Mixed dog breeds are adorable, but not all mixed breeds are healthy.
As pet lovers, we always want to care for our dogs, but it can be more complicated with a mixed breed.
Sometimes mixed breed dogs inherit their parent's potential conditions, while in other cases, they are healthier than their parents.
Throughout this article, we will review a list of the healthiest mixed breeds and answer common health questions.
Are Mixed Breeds Healthy?
Why or why not?
The answer is complicated.
Wisdom Health and Genoscoper Laboratories conducted a study.
They found that mixed-breed dogs have a chance of developing a genetic disease, but there are fewer cases than purebred dogs.
Instead, specific mixed breeds have a higher chance.
For example, if both parents are likely to develop the same disease or condition, their puppies will have an increased chance.
This does not mean that mixed breeds are unhealthy, though.
As long as pet owners take proper care and steps, their mixed-breed dogs have a good chance of not developing health conditions like arthritis or hip dysplasia.
It is not enough just to have a genetic component.
However, toy mixed breed dogs are more likely to develop health conditions.
Breeders strive to create adorable ‘toy' or ‘teacup sized' designer dogs by over-breeding on purpose.
When this happens, it leads to obesity, tracheal collapse, and mitral valve disease.
Obesity is preventable but hard to prevent in smaller breeds as a 1 to 2-pound increase makes all the difference.
Over-breeding is a serious problem, especially for many mixed-breed dogs like Yorkies and Labradors.
Common Mixed Breed Dog Health Problems
Listed below are common mixed breed dog health problems.
Not all mixed dogs suffer from these conditions depending on the breed.
Not all mixed dog breeds are bred the same way, which increases the chance of health conditions like Hip Dysplasia.
While any dog can develop this condition, it is more prevalent in larger dogs like Great Danes and German Shepherds.
This skeletal condition affects a dog's joints, specifically how the ball and socket of the joint fit.
It is connected to genetics, but other factors like weight, injuries, and excess growth increases the chances.
Although it is common in some large mixed breeds, the chances are still slim.
Ear infections are uncomfortable and hard to prevent, especially with floppy-eared dogs.
Bacteria grow in the dog's ear and affect a part of their ear canal.
The most common type is otitis externa which causes redness, swelling, and excessive itchiness.
Any dog can get an ear infection, especially without proper care.
However, Standard Poodles and Golden Retrievers have a high chance of getting an ear infection because of the shape of their ear canal and how dark the space is because of their long ears.
This means ear infections are common in Goldendoodles.
Dental diseases are no joke.
They can turn deadly and leave dogs without teeth, making them very hard to eat!
Some dogs, because of overbreeding, develop flat and small faces.
These brachycephalic dog breeds struggle with breathing, and their teeth overcrowd their mouths, causing dental diseases.
Some dog breeds have a higher chance of getting some kind of dental disease, including pugs, Yorkies, chihuahuas, and dachshunds.
As I have mentioned my dog before, I have a mixed breed myself. And she is a pitbull mix!
I have had no health problems with her and she is full of energy and loves to run around the yard.
Which means she is hard to get good pictures of!
Anyways, I digress, let's dive into some of the healthiest mixed breeds you can own!
8 of the Healthiest Mixed Breeds
Thankfully, most mixed breeds are healthier than purebred dogs.
This is because they have a lower chance of inheriting diseases from parents since the parents are different breeds.
Listed below are 8 of the healthiest mixed breeds with tips and tricks on how to care for them.
Bagle Hound (Basset Hound + Beagle)
What a cute name, right?
The Bagel is a dog combined with a Basset Hound and a Beagle. These adorable dogs are healthy and rarely struggle with health conditions.
While this is true, it does not mean they won't ever develop a health condition.
They are lovely companions that require frequent exercise and care while cleaning.
Ear infections occur because most Bagels have long, floppy ears with narrow ear canals, a perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
Thoroughly drying your dog's ear helps eliminate an ear infection.
Puggle (Pug + Beagle)
When a breeder carefully cross-breeds Pugs and Beagles, they generally have low chances of developing health conditions.
This healthy breed of dog is small and adorable. They have flat faces, which they inherit from their Pug parents.
Their flat faces pose problems, though.
Not all Puggles face the same issue as some take after their Beagle parent with a longer snout.
Puggles with flat faces are brachycephalic dogs and may have trouble breathing.
It is manageable, though, with exercise and lifestyle changes.
Cheagles (Beagle + Chihuahau)
You may have noticed something interesting about this list: many Beagle mixed breeds! Beagles are healthy hunting dogs with a rich and long history.
A Cheagle is a dog with a Beagle and a Chihuahua parent.
These dogs are extremely different but come together to form a silly and affectionate pet.
Cheagles suffering from over-breeding practices in bad conditions have a genetic predisposition to obesity, thyroid problems, and hip dysplasia.
Jack-Chi (Jack Russel Terrier + Chihuahua)
Have you ever seen a Jack-Chi? These adorable pets are a mix of a Jack Russell Terrier and Chihuahua dog breed.
In the best conditions, these dogs are super healthy and live long lives.
They have thick and dense short-haired coats that come in many colors.
Skin allergies are the only major concern for Jack-Chi puppies, but it is preventable.
Allergies sometimes go away with time, and there are medications and preventative measures pet owners can take.
