6 dog breeds with genetic modifications and how it has affected them

Most of the breeds of dogs that we know today are the result of selective breeding to obtain determined characteristics.

Known for some as “human’s best friend,” dogs are one of the oldest domesticated animals. However, the types of dogs that we know today are a result of selective breeding genetically modified to obtain determined characteristics. This has caused notorious changes in the physical features of these species. 

Due to genetic modifications, many of these dog breeds can inherit health problems. Here are some breeds that have been genetically modified, and the health consequences these practices have brought for these canines.


1. English Bulldog

The English Bulldog went from having a long body and face to losing stature, being more robust, and having a flat face. For years, humans have been modifying the dog’s genetics until they’ve made it one of the breeds with the most health problems, most of which are hereditary diseases.

The selective breeding gave this dog the predisposition to suffer respiratory problems, like other snub-nosed dogs. Thus, the English Bulldog has complications with breathing; in comparison with other dog breeds, they are forced to do so through their mouth. This breed also suffers from constant snoring or vomiting.


In addition, the English Bulldog can suffer from hip dysplasia, which prevents the hip joints from working properly, dry eyes, deafness, a fluid accumulation that pressures its brain, split spine, among others.

2. Pug

The aristocratic classes favored small-headed, snub-nosed dogs in the early 1900s. This led to the creation of the pug, a dog that lost its long legs and whose skull has reduced as time passed.


These modifications on the Pug’s head leaves very comprised space to hold its brain. This causes these dogs severe pains throughout its life. In addition, its hip and femur do not fit properly, which leads to constant inflammation and complications such as osteoarthritis.

3. German Shepherd

Historically, the German Shepherd had an appearance similar to that of a wolf. However, society began looking for ways to change its corporal structure to look more robust.


As a consequence of the breeding of their peers, which tend to occur between grandparents and grandchildren to achieve better results, these animals suffer from glaucoma, which can occur before they reach three years of age.

This dog is well known for its great intelligence. It’s an active, affectionate, and easy-to-train companion. But many German Shepherds suffer from hip dysplasia; this particular disease can be one of the worst, so it's essential to be aware of them from a young age.


4. Shar-Pei

This adorable dog is one of the breeds that have the most diseases. Shar Pei in Chinese means "sand skin;” they are short and possess a hard coat under a layer of fat more extensively than other canines. From the beginning, it usually experiences many dermatitis problems due to the folds on the skin. Their skin folds cause problems to their eyes, with a high probability of developing cataracts.

The changes in the Shar-Pei are very similar to those that were sought with the pug. In addition, alterations have considerably reduced their size. The selective crossing developed diseases on its bones and hip. 


Also, Shar-Peis can suffer from fatigue, swelling in the bone marrow, weakness of breathing, and tingling in the extremities.

5. Pomsky

The Pomsky is a designer breed that is a mix of Pomeranian and Siberian Husky. Pomsky puppies have attracted a lot of attention recently due to their cuteness, becoming a highly popular breed. Due to the size difference between the breeds, Pomskies are almost always bred through artificial insemination. 


This mixed breed can develop common health problems presented in both Huskies and Pomeranians. They’re genetically predisposed to conditions like allergies, hip dysplasia, dislocated knees, eye problems, epilepsy, heart disease, collapsing trachea, and skin problems, among other issues. They’re also especially prone to dental issues, so it’s important to keep regular teeth cleaning routine.

6. Corgi Inu

The Corgi Inu is a cross between the Shiba Inu and the Corgi dog breeds. This dog stands out for its charm, which resembles a tiny fox. Corgi Inus go by several names, including the Shiba Corgi or Corgi Shiba Inu mix.


The Corgi Inu breed is predisposed to some of the same conditions that the Corgi and Shiba Inu also face. They may be prone to a few health issues. Some of the more common health problems the Corgi Inus suffers from include: cataracts, elbow and hip dysplasia, and degenerative myelopathy (a disease that affects their spines).

 Photos from Wikimedia Commons, Pixabay, and Pixaphere.

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