6 Most Common And Major Illnesses Of Bichon Frise

There are multiple factors that play an important role in the health of your Bichon Frise. Your dog’s genetics, the quality of veterinary care they receive, what they eat and how safe the environment they live in is. It is very important to recognize the most common and major illnesses of your Bichon Frise to treat and prevent them. The health of your dog is vitally important to give your dog the opportunity of a long, happy and healthy life.

Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is a hereditary condition that prevents the thigh bone from adjusting perfectly to the hip joint. Hip dysplasia is common among Bichon Frise, but it does not affect them all. The dog usually has symptoms of pain and lameness. However, hip dysplasia does not always cause discomfort in the Bichon Frise, but it can develop into arthritis as your dog ages. Hip dysplasia is incurable and the Bichon Frises who suffer from it should not be bred. When buying a puppy from a breeder, you must request proof that none of your puppy’s parents have hip dysplasia.

Cherry Eye

Cherry eye is a problem that most commonly affects certain breeds, but it can affect any dog. The main symptom of the cherry eye is a large red swelling that appears in the inner corner of your dog’s eyes. The cherry eye is caused by the prolapse of a tear gland attached to the third eyelid of your dog. The prolapsed gland swells forward and creates the red lump.

Cherry eye is not a disease that threatens vision, but it causes a lot of discomfort to your Bichon Frise. There are many websites and guides to cure cherry eyes at home, but I recommend bringing your Bichon Frise to the vet so it receives the best quality medical care from a trained professional.

There are two surgical options, performed under general anesthesia to treat the cherry eye. The first is to remove the damaged tear gland completely. The second is to surgically manipulate the gland back to its correct position. I advise you to consult with your veterinarian what is the best course of action for the specific case of your Bichon Frise.


Incontinence can affect your Bichon Frise at any age. If your dog has been previously housetrained, it is important to remember that loss of bladder or bowel control is a physical problem, not a behavioral one. Incontinence is most commonly found in older Bichon Frises, especially females. This is usually caused by the following reasons:

  • A urinary tract infection
  • Old age
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Neurological problems
  • Recent spaying surgery
  • Diseases and other health problems

If your dog suffers from incontinence, it is recommended to take it directly to the veterinarian. The veterinarian can diagnose what is causing the problems and can provide an adequate solution.


Canine parvovirus is a highly contagious and deadly viral disease that affects dogs and puppies. Puppies are more likely to get this disease. Most unvaccinated dogs that contract parvovirus will die. However, parvovirus is not a deadly disease that is identified in its early stages. The best method to prevent parvovirus is to give your puppy, and Bichon Frise, a complete course of medical injections to provide strong protection and immunity against the virus. It is also vital to keep your puppy away from other Bichon Frises and animals before they have been completely vaccinated.

Parvovirus symptoms are:

  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Fever
  • Diarrhea

These symptoms are very common for many other less serious diseases, but you should still take your pet to the veterinarian if you notice any of these symptoms, since you do not want to risk your dog having untreated parvovirus.

Dental Problems

Most dental problems in dogs are caused by periodontal disease. Periodontal disease can affect more than just the mouth and gums of your Bichon Frise! If your Bichon Frise has bad teeth and damaged gums, they are more likely to get other diseases. Greater dental hygiene can cause your Bichon Frise to have inflammations throughout the body.

The best way to provide your dog with high-quality dental care is to provide a chew toy. Chew toys allow your dog to strengthen its teeth and jaw, as well as eliminate tartar. There are also several different types of dental dog treats available that are designed to clean your dog’s teeth and freshen its breath.

It is also considered the best practice to clean the teeth of your dog, either by taking your pet to a professional dental cleaning service, a veterinary clinic or brushing its teeth with a toothbrush. You should strive to make dental care a fundamental part of your dog’s grooming routine.

The key signs for a dental disease are:

  • Excessive drooling
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty eating
  • Broken teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Swollen gums
  • Tartar buildup
  • Very pale gums

If you notice any of the above symptoms, I recommend you take your dog to the veterinarian.

Ear Problems

Most ear problems are relatively easy to treat once they are diagnosed. Ear problems can be chronic (recurrent) or acute. Ear infections are one of the most common types of ear problems found in Bichon Frises. Ear infections usually occur in the external ear canal and have symptoms of redness of the ear, scabs, and secretions around your dog’s ear canal. This type of ear infection is called ‘otitis’ and is caused by a bacterial infection, fungal or yeast infection, allergies or overexposure to water, such as swimming and bathing.

The second most common type of ear problem is an infestation of ear mites. If your dog has ear mites, there will be symptoms of black discharge around the ear canal, redness and inflammation of the ear canal, scabs and a very strong smell. It is a good practice to take your dog to the veterinarian if you notice any of the above symptoms since the veterinarian can identify the cause of the problem and can give your dog the best type of medical care.

It is considered the best practice not to clean your dog’s ears before taking them to the veterinarian; Your veterinarian will need to see the symptoms of your dog’s ear problem. Most ear problems can be corrected by treatment with oral medications or ear drops.