Poodle Health

Friday, January 10, 2020 08:59:00 AM America/Los_Angeles

Congratulations! You have decided to add a standard poodle to your growing family. These large dogs are intelligent and loving, with the ability to run with the kids all day long. Through the years they have held a top spot in many a dog-lover's heart, and for good reason. Your poodle will take to training in a snap and will be eager to shake, chase a ball, or even learn to navigate an agility course. But that doesn't mean that it will be all clear sailing. Pure bred dogs are more susceptible to some medical conditions compared to mixed breeds, who have a stronger immune system. Now is a good time to learn a little bit about your new buddy to be fully prepared for their arrival. Let's talk about poodle health!   

A Reputable Breeder is Always a Good Place to Start

When hunting for a healthy puppy, a breeder that is registered with the AKC is an excellent place to begin. Your puppy will be raised in a healthy environment, be properly socialized with people and other dogs and maybe has been introduced to the proper use of an indoor potty. If you purchase your dog from a pop-up breeder, there is a greater chance that your puppy will arrive with a congenital birth defect or illness that may require extensive care to cure. Check with your vet or humane society to make sure they haven't heard anything negative about the breeder and poodles that have come from a specific individual. Once you know the breeder produces happy and healthy pups, it's time to bring your friend home.

Keep a Close Watch on the Eyes

Once your poodle has come home and has become part of the family, keep a close check on the health of their eyes. Poodles are more susceptible to certain eye conditions including progressive retinal atrophy, which tends to appear from 3 to 5 years of age. Ingrown eyelashes can occur due to their ridiculously curly coat. Should you notice your canine friend rubbing at their eyes, weeping, or a collection of mucus in the corners, it's a good idea to take them into the vet for a quick check to maintain your poodle's health. Many recurring eye conditions can be managed with simple medications when caught early on.

Elbows and Hips

The poodle's tall and slim body build does contribute to some skeletal challenges, especially as they approach their golden years. Hip and elbow dysplasia occurs in about 10% of standard poodles over the age of six. This degenerative joint disease can make it difficult for your pet to take their daily walks. Treatment with analgesics and glucosamine can help with taking care of poodles, but adding ramps around the house never hurts. If your pet is faced with this problem, installing a dog bathroom on your patio or back hall can alleviate some of the struggles they might face when they need to go but are struggling to move fast enough. It is possible to have severe cases of dysplasia treated surgically, which can greatly enhance the quality of life for your loved one as well as give them more years on the run.

Sensitive Skin Under their Unique Coat

Have you ever wondered why it always seems to be the poodles that are at the groomers? Their unique coat is unlike most other dog fur. The tight hair-like curls trap oils next to the skin which can turn into irritation, itching, and sores. The poodle is also known for developing sebaceous adenitis, which is an inflammatory skin disease. While the most obvious indication is scaling skin, it can mean that your poodle is more likely to contract a bacterial infection. Taking care of poodles by bringing them to the groomer every few weeks helps maintain a healthy coat and skin surface. You can further support poodle health by ensuring that the yard is well maintained and any pet potty solution you use inside remains clean. A Bark Potty is perfect for this as it is an all natural dog potty solution that is clean and odorless!

Prone to Gastrointestinal Problems

Many tall breeds, including poodles, are also susceptible to problems related to their digestive tract. Bloat is a condition that can be life threatening as many dogs will hide the symptoms until the illness has turned toxic. This condition happens when a twist occurs in the intestines, cutting off blood flow to the organs in the gut. It is extremely painful and can be treated surgically when caught before the intestine starts to die. Known as canine bloat, you will find it most often in breeds with tall, deep chests like the Great Dane, Doberman, and Standard Poodle. The torsion can be caused by a sudden and excessive production of gas. If caught early enough, surgery can relieve the torsion. Some vets recommend offering a bland diet to combat the excess gas as part of taking care of poodles, but there is little research to support any kind of preventive care. Being attuned to poodle health, especially when they are visiting the pet potty, and taking them to the vet if you think they are in pain is the best way to address this condition.

Any Breed has Its Problems

Before you decide that a poodle may not be the right dog for your family due to its health, consider that, like us humans, every kind of dog will face a variety of medical challenges during their life. Make sure that your choice is determined not by what might happen to your new friend, but by the kind of life you will have the opportunity to share as time goes by. A standard poodle remains a handsome breed, known for its intelligence, friendly demeanor and loyalty to his family. When you are prepared to face their life together, you will have many years of heading out to the park to explore the dog grass and meet new canine and human friends along the way.