DISCLAIMER** I am not a Veterinarian… If your dog is in distress, don’t read this.. Run to your Vet or Emergency Care Facility!
BLOAT In many cases the condition results immediately following:
· Overeating (particularly dry kibble)
· Excessive drinking after eating
· Vigorously exercising just before or after a meal
· Periods of excessive stress
Know the warning signs:
The onset of bloat is usually swift and sudden. Picking up on common early warning signals can mean the difference between life and death.
A dog in the early stages of gastric dilatation will usually show mild agitation and minor abdominal discomfort, often refusing to lie down. He may whine or repeatedly ask to go out. As abdominal pressure increases the dog becomes more restless. He may attempt to vomit or defecate unsuccessfully. He may drool excessively. As the stomach fills with gas, the abdomen becomes painfully distended.
The situation is becoming increasingly critical…. Breathing becomes rapid and shallow, the pulse fast and weak. The pupils dilate. The gums pale, indicating imminent shock. If relief is not immediate, the dog will collapse. The condition is rapidly fatal, causing shock, coma and death within a very short time.
Take your dog to your vet or emergency clinic without delay, preferably one prepared for emergency surgeries!
I have also heard (on Very Good Authority) that if you dog vomits "thick, white, taffy-like" goo - this is a sign on Bloat coming on. - Rush to the Vet!
Hip Dysplasia is a disease that affects development of the hip joint in a young dog. It may or may not be bilateral (affecting both the right and left hip joints). It is brought about by a laxity of the muscles, connective tissue, and ligaments that should support the joint. Even dysplastic dogs are born with normal hips but the soft tissues that surround the joint start to develop abnormally as the puppy grows. This is because of genetic factors in the individual dog. The most important result of the change is that the two bones are not held in place but actually move apart. The joint capsule and the ligament between the two bones also stretch, adding further instability to the joint. As this happens, the articular surfaces of the two bones lose contact with each other. The slight separation of the two bones of the joint is called subluxation; this—and this alone— causes all of the resulting problems associated with this disease.
Wherever these bones come in contact, new abnormally shaped bone will grow. It is a vicious cycle; new bone growth causes further irritation, which causes more abnormal bone growth. This is what we refer to as arthritis and it is usually a very painful condition. As the condition progresses, more new abnormal bone forms and along with it comes further pain and distortion of the bone, discomfort is simply from arthritis of the deformed joints and chronic irritation.
Hip Dysplasia is genetically spread from one generation of dog to the next. A veterinarian can certify that a dog is not dysplastic by having it x-rayed after 24 months of age. The x-rays are sent to the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for grading and certification. By breeding only those dogs certified as free of dysplasia, we continue our efforts to eliminate the disease.
Orthopedic Foundation for Animals is the recognized certifying body in the United States for hip and elbow dysplasia, and other genetic canine diseases. They feature a database where you can easily look up the hip and elbow evaluations for thousands of dogs.
MacIntosh, LadyBug & Mugger all have PASSING hip evaluations: MacIntosh - OFA# GD-6943G25M LadyBug - OFA# GD-8485G24F Mugger - OFA#GD-9458F25M
Dr. Meurs's preliminary data strongly suggests DCM in the Great Dane is an inherited X-linked recessive trait. Assuming that is the case - the bottom line is this: The trait will be manifested in any males who inherit the X-recessive gene from their mother. (Their father has nothing to do with it.) The trait will be manifested in females ONLY if they have two copies of the X-recessive gene, one coming from their mother, the other from their father. If females inherit one just copy of the X-recessive gene, they will not develop the trait, but they will be carriers.
Bringing this back to DCM, Dr. Meurs's data suggests DCM is a recessive X-linked version of an important gene related to the Great Dane heart. If this is true, that means:
If the male carries the DCM (recessive X) gene, he is likely to develop DCM (unless something else kills him first) and he will pass the defective gene onto his female offspring only.
If the female carries only one DCM (recessive X) gene, she will not develop the disease, but she will pass the defective gene onto 50% of her offspring.
If the female carries two DCM (recessive X) genes, she is likely to develop DCM (unless something else kills her first) and she will pass the defective gene onto ALL of her offspring. DCM - Full Article
Symptoms usually appear first in the rear legs as a mild uncoordination in gait (ataxia) and can escalate to involvement of the forelegs as well. The severely affected dog moves like a drunk and the uncoordination shows up most when the dog is walked and then moved sharply into a turn. An unsuspecting owner might simply conclude that his older puppy was just clumsy. Overly clumsy young Great Danes should be Wobblers suspects. As the disease progresses, a characteristic short choppy rolling stride is seen on what appears to be somewhat rigid forelimbs.
The principal breed affected with Wobbler's Syndrome is the Great Dane. Cervical Spondylopathy or Canine Wobblers Syndrome, consists of any uncoordination or lameness caused by pressure on the spinal cord as it travels through the neck (at any age for any reason).
The cause of Wobblers Syndrome is unknown, although a link to fast growth and genetics is suspected.
Click here for a collection of articles on Wobblers.
HOD = Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy
The suspected causes of HOD are: Vaccines, Diet, Blood Infections & Reaction to Antibiotics. The symptoms are elevated fever, up to 106, inflammation of the pastern joints (the joint above the foot in the front legs) usually accompanied by severe pain. The joints will feel hot to the touch and your touch will be painful to the pup.
If you even SUSPECT HOD - Go to the vet and insist that x-rays be taken of the legs.
The old rule of thumb used to be the use of vitamin C - I was sent the following weblinks recently that are offering new information: Linda Arndt -Blackwatch Great Danes Discuss ALL options & treatments with your Vet.
Many of these health issues are Nutrition/Feeding related; while you are free to refer to our page on Feeding, Linda Arndt has an extensive site dedicated to the issue of Feeding, and we strongely suggest that you review that as well: Linda Arndt -Canine Nutritional Consultant.
Personally, we do feel that along with improper feeding, vaccinations are also a leading cause of many major health issues is Danes (especially HOD). We therefore follow Dr. Jean Dodd's Vaccination Protocol.
These are but a Few of the Many Health Issues that a Great Dane may face.