Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Melanie Musson is the fourth generation in her family to work in the insurance industry. She grew up with insurance talk as part of her everyday conversation and has studied to gain an in-depth knowledge of state-specific car insurance laws and dynamics as well as a broad understanding of how insurance fits into every person’s life, from budgets to coverage levels. She also specializes in automa...

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Reviewed by Melanie Musson
Published Insurance Expert

UPDATED: Nov 17, 2020

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The St. Bernard is one of the largest breeds, averaging well over 150 pounds (68 kg) and on occasion reaching up to 300 pounds (136 kg).

They are the iconic rescue dogs of the Swiss and Italian Alps, where they became beloved for their courage, strength, and gentleness, and took their name from a travelers’ wayside dedicated to the saint.

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FACT: Pet insurance pays up to 90% of vet bills when your pet is sick or injured!

Health Problems with St. Bernard?

St. Bernards consider themselves part of the family, and they can be counted on to bark at, and to intimidate, strangers.

Like a number of the larger breeds (like German Shepards), St. Bernards have relatively short lifespans, usually less than 10 years, and are known to be susceptible to a variety of illnesses, congenital and otherwise:

  • Canine epilepsy: this disease of the nervous system causes tremors and seizures. Diagnosis can be confirmed by electroencephalography (EEG), MRI and/or CT scans. Various drugs and even surgery may allow an affected dog to live a fairly normal life.
  • Cardiomyopathy: This disease occurs when a dog’s heart fails to pump properly, causing one side of the heart to become enlarged. If left untreated, the result may be congestive heart failure. Symptoms include lethargy and weakness; diagnosis is confirmed by electro- and echocardiography; treatment involves the administration of drugs that control the heart’s rhythm.
  • Dysplasia of the hip and/or elbow: these dogs may inherit a condition where the hipbone fails to fit correctly into the pelvis, or where the bones of the legs connect poorly. Over time, wear and tear can cause these joints to become inflamed, resulting in pain and restricted movement. The condition can often be reversed with surgery.
  • Osteosarcoma: This form of bone cancer can spread rapidly to other organs, and is usually fatal if not caught early. Symptoms include stiffness and trouble walking. Diagnosis is made by X-ray, biopsy and blood analysis. Osteosarcoma is not a death sentence, however; a combination of chemotherapy and surgery may add quality years to an afflicted dog’s life.

Related: 10 Things You Must Know Before You Buy Pet Insurance

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St. Bernard Pet Insurance

The simple fact is that your St. Bernard while being a great family companion, may spend a fair amount of time at the vet; and some of these treatments, such as chemotherapy and any kind of surgery, can end up costing thousands of dollars.

For many owners, a crucial part of planning for their dogs’ future is pet health insurance, which helps to keep costs predictable and manageable so that you can focus on helping your dog recover rather than worrying about how to afford the treatment.

For other types of dogs, check out our full list of dog breeds.

 

Other articles you may find helpful: 

Is Exotic Pet Insurance Necessary? 

The Best Pet Insurance By State 

What Is Pet Insurance?

Fun Facts, Dog FAQ, And Unsolicited Dog Advice

5 Training Commands to Save Your Dog’s Life

The Ultimate Guide to Safe Foods for Dogs

Dog Health Problems

Dog Breeds

CAT FAQ

Cat Health Problems

Cat Breeds

 

How do you choose a dog breed? There are so many awesome options! We have compiled a complete database about all the dog breeds, their mannerisms, care, and who they do best with. Statistically, some purebreds experience more health issues than mixed breeds. There are many pet insurance companies out there and we have put together a great article about the best puppy and dog pet insurance companies in the US

 

You may be interested in one of these dog breeds:

 

Akita Pet Insurance

Beagle Pet Insurance

Bernese Mountain Dog Pet Insurance

Bichon Frise

Bloodhound Pet Insurance

Border Collie Pet Insurance

Boston Terrier Pet Insurance

Boxer Dog Breed Information

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Pet Insurance

Chihuahua Pet Insurance

Chinese Crested

Chow Chow Pet Insurance

Cocker Spaniel Breed Information

Dachshund Pet Insurance

Doberman Pet Insurance

English Setter Pet Insurance

Fox Terrier

French Bulldog Breed Information

German Shepherd Breed Information

German Shorthaired Pointer Pet Insurance

Golden Retriever Breed Information

Great Dane Pet Insurance

Havanese Dogs | Average Cost and Care

Irish Water Spaniel

Italian Greyhound

Jack Russell Terrier Pet Insurance

Kerry Blue Terrier

Komondor

Labradoodle Breed Info

Labrador Retriever Breed Information

Maltese Pet Insurance

Miniature Schnauzer Pet Insurance

Newfoundland Pet Insurance

Pit Bull Pet Insurance

Pomeranian Pet Insurance

Poodle Dog Breed Information

Portuguese Water Dog

Pug Pet Insurance

Rhodesian Ridgeback Pet Insurance

Shar-Pei Pet Insurance

Shetland Sheepdog Pet Insurance

Shih Tzu Pet Insurance

Siberian Husky Pet Insurance

Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier

St. Bernard Pet Insurance

Staffordshire Bull Terrier Pet Insurance

Vizsla Pet Insurance

Weimaraner Pet Insurance

Real Cost Savings from PetFirst Clients

Luna

PetFirst saved his parents

$6,712

A happy energetic Luna one morning couldn’t hold her food down. After months of multiple costly vet visits to specialists and an endoscopy, the problem was discovered and fixed. Luna put 22 pounds back on in no time and her parents were grateful for having PetFirst by their side to pay the bills.