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Common Labrador Health issues

The importance of selecting the correct breeding stock can not be underestimated. Most genetic diseases in Labradors are inherited. Hips and Elbows of breeding stock are evaluated through the use of X-rays which are 'scored' by radiographers. Only dogs with a suitably low score should be considered for breeding. DNA swabs are also used to establish the presence of other genetic disorders. Dogs may be Clear of a disease, a Carrier of the disease, or affected by the disease.  

  • Hips Dysplasia in Dogs is a disease in which the ball and socket joint is malformed. This malformation means that the ball portion and its socket don’t properly meet one another, resulting in a joint that rubs and grinds instead of sliding smoothly.

  • Elbow Dysplasia is a condition caused by the abnormal growth of cells, tissue, or bone. The condition is characterized by a series of four developmental abnormalities that lead to malformation and degeneration of the elbow joint. It is the most common cause of elbow pain and lameness, and one of the most common causes of forelimb lameness in large and giant-breed dogs

  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), also known as progressive rod and cone degeneration (PRCD), refers to a group of degenerative eye disorders that cause blindness in both eyes. Most forms of progressive retinal atrophy are passed from parent to offspring in an inheritance pattern.

  • Exercise Induced Collapse is a syndrome in dogs is manifested by muscle weakness, in-coordination and complete loss of control of the limbs after five to fifteen minutes of strenuous exercise. Dogs suffering from such condition develop a wobbly gait which soon progresses to non-painful paralysis of the rear limbs and may include all four limbs. Collapse episodes usually last for 5-10 minutes; within 30 minutes there is often complete recovery.

  • Dwarfism Several hereditary forms of disproportionate dwarfism or “short-legged” phenotype have been recognized by breeders of Labrador Retrievers over the years. A distinct form of a mild skeletal dysplasia type 2, termed SD2, is characterized by short legs with normal body length and width.

  • Nose. Hereditary nasal parakeratosis (HNPK) is an inherited disorder in Labrador Retrievers. When present this disease causes the nose to dry out leading to chronic irritation and inflammation of the noses skin.

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