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Hi! I'm new here, I own an 8 month old white German Shepherd named Stig. He was an owner surrender, they bought him as a baby puppy and didn't realize he was going to be so big, so they turned him over to a local rescue, where we recently adopted him. We lost a 13 year old Queensland this summer and my remaining Golden Retriever was so lonely without her friend, so we got a buddy for her. She ignored him for the first few days but now they are best buds.

First, a question:
Do these big dogs get growing pains? Stig developed a limp over the last couple days, on his right front paw, but I can't find anything wrong with it. Nothing is cut or tender to the touch on his paw or leg, he still runs around and plays, just limps. Occasionally he whines about it but he won't just lay down and rest. He looks pitiful all limpy. But I can't afford a bunch of expensive X-rays and tests right this second, especially if growing pains or something are common. Obviously I'll take him to the vet if it persists. But I'm new to the breed so I thought I'd ask here first.

He's 8 months and was 75 pounds at his 7 month vet appt. when he was neutered.
 

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Welcome to the forum. I don't recall any growing pains, but it's not uncommon at all for puppies to tweak a joint or bruise a paw pad and favor it for a day or two. If it lasts longer than that, or doesn't seem to improve I would definitely take his to a vet.
 

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It could be panosteitis (pano). However, they diagnose that by ruling out other stuff, plus it can range in severity so you might want to get a prescription for Rimadyl or something to have on hand during flares. So unfortunately I think you do need to take him to the vet and shell out for some X-rays.
 

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Definitely will take him to the vet for X-rays if needed! Just hate rushing things to be told, no big deal, if it's something that will clear up quickly on its own. It's only been about 2 days so far. But I hate to see him in pain!
 

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He's getting worse already. Now one of his back legs seem to be hurting him. :( Looks like we're making a vet appt first thing in the morning. And the silly boy won't stop following me around the house and rest! I'm going to have to just crate him so he'll stay off it. Eesh. How long does this pano thing last?
 

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In addition to pano (which is what came to mind first) it could be Lyme disease. I would have a full tick panel run, just to make sure.
 

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Sorry to hear he's getting worse, and unfortunately that does sound more like pano. Please update when you find out more.
 

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Most common scenario is that Pano goes away at sexual maturity, around 16 months; but it has been known to last into middle age in some cases, up to 4-6 yrs. Sorry! We'll keep hoping for the best...
 

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He's getting worse already. Now one of his back legs seem to be hurting him. :( Looks like we're making a vet appt first thing in the morning. And the silly boy won't stop following me around the house and rest! I'm going to have to just crate him so he'll stay off it. Eesh. How long does this pano thing last?
It can depend. Pano is self limiting and my vet told me that most cases drop off by age 2. It just depends on the dog (not helpful, I know).

GypsyGhost's suggestion of a tick panel is a good idea also. Especially because pano is diagnosed in part by ruling other stuff out.
 

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We have an appt for Wed morning, which is the earliest I could get since he's a new patient for our vet. He's on flea/tick preventative so hopefully Lyme is ruled out quickly. We live in Central Ca and Lyme isn't super common in our area. And it changes legs, though always seems to be the front left more often than the others. But it does switch and it ranges in severity. The rescue we got him from suggested asprin, and massaging it in the meantime. It doesn't seem to hurt enough to limit his playfulness and activity, not sure if that's a good thing or not. ?
 

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Glad to hear he's feeling better!
 

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Here are things that can help with pano (which is bone inflammation):

-Vitamin C (a holistic vet years ago told me to use the Ester-C brand, but I'm not sure whether it matters)

-fish oil (BIG dose -- more than just a capsule a day...more like 2 per meal at least--a therapeutic dose for anti-inflammatory effect)

-MSM (or a Glucosamine/Chondroitin/MSM combo human-grade pill)

When we did all of these things we cut the severity and duration of each leg's episode. That's about the best you can hope for, but it eliminated the need for pain meds. It takes about a week for this stuff to "load."

This is all anecdotal though -- no research on any of it with pano (but some individually on inflammation). I haven't tried turmeric, but it's another anti-inflammatory that has been in the back of my mind as potentially useful.

Food: be sure the pup is on a good large-breed puppy food!
 
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