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My pup, just over 1 year old, out of nowhere started limping on his left hind leg. It has been 3 or 4 days now with no change. When standing he usually holds his paw totally off the ground. Is this evidence of the beginnings of hip dysplasia? Or is sudden limping and holding the leg off the ground more of a sign of a ligament injury or soft tissue damage. He has not had any hip problems so far, and he is totally crazy all day long. Very active, never stops, and does NOT like being in his crate. I am worried he may have hurt himself trying to fight his way out of his crate when I am not home. I had set up a video camera to record him in his crate after I leave. He goes balistic. He digs at the bottom, runs in circles, bites the bars, etc. I have recently started leaving him in the bedroom when I am gone, kind of like a very large crate. This seems to have calmed him down a good bit.

What do you guys think?
 

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I think all my pup's pano cleared up by that age. Could he have tweaked it somehow? I'd take him to the vet for an x ray to see what's going on.
 

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Does he also limp when moving or only when standing still?

My guy was lame in his rear hock area a few weeks ago but with him he would run fine and only if he was moving really slow or stopped moving would he limp slightly or pick it up off the ground. I never noticed the injury occur he had been training and then was in his crate for an hour when I noticed it later to take him for a walk.

I happened to be at the vet a few days later for something else and they felt all over and rotated his joints and couldn't pin point an injury site. I rested him for 7 days then the limping disappeared then did another 7 days rest with no limping before returning to regular activities.

Unfortunately with your guy it sounds like crate rest wont work as he will just hurt himself more and sounds like that is how he hurt it in the first place. I would keep up using the bathroom and limit his activities for 3-4 days if there is no improvement I would head to the vet. This is assuming the injury looks mild. If he is full on holding his leg up all the time even when moving or is holding it up to lay down I would go to the vet right away.
 

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3-4 days? After a day of not putting weight on the leg he needs to go to the vet and I am none one to run to the vet for every single thing. Can he sit straight or does he hold that affected leg to the side? Could be a cruciate tear.
 

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The post only says when standing he lifts his leg of the ground doesn't say if this is the only time he does it or not. Maybe he is walking normal otherwise?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Does he also limp when moving or only when standing still?

My guy was lame in his rear hock area a few weeks ago but with him he would run fine and only if he was moving really slow or stopped moving would he limp slightly or pick it up off the ground. I never noticed the injury occur he had been training and then was in his crate for an hour when I noticed it later to take him for a walk.

I happened to be at the vet a few days later for something else and they felt all over and rotated his joints and couldn't pin point an injury site. I rested him for 7 days then the limping disappeared then did another 7 days rest with no limping before returning to regular activities.

Unfortunately with your guy it sounds like crate rest wont work as he will just hurt himself more and sounds like that is how he hurt it in the first place. I would keep up using the bathroom and limit his activities for 3-4 days if there is no improvement I would head to the vet. This is assuming the injury looks mild. If he is full on holding his leg up all the time even when moving or is holding it up to lay down I would go to the vet right away.
A little limp when walking, holds it up when standing still. Keeping him in our bedroom seems to be working right now. He stays calm in there and isnt bored when we are gone. He has never liked the crate.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
3-4 days? After a day of not putting weight on the leg he needs to go to the vet and I am none one to run to the vet for every single thing. Can he sit straight or does he hold that affected leg to the side? Could be a cruciate tear.
I knew this was coming. He goes to the vet for every little thing, the vet always says give it some time. We went to the vet recently for front leg limping, after xrays, it was Pano. The vet said this could come back and migrate legs for a while. THE MAIN REASONs I have not gone to the vet yet is because it is most likely pano, the vet will tell me to give it a little more time anyway because i go do 300 dollars in xrays again, and because it started monday afternoon and today seemed better. I have an American bulldog who is 3000 dollars deep in knee surgeries, so its not like they arent well taken care of. He walks normally for the most part, holds it up when he stands still. If i see no change he will go to the vet. telling me he needs to go to the vet is one, not helpful, and two, pretty obvious.
 

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Have you noticed any swelling or heat anywhere on the leg? I wouldn't be suspicious of hip issues based on a lame leg, in my experience hip issues usually have a pretty distinct "look."

I don't think anyone was implying that you're a neglectful owner, just that if they were in your position that's what they'd do.

Trust me, after reading some of the threads the past couple days, if people thought you were being a bad owner, most would just come out and say it ;) No need to read between the lines.

I feel your pain though in trying to keep an active puppy calm enough to heal...

Edit: Jocoyn's question about the sitting is a good one too. Can he sit straight on that leg??
 

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My first thought was cruciate injury. When K injured his first one, he acted the same way you are describing. No whining, crying, more than willing to run....but at a stand, he would lift that leg up. The limp was only obvious at a walk. I ignored it for a couple days, thinking that if it were serious he wouldn't be so eager to take off running.......well, did I ever get an earful from the vet about how wrong my logic was. Best of luck, hope your little guy feels better soon.
 