Cockapoo (Cocker Spaniel + Poodle)
Cockapoos, also known as Cocker Spaniel and Poodle mixes, are happy and friendly pets that are easy to train.
These dogs have a longer history than most mixed breeds. Designers bred them in the early 1960s as a small fashion accessory.
They are not super small, but also not a large mixed breed.
Amazingly, their health is excellent! As long as breeders bring in new dog lines with limited issues, the chances of a Cockapoo's health decline are small.
However, toy Cockapoos are usually overbred, which leads to conditions like cataracts, luxating patellas, and liver disease.
Aussiedoodle (Australian Shepherd + Poodle)
Poodle breeds are healthy alone, and their health only increases when mixed with other similar dog breeds, like the Australian Shepherd.
Aussiedoodles are sweet, loyal, and intelligent dogs.
You won't have to worry much about these playful pets as they love attention and will stick to your side, living a long lifespan.
Aussiedoodles are generally healthy dogs, especially when you get them from a reputable breeder.
But, depending on their gene pool, they can inherit conditions like cataracts and hip dysplasia.
These conditions are not life-threatening, though, and with proper care, you can easily prevent and manage them.
Pitsky (Pitbull + Husky)
Technically, Pitbulls are a mixed breed already.
They are medium to large dogs with unique traits, including coat color, thickness, body type, and eye color.
When a Pitbull mixes with a Husky, you get a beautiful Pitsky with bright eyes and an exciting personality.
Both dog breeds are healthy alone, but when mixing the gene pool, the puppies are even healthier as there is a smaller chance of inherited conditions.
However, Pitsky puppies can still develop medical conditions. The most common ones are skin allergies, hyperthyroidism, and hip dysplasia.
Bordoodle (Border Collie + Standard Poodle)
Border Collies and Standard Poodles are intelligent dog breeds that are loyal to their loved ones.
Their coats are shaggy, requiring a lot of socialization to get them used to new pets and friends.
Like most mixed dog breeds, Bordoodles live long lives of an average of 15 years.
Since Bordoodles are mixed with Poodles and Border Collies, there is always a chance the puppies can inherit hip dysplasia or epilepsy as it runs on both sides.
However, it is rare if the breeder is reputable and trustworthy.
Hip dysplasia is also easy to manage, especially when caught early.
The Best Ways to Keep Your Mixed Breed Dog Healthy
No matter what type of mixed breed dog you have, keeping them as healthy as possible is important.
You can do a few things from the comfort of your home to increase your dog's health!
Take Daily Walks
Exercise is important, but not all mixed-breed dogs require the same type of exercise.
While true, you should take your friendly dog on daily walks.
However, always check the temperature outside.
When it is hot, your dog can suffer from a heatstroke.
This is especially true about brachycephalic dogs with flat faces and trouble breathing.
Schedule Puppy Play Dates
Socialization is part of a dog's health. No one wants to watch their poor puppy suffer with anxiety.
The best places to make friends are at vet offices and dog parks.
Introduce your pet to strangers, including other animals.
It is a lot easier to do this when they are puppies.
Feed them a Balanced and Nutritious Diet
Surprisingly, many commercially sold dog food is very bad for their health. Most dog foods are high in carbohydrates which are hard to digest.
Carbs lead to weight gain, bloating, and constipation.
Looking for dog food with balanced ingredients, including protein and fiber, is a good idea.
However, you should never give your dog new food immediately.
Dogs have sensitive stomachs, and it takes them time to get used to new foods. Instead, slowly introduce the new food by mixing a small amount each day into your dog's current diet.
Keep Vaccinations Up to Date
Vaccinations keep dogs safe, especially puppies that do not have strong immune systems.
If you take your dog to parks where other dogs are, vaccinating is necessary.
It helps reduce the spread of common dog diseases like hepatitis and parvo.
Bath And Groom Regularly
Dogs need baths! A frequently neglected part of many mixed breed dogs' health is their skin and coat.
I get it, sometimes time flies by, and you forget, but dogs with long and curly fur like Poodle mixes require daily brushing to get rid of knots.
When knots are too tight, it can hurt your puppy to pull and brush them out.
Sometimes, it requires shaving their fur, which protects their skin.
Bathing your dog with shampoo is necessary, but always do a small strip test before pouring the shampoo onto their fur.
Product allergies can cause rashes and swelling.
Thoroughly Research Breeders and Shelters
Reputable breeders know how much dogs mean to pet owners and take care of their breeding dogs.
If you are going through a breeder, I recommend doing your research.
Look for reviews with pictures.
Sadly, not all breeders are safe or truthful.
If they refuse to send you pictures of the condition of their location and the puppies, this is a bad sign.
If you can, look in local shelters for your new best friend. Local shelters always have multiple mixed-breed dogs, but they may not be the most luxurious.
However, they need a lot of care and love!
I adopted a one-year-old Pitbull-Greyhound mix from the shelter, and it was the best decision!
They had all her paperwork with vaccinations, which was a smooth process.
Healthiest Mixed Breeds – Conclusion
Overall, all mixed breeds are healthy to an extent.
Mixed breed dogs are healthier than purebred dogs because they have a unique gene pool.
However, taking your adorable mixed breed pet to the vet is still good for checking up on their health and preventing hereditary conditions.