Whether you’re considering adding a Cockapoo to your family or already the proud fur-parent of one, Cockapoo health issues are likely something you’ve given at least a bit of thought to. We all want to provide our dog with the most happy, healthy life possible. In order to do that, it’s important to be aware of common Cockapoo health problems and what steps we can take to best prepare ourselves for them or, ideally, prevent them altogether.
Do Cockapoos Have Health Issues?
Yes, Cockapoo health problems should be something to be aware of if you have a Cockapoo or are planning to get one.
Mixed breeds, such as the Cockapoo, are generally considered to be at less risk for genetic issues because they have a more diverse gene pool. Often, purebreds, such as the Poodle or Cocker Spaniel are at an increased risk to develop hereditary conditions. That being said, Cockapoos do have the possibility of inheriting conditions from either parent.
While this breed is generally considered fairly healthy, there are lots of potential Cockapoo health issues that can occur. As responsible Cockapoo owners, we never want to gamble with our dog’s well-being. That’s why I recommend everyone consider investing in quality, affordable pet insurance that covers up to 90% of veterinary expenses.
I personally have a plan with Healthy Paws and love the peace-of-mind that comes from knowing that I’ll never have to choose between getting the best medical care of my dog and paying my bills.
Cockapoo Health Issues from the Cocker Spaniel Side
Progressive Retinal Atrophy in Cockapoos
Progressive retinal atrophy is a degenerative disease that affects the eyes. With this disease, the cells of the photoreceptors in the eyes deteriorate which leads to blindness.
This condition is an “autosomal recessive” condition, meaning that the offspring would have needed to inherit two copies of the defective gene in order to develop this condition. This is the beauty of a mixed breed—even if it’s common in one parent or even if one parent develops this condition, the offspring may not get it due to the other parent’s genes.
This disease is more common in Cocker Spaniels than it is in Poodles, but it can be present in either breed. Unfortunately, there is no treatment for this disease.
Glaucoma in Cockapoos
Glaucoma is another eye condition that is common in Cocker Spaniels. This condition where the pressure in the eye is increased to an unhealthy level. Increased ocular pressure can result in changes to the retina or optic nerve that can lead to blindness. A diode laser is used to treat glaucoma and costs between $1,400-$1,800.
Von Willebrand’s Disease in Cockapoos
Von Willebrand disease is an inherited blood clotting defect. Due to a missing clotting factor, bleeding can be excessive and prolonged. This is a fairly common disease in Cocker Spaniels and Poodles.
Often if a dog breed has a higher risk of Von Willebrand’s disease, they are screened for it if they are to be used for breeding in order to prevent it from being passed on. Despite this, there is still a chance that a Cockapoo could inherit this from either parent.
There is no cure for this condition, but there is treatment available to manage it. Depending on the severity of the condition, this can cost between $500-$3,000.
Hip Dysplasia in Cockapoos
Hip Dysplasia is a common condition in dogs, especially those that are larger breeds. This condition is common in both Cocker Spaniels and Poodles. Essentially, this is when the ball and socket joint of the hip doesn’t fit correctly, causing rubbing and grinding of the joint. If left untreated, this can lead to deterioration of the joint and loss of function.
Corrective surgery is generally the first line of treatment. The cost can vary depending on the canine’s condition, age, size, overall health, etc. On average, it would run between $3,500-$7,000 per hip.
Familial Nephropathy in Cockapoos
Familial nephropathy is an unfortunate condition that plagues Cocker Spaniels. This is a condition where dogs suffer from early onset kidney failure. It is called “familial” because it is generally passed down in family lines.
Intervertebral Disc Disease in Cockapoos
This can be an especially scary condition, because problems with the spine can be painful and in some cases, lead to immobility. Intervertebral disc disease is when the disc that sits between two vertebrae deteriorates and presses on the spinal cord.
Generally this disc is supposed to cushion and absorb movements, but when it deteriorates, it is unable to do so. Vertebral stabilization, or fusion, is required and costs between $1,500-$4,000.
Cockapoo Health Problems from the Poodle Side
Thyroid Issues in Cockapoos
The thyroid controls metabolism—how the body converts food into energy. Poodles are prone to hypothyroidism, which means the thyroid isn’t making enough of the proper hormones resulting in dry skin and coat, hair loss, weight gain, fearfulness, and some behavioral changes.
Treatment is usually medication that replaces the depleted thyroid hormone. Out of all the Cockapoo health problems, this is one of the most affordable. Diagnostic tests cost between $50-$150 and medication runs between $20-$50 a month.
