Chaudhary Kennel

All Dog Breeds >>Health of German Shepherd

Many common ailments of the German Shepherds are a result of the inbreeding required early in the breed's life. One such common issue is hip and elbow dysplasia which may lead to the dog experiencing pain in later life, and may cause arthritis. A study by the University of Zurich in police working dogs found that 45% were affected by degenerative spinal stenosis, although the sample studied was small. The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals found that 19.1% of German Shepherd are affected by hip dysplasia. Chiefly because of Hip and Elbow dysplasia and spinal stenosis, the popularity of the German Shepherd as a working dog is declining with Police Forces and Armies worldwide.

Even the German Army is increasingly utilizing the Malinois as a working dog. Due to the large and open nature of their ears, Shepherds are prone to ear infections. German Shepherds, like all large bodied dogs, are prone to bloat. The average lifespan of a German Shepherd is 9.7 years, which is normal for a dog of their size.

Degenerative myelopathy, a neurological disease, occurs with enough regularity specifically in the breed to suggest that the breed is predisposed to it. Additionally, German Shepherd Dogs have a higher than normal incidence of Von Willebrand Disease, a common inherited bleeding disorder.