Jack Russell Terrier Health Problems and Raising a Jack Russell Terrier Puppy to be Healthy
By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2013
The most common health problems in Jack Russell Terriers:
Eye diseases are the main concern in Jack Russells, especially lens luxation (which can lead to secondary glaucoma) and cataracts. Other eye diseases include eyelash abnormalities, persistent pupillary membranes, and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA).
Epilepsy and heart disease (cardiomyopathy, patent ductus arteriosus, sub-aortic stenosis) are becoming real concerns in the breed.
Orthopedic health problems in Jack Russells include luxating patella (loose knees), Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and occasionally Wobbler's syndrome. Unfortunately, most JRT breeders aren't testing their dogs for orthopedic diseases, so we have no idea how widespread these problems may be in the breed.
Some breeders are producing short-legged, long-backed Jack Russell Terriers. They look cute, but this type of build is actually a deformity called chondrodysplasia, and it makes these dogs more susceptible to intervertebral disk disease.
Some severe neurological/neuromuscular diseases occur in Jack Russells, specifically cerebellar ataxia, myasthenia gravis, and lysosomal storage disease. Another neurological syndrome called spinocerebellar ataxia can appear during adolescence, but is not as devastating as cerebellar ataxia. Mild abnormalities of the brain may also be responsible for the excessive shaking or tremors of the rear legs that sometimes occur in Jack Russells.
Allergies (which cause itchy skin and often leading to pyoderma) are very common in all terriers.
Inherited deafness can occur in Jack Russell Terrier puppies who are born with a lot of white on their head.
Blood-clotting diseases include von Willebrand's and factor X deficiency. Hormonal/endocrine system diseases include hypothyroidism and occasionally diabetes. Hernias, hydrocephalus, and pyloric stenosis are other health problems that have been reported in Jack Russells.
You probably want to know if you can prevent those health issues from happening to YOUR Jack Russell Terrier.
Yes, often you can.
- Some health problems are genetic, which means inherited from parents. Genetic health issues are common in Jack Russell Terriers today because of unwise breeding practices. My book, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, shows you how to find a Jack Russell Terrier puppy who is genetically healthy.
- Other health problems are environmental, which means they're caused by the way you raise your dog. My best-selling dog health book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy shows you how to prevent environmental health problems by raising your Jack Russell Terrier puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways.
Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy Jack Russell Terrier puppy or adult dog:
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Copyright © 2000-2013 by Michele Welton. All rights reserved.
No part of this website may be copied, displayed on another website,
or distributed in any way without the express permission of the author.