For those who don’t know, hip dysplasia is a very common skeletal diseases in dogs. It’s a disease in which the ball and socket joint of the hip does not form properly resulting in a joint that rubs and grinds instead of sliding smoothly. Large and giant breeds are typically affected--including the Great Dane, Saint Bernard, Labrador Retriever, and German Shepherd--rarely, small breed dogs can also be affected. According to PetMD, symptoms of hip dysplasia can include some of the following:
- Decreased activity and reluctance to run, jump, or climb stairs
- Difficulty rising
- Intermittent or persistent hind-limb lameness, often worse after exercise
- “Bunny-hopping,” or swaying gait
- Narrow stance in the hind limbs (back legs unnaturally close together)
Depending upon the symptoms and the amount of discomfort the pet is showing, hip dysplasia can often be treated by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which can be prescribed by a veterinarian. Pet owners can also consider doses of glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate and/or omega-3 fatty acid nutritional supplements. Vets often recommend moderate daily exercise and avoiding high impact activities such as jumping can keep the pet mobile. Dogs should also be at a healthy weight so the hip joint isn’t under any unnecessary stress.
Because of this disease, and the severity of the progression of the disease, the only option Clark had was to have surgery to remove the head of his femur (leg bone). Clark’s dad is a seasonal employee who is currently looking for a better paying job since his hours had been cut. He reached out to Fur Kids Foundation for assistance, and we were happy to help. Clark is on the mend, and we hope he has a happy, healthy life.
As a side note: Hip dysplasia is considered a genetic or inherited disease. Many vets will recommend that any pet showing signs of hip dysplasia should NOT be bred.
Fur Kids Foundation is grateful for the dedication of our volunteers and supporters who have helped local families stay happy and healthy, and together! If you would like to help Fur Kids Foundation continue to help families in Campbell County, Wyoming with animals, please consider making a tax-deductible donation. The money helps families during a time when they may not be able to afford adequate veterinary care. Check out more Success Stories.