Common health issues
- Panosteitis is inflammation of the long bones that causes pain and lameness in young large breed dogs. The pain occurs in both the front and hind limbs and can seem to shift between different limbs. Eventually, dogs will outgrow the condition, but may need medication to alleviate discomfort for severe symptoms.
- Megaesophagus is a dilation of the esophagus due to the loss of normal muscular contraction. The condition is often see shortly after weaning, when puppies begin to regurgitate food and may fail to thrive. Regurgitation may lead to pneumonia if stomach contents are regurgitated and inhaled. This condition cannot be cured, but may be managed with controlled feedings.
- 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.
- 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.
- Perianal fistula, or anal furunculosis, is a chronic, ulcerative inflammatory disease of the tissues around the anus, most often seen in German Shepherds. The exact cause of the disease is still undetermined, but the broad tail base and low tail carriage common to the breed are thought to be responsible for an increased incidence of infection in the area. Unfortunately, no specific medical or surgical treatment has been found to be consistently effective and many different therapies are often attempted to control the problem. Possible treatments and/or surgeries: $500 to $10,000+