If you’re looking to get a dog, it’s important to choose one that will be healthy throughout their life. This is not only a good way to save on vet bills, but also to reduce the risk of your pet developing serious health issues.
Unfortunately, some dog breeds are more prone to health issues than others. So, we’ve created this list of the dogs with the most health issues to help you make an informed decision.
1. Bernese Mountain Dog
A devoted and loyal companion, Bernese Mountain Dogs are friendly toward strangers and kids. They are also very affectionate with their family members and love to be a part of the daily family routine.
But, as with many other breeds, the Bernese Mountain Dog is prone to a number of health problems. While some are inherited, most can be prevented or treated by following a few simple guidelines.
2. English Bulldog
English Bulldogs are a big, sturdy breed that are loyal and affectionate with kids. However, they are also known to be prone to health issues.
This is due to a unique build that predisposes them to bone and joint problems. It is caused by a structural defect called chondrodysplasia.
Researchers have found that brachycephalic breeds are more prone to bone cancer, hip and elbow dysplasia, and pneumonia. In addition, they are more likely to be overweight and develop hypothyroidism.
3. Chow Chow
The Chow Chow is a big dog with a long and thick coat, making them easy to overheat. This can be dangerous for your dog, so keep them away from hot weather and ensure they always have access to water.
They can also be prone to obesity and allergies, so check out a diet that’s designed for their size and activity level. For example, look for a food that’s rich in glucosamine and omegas, to help keep your dog’s joints healthy.
As with any breed, it’s important to socialise your dog from a young age to help them get along with others and learn to trust. A Chow Chow is a very loyal dog, so make sure they get plenty of human interaction to form an all-important bond with you.
4. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Cavaliers are charming, gentle, and affectionate, but they can also be highly dependent on their owners. They love to cuddle and receive constant attention, and are great with kids and other pets.
They can be prone to skin allergies, which can lead to itchy skin and paws. They also may develop syringomyelia, a condition that causes cavities in the spinal cord to fill up with fluid near the brain.
This can lead to pain and other symptoms, including licking and scratching the neck for no apparent reason. It can be difficult to diagnose, but it can often be treated successfully.
The Dachshund is a loyal companion and is known for its strong heart. However, this breed is also prone to a number of health issues, so it is important for owners to pay attention to their dogs’ health and to take them to the vet regularly.
A common issue is Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD), which affects up to 25% of the breed. This condition causes the shock-absorbing discs between the vertebrae to herniate early in life.
Another genetic problem that dachshunds are susceptible to is Acanthosis Nigricans, which causes dark skin around the dog’s armpits or groin area. The disease can be either genetic or acquired, and usually appears in doxies at an early age.
6. French Bulldog
The French Bulldog is a pedigree dog that’s popular with many people, but it can also be prone to health issues. Like all brachycephalic breeds, Frenchies are at risk of breathing problems because their short faces and snouts make it difficult for them to breathe well.
They’re also prone to skin fold dermatitis and bacterial skin infections due to their folded facial skin around their muzzle and nose.
Frenchies can also be prone to mobility problems, such as hip dysplasia and luxating patellas. These conditions can lead to hind leg weakness and even paralysis if not treated quickly.
7. Cocker Spaniel
Cocker Spaniels are small dogs bred to be sturdy with compact bodies. They’re ideal for hunting and can be excellent family pets.
They’re active, intelligent dogs that need regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy.
Their long coat requires regular brushing and grooming, as well as bathing to keep it looking its best.
Their long ears are prone to ear infections, known as otitis, so it’s important to check them weekly and wipe out any dirt or debris. A vet can confirm if there’s a trigger for an infection and provide the right treatment.