If you currently own a dog or if you are currently searching for your next best friend, you have likely spent time researching dog breeds. There’s tons of information out there about which breed tends to be the most and least healthy, but breed isn’t the only consideration when it comes to healthy dogs.
Genetics, food, lifestyle, exercise routines, social environment, and mental stimulation, to name a few, contribute to your dog’s overall wellbeing.
The good news is that all of these factors are controllable to some extent. The key lies in management and early intervention.
Since genetics (dog breed) does play a role and is arguably the most rigid factor, let’s start there.
The Dogs With the Least Health Problems
Here’s a short list of the dogs that are generally agreed upon to be some of the healthiest dog breeds:
- Australian Cattle Dog
- Australian Shepherd
- Siberian Husky
- Border Collie
- English Springer Spaniel
- Mixed Breeds
The Dogs With the Most Health Problems
If you are a dog-lover and/or have spent time breed-researching, this list is likely not too surprising:
- German Shepherd
- Basset Hound
- Great Dane
- Labrador Retriever
- Saint Bernard
- Golden Retriever
- Cocker Spaniel
Now, don’t fret if your pooch is on this list. I personally own a very healthy Cocker Spaniel! The key is that I am aware of her predispositions and I manage accordingly.
How to Prevent Health Issues in Dogs
Here’s the good news: Dogs are not subject to genetics or breed. Sure, they may have a higher susceptibility to developing certain issues. For example, German Shepherds are known for hip dysplasia. But knowing this information, choosing a responsible breeder, and managing your dog’s care with this in mind, can do a lot of good on its own.
Many of the dogs (and other breeds not mentioned here) on the ‘least healthy dog breeds’ list landed there because of their joints. Many of these dogs are predisposed to arthritis, hip dysplasia, etc.
While this is a concern, it is not a death sentence. Even many of the working dog breeds which tend to find themselves on the ‘healthiest dog breeds’ list are prone to joint problems just because of the nature of their jobs.
Regardless of your dog’s breed, supplementing your dog’s diet with anti-inflammatory joint supportive nutrients, as well as high quality prebiotics, probiotics, and digestive enzymes is key. The reason this is so important is that these nutrients are not available in regular dog food, and your dog’s diet is limited to what you choose to feed them!
When it comes to joint health for dogs, prevention is the best medicine.
And the best medicine includes ingredients that come from nature so your dog’s body can actually absorb and use them.