Aortic stenosis (AS) is a condition in which there is a partial obstruction to the flow of blood as it leaves the left side of the heart (the left ventricle) through the main blood vessel (the aorta) that carries blood to the rest of the body.
Because of the obstruction, the heart must work harder to push the blood through the opening and over time, this can cause problems and even death.
Congenital aortic stenosis is one of the most common heart defects seen in large breed dogs including the Boxer.
Mild cases of aortic stenosis can be difficult to detect. However dogs with moderate to severe stenosis will show symptoms of exercise intolerance because the heart cannot keep up with the body's demands during exercise. As a result during exercise, they may not have enough energy, or they may even faint due to a lack of blood supply to the brain.
If you have a Boxer with moderate or severe aortic stenosis, you need to restrict the amount and intensity of their exercise routine.
A list of boxers tested and passed for Aortic Stenosis can be viewed on the Boxer Breed Council website.
In general the Boxer is a healthy breed, but as with all breeds (including crossbreeds) can be susceptible to inherited diseases. Although there are no required health tests it is strongly recommended by the Kennel Club that Heart Testing for Aortic Stenosis be carried out Boxers before considering breeding. There are other conditions which Boxers can be prone to and we feel these should also be included on this page.
Mr Paul Keenan
3. St. Brigid's Park,
Tel: 028 30838919