German Shepherds – Choosing a German Shepherd

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Gastric torsion, also known as bloat, is a life-threatening sudden illness associated with the stomach filling with air and twisting.

Hip dysplasia is a malformation of the hip joint that results in pain, lameness, and arthritis.

Elbow dysplasia is the abnormal development of certain parts of the elbow joint during the growing phase.

Epilepsy is a seizure disorder, which develops between the ages of 2 to 5 years.

Panosteitis is an inflammation of the long bones during growth. It results in pain and lameness until the dog matures.

Pyoderma refers to deep skin infections.

Hot spots are areas of itchy moist skin irritation.

Pannus is a disease of the eye resulting in inflammation.

Corneal dystrophy is a primary, inherited, bilateral (both sides), symmetrical condition of the cornea that is not accompanied by corneal inflammation or systemic disease.

Degenerative myelopathy is a progressive degenerative disease of the spinal cord that slowly results in weakness and eventually inability to use the rear legs.

Intervertebral disk disease is a disorder that affects the spinal disks resulting in pain, difficulty walking and possibly paralysis.

Diabetes is a disease of the pancreas related to insufficient amounts of insulin production.

Pancreatic insufficiency is another pancreatic disease that results in inability to digest food properly.

Malassezia Dermatitis – is a yeast infection of the skin caused by Malassezia pachydermatitis.

Food Allergy can occur in some pets. Affected pets develop skin lesions secondary to some food ingredients

Perianal Fistula – is an infection and development of fistulas of the anal glands and tissues around the anal area.

Aortic Stenosis – this disease is caused by stenosis of the aorta and causing symptoms such as weakness, collapse, and sudden death.

Pericardial Effusion – is an accumulation of fluid within the pericardial space. It can be caused by tumors of the heart or idiopathic (no known cause).

Congenital Idiopathic Megaesophagus – is a dilatation of the esophagus caused by decreased contraction of the muscles, causing food regurgitation.

Lymphocytic plasmacytic enteritis (LPE) is a form of inflammatory bowel disease

Lick granuloma is a condition in which the dog licks an area excessively, usually on the front leg, until a raised, firm ulcerated lesion is formed.

Anal Sac Adenocarcinoma is an adenocarcinoma of the anal glands.

Testicular tumors are tumors that involve the testicles in intact male dogs.

Dwarfism is a deficiency of growth hormone (GH), which is normally secreted by the pituitary gland.

Cataracts cause the lens of the eye to lose transparency and can result in blindness.

Lens luxation is a dislocation or displacement of the lens within the eye.

In addition, German shepherds have a higher incidence of allergies, ear infections and malignant cancer such as hemangiosarcoma and Lymphoma.

Life Span

The average life span for a German shepherd dog is 10 to 13 years.

We realize that each dog is unique and may display other characteristics. This profile provides generally accepted breed information only.




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