Are you contemplating bringing that adorable little Labrador pup home as a family dog? You may well want to do just that because these are among the most sociable dogs on earth. They are intelligent, easily trained, fun loving and great to have around kids. However, as with any breed of dog, you’ll want to understand the most common health problems they might be prone to and have regular veterinary care to ensure a long and healthy life.
Labs typically have a lifespan of about ten to twelve years if well cared for and the best way to make sure your dog maintains good health is to get pet insurance from the very beginning. It pays in the long term because the cost of veterinary care can be expensive from time to time. Having said that, let’s look at 3 of the most common health problems in Labradors.
1. Ear Infections
Those large, floppy ears are so adorable but the one thing you will notice is that this can lead to ear infections quite quickly. Unlike dogs with short ears, those large ears keep airflow out and that’s why it becomes a breeding ground for all kinds of germs. With any breed, you should have dog insurance, but with Labs, you’ll want to take your dog to a vet at the first sign of pain he may be experiencing. You’ll learn to ‘read’ his body language and if it seems like he’s pawing at one ear (and sometimes both!) more frequently than usual, take out that insurance for dogs and call your vet.
2. Joint Problems
So far, insurance for pets has been mentioned a few times and for a very good reason. Vet care can be expensive, and it is why so many dogs are either abandoned at shelters or left in pain because families just can’t bear the expense. Joint problems can be extremely painful for dogs as you can imagine, knowing just how much human ailments like arthritis can hurt. Check out sites like everypaw.com for puppy insurance before bringing your dog home. You might not need to worry about joint problems just yet but it’s coming. Larger breeds like Labs often suffer joint issues but good vets can help alleviate their suffering.
3. Heart Disease
Some sites list obesity as a health concern Labs are prone to but there is a growing body of evidence that shows that obesity and heart disease go hand in hand, just like in humans. You’ll want to keep your dog fit and in shape so do ensure that you give your loyal friend lots and lots of exercise. Heartworms can be avoided by giving your dog preventative medications taken regularly and the right kind and dose will be prescribed by your vet.
Yes, Labs are one of the very best family dogs you can find and if you have children, they will have loads of fun playing and romping. Schedule check-ups at the vet regularly just as you would when taking your kids to the doctor and you’ll have healthy kids – both the two and four-legged varieties. You can’t go wrong with a Lab.