Your Purebred Puppy, Honest Advice About Dogs and Dog Breeds

Sensible advice for raising your Sussex Spaniel 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 Sussex Spaniels, the best dog food diet for feeding Sussex Spaniel 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

Sussex Spaniel dog breed

Sussex Spaniel Health Problems and Raising a Sussex Spaniel 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 Sussex Spaniels:

This is a heavily-inbred breed with a small gene pool, so it's not surprising that health problems are increasing.

The most serious health problem is heart disease, especially tetralogy of fallot (which kills Sussex puppies before weaning), cardiomyopathy, patent ductus arteriosus, and pulmonic stenosis.

The rates of hip and elbow dysplasia are terrible. The Orthopedic Foundation of America evaluated the hip X-rays of 200 Sussex Spaniels and found 45% dysplastic – the 9th worst rate of 142 breeds. And the true rate is even higher because most of the obviously bad X-rays were not sent in for official evaluation. Of 56 elbow X-rays, 18% were dysplastic, and again, the true rate is even higher. Luxating patellas (loose knees) occurs in the breed, and intervertebral disk disease is another problem that can occur because of the abnormal chondrodysplastic build.

Eye diseases in Sussex Spaniels include cataracts, retinal dysplasia, eyelash abnormalities, eyelid abnormalities (entropion and ectropion), and occasionally progressive retinal atrophy (PRA).

Skin and ear problems are common: allergies cause itchy skin, which can lead to bacterial skin infections (pyoderma).

Hypothyroidism also occurs in Sussex Spaniels.


Can you prevent health problems from happening to YOUR Sussex Spaniel?

Yes, often you can.

  1. Some health problems are genetic, which means inherited from parents. Genetic health issues are common in Sussex Spaniels today because of unwise breeding practices. My book, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, shows you how to find a Sussex Spaniel 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 Sussex Spaniel puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways.

Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy Sussex Spaniel 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 Sussex Spaniel lives a long, healthy life and seldom needs to see the vet.


Real homemade dog food The Best Dog Food For Feeding Your Sussex Spaniel
The best diet for feeding your Sussex Spaniel 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 Sussex Spaniel. The Second-Best Dog Food For Your Sussex Spaniel
If you can't feed homemade dog food, here are your next-best choices.


Information on booster shots for your Sussex Spaniel. Vaccinations and Booster Shots: Needed or Not?
How many vaccinations does your Sussex Spaniel puppy really need? Does your adult Sussex Spaniel 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 Sussex Spaniel. 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 Sussex Spaniel. Spaying Your Female Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of spaying your female Sussex Spaniel.


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