On average the Doberman has a lifespan of anywhere from 10 to 12 years. Many of these dogs suffer from numerous health issues. There are several common Doberman health concerns that are quite serious. Some of these issues include von Willebrand’s Disease, dilated cardiomyopathy, prostatic disease, bloat, Wobbler’s Syndrome, and cervical vertebral instability (or CVI). Other concerns that are less serious are canine compulsive disorder, hip dysplasia, demodicosis, osteosarcoma, gastric torsion, and hypothyroidism.
Studies have shown this breed suffers from several prostatic diseases, including prostatic cysts, prostatiti, benign hyperplasia, and prostatic adenocarcinoma more than any other dog breed. These risks can be significantly reduced by spaying and neutering your pets.
Serious Doberman Health Concerns
One of the leading cause of Doberman deaths is dilated cardiomyopathy. This is at the top of the list for Doberman health concerns because it affects the Doberman more than any other breed. In fact, nearly 40% of cases are Dobermans; the breed coming in second is the German Shepherd with 13%.
Other studies have shown Dobermans also make up the majority of cases of attenuated wavy fiber; a type of DCM that also affects many other dog breeds. The more serious type is fatty infiltration-degenerative type, and this appears to be specific to both the Boxer and Doberman breed. Sadly, most cases of this that affect Dobermans are fatal.
Numerous studies have shown DCM shows up in over half of the Dobermans studied. Nearly a quarter of these dogs who develop cardiomyopathy die suddenly, from causes that are unknown. Additionally, half of them die of congestive heart failure. Experts are unsure why so many Dobermans are affected by these conditions, but one thing is for sure – the diagnosis of such conditions is always more serious for Dobermans. Once a diagnosis is made for a non-Doberman breed survival is expected near 8 months. On the other hand, a Doberman’s diagnosis will have an expected survival time of closer to 2 months. The causes of the disease are for the most part unknown. However, there is some scientific evidence that proves the condition is a familial disease that is inherited in the form of an autosomal dominant trait.
Less Common Doberman Health Concerns
Less common Doberman health issues include progressive retinal atrophy (or PRA), narcolepsy, and albinism. In Blue Dobermans hair loss is common.
For these reasons, it is very important to have your dog checked by the Veterinarian regularly. Vets can run many tests that will rule out Doberman health concerns. The areas tested include eye, cardiac, DNA, and hip tests. The results will determine what conditions your dog already has, and others they are prone to. If you love your four-legged baby, this is the easiest way to prolong his or her life. Additionally, it can make it a happier one that is pain-free. Even if the results do not turn out the way you’d like, at least you know what Doberman health concerns to worry about.