With these dog breeds, you'll face the most veterinary costsThe likelihood of contracting certain diseases is greater in some dog breeds than others. Accordingly, high veterinary costs are preprogrammed for some dog breeds in the course of their life.
Have you ever heard of race predisposition? The probability of contracting a certain disease is greater for dog breeds with a breed predisposition, because the formation of the diseases in them is genetically predisposed. This is because centuries of breeding for external characteristics often neglects health.
Many dog breeds are selected in breeding for certain characteristics, for example a short nose. To do this, only a few animals are interbred, which means a small gene pool. Genetically inherited diseases are thus rapidly passed on and "conserved" within the breed.
Gene mutations or physical characteristics of dog breeds promote disease
DNA mutations have been detected in many breeds today. Genetic tests show, for example, progressive retinal atrophy, i.e. the slow death of the retina, in Springer Spaniels and Mastiffs, or the MDR1 gene defect, which leads to hypersensitivity to some medications, in Border Collies, Australian Shepherds, Collies and White Shepherds. Responsible breeders should know the most important diseases. Have your breeding animals tested for this. Because many parents are healthy, but pass the disease on to subsequent generations. This is called recessive inheritance.
Other diseases occur due to physical characteristics of the breed, without a specific gene being responsible for them. For example, the skin inflammation in the nose fold (skin fold pyoderma) in short noses such as Pug and French Bulldog.
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DeineTierwelt presents the most popular breeds and their most common diseases:
Dog breeds prone to hip and elbow joint dysplasia
Labradors are on trend. As a result, a large number of these dogs are produced, so that breeders would not be able to meet the demand if they were to weed out all the parents whose offspring have hereditary diseases.
The two most important are musculoskeletal diseases: elbow joint dysplasia (ED) and hip joint dysplasia (HD). Elbow dysplasia is actually a collective term for several conditions that cause similar changes in the elbow on radiographs.
These various elbow diseases have one thing in common: The joint, which is composed of three bones, is incongruent – the joint surfaces do not fit together ideally. This causes friction and, in the worst cases, bone chips (osteochondrosis dissecans), which act like a stone in a shoe: They press and destroy the cartilage.
There is no other treatment option than to remove this "stone in the shoe" by surgery. Usually both elbows have to be operated on. Affected joints nevertheless do not become healthy anymore. The consequence: arthrosis.
In hip dysplasia, the acetabulum is too small for the round head of the femur. Here, too, there is unpleasant friction that leads to osteoarthritis. In this case, an operation of the hip joints is often more complex than that of the elbows. Ideally, the puppy is already x-rayed to diagnose HD. The obliteration of the pelvic symphysis, which can be done until the 5. The hip replacement, which can be done at the age of six months, is a comparatively small operation and ideally ensures that the acetabular cups "roof" the femoral head better.
Photo: unsplash.com/Regine Tholen (symbol photo)
The insertion of an artificial hip is a very complex, expensive and risky operation, but besides physiotherapy, it is the only way to help these dogs in adulthood. In general, breed predisposition to ED and HD has been demonstrated for many large, fast-growing dog breeds: For example, Bernese Mountain Dog, Boxer, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, Large Poodle, Irish Setter, Newfoundland or Giant Schnauzer.
Short-nosed breeds often have many health problems
Although the Internet is full of warnings, it still hits many owners unexpectedly: French Bulldogs, Pugs, Pekinese, Shih-Tzu and other short noses are regulars at the vet, especially at the surgeon's office. A whole bouquet of disorders awaits the owner:
On the one hand, the brachycephalic syndrome (translated: "short head syndrome"), in which a narrow, short nose, an overlong soft palate and a narrow trachea cause great respiratory distress. Properly performed care usually involves several surgeries to widen the nostrils, remove the turbinates, and shorten the soft palate and vocal sacs.
Operations in the throat and nose are very painful and not without risk. Therefore, the animals usually have to stay in the clinic for some time after surgery.
Photo: unsplash.com/FLOUFFY (symbol photo)
In addition, the vertebrae of French Bulldogs are often malformed, which increases the risk of herniated discs. Sometimes it is enough to treat slipped discs with medication and immobilization – but usually very expensive surgery is necessary.
Because the eye socket of these animals is very shallow, the eyelids above the eyeball often cannot close completely. Therefore short noses suffer more frequently from corneal ulcers.
And if that weren't enough, French bulldogs also have a breed predisposition to allergies, which are mild in some animals but cause severe itching in others, requiring lifelong medication and regular vet visits.
Why small dog breeds often do not grow old
Fond of children, handy, fluffy – small breeds are the ideal dogs for families. Unfortunately, few people know that the little partner of the children does not always reach old age.
Older small dogs often suffer from a so-called mitral valve dysplasia. In this case, a heart valve becomes scarred, as a result of which the blood in the heart no longer reaches the body's circulation adequately. In the worst case, the animals have fluid in the lungs (pulmonary edema) and suffocate in agony. Dogs with mitral valve dysplasia require lifelong medication. Regular check-ups with a heart ultrasound by a cardiologist.
Photo: pixabay.com/Petzibear (symbol photo)
Due to altered cartilage substance, the cartilage braces that support the trachea and give it its shape soften more frequently in the small breeds. A so-called tracheal collapse (tracheal collapse) is the consequence. This happens especially when the dog gets excited. The resulting narrowing of the trachea can cause severe breathing problems. This disease is difficult to treat. In milder cases, medications are used to dilate the bronchial tubes. In very severe cases, you can stabilize the trachea with a "mesh tube" (tracheal stent).
Dog breeds susceptible to these diseases include: Yorkshire Terrier, Miniature Poodle, Maltese, Bolonka Zwetna, Havanese and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
Boxers often suffer from spondylosis
In order to be approved for breeding, it is nowadays standard to x-ray the back, elbows and hips of a Boxer. The vet will look for evidence of ED, HD and spondylosis. Spondyloses are bony remodeling processes below the spine, which cause a regular fusion of the individual vertebrae.
As a result, animals can experience significant pain, especially in acute episodes. Animals with spondylosis require lifelong support through physiotherapy. In acute episodes also by pain medication.
Tip: Take out health insurance for dogs as early as possible
Mixed breeds of the above breeds can also have genetic predispositions. In general, it is always advisable to consult your veterinarian about possible breed predispositions of your pet. He will also give you tips on how to avoid the onset of these diseases.
It is therefore all the more important to take out insurance for your dog as early as possible. Namely, best before congenital diseases develop. With the new dog surgery insurance from Uelzener, for example, the four-legged friends can be insured from the first day onwards.