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My friend has a golden retriever who had a hip replacement last year. Both hips were pretty severe, but they only did the worse of the two. Yesterday I received this and I am wondering your thoughts:

".... is now 7 years old, was 6 at the time of THR and had 2 involved hips. The worse of the two was the one repaired and until about a week ago, things were peachy.

2) No limping or reluctance to walk, but she has started dragging the foot on the other bad hip’s side. She’s worn her nails down to the quick and yesterday, one started bleeding.

3) I compared the muscle mass in the legs and the HD leg is considerably less muscular when compared to her hip replacement side.

4) I’ve kept her weight under control and see no signs of pain

5) She doesn’t want to take the stairs unless she has to but never declines the opportunity to walk or play."

And this:

"...... doesn’t drag her foot all of the time, only when we go out for walks. I know that “knuckling over” means something neurological and she is not doing that. It is only noticeable when walking on concrete…you can hear her nails scraping."


PS. The surgeon who did the THR is several hours away, and a phone call has been placed.

Any thoughts? Thanks for the help. I know my friend will appreciate it, as well.
 

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Mary,
You have just described Casey to a "T". Even their age is the same.
She never drags the "hip replacement" side, only the other one. The scraping is usually worse towards the end of the day. She mostly drags it when she is going for a walk.
She will correct her foot immediately when I turn it underneath her.
The DM test thing.
I was all freaked out about it (about a year ago) and thought she must have DM.
I took her to 3 different vets and they all said they DO NOT think she had DM and they just think its from her dysplasia.
I have considered having her other side done but the vet said he doesn't think she needs it.
They All said if it were DM it progresses FAST and she would be much worse along by now.
This is working a small miracle for Casey's bad hip. Scraping is MUCH improved. Also the glucosamine and chondroitin and MSM supplements help.
Good Luck!

http://www.germanshepherds.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=729111&page=2#Post729111

P.S. How's Rudy doing?
 

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Hey hey, Casey's Mom! Long time no hear! Thanks for the info, this will bring so much relief for my friend.
I am going to read through the link you gave, as well. Maybe it will be good for the hooligans. Right now both are on Dasuquin with MSM. Do I add this stuff to that, or does it replace it?
All is well with Rudy and his bionic hip. I am still so glad he had this done. I think it's coming up on three years.
Also glad to hear Casey is doing well, too!!!
 

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"Do I add this stuff to that, or does it replace it?"


You add it along with the other supplements.

Thigh Muscle Atrophy (loss of muscle mass) is one sign of hip dysplasia. More excercise especially swimming will help this alot.

Casey's nails never got so short that they bled, but they are scuffed on the one leg.
 

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One test our vet taught us to help try and distinguish between HD and DM was to have your dog standing up, and you down alongside. Support the dog's weight with one arm and with the other turn a rear paw "upside down" so that the knuckles are touching the floor. This is done by gently lifting the paw and gently pushing the toes down forward. Obviously to do this you must be able to support most of your dog's weight.

If the dog doesn't try to correct the footing, or fumbles around and doesn't seem to quite understand how to turn his paw back up then Degenerative Myelopathy is suggested over Hip Dysplasia. If the dog immediately flips his paw into the correct position, then HD is suspected over DM.
Of course both CAN be present at the same time, but the fact that you friend's dog only scrapes on the one (bad side), makes me think it's HD like with Casey.
 
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