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Do Rottweilers Have Health Problems (Unveiling the Truth About Common Issues)?

Owning a Rottweiler comes with the need to understand some unique health challenges, including mysterious behaviors like shaking and spinning. These aren't just quirky traits; they could be signaling deeper health issues. Get well-informed insights and actionable tips on addressing and preventing these health concerns to give your Rottweiler a healthier, longer life.
Do Rottweilers Have Health Problems

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Owning a Rottweiler is a rewarding experience. They’re loyal, affectionate, and excellent guard dogs. However, just like any other breed, Rottweilers have their own set of health challenges. Being well-informed can make a significant difference in their quality of life and help you avoid potential pitfalls. In this article, you’ll learn about the health issues commonly found in Rottweilers, what to expect in terms of lifespan, and get some insights into their unique behaviors like shaking, licking, and spinning.

General Health Concerns in Rottweilers

When it comes to Rottweilers, they’re built strong, but they’re not invincible. Several health issues can affect them.

  • Hip Dysplasia: This is where the hip joints fail to develop properly. It can be extremely painful and may lead to arthritis later in life. Early signs include limping and difficulty in getting up from a lying position. Make sure your vet checks your Rottweiler’s hip scores, especially if they’re young.
  • Cancer: This breed is known to have a higher risk of bone cancer, lymphoma, and other types. Symptoms can vary but look out for unexpected weight loss, lumps, or changes in appetite. Early detection is crucial, so frequent vet checks are recommended.
  • Obesity: Rottweilers love food! But extra pounds can be dangerous, leading to diabetes, heart conditions, and even cancer. A balanced diet and regular exercise are critical.
  • Heart Problems: Rottweilers are prone to heart conditions like subaortic stenosis. Keep an eye out for symptoms like sluggishness or difficulty breathing and consult a vet if you’re concerned.
  • Eye Conditions: Watch out for signs like redness, cloudiness, or excessive tearing. Cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy can cause blindness if untreated.

How Long Do Rottweilers Live?

When well-cared for, most Rottweilers can live up to 8 to 12 years. While this range may seem broad, several factors can influence their lifespan.

  • Genetics: Family history plays a role. Check if the Rottweiler’s parents had any significant health issues to get an idea of what might affect your dog in the future.
  • Health Care: The importance of regular vet visits can’t be overstated. Early detection of diseases often means a better prognosis and can add years to your pet’s life.
  • Diet and Nutrition: Quality dog food can significantly impact your Rottweiler’s health. Invest in high-quality kibble or even consider a raw food diet after consulting your vet.
  • Exercise and Mental Stimulation: Regular physical activity, mental challenges, and social interaction can contribute to a longer, happier life for your Rottweiler.

Why Does a Rottweiler Shake?

Rottweilers shaking can be disconcerting but it’s important to identify the underlying reasons.

  • Temperature: In cold weather, dogs will shake to generate heat. If it’s winter, consider a doggy sweater for those walks outside.
  • Anxiety and Stress: Rottweilers are sensitive animals. Loud noises, a new environment, or even an unfamiliar person can make them anxious, leading to shaking. Try calming techniques or tools like anxiety wraps.
  • Medical Issues: Shaking could be a symptom of an underlying issue, like pain or neurological disorders. If the shaking continues or worsens, a thorough vet examination, including blood work and imaging, may be needed.
  • Normal Behavior: Sometimes shaking is perfectly normal. Dogs shake to release energy or when they’re excited. However, understanding the difference is crucial for your pet’s well-being.

Why Does a Rottweiler Lick So Much?

While some licking is normal, excessive licking could be a red flag.

  • Hygiene: Dogs groom themselves by licking. However, too much licking, especially on their paws or hindquarters, could indicate skin issues or allergies.
  • Oral Health: Excessive licking can sometimes be traced back to dental problems. Bad teeth can make your dog’s mouth sore, causing them to lick as a soothing mechanism.
  • Behavioral Reasons: It could also be a way of dealing with stress or boredom. Provide ample exercise and mental stimulation to keep this behavior in check.
  • Medical Consultation: If the licking doesn’t stop or causes raw patches, consult a vet for a comprehensive health check, which might include allergy tests and X-rays.

Why Does a Rottweiler Spin?

Spinning might look cute, but there are several reasons why a Rottweiler might engage in this behavior.

  • Excitement or Anticipation: Dogs often spin when they’re excited or anticipating something pleasant like a walk or meal. While this is generally harmless, excessive spinning could indicate a problem.
  • Ear Problems: Frequent spinning can be a sign of an ear infection or even balance issues. Check their ears for redness, foul odor, or discharge.
  • Behavioral Issues: Constant spinning can be symptomatic of obsessive-compulsive behavior, requiring behavioral therapy and possibly medication.

Dental Health in Rottweilers

Just like humans, dental health in dogs is often a window into their overall health.

  • Common Dental Issues: Bad breath, tartar build-up, and gum disease are common problems. They can lead to more severe health issues if not addressed.
  • Daily Care: Regular brushing can make a huge difference. Special dog toothpaste and toothbrushes are available to make this task easier.
  • Professional Care: An annual cleaning by a vet can help maintain your dog’s dental health and spot issues before they become significant problems.

Exercise and Joint Health

Rottweilers are active dogs and need a good deal of exercise.

  • Activity Levels: For a healthy life, Rottweilers need at least 1 to 2 hours of exercise daily. This keeps them mentally stimulated and physically fit.
  • Joint Concerns: Due to their large size, Rottweilers are prone to joint issues like arthritis. Exercise, balanced with adequate rest and potentially joint supplements, can help maintain good joint health.
  • Senior Dogs: As they age, their exercise needs may decrease, but light, consistent exercise can help maintain joint flexibility and overall health.


Being a Rottweiler owner is a big responsibility. These beautiful dogs bring a lot of joy but they also come with specific health challenges. Being well-informed will help you take the best possible care of your Rottweiler, making for a happier, healthier life for your four-legged friend. From common health issues to lifespan and peculiar behaviors, you now have the knowledge to be the best Rottweiler owner you can be!