A Few Words on GSMD Health
The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog in general is a healthy breed. However, certain health issues are of definite concern and should be discussed with both your breeder and your veterinarian before you purchase a puppy.
One of the most common and dangerous problems in the breed is " Bloat" (a gastro-intestinal condition). As with many large, deep chested breeds, Bloat is a serious condition in which the stomach rotates on it's axis, causing a loss of blood flow and a deadly build up of intestinal gasses. The condition is a veterinary emergency. Be sure to discuss symptoms of Bloat with your breeder as well as preventive measures. Locating a good veterinarian who is familiar with treating this fatal condition is also very important. Bloat has been known to be genetic in nature.
Hip and Elbow Dysplasia as well as OCD are also problems for the breed. Please be sure to discuss and check the pedigrees of your dog or puppy as Dysplasia can also be genetic. Breeders should have radiographs performed on all breeding stock and sent to the OFA (Orthopedic Foundation of America) for an evaluation and clearance.
Eye problems such as Distichiasis (extra row of eyelash's which can cause eye damage) Entropion and Ectropian are also seen in the breed. The common approach to preventing these conditions is through certification of unaffected breeding stock by the Canine Eye registry Foundation (CERF)
Swissy's are a heavy boned, athletic dog that can be prone to injury as young adults and must be managed properly to prevent expensive and serious injuries. Things such as slipping on wet floors, jumping from cars, jumping from porches or other high places, running up and down stairways and heavy ruff housing can be damaging to the development of the puppy's soft cartilage. Being that Swissy's are a giant breed they mature slowly. There joints can not fully withstand the body's heavy weight in such activities until they are a more mature 2 years old. Weight pulling or heavy packing should also be avioided until the puppy in mature. Excessive and strenuous exercise, such as long jogs or hikes should be avoided until mature.Urinary Incontinence is often the most common health problem in female Swissies. Affected dogs will dribble or leak urine. Many believe this has a genetic factor and it can be treated with medication. Often times a female may out grown the problem and sometimes it helps to allow your female one heat season before spaying.
Urinary Incontinence is often the most common health problem in female Swissies. Affected dogs will dribble or leak urine. Many believe this has a genetic factor and it can be treated with medication. Often times a female may out grown the problem and sometimes it helps to allow your female one heat season before spaying.