The Alaskan Husky and Siberian Husky are both incredibly beautiful dog breeds known for their piercing eyes and sweet, gentle dispositions. When given plenty of exercise, mental stimulation, and attention, the Husky is a very well-behaved dog. But, unfortunately, certain dog breeds are susceptible to certain health problems, and Huskies are no exception.
But just because you have a Husky, or you’re thinking of getting one, that doesn’t mean your dog’s health will be in jeopardy. As the owner of one of these dogs, you’ll need to be alert to the signs of problems.
Here are a few of these problems Huskies might deal with and some of the symptoms.
Huskies are at a higher risk of developing an autoimmune disorder known as discoid lupus erythematosus. This may cause a loss of pigment in the skin, particularly on the nose.1
Another type of issue that affects the skin is hyperthyroidism. When the thyroid glands don’t work properly, this can lead to thickening of the skin, causing fur to fall out. Thyroid problems can also lead to skin infections, resulting in crusty or oozing skin.2
Thankfully, though, there are several ways a veterinarian can successfully address these problems.
Common Eye Problems Faced By Huskies
Those beautiful Husky eyes are, unfortunately, prone to developing problems that can cause pain, discomfort and, in some instances, even worse issues. These are some of the more common eye conditions Huskies will sometimes experience.
Cataracts can affect dogs as well as humans. With cataracts, a dog’s eyes become opaque or cloudy over time. Your vet may recommend surgery to remove cataracts and keep your pet’s vision as sharp as possible.3
This is another issue that can cause vision problems. The front of the eye may be bluer than normal. Other signs include watery eyes and squinting. Glaucoma can rob a dog’s vision if not addressed as soon as possible.4
Progressive Retinal Atrophy
The retina converts light into signals and sends them to the brain. The brain then processes and interprets that light. That’s how humans see, and how our dogs see. Huskies will sometimes develop a condition known as progressive retinal atrophy, or PRA. This is where the cells in the retina deteriorate, causing vision loss.
This is a genetic condition that affects many breeds, including Huskies. Dogs with PRA will often be scared to go into a dark room, or bump into objects in dimly lit rooms.5
Bleeding Disorders in Huskies
Dogs will often develop blood clotting problems that make them bleed. Many of them are mild, but some are severe – even life-threatening in some cases. If a Husky or any other dog with this problem is cut, theycould lose a dangerously high amount of blood.
A clotting disorder can sometimes result in blood in the urine. This condition is known as hematuria.6
Your veterinarian can check for any clotting disorder before performing any surgical procedure on your Husky. Precautions can be taken to reduce the chances of complications if your dog tests positive.
Many breeds of dogs are also susceptible to high blood pressure. If a dog’s blood pressure gets too high, it could be due to a serious health condition. Your vet will determine the cause of the problem and determine the best way to address the situation.
Anytime a dog has a seizure, it’s scary. Sometimes seizures happen due to an organ problem. They sometimes occur because of an injury or cardiovascular issue. When there is no known reason for seizures, that is known as epilepsy.
Huskies are prone to suffering seizures. They usually hit between the ages of six months and three years. As scary as they may be, though, there are medications your vet can prescribe to help keep them under control.7
While just about every type of dog can have dental issues, Huskies are a little more prone to them. One of the biggest culprits is tartar. Tartar buildup can cause dental issues like inflamed, red gums.
It’s very important to get dental problems addressed. The reason is they can wind up hurting your dog’s health. Dental issues can ultimately cause damage to vital organs such as the kidneys, liver, and heart.8
Make sure you take your dog to the veterinarian for dental cleanings regularly. Brushing your dog’s teeth can help keep them clean between visits.
As the name implies, laryngeal paralysis results in paralysis of the vocal cords. Older dogs tend to be at the highest risk for this condition. A common symptom is breathing that is noisier than normal. This could happen during humid weather or after exercising.
Laryngeal paralysis can typically be successfully addressed by your vet. If you notice signs, take your dog to the veterinarian’s office as soon as you can.9
A lot of dog breeds including the German Shepherd, Husky, and others, are susceptible to this condition. It’s mostly associated with larger dogs, but it can also affect a medium-sized dog.
Hip dysplasia is serious because it will usually lead to joint problems. A dog may exhibit lameness in their hind legs, or have trouble getting back up after resting. Overweight dogs are especially vulnerable to this problem.10
Hip x-rays will often be used for dogs that are showing symptoms. If pet hip dysplasia is diagnosed, your vet will take the steps necessary to make sure your dog stays as comfortable as possible.
All dogs, whether they’re a puppy or an adult, may get an upset tummy at some point. Huskies and other breeds may develop a disorder that affects their intestinal lining. This lining can become too thick for the body to be able to fully absorb nutrients. Chronic vomiting and diarrhea are common symptoms – they may flare up out of nowhere and then subside.
If your vet suspects a digestive problem, they may recommend changes to your dog’s diet. Medications may also be needed.11
Myelopathy is degenerative, meaning it occurs over time. It’s a neurological condition that weakens the hind legs and commonly affects Huskies. Diet and exercise may help dogs with this condition. Your vet can recommend other ways to manage myelopathy.12
Ear mites, fleas, and worms can affect any dog, including Huskies. Parasites can get into a dog’s body in many ways. Drinking unclean water, mosquito bites, and even sniffing another dog’s poop are just some of them. 13
Don’t Be Dissuaded
Don’t be scared to bring a Husky puppy home, or to adopt an older dog of this breed. You should just be be alert for any signs of problems.
Keep an eye out for anything odd, such as strange lumps and bumps on the skin, or changes in your pup’s behavior. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, call your vet.
Whether you have a puppy or an adult Husky, a healthy diet and lots of exercise can help ensure that your dog’s health is as good as it can be. Your vet can give you whatever advice you need about potential Husky health problems.
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