Common Beagle Health Problems

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The beagle is a medium-sized breed of dog. The modern beagle that everyone recognizes today made its debut in England in the early 1800s. It is quite a popular choice for pet owners around the world because of its calm demeanor. In fact, many hunters adopt beagles because they possess a sharp sense of smell.

There’s a lot to love about beagles, and while the breed is overall quite a healthy one, it can experience health problems. Let’s take a look at some of them.

  1. Allergies – Beagles can develop allergic reactions to many things. Some of the symptoms of allergies in beagles include long-term ear infections and scratching. Treatments include changes in the dog’s diet as well as antihistamines.
  2. Hypothyroidism – A dull coat, loss of hair, extreme intolerance for cold weather, tiredness, chronic skin disorders, and weight gain are all signs of a dysfunctional thyroid. Thankfully, this condition is easily treatable with a daily thyroid hormone supplement.
  3. Idiopathic epilepsy – This one is quite a common condition in beagles. It’s so common that many believe it to be a genetic issue with beagles. A beagle experiencing a seizure can do any of the following. The dog might fall down, open his/her mouth wide, extend his/her limbs, arch his/her head and neck or shake in a jerky manner. The dog will usually go to sleep after the seizure is over. Seizures last for a couple of minutes.
  4. Intervertebral disc disease – This happens when the cushion between the vertebras (the disc) is injured, which makes it leak or swell. The following symptoms require an immediate visit to the vet.
    1. Refusing to get up and play even when offered food
    1. A beagle yelping when you try to pet him/her or pick him/her up
    1. Shivering in combination with inactivity which is unusual for your beagle
    1. Limping
    1. A rear-end which moves but doesn’t look like it’s in control
    1. Dragging of the hind legs
    1. A strange position especially a pulled-in head or arched back
  5. Beagle dwarfism – Dwarfism or chondrodystrophy is a genetic disorder in beagles. The disorder results in cartilage which doesn’t develop properly. Beagles with dwarfism suffer from short legs. In addition to this, the intervertebral discs in their spines degenerate prematurely when compared to their peers.

It’s always worth a visit to the vet if you notice any strange behavior from your beagle. Your dog looks to you for solutions to any problems that he/she faces. Ignoring symptoms, no matter how small they are, is asking for trouble. The best way to avoid issues entirely is to visit your vet every six months. Remember that prevention is better than cure.

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