The Enemies Of A Great Dane

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How sad it is to think of the fact that the Great Dane is not a long-lived breed. Their lifespan is generally seven to ten years, perhaps longer if well taken cared of. However, a Great Dane may not reach his average lifespan due to some problems. Lack of nutrition, lack of grooming, owner’s negligence, lack of security and various diseases are some of the culprits that could cause your dog’s health to deteriorate and shorten his life.

Below is the list of diseases common among Great Danes. Owners should be well-informed about these diseases to help their dogs in their battle against these life- threatening problems.

– Bloat

Formally called Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV), bloat is one of the killers of large and deep-chested dogs like Great Danes. It is an emergency situation that could take away your dog’s life in less than an hour if not treated immediately. Bloat is a condition in which the stomach swells or becomes overstretched, often related to excessive gas content. The stomach may twist or rotate thus cuts off blood supply to other vital organs. The most common sign is an attempt to vomit every five to 30 minutes, but is usually unsuccessful. Other signs include swelling of the abdomen, abdominal pain, rapid breathing and excessive salivation. A dog may also seem to be restless all the time, frequently changing positions and doesn’t act like his usual self.

– Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is an inherited disorder characterized by a deformity of the dog’s hip socket. The socket and thighbone do not fit together properly, it is a loose fit. It will then cause wear and tear within the joint as it moves. As time goes by, the disease progresses causing great pain to the affected dog. Affected dog commonly reduces movement to reduce pain and may also exhibit stiffness or soreness after rising from rest, lameness, abnormal gait and reluctance to stand on rear legs. Early treatment of this disease, more particularly the clinical signs will save your giant Dane from being crippled.

– Hypothyroidism

The thyroid gland is a two small butterfly-shaped lobes known to regulate a dog’s metabolic rate by producing enough hormone. Hypothyroidism occurs when the hormone produced by the thyroid gland is not enough thus decrease your dog’s metabolism. Signs include skin problems, weight gain, excessive shedding, slow heart rate, lethargy and depression. Great Danes between four to ten years of age are more prone to hypothyroidism.

If your Great Dane is showing signs of any of these diseases, seek the advise of your vet as soon as you can. This article is just a guideline and is not intended to replace any vet’s diagnosis.