As much as the world is fond of dogs, the adorable four-legged creatures don’t get to live a very long life as opposed to the normal lifespan of a human being. The lifespan of a canine is normally 10-15 years, but that factor is heavily dependent on the breed of the dog. Dogs that are a product of selective breeding, such as Boston Terriers, usually have a much shorter lifespan because of the health issues they tend to develop as a result of selective breeding.
Boston Terriers came into being when breeders chose to breed English Terriers with English Bulldogs – the product of which is loved across the globe – but the health issues they develop due to their deformities put their wellbeing at great risk. Unfortunately, there’s not much the owner can do in order to prevent the health issues from forming, but if the issue is recognized early on, one can take the necessary steps to help their dog fight their health issues and live a hale and hearty life.
Due to the selective breeding between a bulldog and a terrier, Boston Terriers acquire shortened muzzles which predispose the canine to develop particular respiratory issues. These include snoring, snorting, and snuffling, among other things. The reason behind this is that the shortened muzzles cause an aberration to form in the upper respiratory system. This causes an incomplete obstruction in the larynx and the nose. This problem is not just restricted to Boston Terriers but to all dog breeds that have shortened muzzles, such as pugs.
Because of this, Boston Terriers normally have breathing problems, loud snoring, and snorting unstoppably. Other short-nosed breeds are also likely to experience similar respiratory problems. A more scientific explanation of this is that shortened muzzle means a more deformed or shortened bone structure of the face, so there’s a profusion of overlying soft tissues. Hence, the abnormalities when it comes to breathing. The respiratory tribulations are communally referred to as Brachycepalic Syndrome.
Orthopedic problems are also commonly seen in Boston Terriers. One such condition called Patellar Luxation affects the Terrier’s knees, making them dislocated which obviously gives the canine some form of pain. Signs that your Boston Terrier has Patellar Luxation include limping, pain, and sporadically stretching rear legs to help the patella pop back into place. Although the condition is genetic in most cases, it can cause Arthritis and severe cartilage damage if left untreated. You must visit the vet at your earliest to ensure that the Boston Terrier receives proper surgical treatment to correct the patellar damage, because if left untreated, there’s a possibility for the dog to lose motor skills.
Problems Concerning the Eyes
Boston Terriers are known for their protruding and admirably large, round eyes, which gaze at you with love and appreciation. However, their eyes are also the most uncovered and sensitive parts of their body. Unlike human beings, dogs do not have a thick set of eyelashes to help keep dirt particles and other substances out of their eyes.
This is a serious problem for Boston Terriers, bulldogs, and similar breeds, because a lot of particles tend to get caught in their eye from time to time causing the eye tissues to be irritated. If the particles are left in too long, the canine might develop an eye infection or in severe cases, formation of corneal ulcers may appear. Although the first thing you should do is to visit your nearest vet, you can also invest in some eye shades designed specifically for dogs, to avoid eye infections caused by particles in the air.
Another problematic issue for Boston Terriers, which affects the eyes, is cataracts – an eye problem which mostly affects the dog as it grows older. There are a lot of telltale signs of cataracts being present in the eyes, as long as you pay close attention for the signs. The most common sign of cataracts is white, bluish or grey fleck(s) present in the eyes.
However, failure to perceive and treat this eye condition can cause the dog to experience complete blindness. Just as in the case of human beings, to remove cataracts from the eyes of dogs, you must take them into surgery immediately. Boston Terriers are also prone to Juvenile Cataracts – a hereditary condition that can cause complete blindness in dogs before they are even one year old. If you notice specks in the eyes of your Boston Terrier, take them to a vet right away.
Problems Concerning the Skin
As with all other dogs, there are certain skin conditions that your Boston Terrier might be prone to as well. Out of all the skin conditions, the most common one for Boston Terriers is Allergic Dermatitis. The underlying cause of the skin condition varies. Some dogs form it as a result of their diet, the shampoo or any other thing that causes their skin to have an allergic reaction.
Because it is an allergic condition, it is crucial to take your loving dog to the vet and have them do an allergy testing on him by a certified dermatologist. This helps in finding out what the underlying cause of the condition might be, so you can prevent it from occurring again in the future. Once the allergy testing is done, the vet should prescribe some anti-allergy medication along with a specific diet for the dog. If necessary, the vet might also give you some topical creams or medical shampoos to beat the condition.
Another thing that is commonly seen in dogs of all kinds is mites. Unlike ticks or fleas, mites can be spotted easily. A dog that has mites on their skin will normally have large patches with no hair present. Due to the fact that mites are microscopic, it is unlikely that you’ll be able to spot them. However, hair fall and excessive itchiness, in addition to hairless patches on skin, are all telltale signs of a dog afflicted with mites. If you have other dogs present, you should be extra careful because mites tend to transfer effortlessly from one dog to the other.
It should be maintained that Boston Terrier is not the only breed that the aforementioned conditions are limited to. All breeds of dogs can develop these conditions. Regular visits to the vet will help.