Doberman Problems

Most Common Health-Related Doberman Problems

Despite dedicated care and exceptional breeding practices, there are a few health-related Doberman problems that you should be familiar with. Unfortunately, not all diseases are preventable, even if you do everything right as a Doberman owner. However, the key to treating or overcoming illnesses is to educate yourself on symptoms so that you can catch them early before they become so severe that they are no longer treatable.

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Cancer

Just like humans, cancer is one of the most common health-related Doberman problems. Many cancers are easily detected as lumps underneath your dog’s skin. Regular bathing and grooming of your Doberman will allow you to notice any abnormalities early.

Bone cancer seems to plague Dobermans over most other breeds. Detectable lumps are found on the legs or shoulders and the dog will display noticeable pain in his legs. Mammary cancer is the number one killer in female Dobermans, especially those that have not been spayed. Males, regardless of alteration, are often diagnosed with prostate cancer.

If cancer is found early, treatment methods such as chemotherapy can be administered unless the dog is older, then they are usually left to live the rest of their life without uncomfortable therapy methods.

Dilated Cardiomyopathy

In this condition, the heart muscle deteriorates due to the dog’s heart expanding. This is one of the most seen health-related Doberman problems, primarily in their left atrium and left ventricle. Symptoms to watch for in your Doberman include a racing or irregular heartbeat, wheezing, coughing, fatigue, shortness of breath and weight loss. However, one-third of Dobermans that are affected by dilated cardiomyopathy experience sudden death with no visible symptoms.

Certain tests are helpful for checking for heart disease as well as monitoring the regularity of your dog’s heartbeat. Preventative tests such as these should be done annually to check for heart concerns.

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Wobbler Syndrome

Cervical vertebra instability, otherwise known as wobbler syndrome is a result of spinal abnormalities that cause compression to the cushioning between your dog’s spinal vertebra. The disc expands and then ruptures which applies a great deal of pressure against the spinal cord.

Doberman Pinschers typically experience this in their fifth through seventh vertebra in their neck which disrupts the nerve function to their hind legs. Symptoms to watch for are lack of coordination, standing with their feet spread apart or walking and severely swaying from side to side. This is one f the most common health-related Doberman problems in dogs that are above four years old.

Hypothyroidism

There is a high incidence of this condition in Doberman Pinschers. The thyroid is responsible for producing important hormones that several of your dog’s organs rely on. Common symptoms include skin and coat problems, obesity or weight loss, anemia, lethargy, weak joints, depression, slowed heartbeat, and complications for females during whelping.

Hypothyroidism can be checked with blood tests and treatment is quite straight forward with daily medication. Dobermans need to have their thyroid tested annually.

Hip Dysplasia

This is not one of the most popular Doberman problems that you will run into with regards to their health however, the threat is still there and you should be aware of the condition. This is a malformation where the socket joint and pelvic ball do not fit properly together which results in lameness and pain.

Large breeds are often plagued by hip dysplasia so it is important to have your Doberman tested. You can prevent and reduce this condition with exercise and a healthy diet. Causes are primarily due to genetics as well as the dog’s environment and diet. To avoid this and many other health-related Doberman problems, researching a puppy’s bloodline through a breeder is vital.