Luxating Patella in Cockapoos
Luxating patella is another term for a dislocated knee. This is a problem that needs prompt medical care, and surgery will cost between $1,500-$3,000. This is caused by genetic factors, poor nutrition, excess stress on the joints, and other medical problems. There are four stages of a luxating patella, ranging from easy to manipulate back into place and virtually painless to being impossible to fully correct and leading to chronic pain.
Collapsed Trachea in Cockapoos
A collapsed trachea is one of the most common airway obstructions in dogs. This is more common in the Toy Cockapoo size, but can affect any size. The trachea is made of rings of cartilage, but when it collapses, tracheal rings collapse and airflow is jeopardized. This is an emergency.
This is initially managed with corticosteroids, bronchodilators, cough suppressants, and antibiotics. If this is unsuccessful, surgery is the next option. The total cost of treatment ranges from $3,500-$6,500 depending on severity and complications.
Hypoglycemia in Cockapoos
Hypoglycemia is when there are low levels of sugar in the blood. Sugar, also known as glucose, is the body’s main source of energy. A clinically “low” blood sugar can result in decreased energy to the point of unconsciousness because the body doesn’t have the energy it needs to perform basic tasks.
The initial cost of surgical intervention or medical therapy to cure the underlying cause starts at $800. However, the ongoing management of hypoglycemia can be between $1,000 and $8,000.
Are Cockapoo Health Issues Common?
Cockapoos are generally regarded as healthy, friendly, well-tempered dogs, who have a minimal risk of serious health problems. That being said, Cockapoo health issues do still exist and it’s important to be prepared for them.
It’s difficult to predict if or when these issues will occur, as each individual Cockapoo has different DNA. One puppy from a litter may be completely healthy their entire life, while their sibling may have health issue after health issue, just because of the genetic “hand they were dealt.”
While major, genetic Cockapoo health issues aren’t super common, they still do exist. Luckily, there are a few preventative measures that can be taken to help keep your Cockapoo as healthy as can be…
How to Protect Your Pet from Cockapoo Health Problems
Choose a Reputable Cockapoo Breeder
The first step in ensuring a healthy dog is that you find a reputable Cockapoo breeder. This means doing your research to avoid pet stores, puppy mills, and backyard breeders. Not only is supporting them unethical, but it can cost you emotionally and financially in the long-term if your new Cockapoo puppy has severe health issues throughout their lifetime. Responsible breeders do genetic testing to limit the likelihood of many Cockapoo health issues and often offer a health guarantee.
Invest in Pet Insurance
As referenced in the description of each of these Cockapoo health problems, they can be incredibly expensive to treat! Luckily, for those of us without thousands of dollars burning a hole in our pocket, pet insurance can cover up to 90% of your dog’s medical bills. This gives you peace of mind knowing you’ll never have to sacrifice veterinary care based on what you can afford!
While there are many companies to choose from, I personally have a pet insurance policy with Healthy Paws and highly recommend them due to their comprehensive, yet affordable coverage.
Screen for Hereditary Disease Risks with a DNA Kit
A simple, mail-in DNA test from Embark can help you see which of 190+ genetic health conditions your pup may be at risk for. This is valuable information for you and your vet, because you know what to look out for in the future and what preventative measures you should take to maximize your Cockapoo’s health.
Additionally, if you rescued your Cockapoo or lost contact with your breeder, this test allows you to look at your dog’s ancestry and potentially even find their fur-relatives!
Embark Breed + Health Kit
Proper Diet & Exercise Can Prevent Cockapoo Health Issues
Diet and exercise is such an important part of a dog’s health. Obesity can increase a dog’s risk of developing certain conditions such as hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, and many more. A healthy diet and daily exercise are an easy way to prevent health issues later on in life.
One of my favorite tools for tracking your dog’s fitness is the Fi GPS Smart Collar. Not only does it work like a Fitbit for dogs in that it tracks their steps, but it can also save their life in the event that they get lost! For more information, check out our Fi collar review and experiment!
Fi GPS Smart Collar for Dogs
Use the promo code POPULARDOODLE25 to get $25 off your new Fi collar!
Don’t Overlook Oral Hygiene to Prevent Cockapoo Health Problems
Tooth and gum care is so important to your dog’s health, but often overlooked! Poor oral hygiene can actually affect your dog’s overall health, not just their oral health. If you’re not taking proper care of your dog’s mouth, it can lead to system wide inflammation, endocarditis, or jaw issues. These can all be serious problems, but luckily all of them can be avoided!
The best treatment is prevention. Regular oral hygiene regimens, including frequent brushing, is essential to prevent Cockapoo health problems.
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