I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(
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Thread: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

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    Senior Member Martiniz's Avatar
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    I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Took him to the vet today. The reason why I took him was because he was showing most of the signs of hip dysplasia like sway walk, side sit, doesnt jump, underdeveloped hind quarters and overdeveloped chest. All these symptoms fit so perfectly. Anyways, I took him to the vet today, and I told the vet that I think my dog has hip dysplasia. He asked me to walk my dog back and forth. He agreed that my dog may have hip dysplasia, but the only way to tell for sure is for an xray. I don't have that much money on me, but I will be getting money around the 14th of feb. I'm gonna take the x-rays and confirm if he does have hip dysplasia or not. After that, I will be considering saving up money so I can do Total Hip Replacement surgery for my dog. But this surgery requires that he has to full mature and develop, so I'm gonna wait until he's 1-2 years old. My question is, when he gets older, lets say for example he loses his limb function and cannot use his hind legs anymore, due to the degenerative effects of hip dysplasia, would I still be able to give him Total Hip Replacement? Or once he cannot use his hind legs anymore, then there isn't anything we can do? I really didn't think it would happen to my Sammy. I been thinking about this a lot lately and I think it was my fault because I think i fed him a little too much when he was at his growing stage. Now I kinda regret it... Any help would be appreciated right now...thanks.
    Let's just let nature decide.


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    Senior Member tonisaysss's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    hello. i'm terribly sorry that you believe your pup has dysplasia. first off, do not blame yourself and don't let your mind reel about this until it's confirmed. the internet is a nasty place and with self-diagnosing your pup, the worries are endless. also, the vast majority of dysplasia problems are genetic issues. if you got him from a breeder, i would definitely contact them right away.

    i know a lot of puppies are sloppy sitters and it's something they grow out of. does your pup bunny jump when he runs?

    anyway, i'm not really one to talk to about dysplasia. however, i just don't think you should be blaming yourself and shouldn't worry just yet because it may not be what you think.

    here's to hoping your sammy is just fine.

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    Senior Member tonisaysss's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    i found this on another forum where someone has posted the same type of concern as yours and it may ease your mind:

    Puppies often have very funny ways of sitting as they grow into themselves, so that's not necessarily anything to worry about either. Particularly at that age (5-10 months), they can get really, really awkward. It doesn't necessarily mean anything is wrong.

    When he's had a bunch of exercise and then takes a nap, does he seem stiff or does have any trouble getting up or walking? Does he still run like that when he's not playing with other dogs? If so, I might have him evaluated by a vet.

    Hip x-rays at his age will definitely show dysplasia if it's severe. If it's borderline, you might not be able to tell yet, since sometimes joints are a little lax at that age and improve by maturity. If he's not showing stiffness or lameness, there's probably no reason to concern yourself yet, though you can give glucosamine and chondroitin supplements for your own peace of mind, since they won't hurt him, and they'll help if he truly does have joint problems.

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    Senior Member Martiniz's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Quote Originally Posted by tonisaysss View Post
    i found this on another forum where someone has posted the same type of concern as yours and it may ease your mind:

    Puppies often have very funny ways of sitting as they grow into themselves, so that's not necessarily anything to worry about either. Particularly at that age (5-10 months), they can get really, really awkward. It doesn't necessarily mean anything is wrong.

    When he's had a bunch of exercise and then takes a nap, does he seem stiff or does have any trouble getting up or walking? Does he still run like that when he's not playing with other dogs? If so, I might have him evaluated by a vet.

    Hip x-rays at his age will definitely show dysplasia if it's severe. If it's borderline, you might not be able to tell yet, since sometimes joints are a little lax at that age and improve by maturity. If he's not showing stiffness or lameness, there's probably no reason to concern yourself yet, though you can give glucosamine and chondroitin supplements for your own peace of mind, since they won't hurt him, and they'll help if he truly does have joint problems.
    Thanks. But i looked at all the symptoms of hip dysplasia, and all the symptoms fit him perfectly. I'm pretty sure he does have it, so now my only option is to take the x-rays and if it shows that he has it, i'm going to get him THR surgery.

