Health

 Note: This section is intended as a source of information only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional care. Always consult with your Veterinarian about health related matters. The information provided here is a brief outline of some of the health issues which may be of concern for the Boxer breed and should in no way to be considered as a complete listing. 

 



Early Spay-Neuter Considerations for the Canine Athlete

Orthopedic Considerations

A study by Salmeri et al in 1991 found that bitches spayed at 7 weeks grew significantly taller than those spayed at 7 months, and that those spayed at 7 months had significantly delayed closure of the growth plates than those not spayed (or presumably spayed after the growth plates had closed).(1) A study of 1444 Golden Retrievers performed in 1998 and 1999 also found bitches and dogs spayed and neutered at less than a year of age were significantly taller than those spayed or neutered at more than a year of age.(2) The sex hormones promote the closure of the growth plates, so the bones of dogs or bitches neutered or spayed before puberty continue to grow. Dogs that have been spayed or neutered well before puberty can frequently be identified by their longer limbs, lighter bone structure, narrow chests and narrow skulls. This abnormal growth frequently results in significant alterations in body proportions and particularly the lengths (and therefore weights) of certain bones relative to others. For example, if the femur has achieved its genetically determined normal length at 8 months when a dog gets spayed or neutered, but the tibia, which normally stops growing at 12 to 14 months of age continues to grow, then an abnormal angle may develop at the stifle. In addition, with the extra growth, the lower leg below the stifle becomes heavier (because it is longer), causing increased stresses on the cranial cruciate ligament. These structural alterations may be the reason why at least one recent study has shown that spayed and neutered dogs have a higher incidence of CCL rupture.(3) Another recent study showed that dogs spayed or neutered before 5 1/2 months had a significantly higher incidence of hip dysplasia than those spayed or neutered after 5 1/2 months of age.(4) Breeders of purebred dogs should be concerned about these two studies and particularly the latter, because they might make incorrect breeding decisions if they consider the hip status of pups they bred that were spayed or neutered early.

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Vaccination Reactions Can Mimic Disease Symptoms
Chronic and acute disease in dogs can be caused by the very vaccines given to prevent disease. Read what homeopathic veterinarian Dr. Michael Dym has to say. 
 
Vaccination is often thought of by the conventional veterinary community as a benign procedure intended to prevent acute diseases, with side effects occurring only rarely. However, vaccination in certain sensitive individuals can result in a chronic disease state that is long lasting or even fatal.  
 
Vaccine-induced disease, called “vaccinosis,” is understood as the disturbance of the life force or chi of the patient that may result in mental, emotional and physical changes. These are induced by laboratory modification of a virus or bacterium to make a vaccine. Then, instead of seeing acute expressions of disease, we are seeing symptoms of chronic illness over years or even a lifetime.
 
For example, symptoms of acute distemper virus infection in dogs include eye and nose discharge; conjunctivitis; vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite; watery feces with blood, mucous and often a foul odor; spasms or seizures and paralysis; eruptions around the mouth; swelling of feet often with red foot pads; pneumonia; skin eruptions; and in chronic cases, emaciation.  
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