Poodle Information: Health

Poodle Information: Health


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The Poodle is prone to a number of health conditions. Learn the specific health needs of this beloved breed.

The Poodle’s origin is largely thought to be German, where these dogs were bred as water retrievers and later as truffle hunting dogs. All Poodles, even the toy variety, are instinctual hunters and pointers. This dog is subject to a number of health conditions, including Addison’s disease, gastric torsion, and sebaceous adenitis. Like many breeds, the Poodle is susceptible to hip dysplasia as well as another hip disorder called Legg-Perthes disease. Nonetheless, the Poodle has a long life expectancy  of 12 to 15 years.

Primary Health Conditions of the Poodle

The Poodle Health Registry reports that the most common Poodle affliction is Addison’s disease, a genetic condition in which the adrenal glands do not produce a necessary hormone. Generalized symptoms such as lethargy and gastric problems can make diagnosis difficult. Most dogs can be treated with medication. Gastric torsion, or twisting of the stomach, is also common in the Poodle. The condition can cause intense pain, and immediate veterinary care, with possible surgical intervention, is needed. Certain types of grains found in inexpensive dog foods can lead to bouts of torsion. Another problem among Poodles are thyroid issues, both hyperthyroid and hypothyroid. These conditions can be managed medicinally.

Secondary Health Conditions of the Poodle

The Poodle is prone to sebaceous adenitis, a genetic disease in which the dog’s immune system attacks the sebaceous glands. The result is hair loss, skin lesions, and a silvery dandruff that clings to the coat. There is no cure, but the symptoms can be ameliorated with mineral oil and medicinal shampoos. This breed is subject to two problems of the hip, hip dysplasia and Legg-Perthes disease; both cause discomfort at the hind legs and may impair the dog’s gait. Treatment is different for these conditions so proper diagnosis is required. The breed may also be prone to epilepsy, which may be controlled with medications.

Poodle Exercise and Walking Needs

The Poodle has abundant energy, so long walks and plenty of play and opportunities to run are a must for this dog. Bred as water retrievers, the Poodle will also benefit from opportunities to swim. Poodles are intelligent, working dogs so those that do not receive the proper attention from their owners and their daily exercise may become destructive as they try to find ways to occupy themselves. Regular exercise will also help to maintain health and will considerably lengthen the Poodle’s lifespan.

Poodle Nutritional Needs

As the Poodle is prone to the sometimes dangerous condition, gastric torsion, it needs a high quality food without grain fillers. Corn and soy, which are often found in low quality dog foods, can trigger bouts of this condition. The high activity levels of this breed also require the dog receive a well balanced food with plenty of protein, carbohydrates, and nutrients to keep the dog healthy and lively.

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard or delay seeking professional advice due to what you may have read on our website.

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Addison's Disease Sebaceous Adenitis Gastric Torsion Poodle
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