Basset hound dog breed was bred as a low dog breed for hunting. They have a strong sense of scent because of their nose and large ears. They are much relaxed, adaptable, and affectionate dogs that you can ever have. If you are new to the dog world, start with the basset hound. You will love them.

Once the basset hound is at home, you need to give the dog an appropriate diet and some moderate exercise to avoid fat gain as it will cause basset hound health problems. Having the dog under the right conditions will give you a better companion by your side for many years to come.

It’s normal for your basset hound to become sick, but good care can minimize the chances of getting sick. Keep your dog healthy by having routine vet analysis and always keeping an eye to spot any illness signs for early intervention.

There are many basset hound health issues that your dog is likely to suffer from in life. In this article, you will find the most common health problems that are likely to affect your dog.

Common Health Issues

Basset hound dogs are more prone to certain diseases and disabilities than other dogs because of the breeding. Having adequate health screening of parents reduces the chances of puppies developing these severe conditions. Mostly they are prone to elbow dysplasia, ear infections, and back problems.

The excess skin and ear length can result in skin fold dermatitis, skin inflammation, or scarring /hair loss. The low body can drag on the ground and cause health issues. Other issues arise from breeding.

asset hound back leg problems

The following are the common health issues that your dog may develop.

1. The Elbow And Hip Dysplasia Problem

It’s an inherited condition that affects the elbow and hip joints of your dog. The condition surfaces from the developmental stage as the one tissue deviates from proper development.

The dog will experience arthritis, which may result in osteoarthritis, a condition associated with the wearing of joint and bone tissues. A report from the OFA (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals) shows that 15% of 40 basset hounds have this problem.


The condition is mainly hereditary. Other causes include obesity and insufficient physical exercise.

Signs And symptoms:

At the age of six months, the signs and symptoms start surfacing. They include limping, pains, walking difficulties, and unresponsiveness to any effort or exercise. The dog may also show problems in lying down or getting up and leg lameness.


Always check the screening report of parent dogs on this condition to save the puppies from it. To protect your dog from this condition, proper diet and sufficient exercise are a must. Arthritis treatment can only be effective if intervened in the early stages. In difficult situations, surgery is done to save the life of the dog.

2. Glaucoma Disease

my basset health connection

It’s a hereditary eye problem that results in blindness in the affected eye within one year despite the treatment measures. It may affect one or both eyes of the dog. Once a dog is affected, it accumulates excess aqueous humor in the eyes with an increased and progressive intraocular pressure.

The optic nerves and retina are degenerated rapidly by ocular hypertensionoces. The degeneration process results in partial or total blindness.

To save your dog, be keen on behavior changes of the dog and administer the early intervention.

Signs And Symptoms:

The dog will have a poor appetite, watery eyes, bluing of the cornea, cloudy eyes, and redness on the eye’s white areas. The pupil and iris become blurred in appearance and sensitivity in regions around the eyes.


Basset hound dogs need yearly screening to have early interventions. Surgery, though expensive, is used to reduce eyeball pressure to save eyesight.

3. Obesity

Obesity is a severe health problem in basset hound if not handled well. It’s a progressive disorder that requires adequate exercise with a special diet to tame it. Failure to control obesity leads to severe diseases. It may cause diabetes, heart diseases, digestive and metabolic disorders, and joint problems.


The dog requires adequate exercise frequently. It should take in low amounts of calories that will cause obesity.

4. Osteochondritis Dissecans (OCD)

It’s a condition that arises when basset puppies overgrow, leading to joint cartilages growing too thick and fail to attach well on bones. It usually occurs when puppies are overfed, and thus, they grow faster than the standard required rate. At some point, the condition is hereditary.

Signs And Symptoms:

  • The dog experiences severe pain and becomes lame. The conditions are worse after exercises.

  • It’s easy for a prognosis if the OCD is managed well.


Pain medication and crate rest are the primary intervention measures. Feed the puppy a regular diet that has less calcium. Weighing should be done every month to check the growth rate.

5. Entropion

my basset health connection

It’s a disease that affects mostly the eyelids of the dog. This disease’s primary condition is inherited, where the secondary infection results from environmental conditions or symptoms of underlying pathology.

