Monday, June 25, 2012

Health


A healthy Rottweiler is a happy Rottweiler.

Rottweilers are extremely versatile dogs, and whether they are pets, service dogs, search and rescue dogs or working as law enforcement dogs, they need to be in top shape, just like people.

The Hoosier Rottweiler Club offers the following tips to help keep your beloved Rottweiler in optimum health:

Food & Nutrition

What you feed your dog is critical to maintaining his or her health.  Start by feeding a good quality food, and avoid brands that contain too much corn or other “fillers”.  Lots of dogs love veggies too, so feel free to include them in the meal.

Bathing & Grooming

All dogs should be bathed frequently, and depending on their activities, some Rottweilers get bathed more than others.  Use warm water and a shampoo that’s free of perfumes or dyes, and be sure to lather up for best results.  Rinse thoroughly – making sure all all traces of shampoo are gone.  Towel dry, or if your Rottweiler  is cooperative, use a small, hand-held hair dryer on the cool setting to dry his coat.

Dental Care

Dogs, just like people, need their teeth brushed to ensure good dental health.  Be sure to brush your Rottweilers teeth every day – or at a minimum, once a week.  Dog love meat-flavored toothpaste, available at your local pet supply store.  Brush both teeth and gums and remove all plaque.  If you notice a large build-up of plaque- make an appointment with your vet for a full dental checkup.

Eyes & Ears

Clear eyes and clean ears are a mark of good health.  When bathing your Rottweiler, be sure to gently wipe your dog’s eyes with a clean, damp washcloth – without any soap.  Next, gently wipe the inside of the ear, and then use a cotton swab to remove any wax or dirt.  If you notice your dogs eyes or ears are “weeping”, call your vet immediately for an appointment.

Reproductive Health

Your Rottweiler’s reproductive health is an important factor in longevity and disease prevention.

Contrary to popular opinion, new studies are showing that spaying or neutering a dog can have detrimental health effects – including cancers, and behavioral issues.

Recently, the AVMA issued this warning about policies which mandate the spaying or neutering of dogs:

“potential health problems associated with spaying and neutering have also been identified, including an increased risk of prostatic cancer in males; increased risks of bone cancer and hip dysplasia in large-breed dogs associated with sterilization before maturity; and increased incidences of obesity, diabetes, urinary tract infections, urinary incontinence, and hypothyroidism”.

- AVMA – Mandatory Spay Neuter – A Bad Idea, May 2009

Reproductive health decisions concerning your Rottweiler are and should always be private decisions made in consultation with your veterinarian.

Toes & Tails

Keeping your Rottweiler in tip top shape includes paying attention to toes & tails.

Dogs go everywhere in “bare feet”, so be sure to check your dogs toes and pads regularly, making sure that they’re free from debris, dirt, sand or even glass.

Trim your Rottweiler’  toenails frequently, and do not allow them to over-grow, as it can become painful if a long toenail has a crack or becomes infected.

Now a word or two about tails!  Keeping a tail clean and out of trouble will make your Rottweiler will be wagging his for a long time to come.

Whether docked according to the breed standard (a painless procedure done when a puppy is less than five days old) or long, pay attention to your dog’s tail – making sure that there are no scrapes, cuts or insect bites.

A healthy tail is a happy tail. Keep those tails a-waggin’!

Rabies & Other Vaccinations

Keeping up with vaccination schedules is another important factor in disease prevention and keeping your dog healthy, and be sure to follow local and state laws.

Rabies vaccination schedules are changing, however, due to new research by Dr. Jean Dodd, which has shown that rabies immunity lasts much longer than previously thought, and that frequent rabies vaccinations has a detrimental impact on health.

Veterinary medical schools and state VMA’s have updated their policies to reflect the new rabies protocols,  and state legislatures are in the process of amending individual state rabies control laws.

Be sure to check with your vet about the updated protocols, or even ask that a “titer” test be done on your Rottweiler before taking a chance on over-vaccinating your dog.

Disclaimer

Nothing on our site should be considered veterinary medical advice, so please check with your vet – always.