Manchester Terriers are in general a very healthy breed. They are long lived and we often see dogs reaching 14 years+.
Manchesters are not affected by the multitude of health issues which afflict many popular breeds. They don't suffer from skin conditions or breathing problems. No droopy eyes or hereditary eye disease, no bad hips or elbows. Nor are they affected by the many genetic diseases found in the majority of pedigree dogs. Some breeds infact carry 8 differing diseases & in addition to this The KC insist that hips & elbows are scored on numerous breeds.
However there are a few things to be aware of
A common occurance in Manchesters are anal gland infections.
A little background information: The purpose of your dog's anal glands are to mark their territory through their faeces that pass over the glands upon defecating. Dogs use their anal glands to establish their identity and to recognize other dogs through the odor that comes from the glands. They are located near the anus in the lower part of the skin underneath. When the dog defecates, the feces pass through the anal canal and push against the anal glands. The pressure from the faeces releases the odor, marking territory and establishing identity.
Anal glands can become infected and impacted if your dog has been experiencing a lot of soft stool or diarrhea. Solid stool is needed to secrete the oil from the anal glands. If the secretions become impacted, the glands will become tender and sore and will swell. Infectious fluids will seep out and are brown or gray in color.
Treatment: Anal gland infections are easily treatable with a short course of antibiotics.
Kidney Failure has found to be present in the breed. The incidence of this appears to be NO higher than in any breed of pedigree dog. However, The British Manchester Terrier Club is working closely with the Animal Health Trust by taking DNA samples to form a database for future research. It is important for any owner to contact me (Estella) as The BMTC Health Committe Secretary, if their Manchester is diagnosed with any form of Renal Disease.
Gladys' Cornish family. The Egloshayle pack........Happy HEALTY Manchesters
A little background information: Heart murmurs occur in all breeds of dogs are much more common than most owners realize, and they can range from very slight to severe. Some dogs that are affected with this condition may show absolutely no signs at all.
A heart murmur is an abnormal sound your veterinarian can hear when listening to your pet’s heart with a stethoscope. Normally, two distinct sounds are heard when listening to the heart of a normal dog or cat. These are often described as “lub” and “dub”. When listening with a stethoscope one hears: Lub-dub...Lub-dub....Lub-dub.
A murmur is an abnormal extra sound (which can sometimes drown out the normal sounds). Murmurs most commonly occur between the “lub” and the “dub” and have a “shooshing” or “whooshing” quality.
Heart murmurs are graded from 0 to 6, according to the severity of the murmur:
Grade 0/6 denotes no murmur.
Grade 1/6 and 2/6 murmurs are considered to be "mild".
Dogs with Grade 1/6 and 2/6 murmurs are highly unlikely to develop any symptoms and lead perfectly "normal" lives.
Grade 3/6 and 4/6 murmurs are generally considered to be "moderate".
The majority of dogs with Grade 3/6 and 4/6 murmurs are also unlikely to develop any symptoms, but a small number will go on to become symptomatic.
Grade 5/6 and 6/6 murmurs are generally considered to be "severe".
Dogs with Grade 5/6 and 6/6 murmurs are most at risk of developing symptoms
ONLY Grade 1 & 2 heart murmurs have been noted in Manchester Terriers. All live happy lives with no symptoms & requiring no treatment whatsoever. All can participate in any activites you would wish to enjoy with your Manchester Terrier.
Manchester Terriers carry only one known genetic disease and is non life threatening.
von Willebrand Disease
von Willebrand Disease (vWD) results from low or abnormal levels of a clotting factor in the bloodstream, which is required to make the surface of the blood platelets 'sticky', thereby assisting in the arrest of bleeding. vWD is the most common inhereted bleeding disease of humans and dogs. It is distinct from hemophilia because it affects both sexes, whereas hemophilia A & B affect males only. Thus the inheretance pattern is different, as is the severity and type of bleeding.
There are recessive forms of vWD seen in breeds such as the Chesapeake Bay Retriever, the Scottish Terrier and the GWP, but by far the most common type seen in many breeds including the Manchester Terrier, is an autosomal incompletely dominant trait. Therefore only one carrier or affected parent is needed to pass on the mutated gene which causes vWD.
The Manchester Terrier has only been identified as carrying the Type I gene mutation, the least severe of three vWD types and is only a mild bleeding disorder. This means even affected dogs produce 10-20% von Willebrand protein, more than enough to aid in blood clotting.
A simple blood test identifies the genetic status of the Manchester Terrier
NORMAL - Does NOT carry the abnormal gene
CARRIER - Carries one copy of the abnormal gene but will never be affected by vWD
AFFECTED - Has two copies of the mutant gene and will most likely develop vWD
All Manchester Terriers can be safely mated if one parent has been tested genetically clear of vWD. This means no affected puppies will be born.
In 2009 Dr Jeff Sampson from The Kennel Club gave an in depth talk about vWD at the British Manchester Terrier Club AGM.
Please click here to read his report, more about vWD and why no Manchester Terrier regardless of vWD status should be excluded from a breeding programme.