The Bracco Italiano a Robust Breed with Few Health Issues

The Bracco Italiano a Robust Breed with Few Health Issues

Health & Safety

These large dogs have a lot of presence which certainly makes them stand out from the crowd. Currently, there are not that many of them here in the UK with numbers standing at around 500 at the present time. However, the Bracco Italiano is known to be a wonderful choice of family pets because they boast such quiet and kind natures.

Like so many other pure breeds, the Bracco Italiano is known to suffer from certain hereditary and acquired conditions which are worth knowing about. The reason being the sooner a health disorder is correctly diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome generally is for the dog. Below is a list of these health issues although it's worth remembering that not all dogs will develop any of them during the course of their lives.

Bendy Legs

This is a strange condition that affects the breed with quite a few puppies developing bowed front legs. Many people think this is a trait rather than an hereditary condition, but with this said it's estimated that around 10% of Bracco Italiano puppies are affected by the condition.

Puppies should not be given too much strenuous exercise which might make the condition worse and very often if their exercise is kept on the "light side", their legs do correct themselves as the puppy matures.

Hip Dysplasia

A condition that commonly affects these large dogs as it does so many other breeds, hip dysplasia is caused by the abnormal development of a hip joint which usually happens when dogs of any size are still growing. Dogs suffering from hip dysplasia are constantly lame and if left untreated, in time arthritis sets in which causes a dog to lose even more mobility.

If you are at all worried your dog might be showing the first signs of hip dysplasia, it's better to play safe and take them along to the vet for a thorough examination sooner rather than later. The quicker the condition is diagnosed and a treatment set in place, the sooner your pet would be made to feel more comfortable and the better the outcome generally is too.

Elbow Dysplasia – OCD of the elbow

This is a common disorder that affects many larger breeds which includes the Bracco Italiano. It's caused by an abnormal development in a dog's elbow joints which causes them a lot of pain. Dogs suffering from elbow dysplasia tend to be lame on their front legs.

Although the cause of the condition is unknown, it can be managed and treated. However, a treatment needs to be started early to alleviate a dog's discomfort as quickly as possible.

Ear Infections & Inflammation

There have also been more reports of these large dogs suffering from ear infections. Again, it's very important to catch an ear infection as early as possible when they are that much easier to treat. An inflamed ear causes dogs a lot of pain and discomfort which means they tend to continually scratch at their ears causing even more discomfort.

Another sign there may be an ear problem, is when dogs continuously shake their heads for no apparent reason. When you check your dog's ears, you may find a nasty smell coming from them which is a sure sign that things aren't right and a trip to the vet may be in order to get to the bottom of the problem.


The breed is also known to suffer from a few allergies and these should be checked out by a vet. It can often prove quite hard to establish the root cause of many canine allergies and it typically involves a process of elimination where vets carry out tests on the type of food a dog may be allergic to. A vet would also need to establish there are no allergens in a dog's environment that might be triggering an allergic reaction.

Dogs suffering from allergies would need to be put on certain medication which would help alleviate the symptoms and irritation until the triggers are found which ensures life is made more comfortable for them in the meantime.


The Bracco Italiano is one of the more robust pure breeds around and they are a wonderful choice as a family pet. However, being such large dogs, they do need space to be run around to remain happy and healthy. Knowing a dog is more predisposed to certain conditions helps you recognise when things might be wrong and the sooner a treatment is started, the better the prognosis tends to be for the dog. The list of health disorders for the breed is a lot shorter than for many other pedigree dogs and not all Braccos will develop any of the conditions listed above during the course of their lifetimes which is something else that is worth noting.

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