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Monday, April 30, 2018

Our Experience with Hip Dysplasia

Thank you for the well wishes for Fiona.  She is on the mend and doing quite well.  She has been running around the yard like crazy this past weekend as the weather has finally warmed up a bit and Fiona has decided to take advantage of it.  I swear, if you saw her, you'd never know she has hip dysplasia.  There is nothing better she loves to do than run.  She would've been the ultimate sled dog.  Sigh.  At least we got a couple good years of her sledding with her mom, Silver.  They were a good pair together.  How I wish I had video of them two sledding together.  Long before the times of GoPro's and such.  Or even a picture of them would be great.  They were my slow and steady girls.  Such a nice comfortable ride.  Steady pace.  So much fun for a beginning musher like myself.  The good ol' days.

And even though Silver had hip dysplasia as well, it never gave her any pain or problems.  And she really didn't pull until her later years, when she ran with her son, Zappa.   Another slow and steady runner.  And they ran beautiful together, especially when Silver did start pulling and taking some of the weight.  Silver still ran pain free and wasn't bothered by her hips issues.

But Fiona was a different story.  I notice she was bothered by her hips around the time she was 2 years old.  A few times sledding with her mom, regular chase games and it became obvious she was uncomfortable.  I gave her just regular pain meds, until the pain got so bad, we took her in for x-rays at age 3 to confirm, she had hip dysplsia,  Fiona was immediately put on a glucosamine supplement called:  Dasuquin with MSM.  Within a day, there was dramatic improvement, she was moving and eating again.  Dasuquin was our miracle for Fiona.  Not only was it helping with the pain, it cushioned the joints in her hip bone.  She's been on it now for 7 years, with no signs of stopping.  We just recently had x-rays done again and you can actually see between the hip bone and the leg bone a layer of cushion that wasn't there before.

When Fiona over does it, like running around the yard or I take her for too long of a walk and she needs pain and inflammation relief, the prescribes Melaxicam and seems to take care of pain.  This is how she is able to run around the yard at free will, one of the most beautiful sights to see.  Even if Zappa won't play with her, she runs FREE.

We've had three different dogs with hip dysplasia, Alex, Silver and Fiona. It's difficult at times, but with medication and management your dog can run free too.

I don't know why I went down this memory lane, but if it reaches you, know that hip dysplasia isn't the end of the world.

I wouldn't trade my three dogs for nothing and if I had to do over, I would do the same.

Don't let your dog and you be defined.


Peter said...

I've had three dogs with hip dysplasia and have kept them relatively pain free until the end when they could just not get up. My current 10 year old collie has shown signs of early dysplasia has been on dasuquin for a year now and is holding his own. We don't give up either.

KB said...

I'm so glad that Fiona is feeling better after her flareup. I had a Lab with hip dysplasia. We thought that she was doing well but she ended up hurting her spine because she was compensating for hip pain. She spent the last year of her life using a wheelchair but was still super super happy! She even ran on our trails in her wheelchair. Dogs' attitudes are the best!

Lavinia said...

It is interesting to know how you manage the hip dysplasia for Fiona and Alex and Silver in the past. I'm glad she can run around happily most of the time and I hope she will be able to for many years to come.