    But what if his hip dysplasia gets worse where he cannot use his hind legs anymore, would THR (Total Hip Replacement) surgery be effective? Would THR allow him to walk again?
    Let's just let nature decide.


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    Senior Member tonisaysss's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    there's a golden retriever forum that i post on and someone was voicing their hip dysplasia concerns. someone mentioned that their golden's growth plates were mature and they did a THR at 11 months and it was very successful. they said their doctors were wonderful and her runs like nothing ever happened now.

    i know breeds vary, but a few sites that i've come across state that THRs normally start 10 months at the earliest (if the pup is in severe pain, of course) because that's when bones are done developing. if he does have HD, i don't think you'll need to wait. there are many services to help with payment plans as well.
    Last edited by tonisaysss; 02-05-2010 at 05:02 PM.

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    Senior Member FilleBelle's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    A pelvic osteotomy can be performed on a young dog that does not yet have a degenerative joint disease, thereby completely avoiding the question of whether or not a total hip replacement will be effective in an older dog.

    Having said that, it's often possible to conservatively manage hip dysplasia for quite some time before it becomes a threat to a dog's daily life. Depends entirely upon the severity of the dysplasia, of course, and how quickly the accompanying DJD is progressing.


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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    you need to give him immediate treatment ,just go to some animal doctor and ask about vaccines and injections which can keep him going.

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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    I have had 2 dogs with hip dysplasia. Both had triple pelvic osteotomys but they have to be done early so I would get x-rays as soon as you can. You will need to have x-rays to determine if your dog has hip dysplasia and how bad it is. It could be something else altogether.

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    Senior Member Cracker's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Martinez, even if your pup does have HD the chances of his losing the use of his legs in the next couple of years is pretty slim. You are jumping from A to Z, and skipping the middle..

    So there is no need to panic at this point. My client's have a GSD with grade three HD both hips, did not do surgery (though I wish they had) and maintain Rankin very well at 7years of age with good NSAIDs and glucosamine supplements and proper exercise. He will not have the length of life that he would if he'd had the surgery, but he walks, runs and jumps and enjoys his life as it is.

    Get your xrays done so you know what you are dealing with FIRST. Get him on a good glucosamine supplement to help prevent discomfort at this point and take it one step at a time.
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    Senior Member GreatDaneMom's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    i was told my great dane had HD when she was... maybe a year old i think it was. all the symptoms fit and i had x rays done. the doc said it was indeed moderate HD. im starting to think he just wanted money from me..... i had a contract with the breeder that if any HD or ED was found before 2yrs old she would pay for all costs. we talkec about hip replacement, etc. and i just decided to wait on it all. i restricted her play (we stopped going to the dog park where she played too hard and would fall and such), started her on glucosamine, chondroiten, and msm supplements, and let her grow. shes going to be 4 this year and since i did all that, she has never showed any signs of problems with her hip. she plays like a wild woman with my other dane and my father in laws 1 yr old lab, and never has a problem. so im not sure what to think anymore....

    what i am going to do it set up with my horse vet to have xrays done again just to look at it. he will do her with his portable machine standing up and deveop it right there for me to look at, and it will be cheaper and safer for her anyway. i hate using any kind of sedation or anything on my girls because theyre high risk with their deep chests and large bodies.

    i think part of her problem when she was diagnosed was that she was going through a lot of growth spurts and was playing really hard. and for all i know it could have been a bad xray at the vet...since he never showed me it! i dont know, maybe its just me but i would get a second opinion- unless you saw the xrays and could see yourself that it really is HD. i wouldnt run out and decide hip replacement is the only way to go either. to me, it depends on how severe it is. to me, if its very mild, and i can keep them going with a good quality of life with supplements and limiting heavy contact or work, i would stick with doing that rather than putting all that money into the surgery and time rehabing. but thats me.... its your choice
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    Senior Member Martiniz's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Quote Originally Posted by Cracker View Post
    Martinez, even if your pup does have HD the chances of his losing the use of his legs in the next couple of years is pretty slim. You are jumping from A to Z, and skipping the middle..

