Survey looks at prevalence of disease in brachycephalic dogs

The insurance company Nationwide released a March 2017 study looking at the prevalence of disease in brachycephalic breeds based on insurance claims.

The study looked at the insurance claims of more than 1.27 million dogs over a nine-year span. The aim was to look at diseases that happen across all breeds and compare the prevalence in brachycephalic breeds vs. non-brachycephalic breeds. The aim was to see if brachycephalic breeds are less healthy in relation to conditions common to all dogs.

Eliminating the well-known and well-documented issues relating to brachycephalic breeds first, Nationwide then removed claims of issues unrelated to anatomy like accidents related to poisoning and infectious disease.

According to the survey: “The analysis revealed that brachycephalic breeds are in fact more likely to be affected by disease, even more so than previous studies have shown.”

The most prevalent finding was that corneal ulcers are three to four times more likely in brachycephalic breeds than non-brachycephalic breeds—6.4% of claims for corneal ulcers were for brachycephalic breeds compared to 1.4% of other dogs.

Dermatological conditions also affect brachycephalic dogs at a higher rate, including fungal skin disease, allergic dermatitis, ear infections, and bacterial skin infections.

The full results of the study, including specific facts and figures can be downloaded via the Nationwide DVM website.

Photo credit: © iStock/Philary