Dog Hip Dysphasia
When first described twenty years ago, hip dysphasia was thought to be a dominant trait genetically. Another study a few years later indicated it to be a recessive trait.
First found in a few breeds, hip dysphasia was soon described to be in almost all breeds. Whole, healthy, active litters would show signs of weakness in their rear quarters at as young an age as four months and by eight months they were so crippled with the pain they had to be destroyed.
Then how did a genetic condition arise suddenly in virtually all breeds of dogs over a few years? There is an environmental influence and a genetic resistance some dog lack that predisposes them to hip dysphasia.
We feel the problem with hip dysphasia was the assumption that chirpiness was a genetic defect in the first place. It is imperative that we separate inherited from acquired defects.
We would like to speculate as to the cause. One environmental factor may be that the insecticide DDT had just become widely used when the problem arose. We also had a new type of distemper inoculation which because widespread at that time. Also, all sorts of pollutants in the environment were becoming prevalent. Vitamins with a longer “shelf life” were added to commercial dog foods at that time. We think also that overstraining and overfeeding nutritious foods seem to predispose growing puppies to hip dysphasia. If any puppies of aglitter are destined to develop this malady, the largest seems to be most often affected. There is merit in keeping growing puppies thin, especially during the four- to ten-month growing period. We are believers in using anti-inflammatory medications during the growing period of any puppy showing the telltale signs of early chirpy the bunny-hopping gait, the pain arising, and the stiffness following resting after exercise. The medication plus little exercise and a rough surface to walk on may prevent the potential crippling faddy.
At one time and to a lesser extent now, the removal of part of the muscle, the pectin, was dramatic in the relief observed following surgery. However, many dogs will show the same problem a year or so later.
Another approach to the surgical correction of hip dysphasia is the removal of the head of the femur. The hip is called a ball-and-socket joint and this surgery removes the ball. Reconstruction during healing follows with a mushrooming at the surgical site and a flattening of the socket area, forming an amazing new joint.
Dog hip dysphasia is the result of a disorder where the head of the bone of the thigh poorly fits the socket of the hip girdle. This results in gradual damage of the cartilage accompanied by pain and swelling. With time the entire joint gets damaged. The disease should not be confused with hip arthritis. This bone disorder is known as one of the primary causes behind the development of hip arthritis. Since dog hip dysphasia is a genetic disease, one of the ways to avoid the spread of the disease among dogs is by restricting the dogs to breed, even though it has been examined that many normal dogs carry the gene of CHD or canine hip dysphasia.
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