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Dog limping I need help or advice please :(

On and off lameness is a dangerous thing and usually soft tissue related. It may be his knee. When you go to the Vet, mention it. I had a friend who weight pulls her dog. He had intermittent lameness. He did lure coursing that day and tore it through. Turns out it was damaged, but she received poor advise and kept working him. I would recommend less turns to none, especially if he is weighted or dragging. Swimming, straight pulls of light weight and walking figure eights, and stand and sit exercises. This and others are a good physical therapeutic regiment. Your Vet may be able to refer you to someone with the full regiment list. I would start this after a period of cage rest. Soft tissue takes an extremely long time to heal, and in the process you can put more pressure on the opposing leg, causing another injury. Good luck. Keep us posted on how it goes.
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Replies (30)
  • So I have been working hard at leaning out Bernie. At one point he was over 80 pounds and slowly have decreased his feed and up the cardio work. He used to limp sometimes when we did the flirtpole this is when he was chubbier, I figured the turning and sprint was not good for him so I kept the running patterns normal without extreme cuts. I have noticed a tremendous improvement in his energy levels and working drive since he lost weight. He is so much faster and agile and I figured now that he is lighter the flirtpole can be used normally. Last night he was running after it and felt I think he slipped, I thought nothing of it and then stopped and started limping again his back right leg. Immediately after limping he came and started licking my leg to let me know something was wrong. I stopped the play and we went inside and gave him a massage and put a little ice on it but he didnt like the icea idea lol anyway he was walking a little funny last night but this morning he seems to be walking normal. Can this be like a pulled muscle or something worse like a torn acl or something? I am getting his hips done in less than a month but I am so demoralized because he was looking great and was getting so fit. I don't want to hurt the dog do you guys know what could cause rear leg limping?
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    • Have you flexed the knee? Any crunching or popping feeling? And swelling? Does it look like he has a hard time bending? Or does it seem like the pain is farther up or down? No matter what I would keep him calm and quiet for 10-12 days...A week never seems long enough here when I have a dog pull something. Another thing I use, which also works wonders is soaking the leg in epsom salt. I have had a dog lay in the bath to soak her sore joints previously, at first they will fight you...But for me the dog feels the comfort and will then allow. Good Luck.
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      • He limped couple of times and then immediately kept walking but I could tell he was swining his leg weird. I started massaging his knee and then he started to stretch his leg on his own. I did not notice any popping or swelling. Then again because of his color it's hard to really see anything. The epson salt sounds like a great idea. What temperature do you recomend for the water? the odd thing is he has limped like this before and then it went away but I am just annoyed to see this happening again now that he is leaner and in better shape :(
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        • On and off lameness is a dangerous thing and usually soft tissue related. It may be his knee. When you go to the Vet, mention it. I had a friend who weight pulls her dog. He had intermittent lameness. He did lure coursing that day and tore it through. Turns out it was damaged, but she received poor advise and kept working him. I would recommend less turns to none, especially if he is weighted or dragging. Swimming, straight pulls of light weight and walking figure eights, and stand and sit exercises. This and others are a good physical therapeutic regiment. Your Vet may be able to refer you to someone with the full regiment list. I would start this after a period of cage rest. Soft tissue takes an extremely long time to heal, and in the process you can put more pressure on the opposing leg, causing another injury. Good luck. Keep us posted on how it goes.
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          • Great advice Betsie. David - it is normal for us to think that our dogs should be able to whatever we ask. If the dog was overweight, and had just lost the extra pounds and started looking good - it really did not mean that he was fit and ready for the tougher sport. Keep him at his good weight and slowly increase his endurance level by low impact (no turns and hanging on poles) exercise until you can tell the change in musculature. It is like us humans - everytime we over do it - something breaks :) Good luck at the vet - and I hope you get good news. What Betsie said is spot-on and those soft tissue injuries are very difficult to diagnose because they are normally temporary until they become debilitating and permanent.
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            • thank you guys I need to make an appointment to take him to the vet. I kept him away from walking this whole weekend. he decided to sprint on his own and was fine. This morning I wanted to take him for a light walk just to poop and since we use a harness he tried to pulle several times but I corrected him so on the way home he had a weird motion on his back leg. He doesn't limp but he has that ghetto limp you see with the hoodlums? lol it's not funny but that is the best way I can describe. I think it was my fault to push him so much even though he was leaner and wanting to work more. I pray that it's a pulled muscle or something muinor, I don't care if I dont ever get to work him I just don't want to loose my boy :( not again...
