We don’t want to Stereotype, but unfortunately certain dog breeds come with certain pre-dispososed health problems. Knowing what health issues can arise can help you treat your pup or hopefully even avoid them! Consulting a vet pre or post adoption can secure you with the tools you need to be prepared.
Dog health issues by breed:
The unmistakable smushed face of a bulldog
What makes these angels cute is also what can cause them to have health issues. Their smushed in faces can cause them to have respiratory problems.
NOTE: All snub-nosed breeds are more susceptible to overheating. The broad head and constricted airways found in Shi Tzus, Boxers, Boston Terriers and Bull Mastiffs means you should keep these babies cool all summer long. That said, English and French Bulldogs are the most susceptible to heat related issues.
Beautiful black lab soaks in the sun
RETRIEVERS - GOLDEN AND LABRADOR
Labradors are particularly prone to becoming overweight. They need a lot of exercise!
The most common issue for Goldens is hip dysplasia a form of arthritis. This form of arthritis refers to the abnormal growth or development of the ball and socket joint of a golden’s hips. A golden retriever with hip dysplasia will have a deformed joint and socket at the hip. He may be in pain, have swelling and trouble walking.
The other issue golden retrievers are prone to is skin issues. Their dense undercoating long top cot create the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Skin issues can include, dryness, flaky skin, allergies. Usually these are easily treated but if you notice something go to your vet to rule out anything more serious.
Perfect example of a tai-color Bernese Mountain Dog with white "slippers"
BERNESE MOUNTAIN DOG
Bernese Mountain dogs are one of the largest dogs breeds averaging in weight from males at 80-115 pounds) to females at 70-95 pounds. Large dogs in particular are at risk of canine hip dysplasia, which causes the head of the femur bone to join into the hip socket incorrectly. The Bernese Mountain dog breed also have a relatively short life expectancy of 7-10 years.
a beautiful German Shepherd taking a water break
German Shepherds appear so tough and rugged its hard to picture them in pain or slow moving. Being a big dog like Bernese Mountain Dog, German Shepherds are prone to elbow and hip dysplasia. German Shepherd owners need to take their health and exercise requirements seriously!
Little Dachsund lounging at home
Because of their (adorable) long bodies, Dachsunds are prone to back issues and spine problems. Make sure you keep your Dach breed pup at a healthy weight as and extra weight on the back can make it worse. If your short legged friend starts limping or whining when you touch him call the Vet immediately.
Fun Fact: Dachshunds were originally bred to hunt badgers. They were selectively bred to have short legs so they could scrabble down the badger holes.
This Cocker Spaniel is enjoying his favorite activity
Any dog with particularly furry ears like the cocker is going to be prone to ear infections as it is harder to keep the ears clean. When you bathe your cocker be sure to keep the ear canals dry.
Cocker Spaniels are also prone to Glaucoma. Glaucoma, an eye condition that affects English Cocker type of Spaniels and people. It is an extremely painful disease that rapidly leads to blindness if left untreated. If you notice squinting, watery eyes or blue-ing of cornea call your vet.
PRO TIP: Invest in a headband to keep dog ears dry while washing (and looking adorable).
A little furry Pom mouthing off to her owner
Poms are sadly prone to losing their amazing fur. Spaying or neutering often causes the hair to grow back as the hair loss is usually caused by excess production of sex hormones. In addition, Melatonin supplements sometimes help.
Westie sitting on the windowsill waiting for his pawrents to return home
MALTESE AND WEST HIGHLAND TERRIERS
Little white dogs are at higher risk for developing tremors. In fact, it is so associated with white coated dogs that it is often referred to as “Little White Dog Syndrome”. Prednisone should alleviate the problem so see your veterinarian if you notice anything unusual.
Poodles always look like they are smiling. This little gal is no exception
Addison's Disease is very common in Poodles. Addison’s Disease is when the adrenal glands don't produce enough of the hormone cortisol. A dog can become lethargic, stressed and even depressed.Poodles are also at a higher risk for eye cataracts.
My what big ears you have little Chi
Dislocated knee caps are common in Chi’s. The good news is that it is only painful for your pup when the dislocation actually happens. Other than that, he will just not put pressure on that leg.
Chi’s are also prone to collapsing trachea. The cartilage supporting the trachea is weakened which results in a collapse. Signs include coughing, shortness of breath and tiredness. See you Vet if you notice anything unusual.
HAIRLESS DOG BREEDS: Mexican and Chinese Crested
Hairless dogs typically have skin problems, especially blackheads and clogged hair follicles if the skin gets too dirty or wet. They are prone to allergies that cause itching and scratching that can tear the skin, which can lead to bacterial infections. The genes that produce hairlessness in dog breeds also tends to produce bad teeth or missing teeth.
Sadly, Great Danes, in all their glory have a relatively short life span averaging between 6-10 years. These regal creatures are prone to numerous health issues, including bloating, a dangerous and often fatal condition that results in the stomach twisting and cutting off blood supply. Once a dog suffers from bloat they will often get it again and your veterinarian may recommend a tacking procedure to try and minimize future risk. Make sure you talk to your veterinarian about the symptoms of bloat and if there is anything you can do to help prevent it.
The most common issue for Boston Terriers is Cherry Eye. Cherry Eye in dogs is characterized as a protrusion in the tear glands. The tear gland is also referred to as the third eyelid since it keeps the dog’s eyes safe from dust and other harmful objects. If your dog has a severe cherry eye you WILL KNOW IT!! It’s a red protrusion that can look like a wart on the eye. If you notice anything unusual starting to develop in your pup’s eyes, call your veterinarian. There are anti-inflammatory eye drops and other treatments they can recommend. If it gets too far gone, surgery may be the only option.
Happy go-lucky mini Shnauzer
Sadly mini schnauzers are not as healthy as their larger dopelgangers.As a breed, they have more occurrences of urinary stones than any other.
STAT: According to a study in the American Journal of Veterinary Research (1998-99), 47 percent of small dogs reported to have stones were Miniature Schnauzers.
Females are most likely to develop struvite usually appear at the same time as a urinary tract infection. Older Males are more likely to develop calcium oxalate stones
We touched on many breed specific issues but we did not cover them all. If you have a dog or are thinking about adding one to your family, do your research! A great place to start is always the American Kennel Club.