Questions & Answers

I have an 8 year old female miniature Chihuahua. Recently she’s been having strange little episodes where she becomes visibly dizzy and her footing is unstable. Her eyes seem to be swimming and she reacts somewhat slowly to sudden movements. What could this be?

Thank you for your question.

Dizziness (or vertigo) is usually related to problems in the brain’s balance system, also known as the vestibular system.  There are many things that can affect the vestibular system including ear infections, trauma, systemic elevations in some blood toxins that can occur with liver or kidney dysfunction, or problems with the brain itself such as meningitis or tumors.  There is also a syndrome seen in older dogs called Geriatric Vestibular disorder where pets may have dizziness without a cause that can be determined.

The most important thing is to determine the underlying cause of the dizziness.  This starts with a good physical and neurological exam.  Bloodwork and other testing may be advised to help assess body functions.  Please contact us as soon as possible so that we can meet you and your pet and get her on the road to feeling better!  813 988 1189

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