusty or golden...green, white or pale yellow indicates infection and should be attended medically right away.

Female dogs can become very quiet during the beginning of their heat cycle, particularly a dog going through puberty, since she is completely unfamiliar with this process. Socially, a female at the beginning of her cycle (the first 7-10 days) may be reticent and shy...she would repulse a male's advances until her ovaries release eggs. Until ready for actual mating, a few females will avoid social situations, and can be a bit grumpy, but most manage things just fine.

Hormonal changes can affect the digestive system, and some gals do have nausea related to estrogen levels.

However, I am concerned that this vomit has come after breaking the ornament. It is possible that she swallowed some tiny and sharp slivers of glass and that they have caused some irritation or damage to her stomach/intestines. Paint or other chemicals that were used in the production of the ornament may also cause illness.

If this were my pet, I'd have her examined by a veterinarian since she is not feeling at all well. The vet can help you decide if she is feeling "teenage" punky or if she is in need of some medical assistance to get up and around again.

If you need additional support at this time, please click "Reply", otherwise I thank you in advance for your "Accept", and hope that she feels better soon.

Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 2225
Experience: Lhasa,Shih Tzu Breeder/ B.A.Neurophysiology & Animal Behavior/I use plain English!
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