Your Purebred Puppy, Honest Advice About Dogs and Dog Breeds

Sensible advice for raising your Scottish Deerhound puppy so he lives a long healthy life and seldom needs to visit the vet. Learn about the most common health problems and issues in Scottish Deerhounds, the best dog food diet for feeding Scottish Deerhound puppies and adult dogs, the truth about vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and natural health care.


11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, my best-selling dog health book

Scottish Deerhound dog breed

Scottish Deerhound Health Problems and Raising a Scottish Deerhound Puppy to be Healthy

By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2013

Quiz – How Long Will Your Dog Live?
How To Raise a Healthy Dog
Feeding the Best Dog Food
Feeding the 2nd Best Dog Food
Vaccinations: Needed or Not?
Are You Sure Your Vet Is Good?

The most common health problems in Scottish Deerhounds:

The Scottish Deerhound Club conducted a health survey that included over 450 Deerhounds. They concluded that the average lifespan is 8.5 years for males, 9 years for females. Only 1 in 5 males, and 1 in 3 females, reaches their 10th birthday.

The leading causes of death are:

  1. Heart disease. Cardiomyopathy affects up to 8% of all Scottish Deerhounds, typically striking at 6-7 years old.
  2. Bone cancer. Osteosarcoma typically strikes at 5-9 years old and is the leading cause of death in females.
  3. Bloat. This emergency gastrointestinal syndrome affects up to 10% of the breed, occurs at all ages, and has a high mortality rate.

Other health problems in the breed include:

  • Liver shunt and an inherited kidney disease called cystinuria are serious concerns in Scottish Deerhounds.
  • The most common orthopedic diseases are osteochondritis and panosteitis. Hip dysplasia can occur, but is uncommon. Hypertrophic osteodystrophy and a bizarre dwarfism called chondrodysplasia have occasionally been reported in Deerhounds.
  • An inflammatory brain disease called aseptic meningitis/vasculitis can cause recurring head and neck pain in Scottish Deerhounds.
  • Skin problems include allergies (which cause itchy skin and can lead to pyoderma) and elbow hygroma.

Because of their low body fat, all sighthounds are extra sensitive to anesthetics and require an experienced vet who will follow a special Greyhound Anesthesia Protocol.

Sighthounds REQUIRE open space to run. A sighthound who can't stretch his legs and gallop off-leash will not develop proper muscle tone for good health. However, the area in which they run must be enclosed. One of the leading causes of death in sighthounds is being hit by a car. These dogs are chasers with sharp eyesight, strong prey instincts, and a one-track mind. If they spy something moving in the distance, their instincts will kick in and they will not respond when you call them.

Musculoskeletal injuries (fractures, pulled muscles or ligaments, broken toes, paw injuries, etc.) are common when slender sighthounds race about.


Can you prevent health problems from happening to YOUR Scottish Deerhound?

Yes, often you can.

  1. Some health problems are genetic, which means inherited from parents. Genetic health issues are common in Scottish Deerhounds today because of unwise breeding practices. My book, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, shows you how to find a Scottish Deerhound puppy who is genetically healthy.
  2. Other health problems are environmental – 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 Scottish Deerhound puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways.

Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy Scottish Deerhound puppy or adult dog:

Dog lifespan quiz How Long Will Your Dog Live? – Take This Quiz!
Based on your dog's breed and how you're raising him, this personalized quiz will help you understand how long your dog might live – and most importantly, how you can increase his life expectancy.


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


Real homemade dog food The Best Dog Food For Feeding Your Scottish Deerhound
The best diet for feeding your Scottish Deerhound is real food. Real chicken, turkey, beef, bison, venison, fish....This is not "people food" and I'll tell you why.


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


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


Information on choosing the best vet for your Scottish Deerhound. 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.


Information on spaying your Scottish Deerhound. Spaying Your Female Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of spaying your female Scottish Deerhound.


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