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              • He went from this To this
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                • you could find the answer when you get his hips/ellbows x-rayed, especially if he has been overweight as a pup. even ostechondros could be a possible explanation, but i won't say to much, since it can be that he has just been pushed to hard. limping can be due to a lot of differend things. but do ask the vet to have a look at his patella aswell when you are there. let someone show you how to massage and strech your dog after work out, especially streching is very importand after work out. i add glukosamine to my dog's food, try that aswell. good luck, i hope you boy will get better.
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                  • My dogs often twist or sprain something and get a bit of a limp for a couple of days, I don't see what the big deal is. They're not invincible, even the best fittest working dogs will hurt themselves from time to time. Actually my cousins serious pig dogs are always limping or walking gingerly from split pads or nursing a crazy wound or something, there's always something, that's just life. It's like they say mma fighters never go into a fight 100%, they're always injured. If you have a closer look at wild animals I think you'll find most of them always have injuries as well. Only a coddled pet wrapped in cotton wool could avoid injuries consistently.
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                    • [quote1289916762=Tonedog] My dogs often twist or sprain something and get a bit of a limp for a couple of days, I don't see what the big deal is. They're not invincible, even the best fittest working dogs will hurt themselves from time to time. Actually my cousins serious pig dogs are always limping or walking gingerly from split pads or nursing a crazy wound or something, there's always something, that's just life. It's like they say mma fighters never go into a fight 100%, they're always injured. If you have a closer look at wild animals I think you'll find most of them always have injuries as well. Only a coddled pet wrapped in cotton wool could avoid injuries consistently. [/quote1289916762] I see what you are saying but my dog is far from quality work stock and I can't expect much out of him as far health goes until I get him tested. I don't mind little things but I know how bad hip or elbow displasia can be and continuing to work him can cause even more damage, it is not worth it in thelong run. My dog is a house pet he is not a yard dog so we place a little more value on the animal.
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                      • [quote1289916871=LillaSophie] you could find the answer when you get his hips/ellbows x-rayed, especially if he has been overweight as a pup. even ostechondros could be a possible explanation, but i won't say to much, since it can be that he has just been pushed to hard. limping can be due to a lot of differend things. but do ask the vet to have a look at his patella aswell when you are there. let someone show you how to massage and strech your dog after work out, especially streching is very importand after work out. i add glukosamine to my dog's food, try that aswell. good luck, i hope you boy will get better. [/quote1289916871] I think I might as well have his luxating patella test done as well. I wonder the benfits of adding glucosamine to his diet, what about whey protein wouldn't this help rebuild tissue as well?
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                        • glukosamine is a component found in meat and is given to hard working horses and dogs. even people who train hard will add glukosamine. this component helps lubing the joints making them work properly. it also helps the body to rebuild bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons and leading-strings. glukosamine is recommended for working dogs and old dogs, but we do add glukosamine in our puppies food aswell to lower the risk for hd/ad. i do not know if whey proteine really is the same thing. whey proteine is rather a proteine source, but since it is vegetable-based i don't think that it is optimale. dogs are predators with a digesting system made for meat based food. dogs usually cannot digest vegetable-based protein (soya, whey, corn, etc) as good as meat based proteines. we feed certain amino acids prior and after work out for building up and maintaining muscle tissue and to avoid the body breaking down muscle tissue because of hard work out, but that is not a substitute for glukosamine.
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                          • I thought whey was made from egg by product? I will be getting some glucosamine for the doggy thank you all for the tips ! :)
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                            • yes, milk actually. language, you know. its not easy sometimes if english isn't you first language. ;) i was thinking of wheat, when i read whey. but in the end whey proteine isn't the same as glukosamine.
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                              • Glucosamine and Chondroitin are cartilaginous molecules found in articular (joint) cartilage. They need to be present in order for joint repair to occur. It will not decrease the occurrence of HD or ED but may limit the arthritic damage caused by the laxity of the joint. Most glucosamine benefit is anecdotal however, there is good short term studies results to support G/C supplementation. I use it, with good results. http://orthopedics.about.com/cs/supplements/a/glucosamine.htm **already cleared up while I was posting...** Whey is not plant based. It is milk plasma, or milk water. If you make cheese, you will squeeze out the whey. It is an animal protein source being from milk. It is also a traditional table scrap food for dogs. If you have it available, you can feed it. If not, any up of the protein in the dogs diet will aid the amino acid pool. Muscle breakdown will always happen, it is just making sure there is more than enough AA to rebuild.
