What Defines a Healthy Dog Breed?

The Internet abounds with search queries concentrated on the topic of healthiest dog breeds. And that's not unexpected, considering that most parents are looking for the healthiest canine companion, one that will be a member of the family for years to come.

Can We Even Talk about Healthy Breeds?

But what defines the healthiest dog breed, and can we even talk about such a thing? Are purebred dogs least prone to diseases, or are mixed breed dogs to be considered? Should I get an Australian cattle dog or a Border Collie? Large or small dogs? The decision is not easy to make, nor is the Internet making it any easier. Just a quick Google search will review hundreds of healthiest dog breeds lists, with inconsistent results. Some websites mention the Beagle as the most longevous dog breed, whereas others stick with the Australian cattle dog.

Although your findings might get you all excited about adopting a puppy, the reality is not so simple. Even the healthiest dog breeds are predisposed to health issues. For example, Beagles generally deal with eyesight issues and hip dysplasia, whereas elbow dysplasia is prevalent among Australian cattle dogs. Such medical issues might deter potential dog parents from adopting, let's say, a Frenchie, whose ear infections and mobility issues are notorious.

How Do We Keep a Dog Healthy?

At Volhard, we believe that longevity is not about dog breeds since two dogs from the same breed can live longer or shorter lives. Instead, attentive care, even before the puppy's conception, healthy, nutritious food, and, of course, lots of love and attention are irreplaceable components for dogs to lead healthy lives. We fight to overthrow the preconceived idea that some breeds are healthier than others while bringing the role of responsible breeders and top-grade food to the public's attention. Today's article will hammer on these two crucial components of any healthy dog life and teach dog parents how to keep their canine friends happy and healthy for years to come!

A Responsible Breeder Will Always Put the Puppy's Long-Term Health First

Our quest must begin with a mindset change: instead of believing that only the "healthiest dog breeds" deserve attention, dog parents must begin their search by thinking that any breed can be a healthy breed. Why do we encourage this mindset change? Because a canine expert can find health problems in any dog, regardless of breed. Genetics, the breeder, and food can considerably influence your dog's average lifespan.

Consider, for example, a purebred dog. You're obviously expecting a healthy, longevous puppy to enrich your kids' lives during their childhood years. But what if your breeder's work methods are unethical? What if the parents' genetic pool will lead to a predisposition to genetic diseases? What if, instead of healthy, nutritious food, the puppy receives a steady diet of poor-quality kibble? Your dog's chances of reaching old age will significantly dwindle.

A Healthy Breed Needs Healthy Food

Although you might see commercial dog food (e.g., dry kibble) as an easy solution for your dog's nutritional needs—due to affordability and practicality—trust us, it's not. Commercial diets are not only unfit for proper digestion, but they fail to provide dogs with enough nutrients to live a happy, healthy life, regardless of breed. For example, mothers who eat kibble deal with a higher malnutrition risk at every pregnancy stage. Not only do they risk malnutrition, but they also give birth to sick puppies, some of which might suffer from the fading puppy syndrome! Research points at female malnourishment as a significant factor in neonatal puppy mortality; even the healthiest dog breeds can give birth to sickly puppies unless nutrition is seriously considered.

Always Consider the Dietary Needs of the Parents!

As discussed in a recent establishment, breeding dogs have different dietary needs, regardless of dog breed. For example, the stud needs more vitamin E for a stronger immune system and, most importantly, a higher sperm count. Female dogs require high concentrations of protein, fat, soluble carbohydrates, calcium, and phosphorus for proper fetal growth. These requirements are universal for all dog breeds, small and large.

Finding a diet that covers all of these requirements can be a challenge. Fortunately, our Volhard nutrition experts have put together a high-quality, well-balanced diet with enough nutrients to prepare the puppies for a lifetime of health and happiness: AM/PM, a unique foundation mix and the cornerstone of a highly digestible, very palatable, homemade, natural diet! With 100% human-grade ingredients and enough protein, carbohydrates, and fiber to prevent hypoglycemia, AM/PM is the perfect choice for a successful pregnancy, from start to finish!

Only from Responsible Breeders Will You Adopt the Healthiest Dog Breeds

Have you set your eyes on a particular dog breed, but the Internet gives you contradicting information? Nothing to worry about! As long as you research your breeder and learn about all of the healthy dogs born under their watch, any breed can become the healthiest dog breed! But choosing a breeder is not an easy fit to accomplish; you can find scores of breeders online through a simple Google search or by skimming through The American Kennel Club Gazette or Dog World.

But how do you know which breeder has the healthiest dogs? The secret lies in the following criteria:

  • Settle only for an experienced breeder with dozens of healthy litters on record and thorough knowledge of the breed.
  • Is your chosen breeder proud of their dogs? Then they won't be afraid to enter them in dog shows!
  • Has your breeder heard of our Puppy Aptitude Test? Being acquainted with our canine personality test will help both you and the breeder ascertain if a puppy is right for your home.
  • The healthiest dog breeds are certified by the applicable registries against breed-related genetic diseases. Ensure that your breeder owns such a certification.
  • The best proof of a professional breeder resides in the dogs themselves. Don't shy away from contacting families who've adopted in the past to learn if the dog stayed generally healthy.
  • Do the puppies live in squalor? An unhealthy environment is an inexcusable red flag.

Even the healthiest dog breeds are predisposed to a few health issues, but with the help of a professional and dedicated breeder, your future puppy will bless your family with his playful personality for years to come!

Volhard Breeders Know How to Breed the Healthiest Dogs!

Whether dealing with purebred dogs or mixed breed dogs, a Volhard breeder will always bring the healthiest puppies into the world. And that's because they thoroughly understand the value of proper nutrition at every point in a dog's life. Breeders who choose Volhard have stuck with our dog food for decades, nurturing a relationship between nutritious food and dedication thousands of happy families can vouch for!

And no one embodies the Volhard quest for proper dog nutrition more than Jane Kelso, a professional breeder with more than 25 years of trust in the Volhard brand. Her extensive experience with the Labrador Retriever breed has brought to life dozens of healthy litters. The dogs she breeds can only be described as healthy, intelligent, and tractable.

But what is Jane's secret? How does she breed generally healthy dogs with little to no health problems? The secret, she says, has always laid in the Volhard food, which she wouldn't trade for the world. The nutrient balance plays a fundamental role in breeding long-living dogs with no health conditions, dogs she is always proud of. Every nutrient found in the Volhard AM/PM diet, from protein and carbohydrates to vitamins and minerals, plays an invaluable role in making every dog breed the healthiest it can be!

All Breeds Can Be the Healthiest Dog Breeds!

We hope that today's article has shattered the myth surrounding the healthiest dog breeds. Instead of falling prey to healthy breed lists, all you have to know is that health issues shouldn't discourage you from adoption. As long as you adopt from a responsible breeder and you feed only the best food, your dog will live a long and happy life by your side. For more advice on dog nutrition, health, and training, make sure you contact us and check out our blog!


Volhard Dog Nutrition and its expert nutritionists are now offering online consultations to help more dog parents discover why, what, and how to feed their dogs the healthiest of foods! Speaking to a Volhard nutritionist will help you understand the inseparable relationship between healthy food, a healthy body, and a healthy mind. If you're interested in contacting one of our Volhard nutritionists, don't hesitate to access our consultation page!

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