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Top 7 Dog Breeds Vets Say “Think Twice” Before Getting

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Some breeds have a higher than average risk for health problems. And that is why veterinarians suggest you think twice before buying these breeds. While they are lovely, friendly, fun, and affectionate dogs, the vet bills might go sky high.

In most cases, these breeds have a shorter lifespan due to health issues. And as they get older, the vet bills become higher and higher.

The health of your dog is crucial for his long, happy, and care-free life. While there is no guarantee when it comes to the health of the dog, there are some factors that determine overall health. One of those factors is the breed of the dog.

With that in mind, we will talk about dog breeds vets worry since there are health problems that plague certain breeds.

Take this list with a grain of salt. But it should be one part of making a decision about the dog you want.

Great Dane

Great Dane

Generally speaking, bigger breeds have a shorter lifespan. And the Great Dane is the biggest dog in the world. As such, the gentle giant has a very short lifespan, averaging just 8 years. That is the reason some people have nicknamed him “The Heartbreak Breed”.

It can be heartbreaking to fall in love with a dog and lose him soon enough. The large size of the Great Dane puts him at higher risk of bloating.

Bloat can be a life-threatening condition. This condition can cut off blood supply when air builds up. If the condition is not treated in time, it can be fatal.

Another problem with Great Danes is dilated cardiomyopathy. This is a condition in which the muscles in the heart become weak and enlarged. As your Great Dane grows older, the problem becomes more and more serious.

Just for comparison, the Great Dane, due to his deep chest cavity, is 40 times more likely to experience bloat (GDV) than any average mixed breed dog. And even with immediate treatment, a lot of dogs do not make it out alive.

French bulldogs

French bulldog

People easily fall in love with Frenchie. And for a good reason. These goofy and small apartment dogs are a delight.

They do not require a lot of exercise, making them perfect for sedentary families. And when they do not sleep, they are fun to be around.

But French Bulldogs come with their own set of problems. Because they are bred to be smaller than bulldogs, they suffer from respiratory problems.

Pugs suffer from the same problem as well. You can easily notice Frenchies have troubles breathing, especially when the weather is hotter.

Another problem with French bulldogs is that they are a brachycephalic breed, which means they are short-nosed.

Yes, surgery can solve these issues. But surgery is expensive, and not all owners are ready to pay the steep price for the well-being of their dog.

Because of the breathing issues, French bulldogs require special care and protection during hot weather. They need to be near air conditioners that will help them regulate body heat.



People fell in love with Akita after the movie Hachiko. It is a story of an extremely loyal dog. The remarkably loyal dog continued to wait for his owner at the train station nine years following the death of the owner. Now that is loyalty.

Same as with the Great Dane, Akitas are prone to bloat. They also suffer from joint problems, including cruciate ligament injuries. In most cases, these joint problems require expensive surgeries to fix the issues.

Truth be told, many breeds that participate in active sports can have ligament injuries. But the Akita is more prone to them.

Last, but not least, Akitas can have problems like hip and elbow dysplasia. If you are not careful whom you buy from, these problems can be a huge concern.



The Rottweiler is the poster child for hip dysplasia. Being large and muscular, Rottweilers put too much pressure on their joints. And as they grow older, the joints cannot handle the pressure and crack. They are also prone to eye issues.

But the most concerning health issue with the Rottweiler is cancer. Yes, cancer can be a cause of death for many breeds. But it is more common in Rottweilers.

So far, there is no study or research that shows why Rotties are more prone to cancer.

Yes, cancer can be treated with chemotherapy. But that means expensive vet bills, and not every owner is ready and can afford the cost of the treatment.

Owners are already taking part in studies to help prevent cancer from spreading. But it will take years before we have some good news.

American Pit Bull Terrier

American Pitbull Terrier

You can say that the American Pit Bull Terrier cannot catch a breath. Not only he is deemed a dangerous and aggressive dog, which is not true, the pittie also suffers from health issues.

All of these factors make it hard to adopt or get a Pit Bull terrier. Prospective owners have to be aware of the health issues, the most common being hip dysplasia.

In addition, you should be aware that people will look at your dog with fear. And the sad part is, the Pit Bull terrier is more like a kitten than a dog, he loves to cuddle with people.

German Shepherd

German Shepherd

The GSD is one of the most popular dogs in America. Loved by many, adored by even more, the breed is just joy to have around.

Sadly, the German shepherd can have some serious health problems.

In most cases, they are of orthopedic nature, including degenerative myelopathy, but also epilepsy, eye problems, sensitive digestion, and many other health issues.

The GSD is the poster child for degenerative myelopathy, a progressive disease of the canine spinal cord. Yes, the GSD is a breed people love and adore. They are very loyal animals, they are easy to train, and lovable.

Orthopedic problems make it harder for German shepherds to walk, and as they get older, things get only worse. You have to be aware that while the GSD will live a long life, it will become painful and expensive to care for him in the later years.

Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever

The most popular dog in the United States is one of the breeds most affected by cancer. One study in America showed that 61% of Golden Retrievers die from cancer.

Yes, cancer is the number one killer in adult dogs, but it seems Golden Retrievers are particularly susceptible to the disease.

In the past 40 years, the average lifespan of the Golden Retriever has greatly reduced. Some 40 years ago, the average lifespan was between 15 and 17 years. Nowadays? Down to 10 years.

Everybody loves a Golden Retriever. He is fun to be around, loveable, loves to play, loyal, and friendly with everyone. But you have to be aware of the health issues that plague the breed.

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4 Responses

  1. Love reading and learning about the difference between the dog breeds. Please keep me updated. Thanks

  2. I have two great danes yes thier life span is shot and vet bill can run high at times but I have never had a breed more that acted more human than this breed well worth the health bills and the responsibility that comes at owning a great Dane thay give more to me than I can ever repay in their life time

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