Leo 11 year old blind shih tzu

We can only imagine a dog’s life before they came to BCFS. Regardless of what people say about loving their pet…

… the pet’s body tells another story. 


This is the case with eleven year old blind shih tzu named Leo. 

The family claimed love, but Leo was flea infested and his legs and undercarriage were covered in heavy mats the fleas had taken up residence.

When they set him on the ground covered in Avon skin-so-soft “to help the itching” Leo ran around the barn scratching and crying in discomfort. Even the family acted alarmed.

This poor guy was being chewed up by fleas. As we cuddled Leo the fleas jumped onto our skin and crawled. We continued to cuddle the filthy, flea infested dog because that’s exactly what we do.

A simple flea bath and a dose of revolution took care of the flea infestation and Leo slept for 24 hours. We had to wake him up to go for potty breaks.


We then noticed that Leo’s anal glands were causing him a great deal of pain. We gave him some painkillers and antihistamines to help when we started cutting out the heavy matting. Leo cried in pain at points and it took nearly three hours to patiently clip out the mats with frequent breaks.

Leo was so uncomfortable that when he was awake he cried in discomfort. He was confused, disoriented and in a panic ran around the living room. We used cuddle therapy to calm him down, along with a sweater and a heating pad.


Once we got him shaved down from the mats that left sores on his skin and his right front leg was swollen from having a mat that went the circumference of his limb.  We noticed he also had an eye infection.


We’re questioning a urinary tract infection as well from the frequent urination. Turns out we were correct on the UTI and he is being treated for rods in his urine.

The good news? He eats like a horse! He a monster cuddle bug and he’s easy to handle. He will be very special needs and reminds me a little of my Baby Jackson.

He loves people, especially children, but as he is entering his golden years we recommend a house without small children. A quiet place he can live out his days being cared for appropriately and loved.


Leo hasn’t been vaccinated in years, nor heartworm tested. He’s received no flea or heartworm treatment or any veterinary care since 2015. Beyond the lack of physical care Leo looks down right sad. The emotional turmoil is catastrophic.

The family had multiple traumatic events and did the right thing by surrendering Leo to BCFS. One look at this little guy in pain and we couldn’t say no.

Leo is up for adoption pending his veterinary visit. He’s 11 and is blind, with a head tilt that tends to spin him in circles. He loves to be outside and will potty outside if taken regularly. He’s great on a leash and gets along with other cats and dogs, but doesn’t need a canine companion.

Leo is definitely  special needs are you able to care for a baby Leo as he enters his senior years? He certainly has lots of spunk left! Don’t worry… he’ll get cuter as he heals.


added to end of article Dec 7: We took Leo to a specialist who stated based on Leo’s behaviour and physical exam, she believes Leo has a brain injury and a spinal cord injury. We are not speculating on the type of trauma. His head tilt, walking in circles or aimless wandering will be a permanent condition with few treatment options.


3 thoughts on “Leo 11 year old blind shih tzu”

  1. Thank God that Leo came to you BCFS!! His life until he came to you was I am sure like living in Hell! Don’t know what kind of love that his owner’s gave to him but it was not true love for a beautiful fur baby! I am confident that BCFS will find Leo the fur ever home he needs will tons of love and care! His physical appearance does not need to change ……….he is beautiful just the way he is……….❤ with sooooooo much love to give! I wish that people would think before buying/adopting a pet of any kind if they can give it what it needs for real! Proper vet care food shelter and the love that a fur baby needs! Anyway ………. the best of luck to Leo ……..I know BCFS will get him what he needs to spend the last year’s of his life in peace and LOVE!❤❤

    1. I would so love to care for Leo. I had a special need dog….deaf, blind, food allergies, grade 4 heart murmur, hypothyroid, suspected brain damage and suspected puppy mill dog. I loved her to bits. At this time, I have 2 dog rescues and a cat rescue. 1 dog and cat are 15 years old. My elderly dog has liver issues, heart failure, is totally deaf and pretty much blind. As you can imagine, this all costs a considerable amount of money to care for all 3. My heart wants to care for all animals, especially those that are most vulnerable, but unfortunately my wallet doesn’t co-operate. I hope Leo finds a wonderful home with people who will value and love him just the way he is. He is so deserving.

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