The attention paid to Health in the Portuguese Water Dog community cannot be overstated. Our Owners and Breeders demonstrate astonishing care for the health and well being of these magnificent creatures. It's been said by many a veterinarian - "I love these owners for all the attention and care (and testing) they do!" Yes, Portuguese Water Dog owners are passionate about the soundness of their dogs.
There are multiple committees focused on the various aspects of Water Dog health. Health related subjects, however, don't end here. The PWDCA is proactive in meeting the needs of its members and their dogs. Each of our Health Committee members is knowledgeable and available to exchange information and ideas with owners and breeders. The well being of our dogs is an ongoing process and the PWDCA responds with new committees and research projects when an important need arises.
In addition to the committees, one major effort is the Portuguese Water Dog Health and Litter Database, which was launched in August of 2005. This provides the opportunity for owners and breeders to share information on the health status of their PWDs in conjunction with the committee focus. It is an online database to which participants can refer in order to make informed decisions for the betterment and perpetuation of the breed.
Another effort involving more than 600 Portuguese Water Dogs today has been in existence since 1996. It is the Georgie Project that is a collaboration between owners and breeders of Portuguese Water Dogs and scientists at the University of Utah. It's named in memory of Georgie, a Portuguese Water Dog that died of an auto immune disease. Georgie's death brought together individuals who have cooperated to create this study. To learn more about genetics and the specific studies of Portuguese Water Dogs, you can visit the Georgie Project website.
Please be sure to visit each of the health conditions and the PWD Health & Litter Database.
A series of health related articles from the 2013 AKC Canine Health Foundation Parent Club Conference are a good resource to learn about different health related illnesses and injury related research.