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                                • I watched the videos you sent me at home last night. I have to say that Bernie's movement was like that for a split second but then the limping completely went away. Those dogs were limping the whole time while Bernie does not. I was interesting to see the Drawer test, I am wondering if a vet can actually mess up a dog's knee if he doesn't do it correctly? I am psyhoctic and I question everything so don't mind me lol I was playing around with Bernie's knee but I wasn't able to see that popping however I think I will try it again with better lighting tonight to see if I notice anything. I am assuming that the drawer test is the same test when they do the ofa knee test? I am getting the glucosamine tonight and I am going to keep resting Bernie. I don't have a good feeling about this whole thing, but the only thing that gives me hope is that Bernie doesn't limp after the fell. Once again thank you for your help :)
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                                  • Which video? There were two and the limping was different for both... On and off lameness can happen in both knee problems, with minor display. I chose videos where the limp is blatant, so you could see the subtle differences in both conditions. If the drawer test is successful by a Vet, then there is damage. When done correctly, there is not enough pressure applied to damage the knee if nothing is wrong, trust me. Those ligaments are fairly hardy. If the drawer test is unsuccessful, yet produces a pain response, there may be damage, but no complete tear. I would feel more comfortable having a Vet do it rather than try yourself, when you don't know what you are feeling for... No. The OFA test is for patellar luxation, not CCL stability. Two separate, yet possible causes on the rule out list. Either way, take the dog to your Vet. Regardless of what protocol you decide to follow, a Vet will be able to decipher the difference and what is truly wrong here (especially if you can't see the differences in the videos). Without this knowledge, you may follow the wrong protocol and not address the true issue.
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                                    • I watched both videos, the little chiwawa is very extreme case. The labrador had a walking pattern similar to Bernie's but not as severe. So I assume you believe the test is better done when the dog is not sedated? I am going to make an appointment for this weekend..
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                                      • Depends on the dog. If the CCL is ruptured, the dog can not stop the drawer test. My Vet and I were able to elicit a drawer test on my Rott with no sedation or analgesics. She had gone completely lame at this point though. Her initial rupture was trauma related. She started with intermittent lameness on the other side before her full second rupture. I treated it as a muscle pull and just rested her, but was wrong. Now I have a great working dog that is completely lame and retired. She gets around well, but still wants desperately to work, but it is too much for her to physically handle.
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                                        • I have an appointment set for next saturday I can't go any other time because of work. I just have to keep the dog rested until then and start supplementing the Glucosamine. I hope my vet knows how to perform the drawer test and I hope it is not painful to the dog.
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                                          • Slow down. Take the steps as they come. Most Vets are very familiar with this test. Knees are a common injury/congenital issue. One bad thing about the internet is the flood of information can make you worry prematurely or too greatly. We will be pulling for you. Let us know how it goes.
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                                            • Panoesteitis?
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                                              • If he was younger maybe. Correct me if I am wrong David, but I believe he is over a year. PanOs usually manifests during the fast growth stages (and in fast growing breeds), though it is a possibility. If it was, I would expect it to wander between the limbs. I would also expect it to manifest without exercise or torque. A radiograph should be able to rule this out...
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                                                • Bernie is a year and 5 months, what is Panos? By the way I purchased 1000mg Glucosamine and I started him on them last night :)
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                                                  • Panosteitis: http://www.vetinfo.com/dencyclopedia/depano.html Akin to "growing pains."
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                                                    • UHmm.. I love for that to be the case but I doubt it :(
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                                                      • Only one way to know for sure :) A good vet can diagnose pano without a radiograph i think. i wouldn't start dosing him with all sorts of stuff just yet, until you know what you're dealing with.... pano can happen up to 2 years.
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                                                        • thank you tosamama i didnt know they were doing elbows that day too I think i might as well do it as well :)
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                                                          • [quote1290131668=tosamama] pano can happen up to 2 years. [/quote1290131668] Yup - didn't show up in my Boerboel until 13 or 14 months
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                                                            • What do you think would be a better Idea a elbow xray or luxating patella test? I can do luxating anytime I think my vet will perform a drawer test and I am guessing she should be able to do the luxatin patella test. However, when I go to the OFA clinic I just found out they are doing elbow xrays too so I was wondering what I should do. I know since the dog is under 2 I get a prelim certificate but it still a good thing in my opinion.
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