Thanks to all for your replies and suggestions. I have been giving him glucosamine/chrodin supplements every single day. I started with the Omega but it gives him real bad diarreah. Maybe you can suggest one particular brand that is better for his belly.
I do want to take him to a specialist, even though there are none locally. I don't mind driving up to San Antonio or Houston for this.
If he/she determines he is a candidate for surgery, then that will be the route we will take. I want Charlie in our lives for a long time and I want him to he as comfortable as possible.
Thanks again all of you!!!!! I really do appreciate you looking at this.
The acetabulums are very shallow. As far as surgery goes, I can't say on that. They can do hip replacements, replace the femur head with a prosthetic one, then scrape out the acetabulum and replace it with a prosthetic socket. As to why or why your dog may not be a candidate per your vet, I don't know.
You are lucky the xrays are digital. I would not travel to a specialist just yet. Instead, I would get references of orthopedic specialists in the area, contact them, and email the xrays.
Thinks you can do - weight is VERY important. Not only does it cause added stress to already stressed joints, but adipose tissue causes and increases inflammation. Since HD can cause severe inflammatory pain, feeding off fat just adds to the problems.
Supplements. Glucosamine, Chondroitin, essential fatty acids, and fish oil are all very important. In fact, ALL dogs, especially dogs like GSDs prone to joint problems, could benefit from those supplements.
Exercise. Muscle can help take some stress off the hips. However, don't overdo it. The abnormal rubbing of the femoral heads in the acetabulums causes a calcium buildup, basically "scarring" on the bones. THIS is what causes the pain associated with HD. This is something that you need to discuss with your vet. How much is good but what is too much?