Dog WellnessDog Health 101: How to Keep Your Pets in Top Shape

February 26, 2021by admin
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All responsible dog owners want to know how to keep their dogs the healthiest they can be. Like humans, dogs are also prone to get various diseases. Each dog breed is different and has its own health issues.

While there is no absolute way to keep them from getting sick, we have created a guide for common dog breeds to understand their potential health issues.

Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever health

These dogs are commonly owned by families because of their loving good nature. They love being around hoomans making them the perfect playmates and house pets. Don’t let their size fool you, they’re a gentle and kind breed of dogs.

Common Health Problems:

HIP DYSPLASIA – common in this breed. It is a form of arthritis that is debilitating. It is an abnormal growth in your dog’s ball and socket joint that if left untreated, could lead to degeneration of the hip, inflammation and pain, or permanent disability.

  • Symptoms: Difficulty or reluctance in rising, decreases range of motion, or loss of thigh muscle mass
  • Care: Physical therapy, joint fluid modifiers, and anti-inflammatory medication

SKIN CONDITIONS – often caused by allergies. Their dense undercoat and longer outer coat attract disease-ridden bacteria.

  • Symptoms: Skin sores, dry and itchy skin, rashes, lumps, or hair loss
  • Care: Pinpoint what they’re allergic to (pollen, dust, food, grass, and so on), topical medication, change diet, or use hypoallergenic dog shampoo
Extra Dog Care:
  • Proper and regular grooming
  • Maintaining a clean environment
  • Regular check-ups (most especially, when your dog is showing symptoms)
  • Walks and exercise

Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retriever health

Just like the golden retriever, this breed is also common in family households. They are intelligent and fairly easy to train, especially because they love being around people and other dogs.

Common Health Problems:

HEART DISEASE – a disease common in the dog community, even the healthiest dogs have the possibility of having this.

  • Symptoms: Loss of consciousness due to lack of blood flow to the brain, difficulty breathing, bluish tint to the skin, or loss of appetite and weight
  • Care: Keep their vaccines up to date, regular exercise, vet-prescribed medication, and keep them well hydrated

OBESITY – A normal and healthy labrador weighs 55 to 75 pounds, while an overweight one can top 100 pounds. The extra weight can have a serious impact on the health and life expectancy of your pet. It also increases the chances of them getting other diseases.

  • Cause: Over-feeding, Genetics (They could have inherited it), or insufficient exercise
  • Symptoms: Refusal to move or play, excessive panting, abdominal sagging, and/or a reluctance to go for walks
  • Care: Scheduled meals and no extra treats after meals, cut down food intake and change diet, and record your dog’s weight loss progress
Extra Dog Care:
  • Regular vet check-ups and consultations

French Bulldog

French Bulldog health

A loving and loyal breed that is a common companion. Unfortunately, a lot of Frenchie owners tend to give them up for adoption due to medical bills that sometimes pile up due to their long list of health problems. 

Common Health Problem:

EAR INFECTION (Otitis Externa) – It is common for this breed to get this due to the narrow ear canal.

  • Cause:  Wax buildup, excessive cleaning, ear canal injury, moisture (which can become a growing environment for bacteria), allergies, and/or autoimmune disorders 
  • Symptoms: Scratching the affected ear constantly, crusting or scabs in the ear, dark discharge, or redness or swelling of the ear canal
  • Care: Go to a Vet and have it checked and follow their instructions closely and make sure to clean out excess moisture after swimming or baths

HIP DYSPLASIA – Occurs when the ball and socket joint of the hip isn’t formed correctly.

  • Symptoms: Inability to climb stairs and jump, “bunny hopping”, decreased activity, and/or hip sensitivity, and difficulty standing up
  • Care: Regular check-up with the vet, avoid over-exercising as a puppy, regular gentle and low-impact exercise, and veterinarian-prescribed supplements.

Beagle

Beagle health

A friendly and gentle small hound that is also common in households because of size, good temper, a lack of health problems.

Common Health Problems:

DIABETES  – Just like humans, dogs can also get diabetes. The two types are :

  • Type 1 – Inability to produce enough insulin 
  • Type 2 – Producing enough insulin, but it is not working the way that it should 
  • Symptoms: Excessive thirst, a change in appetite, lethargy, and increased urination. 
  • Care: Diet and exercise and insulin shots (consult with a vet first)

EAR INFECTION – With their floppy ears it is usually possible for air, moisture, and dust/debris to be trapped inside.

