Cocker Spaniels may suffer from diseases common to all dog breeds, but there are also conditions of genetic nature, i.e. hereditary health issues that mainly affect Cocker Spaniels. Your dog may be very fit and active, but there is no guarantee, that your Cocker will be so healthy in the future.
Every Spaniel owner should know about general heaths issues within this breed to detect possible early symptoms and get in-time vet aid.
Cocker Spaniels are considered to be healthy dogs. A Cocker Spaniel may live from 10 to 12 years, sometimes there are cases, when these dogs live up to 14 or 15 years. It mainly depends on the overall lifestyle of a dog, i.e. diet, activity level, housing conditions and well-timed health problems elimination. Also, the hereditary background plays a very significant role.
General Internal Health Problems
- Hip Dysplasia – a very widespread condition among many dog breeds. This condition is a malformation of the hip joints.
- Familial Nephropathy (FN) – a problem with kidneys. Namely, their filtering system are no longer able to work effectively.
- Immune mediated thrombocytopenia(IMT) is an auto-immune health problem that is impossible to treat (only to eliminate symptoms). Can provoke internal and external bleedings and lead to anemia and even to severe lethargy.
- Mammary tumors are quite common in female dogs (but those, found in males, are much more dangerous).
- Pancreatitis – the pancreas of your Cocker is not able to work properly. There are hardly any enzymes to digest food and control sugar level in blood. Leads to diabetes.
- Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) – severe back pain. May lead to paralysis in neglected cases.
- Various heart problems.
Other Health Issues
Cocker Spaniels are highly prone to various skin problems, including Atopic Dermatitis (is caused by inhaling pollens), other allergic reactions (to food, medications, etc.)
Also, Cocker Spaniels are likely to have problems with the ears since they are pendant and poor-aerated (ear margin dermatosis, ear mites, yeast infections).
But eye problems are number one among other health issues within the breed. Just the fact: almost 89% of all Cocker Spaniels have ever had some problems with eyes. The most common conditions are:
- Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA);
- Cherry eye;
- Distichiasis (extra eyelashes);
- Dry eye (Keratoconjunctivitis sicca).
Cocker Spaniel is a breed rather prone to obesity (especially, the senior). Whilst being overweight may cause several heart problems, liver disease and even tumors. Also, extra weight affects the joints.
We advise you to always keep your dog’s health problems at bay to make it sound and healthy.