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What Are Common Health Problems In Golden Retrievers

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Make Changes To The Dogs Feeding Plans

What Common Health Problems Do Golden Retrievers Have

To deal with a dying Retrievers lack of appetite and subsequent weight loss, it can help to feed the pooch smaller meals at a regular interval. You can also embrace the use of appetite stimulants or a special weight management diet plan, but this should be done after consulting your vet.

You should also ensure that your poochs food and water bowl are within reach at all times.

What Kind Of Skin Problems Does A Golden Retriever Have

Golden Retriever Skin Problems. Ringworms attack the outer layer of skin causing itching, redness and scabbing in dogs. Veterinarian treatment is crucial and should be immediate after detection. Seborrhea Canine seborrhea usually presents itself with a flaky, scaly and greasy skin followed by a distinct smell, extreme licking and itching.

Golden Retriever Health Problems & Issues

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Golden Retrievers are a loving and loyal breed that make a wonderful addition to a family, but before adding a Golden Retriever to your household it is vital to understand the health problems and issues that Golden Retrievers are prone to.

There are a number of Golden Retriever health issues that have been found to be common among the breed and it is important to understand these in order to keep an eye out for those symptoms.

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Some Health Problems With Golden Retrievers:

Cancer 61% of American Golden Retrievers have passed away because of Hemanglosarcoma, lymphosarcoma, mast cell tumor or osteosarcoma making it the breeds biggest killer. Studies have been done by the Golden Retriever Club of America in 1998 and I am sure much as changed since then.

Hip and Elbow Dysplasia is the next biggest problem for this breed affecting one-fifth of the breed. It is one form of arthritis. It refers to the abnormal growth or development of the ball and socket joint of the hips of dogs.

Eye Diseases Uveitis is an inflammation in the parts of the eye that normally contains the blood vessels, called uvea, which includes the iris, ciliary body and choroid. Many things can cause uveitis, including infections, cancer, and autoimmune diseases. Blood, inflammatory cells, and clotting factors tend to leak from the blood vessels in affected eyes, and the disease may not only be painful, but may also cause serious cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy, glaucoma, distichiasis, entropion, corneal dystrophy and retinal dysplasia being among the most prevelant.

Heart Disease Subvalvular aortic stenosis and cardiomyopathy are the two most diagnosed. Signs of heart disease in your Golden is when they show signs of tiring during exercise, low exercise tolerance or may even faint due to lack of blood supply to the brain.

VetVid Recognizing Hip Dysplasia in Dogs

Common Golden Retriever Health Issues To Know About

Some Common Health Problems in Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers are known for their intelligence and friendly demeanor.

The breed is a long-standing favorite in US households.

While generally healthy and hearty dogs, Goldens are susceptible to various health issues that, if allowed to progress, can cause severe suffering in the long run.

Common Golden Retriever health issues include cancer, von Willebrand Disease, bloat, hypothyroidism, cataracts, and hip and elbow dysplasia. In addition, Goldens are prone to various skin conditions, chest problems, and ear infections.

Using my experience as a veterinary doctor, Ive compiled the following list of common Golden Retriever health issues, their symptoms, how theyre diagnosed, and the best course of action.

In this post, well look at:

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How Do Itreat My Golden Retrievers Ear Infection

The best thing you can do is to get the ears clean. Thiswill help with the smell and allow the immune system to get a start on overcomingthe infection.

You can get a specific cleaner from the vet, or you may evenbe able to find something on the shelves at your local Walmart or PetSmart. Oryou can mix up your home remedy. All you need is one-part vinegar and two-partswater. Do this outside because you are probably going to make a mess.

Apply a moderate amount of cleaner the inside of your dogsear. He will likely shake his head furiously, so be ready. Now hold his eardown and massage the canal to loosen up the gunk. It is not a big deal if yourdog shakes out the cleaner. You can always repeat the process if needed.

Use a swab or Q-tip to clean out the gunk or any debris thatmight be causing the infection. It is a good idea to have several swabs on handand garbage nearby. A paper towel is another option if you are uncomfortablewith the swab and are afraid of jabbing your dogs ear. Just twist the papertowel until you have a pointy end that is somewhat firm. This will not jab yourdogs ear like the stick on a Q-tip. Then just put this twisted end into theear canal and twist around and around.

Repeat this process until you do not get any more gunk onthe swab or paper towel.

Your dog probably wont like this and will try to escape.Just be patient and understanding.

Golden Retriever Skin Problems Are Among The Common Health Problems

Golden retrievers are indeed one of the best dog breeds with a great amount of charm as well as intelligence. But, as in any other dog breed, these dogs are also prone to certain health problems, especially skin problems. Even though, you take much care through regular brushing and grooming Golden Retrievers, they may sometimes develop certain skin problems that may go unnoticed due to the lush golden coat. So, it is very much important to check for skin changes, if you own a Golden Retriever. A basic idea about some of the common skin problems in this dog breed may help you in identifying the condition at the very onset.