  • Symptoms: Scratching the affected ear constantly, crusting or scabs in the ear, bad odor discharge, and excessive head shaking 
  • Care: Go to a vet and have it checked 

English Bulldog

english bulldog

English Bulldogs are short and extremely stout. They’re tough little guys and were originally bred to fight bulls. These days, they are sweet, cuddly, and super lovable dogs.

Common Health Problems:

BRACHYCEPHALIC SYNDROME is pretty common among dog breeds with short snouts like the English Bulldog. Their airway is obstructed and they have trouble breathing. In severe cases, your dog may have trouble breathing at all. This can require surgery and regular oxygen treatment to resolve.

  • Symptoms: Labored breathing, overheating
  • Care: Keep them cool at all times. They overheat easily due to their size and the way they breathe
Extra Dog Care:
  • Moderate exercise is still required for this unathletic dog breed.

Chihuahua

chihuahua

Chihuahuas are a relatively healthy breed with few serious health problems. Still, it’s important to know the signs and symptoms of possible health conditions.

Common Health Problems:

LUXATING PATELLA is a condition in which the kneecap slips out of its place. Sometimes, it is not severe enough to need surgical treatment and sometimes it is. Genetics can make a Chihuahua prone to this and then a certain action – such as running or jumping down from a certain height – can trigger it.

  • Symptoms: Limping, favoring one side of the body, reluctance to run, whimpering when jumping/ being picked up
  • Care: With proper rest, this can heal well though most dogs will be prone for another episode. Running and jumping should be limited. Only in severe cases is surgery needed.
Extra Dog Care:
  • Anti-Inflammatory medicine as prescribed by your vet.

Corgi

Corgi Dog Related Words

Corgis are adorable, popular, and distinctive, and there’s a reason they’re so beloved by many, including Queen Elizabeth.

Common Health Problems:

PROGRESSIVE RETINAL ATROPHY is a degenerative condition that affects the photoreceptors in a dog’s eyes, degrades vision over time, and eventually leads to blindness.

  • Symptoms: night blindness or pupils that look more dilated than normal.
  • Care: There’s currently no known treatment for PRA, but if you notice that your dog is exhibiting symptoms of decreased vision, it’s time for a visit to your vet. They can diagnose PRA and discuss how you can help your pet stay safe.

Yorkshire Terrier

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Yorkies are currently the ninth most popular dog in the U.S. and have to be one of the cutest pups on the planet.

Common Health Problems:

DENTAL ISSUES due to their small jaws and the propensity of overcrowded teeth. This leads to a buildup of plaque that can result in decay and disease that may spread to other organs.

  • Symptoms: bad breath, difficulty eating, swollen or inflamed gums, and loss of teeth
  • Care: Brush your Yorkie’s teeth every day to avoid the buildup of plaque and tartar that leads to dental decay. 
Extra Dog Care:
  • Get your dog’s teeth professionally cleaned at least once per year.

Rottweiler

most expensive dog breeds rottweiler

Rottweilers rank high in the most popular dog breeds. They are loyal, working-class canines who love spending time with family.

Common Health Problems:

ELBOW DYSPLASIA occurs when there’s a displacement between the joint and the bone. It doesn’t cause complete dislocation, but it can be quite painful and complicated if severe enough

  • Symptoms: lameness in the leg, extreme pain, an abnormal gait, difficulty straightening the arm, and immobility.
  • Care: Different treatments are available, but surgery is offered only if the elbow dysplasia is preventing mobility or causing extreme pain in dogs.

Pomeranian

Pomeranian

Pomeranians are cute, cuddly, and stylish dogs that can suffer health issues just like any dog.

Common Health Problems:

HYPERTHYRODISM occurs when the thyroid gland is not producing enough thyroxine. The causes include trauma, insufficient nutrients, and even low exposure to daylight.

  • Symptoms: Constipation, dry skin, weight gain, infertility, low energy, skin bacterial infections.
  • Care: Vets will do a full examination before prescribing appropriate medicine.
Extra Dog Care
  • Their thyroid gland can be stimulated by ginger root and zinc. Daylight exposure, exercise, and a suitable diet will also help this breed.

While there is no guarantee that your pet will not go through any of these, one thing you can do is to make sure that you are taking the best care of them. 

Being a responsible owner means putting in the extra care and precaution and knowing how to keep your dog healthy — that includes having a trusted vet for your dog to regularly visit. Remember, a healthy dog is a happy one.

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I Love My Dog So Much LLC is an American-based
online magazine focused on dogs, including
entertainment, wellness, educational resources for
pet owners, advocacy, and animal rescue.

I Love My Dog So Much LLC is an American-based online magazine focused on dogs, including entertainment, wellness, educational resources for pet owners, advocacy, and animal rescue.

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