The eyelid edge bents inwards totally or partially coming in contact with the eyeball. The eyelashes irritate the eye and cause tears and redden. It results in severe pain, which may lead to corneal ulceration and perforation. The eye forms scar tissues.

Signs And Symptoms:

Irritating eyes, loss of vision, inward bending or eyelids, difficulty opening eyes, and thickened skin around the eye. Repeated scratching of eyes, depression, excess tearing, eyelid spasms, and eye discharges occasionally mixed with blood or pus are other symptoms of the condition.


Artificial tears treat mild conditions for dogs with a vet’s description. Severe conditions need surgery to be fixed.

6. Ectropion

basset hound common health problems

Ectropion operates the opposite of entropion disease as the eyelid curves outward, exposing the palpebral conjunctiva. The open eye leads to staining of the dogs’ face making the dog to be more prone to eye irritation and infections. The condition is caused by loose skin on the dogs’ face.


A vet may use an antibiotic and lubricating ointment for the eyes. Clean the face of the dog regularly to avoid complications. The problem is usually congenital.

7. Wobbler Syndrome

Wobbler Syndrome

Wobbler syndrome is a severe combination of different chronic degenerative disorders that affect the neck’s intervertebral vertebrae discs. It’s a neurological disease that makes dogs walk with a wobbly gait.

It results in excessive compression of the nerves and the spinal cord on the neck. The illness is mainly caused by genetic predisposition.

Some dogs may have the condition after a heavy trauma in the cervical region that displaces the intervertebral discs.

Signs And Symptoms:

Strange gait walks in dogs, pain and neck stiffness, or even paralysis under challenging situations. Loss of balance is also a common symptom. If not tackled on time, it results in permanent paralysis.


  • Vet officers use x rays, CT scans. Myelography and MR scan to diagnose the problem. Urinal analysis and blood tests are fundamental to rule out other conditions that might show the same signs and symptoms.

  • Crate rest combined with several steroids, muscle relaxers, and other pain-relieving medications are administered several weeks to help the dog recover. Severe conditions of the wobbler syndrome are treated through surgery by a qualified veterinary neurosurgeon.

8. Intervertebral Disc Diseases (IVDD)

Intervertebral Disc Diseases In Dogs

The IVVD problems is a common condition in dogs with long backs and short legs. The soft cartilage discs in between the vertebrae break or wear out, a condition that leads to spinal cord compression.

Signs And Symptoms:

The dog is unwilling to jump up or go upstairs. A dog might refuse to walk around, cry frequently, refuse to release excrement, or even refuse to eat. The dog may develop a hunched back and limb paralysis or unable to lift the hind legs.


  • Enough rest accompanied by medications treats mild conditions. In severe cases of the disease, surgery is applied to remove ruptured discs when done within one day when the symptoms surface.

  • Diet control to avoid excessive weight gain will prevent a dog from developing the condition. The dog should use steps or ramps since younghood to avoid back stressing while jumping up and down on the furniture.

9. Panosteitis


It’s a self-limiting condition causing lameness and severe bone pains in dogs. It occurs in the developmental stage up to 18 months, and it’s a short-lived condition common in medium and large breeds. Mainly it is caused by obesity, inadequate exercise, and also genetic disposition.

Signs And Symptoms:

Dogs have severe bone pains, develop fever, and at times stop eating. There is rapid weight loss in dogs.


You need Blood tests done and x-rays to rule out other diseases that might cause the same symptoms. Administering anti-inflammatory medications and adequate rest for weeks with frequent checkups enables the dog to heal independently.

10. Patellar Luxation

Patellar Luxation In Basset Hound

At times the Bassets kneecap may slide out of place while moving around, causing lameness and pain. It occurs due to wearing out of the groove holding the kneecap, making the bonny ridge unable to control the kneecap.

Even if it returned, the incidence reoccurs severally. At times the dog might kick its leg, and the kneecap comes back to its position. Severe conditions need treatment.


Mild cases are treated with arthritis medications. Severe conditions that affect both knees are cured via surgery to reattach the knee ligaments and the kneecap back to its normal position. Pain and stiffness may appear after surgery for some time before the dog fully recovers.

