Hip Dysplasia

This disease consists in the defective development of the hip articulation. There can be many causes to this disease, like overfeeding or over-exercising the animal (during growth).

The dog will limp with the front legs. In younger dogs you'll often observe that when the dog runs, he makes "rabbit hops", characterized by a simultaneous advance with both hind legs.

there are different tests to evaluate the articulations in a puppy but the final diagnosis is obtained by doing an x-ray of the area.

Treatment can be divided into two different kinds:

1) Non-surgical or conservative treatment:

  • restrained the animal's activities
  • administer anti-inflammatory medication (not steroids) to control the pain
  • avoid overweight
  • use supplementary foods that are intended for nurturing the articulations

2) Surgical treatment (there are different times and the election of the right one depends on various factors):

  • triple hip osteotemy: especially indicated for young dogs (under 10 months old) with dysplasia characterized by an incomplete subluxation and degenerative signs
  • Exeresis (excision) of the femoral head and neck: this is indicated for dogs of all ages, especially for those that have the weight below 20 kg and with a degenerative articular disease. This alleviates the articular pain. It is very important to continue with post-operational physiotherapy.
  • Prosthesis or complete substitution of the hip: this is indicated for dogs that have a weight over 20 kgaand who have stopped growing and have a severe dysplasia.
  • Pectinectomy or resection of the pectineal muscle or tendon: the effectiveness of this procedure is not that clear in the long-term. It is used to alleviate the pain due to abnormal articular mobility.

It is advisable not to allow the reproduction of any affected animal. The early diagnosis of this disease will allow, in as much as possible, to control its evolution.

You have to avoid overfeeding and over exercising your dog. Also, too much calcium is not recommendable.


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