Cockapoo Health

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Cockapoo Health

Cockapoos are a loving hybrid breed of Cocker Spaniel and Poodle parentage and their popularity is no surprise when you see their playful and intelligent personalities.

Even though a Cockapoo is a hybrid breed of dog, the parents of the puppy can still pass on their genetic health issues if they are not checked for breeding compatibility. Owners should always insist on parent documentation from their chosen breeder before entering into any contract to purchase a puppy.

It’s never a bad start to consider common health problems in a breed before you adopt a dog, so let’s take a look at some issues that could affect the Cockapoo.

Prcd-PRA – (Progressive Retinal Atrophy)

Progressive Retinal Atrophy is a genetic condition that can result in blindness. The cells in the back of the retina decay gradually and die, leaving the dog with night blindness, and, eventually, full blindness by the end of its life. The onset age is typically early adolescence or adulthood.

Cockapoo Health Problems Cockapoo Puppies Health Problems

The symptoms of PRA are night blindness and gradual short-sightedness.

There is no cure for PRA, and the only way to prevent it is by testing the parents before breeding.

The parent dogs possibly affected are the American Cocker Spaniel, English Shower Cocker, English Working Cocker, Miniature Poodle, and Toy Poodle. For all registered Cockapoos, one parent must be clear of this condition for prevention.

FN – Familial Nephropathy

Cockapoos are susceptible to Familial Nephropathy, a recessively inherited disease that destroys nephrons, the cell structure that makes up the kidney. The onset age is 6 to 24 months of age.

The symptoms of FN are the dog drinks more, urinates more, weight loss, lack of appetite, vomiting, or diarrhoea.

There is no cure for Familial Nephropathy, and the only way to prevent it is by testing the parents before breeding.

The parent dogs possibly affected are the English Shower Cocker and the English Working Cocker. For all registered Cockapoos. (F1 and poodle back crosses are exempt) carrying English Show & Working Cocker Spaniel genes, must have one parent clear/normal.

Phosphofructokinase (PFK)

Phosphofructokinase (PFK) is an essential enzyme needed to produce energy. The disease occurs when the gene mutates and stops producing energy from sugar sources within the dog. The age of onset is adolescence and adulthood.

The symptoms of Phosphofructokinase are jaundice, sudden weakness, cramping, and anemia.

There is no known cure for PFK, and the only prevention is health testing.

The parent dog possibly affected is the American Cocker Spaniel. For all registered Cockapoos (F1 and poodle back crosses are exempt) carrying American Cocker Spaniel genes must have one parent clear/normal.

Von Willebrand disease TYPE 1 (vWD1)

Von Willebrand disease type 1 is a bleeding disorder. vWD1 is a protein that enables blood clotting. The age of onset is early adolescence / adulthood. It is often discovered after nail trimming, teething, spaying, sterilizing, and tail docking or cropping. Symptoms include spontaneous bleeding from the nose, gums, and other mucous membranes. Excessive bleeding occurs after an injury, trauma or a surgery.

Type 1 only results in mild bleeding. Type 2&3 are more severe and bleeding can occur in intestines, stomach, urinary tracts, genitals and joints. The only prevention is health testing.

The parent breed that may be affected by this is the Miniature Poodle.

Hip Dysplasia

Like many dog breeds, Cockapoos are highly susceptible to Hip Dysplasia, a degenerative joint disease in which an abnormality involving the hip joint causes it to slip out of place. Most dogs born with this condition initially have normal hips, but due to both genetic and environmental factors, the soft tissues that surround the joint start to develop abnormally as the puppy grows. This growth affects the way that the joint is held together, causing them to move apart instead of stay together.

Puppies as young as 4 or 5 months may be diagnosed with Hip Dysplasia, although, since it is a degenerative disease, clear signs often do not show until a Cockapoo is in his later adult years.

Symptoms such as a “bunny hop”, walking funny, trouble rising, trouble with mobility, a narrow stance, intermittent stiffness and eventual loss of muscle tone may be observed.

Hereditary hip dysplasia is not curable. Treatment can include weight management, controlled exercise and applying warmth. There are several supplements that can help, along with certain medications for both swelling and pain. In some cases, surgery is needed.

The parent dogs possibly affected are the American Cocker Spaniel, the English Shower Cocker, the English Working Cocker, the Miniature Poodle, and the Toy Poodle.

Glaucoma

Primary Glaucoma is caused by increased pressure build up within the eye. It is classified as either primary or secondary. The eye’s drainage becomes blocked, but the eye keeps making fluid. As a result, pressure on the eye increases. Secondary glaucoma occurs when other eye diseases cause fluid drainage problems. With secondary glaucoma, be watchful for eye inflammation, cataracts, retinal detachment and movement of the lens. The age of onset for glaucoma is adolescence or adulthood.

The symptoms of glaucoma can start in just one eye.

It is crucial to determine if the dog is affected by primary or secondary glaucoma. The treatment needed and the prognosis for vision is different for each type. An annual vet check-up can prevent secondary glaucoma. The British Veterinary Association (BVA) also have a scheme for specialist Canine Opthalomogist. A manual examination of the eye needs to be done.

The parent dogs possibly affected are the American Cocker Spaniel, the English Shower Cocker, the English Working Cocker, the Miniature Poodle, and the Toy Poodle.

Retinal Dysplasia

Retinal dysplasia appears as streaks and dots in the central retina affecting a dog’s eye site. Most cases are hereditary. The age of onset is adulthood.

Mild retinal dysplasia may not show symptoms. In dogs with more severe cases, the symptoms may include being afraid of the dark (even inside the house), bumping into things and noticeable visual impairment.

There is no cure for retinal dysplasia. Other than an inherited condition, retinal dysplasia may be bought on by prenatal infections like the Herpes-virus. Herpes-virus causes inflammation of the eye and retinal dysplasia may develop later on in life. Also, Parvo-virus and exposure to toxins can cause retinal dysplasia in dogs.

The parent dog possibly affected with retinal dysplasia is the American Cocker Spaniel.

Hypothyroidism

Cockapoos can experience irregular thyroid glands, resulting in fairly obvious symptoms such as hair loss, weakness and weight gain. The thyroid does not function properly, interfering with metabolism and other basic body processes. The worst possible scenario is that the disease can lead to a coma or death if untreated. This disease can occur at any age from birth, but is most commonly observed in older dogs.

This serious medication can easily and effectively be treated with medication, which is monitored and maintained by blood tests.

General Care

By far, the best thing you can do for your Cockapoo to ensure optimal health is to find a reputable breeder who will complete all available DNA testing to ensure great health before you bring your Cockapoo home. A responsible breeder may very well be more expensive, but he’ll be upfront with testing and the extra money will be well worth your while.

Once you bring home your healthy Cockapoo pup, you’ll want to ensure that regular grooming becomes a part of his routine. Many dogs are allergic to fleas and other environmental toxins, so keeping their skin and fur clean is ideal for their health. Regular grooming can prevent their long fur from tangling or matting. In addition to grooming often, you’ll want to ensure you’re providing your dog with a healthy diet – high in protein and fibre – to ensure his body is getting the nutrients it needs to maintain that hard working and energetic lifestyle he loves and thrives on.

Generally speaking, Cockapoos are loyal, loving, and cuddly dogs. Doing DNA testing before you bring home your Cockapoo will ensure that, for the most part, your pup stays healthy for the duration of his life.

Looking for a Cockapoo?

If you are looking to buy or adopt a Cockapoo, you can view our:
 
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