Skin Diseases in Golden Retrievers

So, Golden Retrievers are prone to skin problems that may be caused by various factors, like, allergens, heredity, skin parasites, fungi and even cancer. It has also been noticed that most of these dogs have sensitive skin that needs special products, like, medicated shampoos. So, let us take a look at some of the skin problems that are commonly found in Golden Retrievers.

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Joint Diseases In Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers suffer from high rates of hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia.

The Orthopedic Foundation of America evaluated the hip X-rays of 148,000 Golden Retrievers and found 20% dysplastic. Over 42,000 elbow X-rays were evaluated and 11% were dysplastic. For comparison, Flat-Coated Retrievers have a 4% hip dysplasia rate and less than 1% elbow dysplasia rate.

Other common orthopedic health problems in Goldens include luxating patella and osteochondritis.

Goldens are prone to tearing or rupturing the cruciate ligament in their leg. Repairing it is an expensive surgery with a long recovery time.

Panosteitis can occur in young Golden Retrievers.

How To Prevent These Health Problems From Happening


So now that you know what health problems are common with golden retrievers and why they happen, the question is this: how can you prevent them?

Theres no way to totally prevent everything, but there are certainly some steps you can take.

Of course, the number one thing is to have a good relationship with your vet.

They know your puppy and their health best, and by having good communication with them, youll help out your puppy a lot.

In addition to speaking with your vet, to combat many of the problems that puppies specifically run into, heres what you can do:

  • Dont let your puppy eat poop which can potentially be infected with a virus, bacteria or parasites
  • Dont let your puppy drink from standing water
  • Choose a good food to help strengthen your puppys immune system
  • Avoid popular dog places like the dog park before your puppy is fully vaccinated
  • Talk to your veterinarian about supplementing with vitamins
  • Talk to your veterinarian about necessary vaccinations

And to try to prevent many health issues that golden retrievers as a breed are commonly diagnosed with, here are some tips:

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Strive To Make The Dog Comfortable

Golden Retrievers that are dying generally tend to sleep more, show a general lack of interest in their usual activities and seek solitude in quiet places. Consequently, you should provide your dying Retriever with a comfortable resting location, and if you notice that it already has a preferred spot, provide lush blankets.

Also, to combat the poor hygiene that is observed in dying Retrievers, you can assist your pooch with some of the grooming practices that it would usually undertake itself. And to assist with incontinence, you can also embrace the use of hygienic pads.

Common Health Problems Of Golden Retrievers

Home»Dog Health»Common Health Problems of Golden Retrievers

If you have been thinking of adopting or getting a Golden Retriever puppy, you might have to do a bit of research before making the final decision. This breed is prone to developing a variety of medical conditions, the majority of which are due to genetic predispositions.

In the past, breeders didnt pay any attention to what health problems affected the dogs used for breeding. This is how some breeds ended up with diseases that are genetically transmitted. It is, in fact, almost impossible these days to find a perfectly healthy Golden Retriever and use him or her for breeding.

In this article, well look at some of the most common health issues that can affect this breed. Just a heads-up you need to be prepared to handle a lot of emotional stress if you want to be a Golden Retriever owner.

Skin problems

Golden Retrievers are at a higher risk of developing a condition called atopic dermatitis, which is similar to an allergy, but its cause is idiopathic. Seeing how they are covered in a lot of hair, the skin of Golden Retrievers has a harder time breathing, which means that it becomes the perfect environment for plenty of bacteria and fungi to thrive in.

Make sure that you prevent some of these issues by making sure that your Fido doesnt have any fleas or ticks, has a clean coat, and is properly groomed regularly.

Genetically transmitted diseases

Hip and elbow dysplasia

Respiratory and cardiac conditions


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Hereditary Golden Retriever Issues

We have already gone over hereditary orthopedic health problems like hip- and elbow dysplasia, but there are other hereditary conditions that Golden Retrievers are also prone to. It is important to remember that all pure breed dogs are prone to certain diseases and health issues, so while this list of medical conditions might seem somewhat intimidating, it is not just the Golden Retriever that battles with hereditary health issues, and not every dog is affected.

The Golden Retriever is known for having a few hereditary eye problems, which in severe cases could lead to loss of eyesight or even blindness. One alarming disease goes by the name of Golden Retriever Pigment Uveitis , and it is an intraocular inflammation which in the worst of cases could lead to the removal of the eyes. Symptoms are squinting, conjunctival redness, abnormal or odd pupil shape and color changes to the iris, and while this might sound scary, there are ways to prevent it from developing into something irreversible, so if you notice changes in your Golden Retrievers eyes make an appointment with your veterinarian for a full evaluation and possible plan of action.

Most Common Health Problems Affecting Golden Retrievers

There are many common health problems that your Golden ...

If you are considering to get yourself a golden retriever you will have to understand how certain conditions may affect their health.

Some health conditions are especially common in golden retrievers and therefore its much safer to be on the lookout for them.

Catching these conditions early could save the health and life of your dog.

