The Hovawart emerged in the 1900s supposedly based on a much earlier farm guard dog. He’s a relatively recent arrival into the UK and a big, handsome dog. His relatively long and thick coat needs regular grooming. He will also enjoy as much exercise as you can give him.
Inbreeding coefficient – COI
(should be as low as possible and not higher than 6%)
The breed average COI is 0.6%
Health and welfare problems due to conformation
(body shape and physical characteristics)
BVA/KC Health Schemes http://www.bva.co.uk/chs
- Hip dysplasia (malformation of the hip joints causing pain and lameness) breed mean score 9 (parents should be lower)
DNA tests available
None currently available
Unofficial (breed club) schemes
- Breed club thyroid function test
Ask the breeder to show you the certificates for the above tests/screening for both parents (or check the KC’s health test results finder). If any of the above tests have not been considered necessary by the breeder (and there may be good reasons), ask her to explain why.
(for which there are currently no genetic or screening tests for sire or dam)
- Hypothyroidism (underproduction of thyroid hormone causing lethargy, change to caot and tendency to obesity
- Bloat/torsion (the stomach fills with air and twists, needing immediate veterinary attention)
- Osteochondritis dissecans (cartilege which causes front limb and shoulder lamness/arthritis) not common
- Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) (likely to be caused by defective heart valves) not common
- Dog on dog aggression has been reported
Ask the breeder about the medical history of the parents, grandparents and great grandparents. Consider carefully whether to purchase a puppy if some of these or other diseases are in the family line.
Ask about the breeder’s policy in cases of serious genetic diseases occurring to your puppy in later life. Good breeders will request to be informed of such events in order to improve future breeding decisions. Some breeders will also agree to contribute towards medical costs or refund purchase price.
You are strongly advised to buy from a breeder who uses (or is prepared to use) the RSPCA / BVA AWF Puppy Contract and Puppy Information Pack (PIP): www.puppycontract.org.uk
You are also advised to buy from a breeder who follows the Dog Advisory Council’s Standard for Breeders: http://www.dogbreedhealth.com/dac-breeding-standard/