    So there is no need to panic at this point. My client's have a GSD with grade three HD both hips, did not do surgery (though I wish they had) and maintain Rankin very well at 7years of age with good NSAIDs and glucosamine supplements and proper exercise. He will not have the length of life that he would if he'd had the surgery, but he walks, runs and jumps and enjoys his life as it is.

    Get your xrays done so you know what you are dealing with FIRST. Get him on a good glucosamine supplement to help prevent discomfort at this point and take it one step at a time.
    Wait, so you're saying hip dysplasia can shorten a dog's life expectancy?
    Let's just let nature decide.


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    Senior Member Martiniz's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatDaneMom View Post
    i was told my great dane had HD when she was... maybe a year old i think it was. all the symptoms fit and i had x rays done. the doc said it was indeed moderate HD. im starting to think he just wanted money from me..... i had a contract with the breeder that if any HD or ED was found before 2yrs old she would pay for all costs. we talkec about hip replacement, etc. and i just decided to wait on it all. i restricted her play (we stopped going to the dog park where she played too hard and would fall and such), started her on glucosamine, chondroiten, and msm supplements, and let her grow. shes going to be 4 this year and since i did all that, she has never showed any signs of problems with her hip. she plays like a wild woman with my other dane and my father in laws 1 yr old lab, and never has a problem. so im not sure what to think anymore....

    what i am going to do it set up with my horse vet to have xrays done again just to look at it. he will do her with his portable machine standing up and deveop it right there for me to look at, and it will be cheaper and safer for her anyway. i hate using any kind of sedation or anything on my girls because theyre high risk with their deep chests and large bodies.

    i think part of her problem when she was diagnosed was that she was going through a lot of growth spurts and was playing really hard. and for all i know it could have been a bad xray at the vet...since he never showed me it! i dont know, maybe its just me but i would get a second opinion- unless you saw the xrays and could see yourself that it really is HD. i wouldnt run out and decide hip replacement is the only way to go either. to me, it depends on how severe it is. to me, if its very mild, and i can keep them going with a good quality of life with supplements and limiting heavy contact or work, i would stick with doing that rather than putting all that money into the surgery and time rehabing. but thats me.... its your choice
    Yeah thats true, but hip dysplasia gets worse throughout the dog's lifetime and i really don't want my dog to be in any kind of discomfort or have any limitations. I want him to be able to play at dog beaches, parks, etc.
    Let's just let nature decide.


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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Do not jump the gun. At 8 months old, unless the dog has severe HD, you may be looking at more of a "teenage awkwardness" than at HD. GSD's take a while to grow into their bodies, especially the larger members of the breed.

    Do you have the dog's pedigree? What are the OFA or German Hip scores of the sire and dam? Does the breeder have any other pups with HD? Do you have a guarnatee from the breeder for genetic defects wherein the breeder will replace the dog if your dog has HD by age 2? What does your contract say? (most breeders you keep the current dog and get another from another littler).

    At 8 months old your dog epiphysis have not hardened... he is still soft. Take a deep breath and a step back. HD will get worse with age, but you have to be sure there is HD first. Eight months is typically too young to tell for sure with Xrays unless the dog is REALLY REALLY bad. What does your BREEDER SAY???

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    Senior Member GreatDaneMom's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Quote Originally Posted by Elana55 View Post
    Do not jump the gun. At 8 months old, unless the dog has severe HD, you may be looking at more of a "teenage awkwardness" than at HD. GSD's take a while to grow into their bodies, especially the larger members of the breed.

    Do you have the dog's pedigree? What are the OFA or German Hip scores of the sire and dam? Does the breeder have any other pups with HD? Do you have a guarnatee from the breeder for genetic defects wherein the breeder will replace the dog if your dog has HD by age 2? What does your contract say? (most breeders you keep the current dog and get another from another littler).

