Boston Terriers or the “American Gentlemen” are well loved dogs by many dog owners. They are a bundle of joy that can be pretty spontaneous! You’d be surprised with their versatility; one minute their ecstatic to play and in another they’ll be ready for nap time!
Unfortunately, like all dogs, Boston Terriers have their set of health issues as well. If you’re a Boston Terrier dog parent, you’ll have to be highly aware of your furry friend’s possible health conditions.
While there are other health issues that the Boston Terrier can acquire we’re just gonna focus on the common ones that affect their bones.
4 Boston Terrier Health Issues On Their Bones That You Need To Know
The most distinctive feature of Boston Terriers is usually their cute pudgy face. You’ll get sucked right in with those large beautiful eyes of them!
However, as much as their face is what sets them unique and iconic, their face structure also is one of the cause of their health issues.
Boston Terriers have what you call a “flat face” or the Brachycephalic Syndrome. There is a partial blockage in the air pathways for them.
The symptoms usually vary but the common ones are:
- Loud snoring
- Severe or heavy breathing
- Vomiting or retching
- Prone to tiredness
It’s important to note though that NOT ALL Brachycephalic dogs can acquire this syndrome. As long as you make sure that your Boston Terrier has a healthy diet and exercise then you’ll have nothing to worry about.
There’s usually a lot of causes of Brachycephalic Syndrome and here are some of them for you to understand it better:
- Elongated soft palate
- The soft palate of your Boston Terrier is longer than usual and is the source of their difficult breathing.
- Laryngeal Collapse
- In this case, the larynx which is the cartilage “voice box” has collapsed and blocks the trachea or airway of your Boston Terrier.
- Stenotic Nares
- This is a condition where the nostrils are narrow and pinched. This is often a source of breathing difficulty as well.
- Hypoplastic Trachea
- The trachea is the air pathway and where oxygen flows to the lungs. Hypoplastic means “underdevelopment” and this usually means that your Boston Terrier has a shorter airway than usual making them gulp lungfuls of air.
To take care of your Boston Terrier from this syndrome, you can start off by giving them regular exercise that isn’t too strenuous for them.
Because Boston Terriers are prone to overheating they need to be in a well-ventilated space most of the time and should not over-exercise.
Alongside this, you have to monitor their food intake to be regular because they can also easily put on weight. While you may think that they’ll just look cuter because of this, you’re definitely mistaken!
The more they put on weight, the more they’ll find it harder to breathe, so make sure to keep your Boston Terrier on tip top shape always!
Hemivertebrae is a health issue wherein your Boston Terrier has a spinal deformation. This defect is usually caused genetically and had risen from breeding practices.
This health issue is caused when the right and left halves of vertebrae had failed to fully fuse during fetal development. When you see the top view of it, it looks like the shape of a butterfly thus the moniker “butterfly” vertebrae.
This condition can affect their tails and you’ll often see it if the tails are corkscrew by nature. In worst-case scenarios their tail grows backward that can be very painful for them.
You’ll have to go to the vet and amputate their tail if it’s get any worse.
Hip Dysplasia on the other hand, is a Boston Terrier health issue wherein the hip joint isn’t fully developed. This causes them to rub or grind instead of sliding smoothly causing pain to your furry friend!
Usually, hip dysplasia only occurs to large dogs but these short dogs can also be afflicted by this condition.
Hip dysplasia often happens because of the following:
- Excessive growth rate
- Overweight due to imbalanced diet
- Unideal exercises for Boston Terriers
This Boston Terrier health issue does not only arise due to old age but can also be apparent even if their just a puppy. The symptoms of hip dysplasia won’t always be the same and is a case to case basis.
Here are some of the common symptoms to watch out for:
- Decreases motion (no running, walking, and just resting most of the time)
- Difficulty in jumping or climbing the stairs
- “Bunny hopping” gait
- Enlargement of the muscles in their shoulders
- Muscles in their hind legs have loosened up
- Lameness in their hind legs
- Stiffness and pain
To treat the hip dysplasia of your Boston Terrier, you have to take them to the vet first where they will undergo a physical exam.
The usual solutions for this Boston Terrier health issue are through physical therapy, diet for them to lose weight, and anti-inflammatory as well as joint supplements.
Not all dogs experience this of course, and your Boston Terrier won’t usually acquire this! However, it’s never too late to be cautious. Osteoporosis usually occurs because of their old age and will cause stiffness and pain in their limbs.
Boston Terriers are heaven sent angels for dog lovers! They will always entertain you with their unusual antics and will openly communicate with you.
Just watch out for their large beautiful eyes! They’re very persuasive *wink*.
Boston Terrier health issues aren’t so good and of course, every dog owner prefers to not deal with them. However, being prepared for your Boston Terrier’s health is always a responsible thing to do.
If you want to learn more about the various Boston Terrier health issues aside from their bone problems, check out our comprehensive guide here!