Intervertebral disc disease, commonly referred to as IVDD, is an important health condition that can affect dogs of all breeds, including French Bulldogs. It is a degenerative disc disorder that can cause intense pain, diminished movement, and even paralysis if left untreated. Unfortunately, IVDD is a fairly common condition among French Bulldogs due to their anatomy and prone posture. To help understand and manage IVDD in French Bulldogs, it is important to be aware of how common it is, how it is diagnosed, and how it can be treated and managed.
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How Common Is IVDD In French Bulldogs?
Intervertebral disc disease is a fairly common condition among French Bulldogs, with estimates placing the average to be around 10-15%. It is more prevalent in older dogs, with about 30% of French Bulldogs over the age of 8 affected.
What are the Risk Factors for IVDD in French Bulldogs?
There are several risk factors for IVDD in French Bulldogs, the most important being the breed’s anatomy and slumped posture. Due to its wide chest and short legs, French Bulldogs have a decreased amount of space between their vertebrae. This makes it easier for the intervertebral discs to suffer from herniation or deterioration. French Bulldogs are also more prone to obesity and they should be regularly monitored to maintain an optimum weight as obesity increases the strain on the back and can worsen IVDD.
What Are the Symptoms of IVDD in French Bulldogs?
The most common symptom of IVDD in French Bulldogs is acute pain. The pain can be severe and can cause the dog to yelp or whine when touched or moved. Other symptoms include:
- Abnormal gait
- Inability to move the hind legs
- Lack of coordination
- Muscle loss
- Weak reflexes
How Is IVDD Diagnosed?
IVDD can be difficult to diagnose and a full examination is needed. X-rays and a full blood profile will be necessary in order to confirm the diagnosis.
How Is IVDD Treated?
IVDD can be treated with either conservative or surgical treatment. The decision on which treatment to pursue will be based on the severity of the symptoms and the age of the dog.
Conservative treatment includes strict crate rest, pain medication, anti-inflammatory medication, and physical therapy. This treatment is recommended for mild cases of IVDD.
Surgical treatment will involve the removal of the damaged disc and insertion of a spacer to replace the removed disc. It is a more invasive procedure and can be risky in small dogs.
IVDD is a fairly common disorder in French Bulldogs, with estimates placing it at 10-15%. It is important to be aware of the risk factors of IVDD to help manage and prevent it. Knowing the symptoms is also important as early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent severe pain, paralysis, and even death. Treatment options include conservative and surgical treatments, with the severity of the symptoms determining which option is best for the individual dog.
In conclusion, French Bulldogs are more prone to IVDD than other breeds due to their anatomy and posture. Knowing the risk factors, understanding the symptoms, and receiving prompt treatment will help ensure a positive outcome for affected dogs.
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