Common health issues
- GDV (or bloat) describes a condition whereby a dog's stomach becomes dilated with air and then, while dilated, twists over on itself, effectively sealing the stomach. The most common sign of bloat is a firm, distended stomach, especially if it seems to occur rapidly. GDV is one of the true life-threatening emergencies in dogs and many cases require emergency surgery.
- Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) is a cardiac condition that Boxers are prone to develop. In this adult onset disease, cardiac muscle responsible for pumping the heart is replaced with fatty tissue, leading to dysfunction of the heart, arrhythmias, and congestive heart failure. Medical treatment centers on normalizing the heart rate and rhythm.
- Cataracts describes the transparency of the lens in the eye.While cataracts are a common finding in older dogs, many breeds, including Cavaliers, have a genetic predisposition to juvenile cataracts, i.e., occurring in young animals. Hereditary cataracts can occur as early as six months of age and progress to complete loss of vision by two years old. The good news is that most affected lenses can be treated surgically. Cost of treatment: $1,500 to $3,000 per lens.
- Osteosarcoma is the most common bone tumor in dogs, and usually strikes the leg bones of larger breed dogs. This devastating condition is severely painful and amputation of the affected limb is generally recommended to alleviate pain. Affected dogs are often euthanized before treatment due to poor prognosis, but treatment entails surgery and chemotherapy.
- Hip dysplasia is an inherited condition in which the ball and socket of the hip joint do not fit well together, resulting in a hip with increased laxity. This laxity can lead to degenerative changes and depending on the severity, may require surgical correction.
- Elbow dysplasia is actually a collective term which refers to the effects of one or more diseases of the elbow joint which result in pain and arthritis. Many of these problems can affect both elbows and result in forelimb lameness and elbow pain, often requiring surgical correction.