Bow Legged
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Thread: Bow Legged

  1. #1
    Junior Member jennlea's Avatar
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    Bow Legged

    I'm taking my 6th month old Papillon to the vet on Monday because she appears to be getting bow legged and occasionally her back legs pop when she bends or straightens them.

    Anyone have any experiences or thoughts on that sort of thing? She moves fine, runs fine, jumps fine and doesn't seem to be in any pain but I'm a little worried.

    Hope it isn't anything major.

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  3. #2
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    Re: Bow Legged

    Sounds like luxating patellas to me. That's when the tendon that runs down the front of the knee can slip out to the side of the joint. Unfortunately, it's pretty major. It may not seem to be causing her any problems now, but left untreated it will probably get worse, and will almost certainly lead to early arthritis and/or other problems with the joint. My Bindi had the surgery on one knee and it ran us about 1500.00 after all was said and done. She did recover well though and that knee is now tighter than the other one, which may some day need the surgery too.

    Chasing the Tail of Dogma

  4. #3
    Senior Member Thracian's Avatar
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    Re: Bow Legged

    Oh, boy. That doesn't sound good. I'll hope for the best news. I hope the OP will post after the visit to the vet.

  5. #4
    Junior Member jennlea's Avatar
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    Re: Bow Legged

    When I first got her in March and took her to my vet for a puppy check up he was impressed at how tight her knee caps were. She did not have luxating patella's then and the breeder I got her from guaranteed she did not have any knee issues.

    Is it something that can happen at any time?

    I will definitely update after her visit to the vet

  6. #5
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    Re: Bow Legged

    Yes, it's something that can definitely get worse, either quickly or slowly.

    I'm not a vet, but I did do some research on this and spoke to the surgeon about it.

    There are 3 main components to the system that can cause problems:

    1) The attachment point on the lower leg. This can be out of alignment with the joint, causing lateral (sideways) pressure on the tendon.

    2) The slot in the bone that the tendon rides in can be too shallow to properly hold the ligament in place making it easier for the tendon to pop out of the slot, or luxate.

    3) There are 2 tendons that attach to either side of the patella and hold it in place. These tendons can become stretched or torn and will not heal or tighten on their own.

    So, a dog can have problems with 1 or 2 but not 3 and this can mask any other problems during the exam. The stress on those stabilizing tendons can eventually (or suddenly) stretch or tear them leading to the chronic condition.

    In Bindi's case, she had minor problems with 1 and 2 and then a traumatic injury caused issues with 3. During the surgery, they detached the tendon and reattached it in a better position, deepened the groove that the tendon rides in, and used sutures to tighten the supporting tendons. The surgeon may elect to do any or all of these procedures, depending on the dogs particular condition.

    Chasing the Tail of Dogma

  7. #6
    Junior Member jennlea's Avatar
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    Re: Bow Legged

    Just got back from the vet.

    He checked out everything and said there are no issues. Kneecaps are not luxating and are in great condition. Her legs were examined all over and no problems were found. Since she isn't limping, displaying discomfort or pain he isn't worried.

    He said the cracking/popping is coming from her hock joint and is more than likely due to her growing and should work itself out in time.

    So I will keep an eye on her and watch for any signs of pain.

  8. #7
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    Re: Bow Legged

    Great news.

    So, the bowleggedness is normal? your imagination? what?

    Chasing the Tail of Dogma

  9. #8
    Junior Member jennlea's Avatar
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    Re: Bow Legged

    Oops, forgot to include the bowlegged issue!

    She is slightly bowlegged at times. She will stand with her legs perfectly straight and sometimes she turns them in. The vet wasn't worried about it and is probably due to her still growing. It could fix itself or she will just have a unique gait, lol.

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