11. Basset Hound Hereditary Thrombopathy (BHT)

basset hound Hereditary Thrombopathy problems

Thrombopathies are numerous inherited disorders that affect blood platelets and damage them. The blood platelets fail to clot, making dogs lose much blood that can cost its life. The condition has no cure.

The involved gene is the RASGRP1 that is inherited from parents. Research by Sir James Dunn Animal Centre, the Prince Edward University of Iceland, and the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association shows that basset hound is affected by basset hound thrombopathy.

Signs And Symptoms:

  • Difficult in wound healing, blood in mucus membranes, bleeding in ears, and nasal bleeding.

  • A dog needs to be kept safe from situations that might cause cuts to avoid excessive blood loss.


There is no permanent cure for the condition. Blood transfusions from healthy dogs can be a measure to cover the excess blood loss.

12. Gastric Torsion

All deep-chested dogs, including basset hound, are prone to this dangerous condition that kills a dog in a short time frame. The disease has other names like gastric dilation, bloat, volvulus syndrome (GDV).

It results from when a stomach is filled with gas and twits on its short axis. It’s a painful occurrence that cuts blood flow to the stomach and may cost the dog’s life if not attended to in time. Mostly it’s an inherited condition.

Signs And Symptoms:

A dog has a distended abdomen, dry heaving, and excessive drooling.


Surgery is the only cure for the condition. The stomach is untwisted and stapled on the interior lining to avoid it happening again in the future.

13. Skin And Ear Infections

basset hound ear infection

The folded facial skin and hounds’ glorious ears make it a prime target for ear and skin infections. Saliva stack in the skin and dries can cause yeast infections.

Moisture stack in-ears will create the right environment for bacterial and fungal infections, ear mites, and otitis externa.


The dog requires frequent cleaning of the ears and the folded skin to prevent infections. Fungicides, antibiotics, and medication can be used to eliminate ear mites. The treatment process is short.

14. Seborrhea

Seborrhea Disease

Seborrheic dermatitis affects dogs’ scalp leading to overproduction of sebum by the sebaceous glands. It surfaces as a secondary symptom of other health conditioning dogs like malnutrition, allergies, metabolic problems, skin cancer, autoimmune pathologies, and parasitical infestations.

If a dog has it as a primary disorder, then it’s due to inheritance.

Signs And Symptoms:

There is a formation of crusting or scabs, accumulated fatty oils, and a very pungent smell. The most affected regions are the torso, face, and legs.

The information in this article is purely informative that can’t be replaced with a vet’s advice. These are not all the diseases that will affect your basset hound. Your dog’s health counts on the environment you keep your dog in and the care you give.

Give your dog a long and healthy life by giving it the required living standards. Good diet and exercise are a must since most of the conditions arise from them. In case you notice any symptom, visit a vet officer immediately, as early intervention is vital here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What Diseases Are Common In Basset Hounds?

Ans: Basset Hounds are susceptible to bacterial and viral illnesses, such as parvo, rabies, and distemper, that affect all dogs. Most of these infections can be avoided by getting vaccinated, which we will advise depending on the illnesses we find in our area, her age, and other considerations.

Q2. How Do You Keep A Basset Hound Healthy?

Ans: Most of what you can do to maintain your dog happy and healthy, just like it is for people, is basic sense. Keep an eye on her diet, make sure she gets plenty of workouts, brush her teeth and coat on a daily basis, and call a pet emergency hospital if anything appears out of the ordinary.

Q3. What Do Basset Hounds Usually Die From?

Ans: The majority of Basset Hounds perished as a result of aging and common health problems as OCD, elbow dysplasia, and stomach torsion. Some Basset Hound owners claim their dogs lived to be 17 years old, which is five years longer than the normal lifetime.

Q4. Do Basset Hounds Have Many Health Problems?

Ans: Basset Hounds are prone to a variety of health issues, many of which are the result of their being bred for their look rather than their health. Breed clubs may often advise you on what diagnostics your breed might require and where you may get them done.

Q5. What Kind Of Health Problems Do Basset Hounds Have?

Ans: OCD, elbow dysplasia, stomach torsion, entropion, thrombopathy, otitis externa, ectropion, von Willebrand’s Disease (vWD), glaucoma, and canine hip dysplasia are all common health problems in the Basset Hound, which has an average lifetime of 8 to 12 years (CHD)