    At 8 months old your dog epiphysis have not hardened... he is still soft. Take a deep breath and a step back. HD will get worse with age, but you have to be sure there is HD first. Eight months is typically too young to tell for sure with Xrays unless the dog is REALLY REALLY bad. What does your BREEDER SAY???
    this is exactly what im saying. before i did anything i talked to my breeder. both sire and dam and grandparents on both sides are OFA good or better, and she has never had a pup have HD or ED. so this would have been very unusual. and hip replacement isnt an easy or cheap thing to go through- so if the quality of life is fine without having to put them through that, why do it? i definitely wait until it was actually the only option. until then for now, keep him at a healthy weight, dont let him get fat and put stress on his joints, feed him well and dont let him grow too rapidly, and keep him on a glucosamine, chondrotin, and MSM supplement.
    Last edited by GreatDaneMom; 02-07-2010 at 12:03 PM.
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    We had a yellow lab that had hip dysplasia, she was diagnosed at 6 months. She had the worst conformation and definite dysplasia. She was a rescue dog. She lived to 11 years old and never needed any supplements of help with her hip dysplasia. We kept her on the low end of her weight range. She was an 80+ lb lab. We let her swim daily for exercise, we did limit long walks for her but she loved her swimming. Towards the end she was slower to get up but never displayed signs of pain. Our daughter also has extremely severe hip dysplasia, so we have been surrounded by it. It's not necessarily going to cause loss of limb function, it's not necessarily going to shorten life expectancy. It's not something to panic about. It is a condition that is manageable in most cases! I wouldn't rush into any type of surgery, especially not until growth is completed. Decide what to do once you get x-rays done.

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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    GreatDaneMom,

    A standing x-ray may not be very useful in determining the presence and severity of HD. The head of the femur is best viewed when the dog is lying on it's back and the shot is taken in proper OFA style procedure and that is your main objective when evaluating HD.

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    Senior Member GreatDaneMom's Avatar
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. V View Post
    GreatDaneMom,

    A standing x-ray may not be very useful in determining the presence and severity of HD. The head of the femur is best viewed when the dog is lying on it's back and the shot is taken in proper OFA style procedure and that is your main objective when evaluating HD.
    im not saying that that will tell me if she has it or not, as i know she doesnt. i want to set it up that way to make sure there is nothing like arthritis or anything starting (this is both my dogs, and not just their hips), and just get an overall feel of how shes doing. if he sees anything THEN i will take her to my vet to get better xrays done. he works not only on horses but other animals too, he just mainly does racehorses and travels to tracks so he doesnt have a clinic set up anymore. i dont like to have my girls sedated due to being a high risk breed. i would rather have xrays done and see if there is anything for concern, then advance on that, than have them sedated, spend a bunch of money, and have nothing at all wrong anyway.
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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    I was going to say the same thing on the hip xrays.

    My dog is going to need episiolasty surgery and I have considered have them X ray her hips while she is out FMOI. I probably won't andwill let them just check her manually since she is a spay and her sire was OFA good and her dams Sire was OFA Excellant and Atka shows no symptoms at age 3.

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    Re: I think my 8 month GSD has hip dysplasia =(

    I am new to this site and I just found your thread. I just wanted to see if you ever had your GSD x-rayed? I have a 10 month old male with moderate hipe dysplasia and mine has all the same symptoms that you have listed. I have had mine on supplements for about a month now and I have seen an improvement in his activity level, it is no curem but they have been helping him. A THR is about $5k and you need to do one hip at a time, they are not 100% effective and they may not last the life of the dog. Just something to think about. It is a shame that we have to go through this and watch our dogs struggle. I had my x-ray graded by OFA and it came back moderate, which is a step from severe at only 9 months old when it was taken. GSD's with mild or borderline can lead long, normal, healthy lives. Maybe you will get lucky. If you have any questions for me, don't hesitate to ask. Please let me know how your pup is doing. Thanks, Kelly

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