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Thread: Need your opinions on limping dog

  1. #1
    Member vstoddard's Avatar
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    Default Need your opinions on limping dog UPDATE in orginal post in blue

    A couple of months ago when i got home my 1 1/2 year old lab was limping, we figued she hurt herself playing with our other lab. They play really rough at times, and she is very hyper constantly running around. A couple of days later she stopped limping so we thought nothing of it. Then i took her to the dog park a couple of weeks later and she took off running and reinjured it, same thing a couple of days later she was fine. So we stopped all exercise for a while, I took her walking this weekend she jogged but never really ran hard. Later that evening she started limping again so we made an appt at the vet.

    We are not happy with our old vet so took her to the new vet that two friends recommended. The vet has labs and knows of the breed really well. This was the first time they have seen one of our animals, the vet said she thought she might have micro tears in her muscles but wanted to sedate her because her muscles were so tight. Nothing popped out during the exam so she did an x-ray and came back and told my husband she had hip dysplasia that her socket was shallow. She said no exercise for two weeks then slowly start taking her on walks again but keep her by our side and not let her jog or run.

    She gave us info on a surgeon and said to take her there for a consult, but that unless we have the surgery she'll never be able to hunt or be an active dog again. For those of you that have had this problem, did you see signs in your dog before you found out they had hip dysplasia because she has never shown any signs before. Would you take her for a second opinion, or just get the consult and see what they say. She's so young and it's going to be hard to keep her from having little to no activity for the rest of her life. She's very active and hyper and so is our family, and I hate for her to be stuck in a kennel all the time alone when were gone with the other dogs out doing things.

    I'll do what it takes don't get me wrong just trying to wrap my head around this and see what others think. Also if you did the surgery how was your dogs quality of life as she said she would be able to do everything she is now and get back to hunting, hiking, etc.


    Update: We had an appt today with an othropedic specialist. Raven is no longer limping, as it only lasts a few days. He examed her for an hour and couldn't find anything wrong. He checked her knee caps and couldn't get them to pop out, he hypo and hyper extended her ankle/knee/hip joints and couldn't get any of them to show any weakness or stability issues. He said since she's not limping to start walking her again and slowing extend the walk, then start changing the momentum here in another week. He said if they tear a muscle or liagment that it usually takes 6 weeks to heal on it's own so lets try that avenue and then if she starts holding her leg in the air again and only walking on three legs to bring her in immediately so he can examine her and try to pin point the issue if it's anything else. She also has to stay kenneled during the day and crated in the house if she won't calm down. He also examined her hip x-ray and he wasn't concerned with it as she's not showing any symptoms or has even when hurt of having hip problems. He said she will probably have problems when older but its nothing to do surgery on now or worry about.

    Her attitude has changed, she has never shown any aggression issues but is now growling at other dogs so I know something is bothering her even though she's not limping anymore. She also used to always lay in the living room and now she stays in the kitchen on the tile floor.

    He also said I got great advice from you guys so I wanted to say Thanks!!!
    Last edited by vstoddard; 02-05-2013 at 11:09 AM. Reason: UPDATE
    "If we all did the things we are capable of doing we would literally astound ourselves." Thomas A Edison

  2. #2
    Senior Member thelast2's Avatar
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    I havent had a dog suffer from this, but im curious if you have contacted the breeder, and what the reaction was. Most reputable breeders gaurantee the hips and at least if you could recoup the cost of the your dog, it might offset the cost of the medical attention you dog now needs.

    And yes, I would definitely get a second opinion with something this serious. Might ask around see if you have any orthopedic vets in your area
    Last edited by thelast2; 01-31-2013 at 02:09 PM.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member EdA's Avatar
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    The fact that the dog has an imperfect hip on X-ray does not mean that is the only possible cause for the lameness. Typically adult dogs do not develop acute lameness from congenital hip disease. Acute intermittent rear limb lameness in an athletic dog which improves with rest should be considered a possible cranial cruciate ligament injury until proven otherwise. Get a second opinion.

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    Definite 2nd opinion. I have a 7 mo. BLF that has a limping issue also, but it is on a front leg. As you stated, I think she injured it playing with my older dog. If she rests it the limp will go away, but once they start roughousing again the limp starts up again. Have a vet appt. tomorrow

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    I have had this happen in the past. 15 Month old male lab hip dysplasia ( very bad ). The breeder replaced the dog. It will show up just how you described if the socket is that bad.

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    What Ed said. Plus there are many retrievers that have bad hip/hips on xray, and live a long active life with no corrective surgery. I have had two myself over the years - the male w/ two bad hips never limped and still leaped in the truck at age 10. The female w/ one bad hip had a very mild 'catch' in her gait if you looked for it - she hunted until age 10 and often showed up the GSP's she was hunted with. Of course each case is different.

  7. #7

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    Your vet recomended a surgeon. I'd think he would become the second opinion.
    Very sorry. We all have high hopes and dreams for them.
    I also had one. He couldn't run or jump but he made a fine retriever for 12 years. Everyone that saw him work was impressed. He was slow, but he got the job done.

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    Member vstoddard's Avatar
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    when I got my first two labs I did not know about pedigree, eic tests, hip & elbow tests, etc. she was a newspaper dog.
    I did tell the breeder as I have kept him in the loop regarding her training. he said just let him know what happens and he is sorry.


    Quote Originally Posted by thelast2 View Post
    I havent had a dog suffer from this, but im curious if you have contacted the breeder, and what the reaction was. Most reputable breeders gaurantee the hips and at least if you could recoup the cost of the your dog, it might offset the cost of the medical attention you dog now needs.

    And yes, I would definitely get a second opinion with something this serious. Might ask around see if you have any orthopedic vets in your area
    "If we all did the things we are capable of doing we would literally astound ourselves." Thomas A Edison

  9. #9
    Member vstoddard's Avatar
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    I have a surgical consult tuesday morning. I talked to the vet myself just a little bit ago, she x- rayed her knees and they looked fine. her hip socket is shallow and its on the side she's limping on. it is not slowing her down any, it's hard to keep her laying down, so I am breaking her old crate out. she puts no pressure on that leg at all, I would have thouthat it would hurt her worse to hold her leg up all day. I am getting both her knee and hip x- rays Saturday to take to the consult so he can rule anything else out.
    "If we all did the things we are capable of doing we would literally astound ourselves." Thomas A Edison

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    Senior Member Breck's Avatar
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    You can't rule out every thing with x-rays. The likely problem Dr Ed mentioned involves partial or complete tears of the CCL ligaments and miniscus damage if present. Good ortho vet can detect tears by manual manipulation of the joint to detect abnormal drawer motion. If the surgeon has a good reputation you will have to trust their conclusion from these exams. You could confirm via mri but most people dont bother due to expense.
    The non weight bearing issue you're seeing is a typical sign of CCL injury but of course you need vet to do a full exam to determine actual problem. If you're looking a ccl there are several repair options, the TPLO procedure being the gold standard.
    Good luck
    Last edited by Breck; 01-31-2013 at 06:54 PM.
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