This is a central nervous system disorder caused by low blood sugar. It occurs mainly in Toy Breeds, between 6 and 12 weeks of age. Stress is the leading cause.

The signs are those of listlessness and depression and are followed by muscular weakness, tremors (especially the facial muscles) and later, convulsions, coma and death. The entire sequence is not always seen and may simply appear to be depressed, or he may be wobbly, jerky and may go into a coma.

Hypoglycemia can occur without warning, when a puppy is placed into a new home, or while being shipped. Symptoms might appear after a puppy misses a meal, chills or becomes exhausted from too much playing or has a digestive upset. These upsets place an added strain on the energy reserves of the liver and bring on symptoms (if the dog is susceptible).


Begin at Once! Treatment is directed at restoring blood levels of glucose. Give the puppy a mouthful of Nutri-Cal (Canine Supplement). If he cannot swallow it all at once, it will begin to absorb under the tongue and should start bringing him back to a conscious state so that will be able to swallow the rest. When he can swallow, give him water (about 1 cc at a time so he doesn't choke). Continue to give him Nutri-cal and water about every 10 minutes until he is conscious and moving about.

If you do not have Nutri-cal (canine supplement) you can temporarily substitute this with honey or syrup until you can purchase Nutri-cal. As soon as the puppy begins to recover, give him some canned food and try to get him to eat. You will also need to begin some Pepto-Bisol to help him from getting bad diarrhea. The large dose of Nutri-Cal or syrup will probably cause some diarrhea to occur, but is usually self limiting.

To prevent recurrent attacks make sure the puppy eats at regular intervals. He should have dry food available at all times and should be fed canned food at least 2 times a day. A daily vitamin should be given, (Nutri-Cal 1 cc 2 or 3 times a day) also cottage cheese or yogurt can be added to the diet.

Owners of toy puppies should not allow them to become overtired or chilled. Play time should be limited and controlled to prevent undue stress and tiring. Hypoglycemia must be offset by frequent feedings. A puppy who does not eat frequently, for whatever reason is heading for trouble.