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Posts Tagged ‘Health Issue’

HOD – Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy

Puppies from 2 months to 8 months can experience symptoms of HOD. This range is the range of highest growth rate in Great Dane puppies. Puppies with the most severe symptoms suffer from anorexia, weight loss, fever, and depression accompanied by extremely swollen, warm, and painful long-bone abnormalities. The pain can be so severe that they refuse to bear weight on the affected limbs. The symptoms can appear for approximately 1 week and then disappear reoccurring multiple times of a 6 week period.

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Wobbler’s is a condition where there is pressure on the spinal cord in the neck area and results in an unsteady gait and increasing loss of stability. Dogs may become paralyzed. There is a congenital form of Wobblers that is usually seen in young Danes perhaps caused by nutritional effects and perhaps inherited traits. Wobblers…

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Osteosarcoma – Bone Cancer

Osteosarcoma is one of the top 3 causes of death in Great Danes. It can appear very quickly as a swelling around the ankle area in the front legs. It is probably the most terrifying diagnosis a Great Dane owner can hear. Bone Cancer usually attacks dogs over 8, but it can start in dogs as young as 5 or 6, even occasionally 1 or 2 years old.

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Mega – Megaesophagus

Megaesophagus has become a top health concern in Great Danes. Mega is a potentially fatal condition and researchers believe that there area bout a dozen breeds that are genetically predisposed to megaesophagus. The primary symptoms of the disorder is the esophagus not moving food along into the stomach efficiently. Puppies can be diagnosed between 6-8…

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Pano – Panosteitis

Pano is a growth issue as a result of too rapid growth during puppyhood. It causes lameness and a lack of energy. Pano usually is self-limiting, meaning it ends up spontaneously resolving, but the condition is quite painful and pain medication and anti-inflammatory drugs may be needed.  These are painful conditions of the bones that occur during the rapid growth phase of puppyhood causing lameness and general malaise. 

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Bloat – Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus

Bloat is the number 1 killer of Great Danes. It is unfortunately common in deep-chested breeds. During Bloat the stomach distends and then has a tendency to twist which cuts off the blood supply to various parts of the body. This is an extremely painful condition and very quickly life threatening. If you suspect your…

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Fortunately cataracts are not common in Great Danes and they can be tested for. A CERF exam is one of the 4 health tests recommended by the Great Dane Cub of America, before a dog or bitch is used for breeding. Cataracts over time will eventually cause blindness.

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Thyroid Disease

Hypothyroidism is a condition resulting in not enough production of thyroid hormones by the thyroid gland. Symptoms are weight gain, inactivity and dull hair with excessive shedding. The condition most often occurs in dogs 4-10 years old and in medium to large breeds. Hypothyroidism is diagnosed through blood work and is treatable! The disease in an inheritable disorder of the immune system and so testing for it is one of the four health tests recommended by the Great Dane Club of America.

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Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM)

Dilated Cardiomyopathy is a condition in which the walls of the heart thin and the heart becomes enlarged. Over time the condition worsens and causes progressive loss of heart function, often showing no obvious signs for several years. DCM is one of the leading causes of death in Great Danes.

DCM can be diagnosed by ultrasound and ECG and because it has been shown to have a genetic component, that there is a familial tendency, a genetic predisposition, testing for DCM is one of the four recommended health tests for Great Danes. This health test should be performed every 2 years and results should be kept current if the dog is used for breeding.

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Hip Dysplasia

In dogs, hip dysplasia is an abnormal formation of the hip socket that can eventually cause crippling lameness and arthritis in your dog’s joints. It is awful in all dogs and especially distressing in Giant Breed dogs.

There are several factors that lead to the devoopment of hip dysplasia in dogs, beginning with genetics, that is why evaluation of the parent’s hips is one of the 4 health tests recommended by the Great Dane Club of America. Genetic predisposition can be exacerbated by some environmentl factors, such as a dog’s weight and nutrition, rapid excessive growth and exercise.

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