Humans have their tennis elbow, but they don't have a corner on the market. Dogs also are prone to an inherited disease called elbow dysplasia.. Both elbows are normally affected, but the condition also can affect just one limb.
Elbow dysplasia describes a type of damage within the elbow joint, often resulting in severe arthritis. Some dogs will display only a slight limp or an otherwise abnormal gait; others will end up virtually crippled by the pain. Dogs in the early stages of the disorder often hold their elbows outward or stand with their feet rotated outward. Or, they may shuffle their feet excessively and flip their front feet outward as they walk. Some are notable only by the dog spending an inordinate amount of time sitting or lying down, keeping weight off of its feet. [...]
Elbow Dysplasia or ED is most often found in medium to large breeds of dogs and is most common in breeds such as the German Shepherd, Bernese Mountain Dog, Rottweiler, Retrievers and Chow Chows. Some of the medium sized breeds such as the Shetland Sheepdog and the Shar Pei also have high incidence of elbow dysplasia. Males are between 25 and 30% more likely to exhibit elbow dysplasia in the breeds that are prone to the condition. Elbow dysplasia can occur in one or both of the elbows and is particularly puzzling because not all dogs that have the condition will become lame and those that do become lame may have periods where the condition comes and goes at least in the early stages. [...]
Thanks to good breeding practices and the absence of traits that could cause harm to the dog, the Silky Terrier is a relatively healthy breed. Like all breeds, though, there are some genetic conditions to which the breed is susceptible and which need veterinary care. One of these conditions is elbow dysplasia. The word "dysplasia" simply refers to some kind of abnormal development, while the "elbow" part of the condition obviously refers to the dog's elbow; hence, the condition involves the abnormal development of the dog's elbow joint.
In elbow dysplasia, various parts of the elbow joint may develop abnormally, with something like cartilage disruption or failure to fuse being seen often; these abnormalities usually lead to inflammation, an uneven joint surface, arthritis, lameness and joint swelling. Though the primary factor behind the condition is most likely genetic, the exact cause is still unknown; experts believe that more than one gene is most likely involved and that perhaps hormonal factors may play a part in the condition. Rapid growth combined with over-nutrition and trauma may also be triggering environmental factors. [...]
The dramatic rise in popularity of the German Shepherd Dog almost from its first introduction to the United States is perhaps the single biggest reason that this breed historically was known for fairly significant health problems. Thankfully a great many highly reputable breeders have been working diligently over the last thirty years or more to eliminate many of the problems found in the breed, and there are very well developed, healthy lines of German Shepherd Dogs found all over the country. The massive random breeding programs used in the early 1900's did cause some problems, however this is certainly not true today. [...]
As with any purebred line of dogs or any hybrid dog breed combination, there are inherited genetic problems that can occur. It is important for dog owners to understand that there are no health issues that occur only in the Rottweiler, rather most of these conditions occur in almost all other types of large breed purebred and mixed breed dogs. [...]
As with any purebred breed of dogs there are some genetic health problems associated with the Akita breed. They are not typically unhealthy dogs and virtually all of the health issues within the breed can be tested for prior to breeding, ensuring that reputable breeders are not producing genetically inferior litters. With this breeds surge in popularity in the early 1970s through the 1980 many puppy mills and backyard breeders produced genetically unhealthy dogs, leading to health issues with the breed. For this reason it is highly recommended to only purchase an Akita from a reputable breeder that completes all health and genetic checks prior to breeding programs. [...]
Basset Hounds, perhaps because they were originally developed by using dwarf lines found within Bloodhound and other hunting hounds, tend to have slightly more health concerns than most of the other hound breeds. They have also had significant spikes in popularity throughout history, leading to poor breeding practices by many backyard types of breeders only in it for the money. Reputable breeders and kennels have maintained very healthy and genetically sound Basset Hounds that have few of the health issues listed below. [...]