Joint problems? Advice needed please!

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Joint problems? Advice needed please!

Post by katej215 » Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:05 am

Hey guys,

I haven't posted on the forum for apologies. I have an issue I am not quite sure where to go with and honestly couldn't think of a better place to get some sound advice.

I have a rescue dog, we've had him 2 years now, so he is possibility around 4 or 5 years old. He looks like a collie sized parson russell terrier. He has had a rough start to life as far as I know. Likely bred for hunting in Spain then abandoned to live on the streets.

Since we have had him he has had occasional lameness on his left front and very rarely also on a back leg (its so rare I don't even know which one). He will literally be hopping lame, can't put a foot to the floor for maybe 2 minutes, then (if a front leg), if he cocks his leg to wee, or somehow stretches /moves in a certain way he is immediately sound again. My sense has always been that this is a shoulder or elbow problem (no clue why he would go lame behind). I have had him to the vet before, they gave him painkillers and anti inflams and couldn't see anything wrong with him.

This morning, 10 mins into our walk, he'd chased a rabbit downhill (not sure if this is the reason) but v soon after he was hopping on his right front leg, the leg was sticking out at 45 degrees to his body and he couldn't put his foot down. Really looked like a shoulder issue. After a lot of faff , calling for a ranger to rescue us and then getting a taxi home (we were 5 miles away!) he seems to be sound again. However this appears to be a new issue, as it was a different leg and the angle he was holding it at was something I have not seen before.

I really don't know what to do. I could take him to the vet but this will be very stressful for him and my fear is that they will just want to pump him with drugs and will give me no answers. I am wondering whether I should just ask for him to be referred for an MRI scan? I just want to get to the bottom of what this is about and put a plan of action in place. I wish I had a vet I could have an honest conversation with!!! My worry is that his likely poor start to life (maybe over exercise /poor nutrition ) has affected his joints.

As a disclaimer - I know you guys are not giving me veterinary advice - i would just like to know what you would do in my shoes.

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Re: Joint problems? Advice needed please!

Post by Nettle » Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:14 am

Do you have access to a doggie chiropractor or osteopath? Mine comes to the house and is brilliant.

I agree that anti-inflamms and painkillers are not a diagnosis, and a diagnosis is what you need.
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Re: Joint problems? Advice needed please!

Post by katej215 » Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:19 am

Hi Nettle, thank you for your reply!
I went to a Mctimmoney chiro a while ago with both dogs, just for a check really, but it was a 2 hour drive and I didn't really get any answers from her with regard to his lameness issues. Although she did say his spine was slightly out of alignment

As an update, he has just got up out of the his bed and is lame, not hopping just unsound :? :(

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Re: Joint problems? Advice needed please!

Post by JudyN » Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:46 am

Some vets will do a house visit, particularly if you explain the dog's background. If they didn't seem interested in the dog's fear issues or just want to give him painkillers they're probably not the vet for you anyway :wink:

Have you looked round for another vet you can have more confidence in? I think that's what I'd do in your position.
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Re: Joint problems? Advice needed please!

Post by Erica » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:18 am

When it comes to joint/muscle injuries and problems, I ask the dog sport people in my area where they go. They tend to know the best vets around in that area! If you know anyone who does agility or flyball for example, see if they have recommendations for a good vet who will try to get to the bottom of the issue instead of tossing you some painkillers.

I agree that a chiro or osteopath might also be helpful; again, people with high-activity working dogs know the best ones around.
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Re: Joint problems? Advice needed please!

Post by katej215 » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:42 am

Thanks guys. We will be moving soon (fingers crossed) so will be looking for a decent vet in my new area.

I contacted another Mctimoney chiro earlier who does house visits, so hopefully she will give me a call back and we can organise a visit ASAP.

His lameness seems to have worn off after a rest, so will give our vets a miss. I will take it easy with him on walks for a few days and hopefully see a chiro in the next week or two.

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