Most common health problems in Gordon Setters, plus health care and feeding.


My Complete Health Care Program for your Gordon Setter

If you want to AVOID health problems in your Gordon Setter, you'll find my health care program very valuable.

It's called "11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy."

Raise your dog the RIGHT way, feed him the RIGHT food, give him the RIGHT vaccinations, avoid unnecessary veterinary expenses, and help him live a longer, happier, and more comfortable life.

If your Gordon Setter already HAS a health problem, I'm sorry to hear that. You should immediately begin my health care program, and you may be able to restore his good health – or at least make him much more comfortable. Let me help!

My best-selling dog health book


Gordon Setter dog breed

Gordon Setter Health Care & Feeding

By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2017


Quick list of Gordon Setter health problems

Gordon Setters suffer from high rates of hip dysplasia (19%) and elbow dysplasia (14%), both of which cause pain and lameness and may require expensive surgery.

Gordons are at high risk for an emergency gastrointestinal syndrome called bloat, which can kill a dog within hours.

Hereditary eye diseases can cause blindness, and eyelid abnormalities can require surgery.

Chronic allergies cause itchy skin that can lead to bacterial infections (hot spots). Ear infections are common due to lots of hair in the long narrow ear canals.

(See more health problems below.)


Preventing health problems

Some health problems are inherited. For example, if both parents of your Gordon Setter have certificates proving they were tested and cleared of hereditary eye diseases and hip and elbow dysplasia, your Gordon Setter has less risk of developing those conditions.

Other health problems can be prevented, or partially prevented, by the ways you raise your dog. If you're serious about doing everything you can for your Gordon Setter, my best-selling book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, shows you how to raise your Gordon Setter puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways. It will help you be your dog's health care champion!


Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy Gordon Setter puppy or adult dog:

Obedience instructor and author Michele Welton Dog Health Care – The Sensible Way
Read my advice on daily health care so your Gordon Setter lives a long, healthy life and seldom needs to see the vet.


Real homemade dog food The Best Dog Food For Feeding Your Gordon Setter
Food is the #1 foundation for good health. The best diet for feeding your dog is real food. Real chicken, turkey, beef, fish....these are not just "people foods" and I'll tell you why.


Natural dog foods for your Gordon Setter. The Second-Best Dog Food For Your Gordon Setter
If you can't feed homemade dog food, here are your next-best choices.


Information on booster shots for your Gordon Setter. Vaccinations and Booster Shots: Needed or Not?
How many vaccinations does your Gordon Setter puppy really need? Does your adult Gordon Setter need yearly booster shots? The vaccination guidelines have changed! Find out what some vets aren't telling you.


Information on spaying your Gordon Setter. Spaying Your Female Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of spaying your female dog.


Information on neutering your male dog. Neutering Your Male Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of neutering your male dog.


Information on choosing the best vet for your Gordon Setter. The Type of Veterinarian I Recommend
Is your veterinarian really the best choice for your dog? Learn about the differences between vets who practice conventional, holistic, and alternative veterinary medicine.


Assisi Loop Assisi Loop Review: How I Helped Treat Inflammation and Pain
Does your dog suffer from arthritis, hip dysplasia, disk disease, colitis, a skin wound? My honest review of a veterinary device you can use at home to help reduce inflammation and pain.


Complete list of Gordon Setter health problems

The most common orthopedic diseases in the Gordon Setter are hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia. The Orthopedic Foundation of America evaluated the hip X-rays of 6400 Gordon Setters and found 19% dysplastic. That's bad, and the true rate is higher because most of the obviously bad X-rays were not sent in for official evaluation. Similarly, over 1000 elbow X-rays of Gordon Setters were evaluated and 14% were dysplastic. Bad.

As with all deep-chested breeds, Gordon Setters are at higher-than-normal risk for the emergency gastrointestinal syndrome called bloat.

Skin problems include allergies (which cause itchy skin and can lead to pyoderma) and non-tumorous growths (sebaceous cysts). Ear infections are common in Gordons due to the long pendulous ears with lots of hair inside the ear canal.

Hypothyroidism is common in the breed. According to the Michigan State University Thyroid Database, up to 20% of Gordon Setters have low thyroid levels.

Inherited heart disease is being reported in the Gordon Setter.

Eye diseases in the breed include eyelid abnormalities (entropion and ectropion), dry eye, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), and retinal dysplasia. At 2-3 years of age, cataracts can appear.

Follicular dysplasia and cerebellar ataxia are rare diseases that have been reported in Gordon Setters.


To help you train and care for your dog

book cover To learn more about training your dog to be calm and well-behaved, my dog training book is Teach Your Dog 100 English Words. It's a unique Vocabulary and Respect Training Program that will teach your dog to listen to you and do whatever you ask.

book cover My dog buying guide, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, will teach you everything you need to know about finding a good-tempered, healthy dog.

book cover My dog health care book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, shows you how to help your dog live a longer life while avoiding health problems and unnecessary veterinary expenses.