Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) is the most common cause of back pain in French Bulldogs, and can even cause paralysis. This debilitating condition is strongly correlated to inherited genetic markers, but research has recently revealed that there is an environmental factor as well. Before understanding the complex genetics associated with IVDD, it is important to understand what exactly IVDD is and what the symptoms are.
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What is IVDD?
Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) is a condition in which the discs between the vertebrae of the spine become displaced, either partially or completely. This can lead to nerve damage, which can cause pain and even paralysis, depending on how severe the disc displacement is. The severity of IVDD also increases in frequency as French Bulldogs age, as the cartilage between the discs breaks down over time.
What Are The Symptoms of IVDD?
Symptoms of IVDD can range from difficulty walking, swimming or jumping to a sudden, acute paralysis. Other signs of IVDD can include:
- Soreness or pain in the lower back
- Stiffness in the back
- Weakness in the hind legs
- Loss of muscle control in the hind legs
- Lack of coordination or balance
If any of these symptoms are present, it is important to take your French Bulldog to a vet as soon as possible for an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Is IVDD Genetic In French Bulldogs?
While it is well established that IVDD is largely genetic, recent research has revealed that there is an environmental factor as well. It is believed that factors such as nutrition and weight can contribute to the development of IVDD, as can the presence of certain genetic markers.
It is important to note that while there are some breeds, such as Dalmatians, that are more prone to IVDD, all French Bulldogs can suffer from this painful condition. As such, it is important to take preventative measures, such as providing a healthy diet, monitored exercise, and avoiding excessive activity, to help reduce the risk of developing IVDD.
IVDD is an inherited condition in French Bulldogs, and there is an environmental factor involved as well. By ensuring that your French Bulldog receives proper nutrition, exercise and love, you can decrease the chances of them developing IVDD and give them a longer, healthier life. While it is impossible to completely avoid inherited conditions, proper preventive care can go a long way.
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