Mortality

Discussion in 'Bernese Mountain Dog Health Questions' started by liowkc, May 21, 2008.

  1. liowkc

    liowkc New Member

    Health surveys of Bernese Mountain Dogs in USA/Canada show that this breed is very short-lived compared to breeds of similar size and purebred dogs in general.

    Berners have a median longevity of 7 years in USA/Canada

    Why is this the case?
     
  2. maryelser

    maryelser New Member

    Part of the reason is because Bernese dogs are a big breed, so there is more strain on their skeletal structures. Their bones and joints break down easier because of the weight they support.
     
  3. liowkc

    liowkc New Member

    Thanks for your post. What are ways to prolong their lives or strengthen their bones. Or can we cut down on their body weight?
     
  4. R1986

    R1986 New Member

    That's scary to think of and something that I'd be really interested in knowing more about as well. If there is anything that can be done I would be happy to do it. Seven years is so young!
     
  5. tina

    tina New Member

    I never knew it was that short! I wonder what the shortest is among all dog breeds. I always thought 10 years was a given... I guess it isn't. :(
     
  6. R1986

    R1986 New Member

    Yeah, it's very sad. I always thought that around ten years was the shortest life expectancy as well so it's sort of depressing to find out that that's not true.
     
  7. bernermom

    bernermom Administrator Staff Member

    The life expectancy scared us off at first too. But I did a lot of reading (on the internet of course) and there are Berners out there that have lived to be 12 or I even saw one that was 15! We had chows before, and there life expectancy is 9 or 10 years, ours lived to be 13 and 14.
     
  8. R1986

    R1986 New Member

    That's good to know. Even the Labradors I grew up with only live to around 12 or 13 but ours carried on in good health until she was about 14. I just feel sad already about getting attached to a dog that has such a short life expectancy.
     
  9. tina

    tina New Member

    Then again, I think nothing is impossible when it comes to raising a dog. If you care for it a lot and keep it very healthy, the life expectancy will probably not apply. I've seen a lot of dogs live around 5 years longer than they were 'supposed to' without any problems. It's all about the way you raise them.
     
  10. fightscam

    fightscam New Member

    I agree with you, its the way you care the dog. Its not only a dog, it applies to any pet, if its happy with the owner then it lives long.
     
  11. maryelser

    maryelser New Member

    I'm so glad to know that they can live past their life expectancy. I would love to have a bernese but I would hate to lose one after just a few short years!
     
  12. jessica

    jessica New Member

    Whew! That got me quite worried for a while. I couldn't imagine taking care of a dog (or any pet for that matter) and losing him/her so soon. I can still remember how devastated I was when I lost my pet dog when I was young!
     
  13. bernermom

    bernermom Administrator Staff Member

    Loosing a pet is horrible! They become just like a family member. Riley has had a lot of medical issues in the past, and there were many times I thought we might loose him. But I wouldn't trade any amount of time that we have had him. They just bring so much love and joy to your life. I cant imagine never knowing him.
     
  14. Lynn

    Lynn New Member

    We lost a dog at 41/2 to cancer he was a x breed. I was devastated by it and it took me 3+ years to think about getting another dog.
    I had fallen in love with the Bernese, but was put off by the all the health issues main one being cancer, but my OH talked me round and said for however long we had that dog he would bring a lot to our lives, so we went ahead he is now nearly 21/2 and as of yet fingers crossed no health issues although we will expect them.
    There is a saying for the Bernese 3 years a young dog,3 years a good dog,3 years an old dog and anything else is a gift from a God.
    Ollie's breeder has got some who are 13 so we hope that is the case with Ollie.
    If not we certainly would not of been without him and however long or short the time is we have with him I would not of changed a day of it.It is always heartbreaking to lose a pet of any kind at any age,
     

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