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Bad leg: Birth defect or accident? : General Dog Health Problems -Questions and Answers
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Bad leg: Birth defect or accident?

Dogs like humans may have health problems to which you have questions. You are the one that has to identify the issues, symptoms and get solutions. Share your views here.

Bad leg: Birth defect or accident?

Postby Dog Training by Trainer » Wed Feb 22, 2006 4:16 pm

I have recently adopted a bullmastiff/boxer mix (we think [img]./dog-discussion-forum/images/smilies/smile.gif[/img]) for our local pound. He has a very bad front left leg. He is only 3-4 months hold and no one is sure whether it is a birth defect or an accident that happen early in life. I have searched the internet for any common problems but have had no luck. It would be easier if i could send you a picture but i will try my best to explain the shape of this leg. First off besides the leg, the left shoulder is dropped lower then the right, indicating to my vet there may be nerve damage although the muscle around the shoulder has still developed. The leg is straight from the shoulder to the "knee" part but then the joint bends out aways, away from the other leg. He does stand on his "toes" one that left leg but puts very little weight on it. It does not seem painful in anyway but it restricts his movement to a walk. At first glance his leg looks "too long". What has happen though because of the lack of weight on his left leg, his right paw has spread out into like a "webed" pattern because of the extra weight. Like i said it is hard to discribe. One vet at the pound said that a possible operation in which they put a splint in the leg to straighten it may help or just to remove the leg all together. My vet suggests that the splint will not do any good as like a said she thinks there is nerve damage. She has also said that he is a big dog to walk on three legs and the damage that it has done already to the "good" legs suggests that it won't be long before he has problems with those legs too. I am sorry that there is not much information to go on here and that it is probably one of these things best seen in person but all i am really looking for is if this condition rings a bell anywhere, if anyone has delt with a similiar problem. Thank-you for listening and hope to hear from you shortly. Tara
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Postby Dog Training by Trainer » Wed Feb 22, 2006 4:17 pm

have a Purebred English Bulldog with the same problem but in one of her back legs. She walks on her toes and the one leg is thinner and does not bend as easy. My vet has said it is nerve damage but since she was a rescue we have no way of knowing for sure if it is because of abuse or birth defect.He has said that at some point she may have pain but for now she is doing good. I got Grace when she was about 4 months old and she is now 3 years old. Now days if it is cold she moves alittle slower to start and will not climb the stairs to our second floor. The few steps out the backdoor she goes down fine but coming in she bunny hops them. She runs circles around the yard after my teenage son and you can not tell she has the damage. She still is pain free, and we just love her to death and want her to have the best life possible.
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i would love to understand if leg braces help

Postby newenglishbulldog1 » Sat Apr 15, 2006 3:16 am

i have got a english bull dog today knowing that he really cant walk well at all if any on his to front legs. feeling sorry for him i got him anyways. he stands up and his ankles kindof bend and show no signs of support. would leg braces help him. he is also blind in 1 eye and 8 weeks of age. yes i am a sucker but i feel in love with him.
please if anyone knows about this problem and has been though something like this please give me some ideas. thanks
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English Bulldogs

Postby Jennifer Adams » Sat Apr 29, 2006 9:20 pm

I did appreciate the stories that i read about your dogs. My English Bulldog Oscar has the same problem with his right front leg. He is four months old. He just has surgery for the problem a week ago. It is called an elbow luxation and I was told by a specialist at Gainsville University school for vets that it is very common amoung English Bulldogs. It means that the head of the radial bone is not in the elbow joint. It can either be due to trauma or it can be a birth defect. The vet said that most of the surgeries he does for this birth defect is on English Bulldogs. He said that they are the most unhealthy breed of dog. That really upset me and I hoped I could find out from other owners if that is true in your experience. They could not fix Oscar's elbow they said that it was very hard to correct when dog's are born that way. He is now trying to recover from the surgery last week and they told me that I could just amputate the leg which I thought was a horrid option or I can send him to another specialist. The specialist does not give us a lot of hope either. He said that most of the surgeries do not correct the problem and thta they are very expensive and very painful for the dog. I wanted to find out if anyone had this problem and just left the leg alone and how well did the dog do? I love this dog so much and I do not want to put him through more pain of surgery if it is just experimental and I also cannot think of amputating the leg because all of his weight is in the front of his body. I really am not sure what to do. I would love some help.
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