German Shorthaired Pointers are generally healthy and can be expected to live for 10 to 12 years.
GSPs are prone to potential health issues which include Von Willebrand disease, gastric dilation-volvulus, and entropion. To help your GSP live a longer and healthier life, you should take them for regular screenings.
Von Willebrand Disease
Von Willebrand disease is a blood disorder. This disease disrupts the clotting process by reducing the von Willebrand factor in your GSP’s blood.
Symptoms of Von Willebrand disease include bleeding gums, prolonged bleeding after surgery, frequent nose bleeds, and long periods of bleeding during heat cycles. This disease can be diagnosed between the ages of 3 to 5 years.
This disease cannot be cured but it can be managed. Management of Von Willebrand disease includes suturing injuries, avoiding some medication, and blood transfusions from dogs who do not have this disease.
Gastric dilatation-volvulus, or GDV, is a condition that generally affects deep-chested dog breeds, such as the GSP, and it can be life-threatening.
Your GSP’s susceptibility to this condition is higher when they drink too much water after meals, eat too quickly, undergo strenuous exercise after meals, and when you feed them one large meal daily.
GDV occurs when the stomach is bloated and twists. Your GSP would be unable to spew up or belch, to relieve themselves from the stomach pressure that accompanies boating.
Your GSP’s regular blood flow will be impeded, resulting in their blood pressure dropping and your dog will enter a state of shock. If your GSP does not receive immediate medical care they could die.
Symptoms of bloating are excess drooling, distended abdomen, and retching. Other symptoms include your GSP being depressed, weak, and lethargic with a fast heart rate.
If you suspect that your dog may be affected by GDV, you should get them to the veterinarian as soon as you can. Early intervention can save your GSP’s life.