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It is offensive when someone makes it sound like I do not take care of my dogs.
I am sorry you took offense because you made a big leap from me saying the dog should see the vet to "I don't take care of my dogs". I said that I did not run to the vet for everything under the sun but would in this case.

It does sound like a possible cruciate injury and, FWIW, the vet can check that by manipulating the legs before determining whether or not an x-ray is necessary.

I typically give a day after an injury and watch the dog like a hawk and usually minor strains, sprains, bumps seem to be getting better and then I don't go.
 

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Could be nothing at all except a pulled muscle or ligament or could be Pano or the early signs of HD.Any chance of a small fracture in the toes or foot from being such a brat in the crate?
My first GSD was at a dog show, she was fine, when we got back home after the car drive, I let her out of the crate she was holding a leg up. Watched it for a couple of days to see if it would go away. It didn't go away, took her into the vets, xrayed and found the nastiest set of hips you can imagine, one was even subluxated. She showed no signs of pain at all, nothing until she walked out of the crate holding the leg up. She was just under a year old, had FHO's done on both her hips in the following months.
If it doesn't clear up, I would probably think about a vet appointment, in case it is something other than Pano. Good luck
 

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HD can often be determined through manipulation of the joint as well (laxity)....if the vet feels laxity in the joint, then get an xray since that would point more to HD (or other joint issues) then pano.

Usually, as others have mentioned, if it's just a minor soft tissue issue it should improve/resolve with a couple days rest.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Have you noticed any swelling or heat anywhere on the leg? I wouldn't be suspicious of hip issues based on a lame leg, in my experience hip issues usually have a pretty distinct "look."

I don't think anyone was implying that you're a neglectful owner, just that if they were in your position that's what they'd do.

Trust me, after reading some of the threads the past couple days, if people thought you were being a bad owner, most would just come out and say it ;) No need to read between the lines.

I feel your pain though in trying to keep an active puppy calm enough to heal...

Edit: Jocoyn's question about the sitting is a good one too. Can he sit straight on that leg??
No swelling or heat, seems to sit fine.

And understood, I get too defensive. These dogs are everything to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My first thought was cruciate injury. When K injured his first one, he acted the same way you are describing. No whining, crying, more than willing to run....but at a stand, he would lift that leg up. The limp was only obvious at a walk. I ignored it for a couple days, thinking that if it were serious he wouldn't be so eager to take off running.......well, did I ever get an earful from the vet about how wrong my logic was. Best of luck, hope your little guy feels better soon.
Well vets need to get paid.

What did you end up doing and how did it turn out?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Could be nothing at all except a pulled muscle or ligament or could be Pano or the early signs of HD.Any chance of a small fracture in the toes or foot from being such a brat in the crate?
My first GSD was at a dog show, she was fine, when we got back home after the car drive, I let her out of the crate she was holding a leg up. Watched it for a couple of days to see if it would go away. It didn't go away, took her into the vets, xrayed and found the nastiest set of hips you can imagine, one was even subluxated. She showed no signs of pain at all, nothing until she walked out of the crate holding the leg up. She was just under a year old, had FHO's done on both her hips in the following months.
If it doesn't clear up, I would probably think about a vet appointment, in case it is something other than Pano. Good luck
I've made a vet appointment, I'm sure it could be any of the above. I always assume the worst, my dogs always seem to have leg problems. Very sad.
 

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Well vets need to get paid.

What did you end up doing and how did it turn out?
Yes they do:D, he was actually very nice about it. He just made sure I understood that especially with this breed they can be stoic. The fact that he would still chase did not speak to him feeling well, but rather his inborn drive and aim to please me.

At the time our vet recommended conservative treatment. We did about 7 weeks of bed rest, meds, alternate heat/ice, only outside on leash to potty etc. I trusted that would be the best route. After the weeks of bedrest, we slowly started giving him more freedom while still keeping him at a slower pace. However w/in 2 months he tore the other one extremely bad....at that time we decided to consult a surgeon for a 2nd opinion. Long story short, the surgeon said we should have been advised to do surgery on the first one. Since we didn't, it didn't heal correctly, arthritis was already setting in and for those and other reasons he was not a candidate for surgery on either knee. So 5 years later, I have a dog that I couldn't love more who has debilitating arthritis in both knees and is running out of pain management options quicker than I would like, while I am riddled with guilt for not getting a 2nd opinion the first time around.

Sorry that was so long and rambled....now I'm crying:cry: I guess if you find yourself in that position and the vet thinks it's a torn cruciate, please save yourself and your buddy a lot of pain and get more than one opinion on treatment.
 

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No swelling or heat, seems to sit fine.

And understood, I get too defensive. These dogs are everything to me.
No worries :) I understand the feeling for sure... the last thing we want to do is fail our pups. I just hope you get good news and are able to keep him relaxed for long enough for everything to heal up.

We have had bad leg issues with our girl too but I don't want to stress you out with more scary ideas of what could be wrong... fingers crossed for just a tweak!!
 
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