Posts Tagged ‘small dogs’

Beds, Arms, and Broken Bones: The Dangers of Being A Small Dog

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

     Every year, Veterinary Pet Insurance releases some of the data that it garners about pets and their owners, and one tidbit worth repeating is the most common reasons dogs and cats break their bones.  Not surprisingly, getting hit by a car tops the list.  Yep, that’ll definitely break a bone—or worse—so it’s a good reminder to keep dogs on leash at all times when they’re outdoors and to keep your cats inside.  And while being hit by a car accounted for 40% of all VPI’s claims for broken bones, the next 40% was attributed to pets jumping or falling from furniture or other high places. 
     At Scout’s House, we can attest to how dangerous it is for pets, particularly small dogs, to jump or fall from a height.  Some of the dogs we’ve seen have fractured their front legs by suddenly jumping out of their owners’ arms or by launching themselves off beds (usually to “answer the doorbell”).  It happens most with small dogs, especially the teacup and toy breeds, but we’ve also had patients as big as Lhasa Apsos, Shih Tzus, and Shelties.  And overweight pets are at even greater risk, for obvious reasons.
     Granted, they’re just being themselves and jumping off things is what dogs and cats do, but you can lower your pet’s chances of breaking a bone by putting ramps and stairs in strategic spots around the house—leading up to sofas and beds—and then training your dog to actually use them.  And never, ever let a dog or cat  jump from your arms or your lap, no matter how often that doorbell rings.  Hang on tight until you can put Fluffy down on the ground and you just might save your pet the pain of a needless injury–and save yourself the $1500-$2600 it costs to surgically repair a broken bone.