Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am fostering for a local shelter and currently have a puppy who is showing some buckling in her front legs at the wrists. She and her brother have been completely on the bottle (Esibilac) until yesterday. They just started the weaning process. I am their second foster, they were brought to intake at the shelter at 1 wk old (I think) I have no idea what happened to Mom, or how long they were able to nurse from her. They are listed as lab mixes, but really, who knows? Anyway, I took her in to see the (shelter's) vet bc it worried me. I don't have a ton of experience with pups this young so, just want to check and make sure the answer I got is sufficient. I was told not to worry, her ligaments are just loose due to her age and it goes away as she gets older/stronger. Something is just nagging at me though. She is pretty bowlegged and her brother doesn't walk anything like her at all. Hopefully, I am just worrying too much and this is completely normal for her age (about 3.5wks) I am Googling to look for answers, but figured it wouldn't hurt to get opinions from here too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,066 Posts
Can you post pictures? If you're describing what I *think* you are, it is not terribly unusual for babies, just a weird stage of growth. But I'd really like to see it before I make that assessment.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Here are a few. Sorry for the quality, hard to get pics of wiggly pups. (Excuse my dirty rug, haven't vacuumed today) I sure hope you are right and it is just a stage. It does tend to get more pronounced the longer she is awake and playing.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
does she walk on mostly hard floors?
I do have ceramic tile, but I keep them on rugs to play and they have blankets when they are inside their kennel. I have exposed them to the tile, but not let them actually be on it very much
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,066 Posts
The knuckling over here concerns me because of how wide set her front is. It's actually "normal" for them to knuckle over a little bit as they learn to support their weight and the tendons and muscles strengthen. But this little baby has a bowed front that is not helping support the body. You can see she's out at the elbows, which is causing her to toe in, and the knuckling over is worse than it would be otherwise.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
The knuckling over here concerns me because of how wide set her front is. It's actually "normal" for them to knuckle over a little bit as they learn to support their weight and the tendons and muscles strengthen. But this little baby has a bowed front that is not helping support the body. You can see she's out at the elbows, which is causing her to toe in, and the knuckling over is worse than it would be otherwise.
Thanks so much Xeph. What search terms should I be using to gather info? The ones I have tried so far aren't giving me what I am looking for. I have a feeling this will take me arguing with the shelter staff a bit to take this more seriously. Yesterday, it was a tech who looked at her, they didn't feel it warranted the vet. I really want to be informed so I can advocate for the little one. (Cupcake, you get silly names when you allow friend's kids to name fosters) I want to know what types of testing are needed, should her diet be changed, can we do exercises and bracing to help straighten her out, what long term prognosis possibilities are etc.

