The Chinese Sharpei and Shar-Pei Fever

Owner’s question

“Hi! I have heard that Sharpei dogs have a tendency to have some kind of fever. What exactly is this and how can I treat it if my dog develops it?”

Vet’s detailed answer

“Hi! Yes, you are correct, Sharpei dogs do have a predisposition to Familial Shar-Pei F ever (FSF) or more simply Shar-Pei Fever.

FSF is a genetic disease specific to the breed and is caused by an abnormal function of the dog’s immune system.

The typical symptom of FSF is a high fever that usually lasts for 24-36 hours.

The fever often comes on suddenly and your dog is visibly affected.

Other possible symptoms include restlessness, loss of appetite, lethargy and swelling of the skin. In severe cases, FSF can also cause inflammation of the dog’s internal organs, such as the kidneys and liver.

If your dog shows these symptoms, take him to the vet immediately!

Treatment of FSF often involves managing the symptoms, which usually involves antipyretics and anti-inflammatory medication.

In severe cases, where the disease affects organs, treatment can be more complicated and may require additional medication or even surgery.

Unfortunately, there is no known cure for FSF as it is a genetic disease.

The most important thing is to recognise the symptoms and take your dog to a vet as soon as possible if you think it may have FSF.

It should be noted that not all Sharpeys suffer from FSF!

The incidence of the disease varies in the population, but it is estimated that around one in five Sharpeys are affected. If you have a Sharpei, it’s worth having a genetic test to find out if it carries the genes that predispose it to FSF.

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With this information, you’ll be better able to prepare and deal with potential health challenges.”

Last but not least, it’s important to note that the Sharpei is an extremely loyal and loving breed, and despite FSF, many Sharpei’s live very happy and healthy lives.

The most important thing is to be conscious of your dog’s health and work closely with your veterinarian to provide him with the best possible care!”