Here are the most common ones:

Hip Displasia

Hip dysplasia is a form of arthritis that causes growths in the joint of the dogs hips. Its very common in larger dogs like Goldens. Improper nutrition and obesity alongside with deformed joints or ligaments are the most common causes. Be warned if youre seeing decreased activity, pain, or loss of muscle mass.

Chest Problems

Subvalvular aortic stenosis , when the part of the heart that carries oxygenated blood out of the heart is narrowed, is also quite common in larger dog breeds like golden retrievers. On the brighter side a lot of dogs with SAS are typically asymptomatic, and it rarely progresses to something more serious.

Skin Issues

Skin problems are one of the most common reasons owners take their dog to a veterinarian. Luckily, most skin issues are as scary as they sound. Most commonly they are just benign masses made up of fat cells.


Unfortunately cancer is very common in golden retrievers and about 60 percent of Golden Retrievers are impacted by cancer. Sadly, much like cancer in humans, we know very little about a cure.

Patellar Luxation


Thyroid Problems

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Recommendations For Your Golden Retriever

Cosequin DS Chewables Plus MSM by Nutramax

This supplement contains glucosamine and MSM and is effective in supporting mobility and joint health in dogs.

Doc Ackerman’s Epilepsy & Seizure Formula for Dogs and Cats

This is an effective herbal formula that contains nerve-calming and nourishing herbs such as chamomile, ginseng, passion flower, St.-John’s wort, valerian root, etc. It greatly helps dogs with epilepsy.

Furminator De-shedding Tool

Golden Retrievers have long double coats of an outer hair and an under coat. The thick coat may become matted unless groomed twice a week. Goldens shed throughout the year with increased shedding once or twice a year. This excellent tool helps to control shedding by removing the loose and dead undercoat hair, without damaging the topcoat. Highly recommended!


Cardio And Respiratory Conditions

Many large breed dogs, including Golden Retrievers, have problems with their heart, lungs, and circulatory system. One of the most common issues is a genetic disease called subvalvular aortic stenosis . This is a narrowing of the aorta that causes the heart to work harder than it normally would. The most common symptoms of SAS are weakness, lethargy, and difficulty breathing. Eventually, SAS can lead to death. Sometimes its difficult to tell if your Golden Retriever is lethargic because of a health issue or if hes just being lazy. If your dogs personality seems to have changed or hes more lethargic than usual, a vet visit will help put your mind at ease.

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How To Keep Dogs Healthy And Happy

Most dogs will have at least one or two health issues during their lifetimes, regardless of their breed. But you can reduce your dogs risk of health issues by ensuring they have a preventive care routine, also known as a wellness plan. Here are some simple steps you can take to keep your dog healthy.

Pro Tip: Many people add a pet wellness plan to their insurance coverage once they realize how much they spend on dog teeth cleaning costs, flea medication, grooming services, and so forth. Most providers allow you to add it to your insurance policy at any time, but if you enroll while theyre a puppy, you can be reimbursed for the expensive cost of vaccinations and spay/neutering.

Top 10 Most Common Health Issues For Golden Retrievers

10 Things You Didn’t Know About: Golden Retrievers
  • Otitis middle ear infection
  • Pyoderma bacterial infection of the skin
  • Dermatitis inflammation of the skin
  • Gastritis inflammation, irritation or erosion of the lining of the stomach
  • Lipoma slow-growing, fatty lump between the skin and underlying muscle layer
  • Allergies
  • Colitis inflammation of the inner lining of the colon
  • Mass
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    Caring For Your Aging Golden Retriever

    As your beloved golden gets older he will require certain lifestyle changes. As a loving dog owner, it is up to you to make sure his golden years are just as happy and comfortable as before, and that his good health is maintained.

    Veterinary Care

    Now that your dog is a senior it is important to visit your vet twice a year for a check-up. Your vet will be able to discuss with you any changes that you may have noticed, as well as perform a complete thorough exam.


    As your dog ages, his metabolism will slow down. It is important to keep your dog at a healthy weight, and not let him become obese. If your dog is overweight it is important to work at shedding off the excess weight.

    Your older golden requires a balanced diet that is low in calories but has an adequate amount of protein and fat. A high fibre diet will help keep your golden fuller longer.

    Many people add glucosamine to their dogs diet to help with joint pain. It is also a good idea to feed your senior dog smaller meals throughout the day, instead of just once or twice. This allows your dog to metabolize the food better.


    Hopefully, you are already grooming your dog on a regular/daily basis, but older goldens may have difficulty grooming themselves because of decreased mobility. It is important to brush your golden, trim his nails, and bathe him regularly. This will allow you to spot any skin conditions or changes in the coat.

    Do you know what the best brush for a golden is? Find out here.


    Can You Prevent Any Of These Health Problems

    The best thing you can do, given that Golden Retrievers can develop so many conditions is to keep an eye on your dog as best as possible. Make sure that you assess his or her appetite for food and water, whether any signs such as fatigue or weight loss have occurred, or any change in your canine friends behavior or general appearance.

    Last, but not least, we would also recommend taking your dog to the vet two or even three times a year for checkups, given that all of the diseases that we have mentioned in this article are easier to treat or manage when discovered in their early stages.

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