Health Testing for American Staffordshire Terriers

HIP DYSPLASIA
Hip Dysplasia can eventually lead to various degrees of arthritis (also called degenerative joint disease, arthrosis, osteoarthrosis) which can cause pain and debilitation depending on the severity.


CARDIAC EVALUATION
Congenital heart diseases in dogs are malformations of the heart or great vessels. The lesions characterizing congenital heart defects are present at birth and may develop more fully during perinatal and growth periods. Many congenital heart defects are thought to be genetically transmitted from parents to offspring; however, the exact modes of inheritance have not been precisely determined for all cardiovascular malformations.


AUTOIMMUNE THYROIDITIS
Autoimmune thyroiditis is the most common cause of primary hypothyroidism in dogs. The disease has variable onset, but tends to clinically manifest itself at 2 to 5 years of age. Dogs may be clinically normal for years, only to become hypothyroid at a later date. The marker for autoimmune thyroiditis, thyroglobulin autoantibody formation, usually occurs prior to the occurrence of clinical signs. Therefore, periodic retesting is recommended.


NCL-A (Cerebellar Ataxia)
Cerebellar Ataxia is an autosomal recessive neurological disease. The first signs of the disease usually appear between 3 and 5 years of age in affected dogs. They are:  loss of balance, difficulty cornering, and falling when shaking their head. As the signs progress, most dogs seem to have difficulty initiating movements.  When they became unable to walk without falling repeatedly, owners usually make the difficult choice to euthanize.