Edit* Never mind, it is called carpal flexural deformity I think. If I would have just used the terms on GDLadys page I would have known that. Sleep deprivation is great for muddling my brain
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Ok, another question or two.....From what I have been reading, this isn't typically a painful condition. Cupcake has been less playful today even compared to yesterday. I have a small, electric, space heater I keep by the foster kennels, since I have all bottle babies. When I let her and Applesauce (her brother, I know another funny name) out to play, Cupcake plays for a few minutes and then lays down directly in front of the heater. She has started whining/crying while she lays there, so pitiful. She will play if she is sitting in my lap in the floor, but doesn't want to put much weight on her legs it seems. She doesn't act as if she is in pain when her legs are moved around or massaged. She is eating well and nice and perky/feisty. I have also read that nutrition has a lot to do with this. I feel so guilty! I weigh them every few days and calculate their feeding amounts and times appropriately, the formula is always mixed as directed. I don't overfeed or underfeed. I haven't found much info on pups this age and/or bottle fed pups with this issue. The shelter wants them on only one brand of food, but Cupcake has only gotten worse since introducing that food yesterday. Working on an email to send to the foster coordinator, hoping they will take me more seriously this time and maybe we can get her in tomorrow, before the holiday.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,384 Posts
feel for you,,, understand having to follow the shelters direction but if it was me... I would be finding an orthopedic vet and getting a consult from them. The Denver Zoo had two polar bears girl and boy that were doing this and they had to find a formula that would assist them.. so your right on the nutrition aspect of it. I remember one of them was named Snow... I hope you find something helpful with the Great Dane Lady I would email her and see if you get a response from her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
feel for you,,, understand having to follow the shelters direction but if it was me... I would be finding an orthopedic vet and getting a consult from them. The Denver Zoo had two polar bears girl and boy that were doing this and they had to find a formula that would assist them.. so your right on the nutrition aspect of it. I remember one of them was named Snow... I hope you find something helpful with the Great Dane Lady I would email her and see if you get a response from her.
Thanks Patricia. I will try the GD Lady, it can't hurt! I am not "supposed" to take fosters to any other vet. Legally, they are not my property and therefore, I cannot sign off on their care. The shelter has limits on what they deem treatable though. I could very well be jumping the gun here, but I feel as if this is something they may want to euth for, instead of treat, if it is too serious. I do understand they have limited staff and resources, truly, I get that. If it comes to that, I will adopt her myself and try to find a rescue who can assist with funds. I can't add Cupcake to my home as a permanent resident, but I have no problems fostering her and doing extra work with her, if she can get through this and lead a happy, healthy life. Like I said, maybe I am judging prematurely and once the actual vet sees Cupcake or her pictures, they will agree to wrapping and a diet change. That would be the ideal outcome. I started doing some stretching exercises with her today, am hesitant to attempt wrapping without direction. Don't wanna do it wrong and cause more harm than good.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
438 Posts
I've had a couple litters and seen others belonging to friends. While I have not come across this, I agree with the vet. It is way too early to be concerned at all. Puppies can do all sorts of weird things when learning to walk. The elbowing out may just be a result of the knuckling over, a compensation. Give it a couple weeks.

I do agree with keeping them on surfaces with plenty of traction. Also give plenty of room and encourage exercising. Can you set up a puppy run outside, weather permitting? That's what we do starting at about 4 weeks. All it takes is a cheap roll of field fencing and some of those posts you just pound into the ground. Running around like crazy would probably be the best therapy. Keep us posted!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
I've had a couple litters and seen others belonging to friends. While I have not come across this, I agree with the vet. It is way too early to be concerned at all. Puppies can do all sorts of weird things when learning to walk. The elbowing out may just be a result of the knuckling over, a compensation. Give it a couple weeks.

I do agree with keeping them on surfaces with plenty of traction. Also give plenty of room and encourage exercising. Can you set up a puppy run outside, weather permitting? That's what we do starting at about 4 weeks. All it takes is a cheap roll of field fencing and some of those posts you just pound into the ground. Running around like crazy would probably be the best therapy. Keep us posted!
I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts and opinions, samshine. There does appear to be very differing thoughts on the proper ways to treat/not treat this. I don't have an area to set them up outside, even if the weather was warm enough at the moment. These guys being bottle fed aren't afforded the same protection as Mama raised babies, so I am very hesitant to risk exposure. For now, I am following my gut feelings and allowing Cupcake to play/exercise as she feels up to it. She is displaying what may be some signs of pain, I pay attention and let her dictate when enough is enough. They get lots of free time outside of the kennel, and their kennel is huge as well. Again, thank you for sharing your experience!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Figured I could do a quick update on Cupcake. I ended up pretty much, on my own with her legs. We did lots of stretches every day and I made sure to watch her food intake closely. She will scarf her food down, and run to her brothers bowl, before he has a chance to finish. Little oinker ;) She no longer knuckles and is very steady on her feet. As steady as they can be, at this age anyway lol Here's a few (bad) pics. Maybe, her legs would have straightened out on their own. Maybe not. I knew the stretches couldn't hurt, and they seemed to relieve the signs of pain she started showing.

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,518 Posts
I have seen this at the clinic also. The ortho vet says just to leave it be and they will outgrow the conditions. He will wrap the legs sometimes because the owners insist on having the legs splinted. I will say that he is right and the pup grows up without any problems whether or not he wraps the legs. I do believe nutrition is a big part but the condition does correct itself when the owners do nothing but let the pup grow.
Slippery floors do not seem to be the cause. The ones I have seen are dogs that are in outside runs or cages. I will say I have seen this condition more on pit puppies than other breeds.

thanks for the update.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
438 Posts
Just this afternoon I was wondering about this pup for the first time in a couple weeks. And here is a great update! Thank you!
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top