Hip Dysplasia In Dogs: A Complete Guide For Labradors
Labrador Retrievers are known for their loyalty and love of humans. They have been bred to work hard and provide unconditional love. These traits make them ideal companions for families. However, some dogs do not perform well under stress or when they are left alone too much.
Some dogs develop health issues such as hip dysplasia which causes pain and difficulty walking. Other dogs develop hip dysplasia due to other factors like genetics, diet, exercise habits and even environmental conditions.
Hip Dysplasia In Dogs: A Complete Guide For Labradors
The most common cause of hip dysplasia in dogs is over activity. Many times owners don’t realize that their dog is overexerting himself or herself because they think it’s just normal for a labrador retriever. When your dog does get into trouble, you need to take action immediately. If you aren’t sure what to do, then consult a veterinarian first.
How Can I Prevent My Dog From Developing Hip Dysplasia?
Hip dysplasia in dogs is preventable. You can start by feeding your dog a good quality diet and give him or her ample time to exercise. Also, there are hip dysplasia vitamins you can give your dog to strengthen his or her bones. You should also avoid allowing your dog to jump off of high places. These precautions can greatly reduce the risk of your dog developing hip dysplasia.
How Can I Tell If My Dog Is Developing Hip Dysplasia?
The most common symptom of hip dysplasia is difficulty walking. You may also notice your dog has trouble getting up after lying down or laying down. There may be a noticeable dip at the top of the hips as well. Your dog may experience severe pain when attempting to walk and even a slight limp.
How Do I Know If My Dog Needs A Vet Or Surgery?
You should always seek out the assistance of a veterinarian if you notice any of these symptoms. A veterinarian will examine your dog to ensure that hip dysplasia is the cause of the symptoms. A veterinarian can also advise you on how to treat the disease and prevent it from getting worse. If your dog needs surgery, then a veterinarian will be able to perform the operation. Your dog will need to stay in the hospital for a few days before he or she can return home.
What Is The Recovery Time For A Dog After Surgery?
After receiving surgery for hip dysplasia, your dog will need time to recover. Your veterinarian may put your dog on restrictions. This means a restricted diet and limited activity for a period of time. This is necessary to ensure your dog’s health. During this time, it is important that you monitor your dog’s pain levels and mobility. If you notice any problems, contact your veterinarian immediately.
What If My Dog’s Pain Is Not Resolved?
If your dog is in a great deal of pain, you may want to try giving him or her medication. Do not give your dog aspirin because this can be toxic to dogs. Ask your veterinarian which pain medication is right for your dog.
Your dog will need to stay on his pain medication for the rest of its life. In some severe cases, your veterinarian may recommend a diet specifically formulated for dogs with hip dysplasia. This will include glucosamine and chondroitin which may help to ease the pain of the arthritis often associated with hip dysplasia.
Hip dysplasia in dogs is a painful condition that can greatly impact the quality of life for your dog. It’s important to monitor your dog and seek out treatment as soon as symptoms appear. With the proper hip dysplasia treatment, your dog should be able to live a long and healthy life.
Labrador Health Problems
One of the most famous dog breeds in the world, the Labrador Retriever is native to Canada and loves water. Labradors are medium sized dogs with an incredibly sweet demeanor and a friendly personality, but as with all breeds, they’re not perfect. As designer dogs, Labradors’ traits are based on those of other breeds, and as such, they can have any variety of health problems their ancestors might suffer from.
Labrador Retriever puppies are extremely adorable, and their faces do not really change all that much as they grow. They always have the big, blocky head that gives way to a shorter snout than their father, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever. The eyes are either a brilliant green or yellow, and the tail is thick and powerful and sticks right out the back. The paws are also big, and Labradors typically have webbed feet that make them excellent swimmers.
The coat of a Labrador is short and smooth, and comes in black, yellow or chocolate colors.
As they age, their ears will rise slightly, and they will gain a few wrinkles in the face. Their jowls will develop, giving them a bit of a cheeky look. Their noses will also get a little darker as they age. Other than these minor changes, they will stay the same cute dogs they were when they were puppies.
Unfortunately, due to their origins as a hunting dog and their popularity as a pet, Labs are one of the most common pets in the world, so you’re sure to know someone with one – or to own one yourself. As such, the Lab is prone to some health problems that you should be aware of.
One of the most common health problems for Labradors is hip dysplasia, a problem where the socket of the hipbone, where the head of the thighbone connects, does not form properly. While it’s more common in large breeds due to their fast growth rate, any dog can be born with hip dysplasia. It can cause a lot of pain to your dog, and can even result in limited movement and a shorter lifespan.
Labrador Retrievers are especially prone to hip dysplasia due to their fast growth rate, and improper nutrition when they’re young can increase the chances of your puppy developing hip dysplasia. It’s possible for your veterinarian to identify hip dysplasia while your dog is still a puppy, and provide medication and treatment to help slow down the disease. Additionally, you can provide your dog with a healthy diet and limited exercise to help as well.
Labrador Retrievers are prone to eye problems due to their origins as a hunting dog.
Due to the Labrador Retriever’s origins as a hunting dog, they’re prone to eye problems. Most commonly, Labs can suffer from cataracts, a condition where the lens of the eye begins to cloud over with a buildup of protein. This can make your dog’s eyesight much worse, and in some cases, they won’t be able to see a thing.
It’s also possible for your Lab to suffer from juvenile cataracts, which appears when they’re between 4 and 7 months old. The lens of the eye begins to cloud over, and your dog will start acting very tired all the time. It’s important to have this checked out by a veterinarian as soon as possible; it can be treated with surgery.
Another eye problem that Labs can suffer from is Retinal Atrophy, which makes them begin to lose vision in dark surroundings when they’re between one and three years old. The retina begins to deteriorate, making it harder for your dog to see at night or in dark areas, though they won’t be able to see things clearly during the day either. It’s a painless condition, but can make it difficult for your dog to get around.
Like humans, dogs can suffer from dysplasia in their elbows. Although less common than hip dysplasia, this problem can still happen to your dog. The term elbow dysplasia refers to when the growth plate found in a dog’s elbow doesn’t close properly, which prevents the bones in the arm from fitting together correctly. This can lead to limited movement and a great deal of pain for your dog.
It can be treated with surgery, but there’s a chance that your dog will suffer from the condition again in the future.
Elbow dysplasia is more common in large-breed dogs, but it can occasionally happen in small-breed dogs as well. It can be difficult to detect in dogs who are still young, but there are tests your veterinarian can do to check if your dog has elbow dysplasia or not.
There are certain factors that can cause your dog to develop an allergy, and you might be tempted to simply give them more medication to deal with the symptoms. However, this is a problem that can be fixed with a little bit of work on your behalf. If you begin to see your dog suffering from skin irritation, recurring ear infections, diarrhea or other gastrointestinal issues, it’s a sign that they’re allergic to something. You’ll need to work with your veterinarian to figure out what the allergen is so you can remove it from your dog’s life.
Your veterinarian might find that your dog has an intolerance to certain substances rather than an allergy. This means that their bodies simply don’t process certain substances very well. The symptoms will be similar to an allergy, but the treatment plan will be different.
Sadly, cancer affects all species, including our beloved dogs. There are two main types of cancer that can affect dogs: hemangiosarcoma and lymphoma. Both of these types of cancer are found in the blood or lymphatic systems, and often, there aren’t any symptoms at first. By the time your dog starts showing signs that something is wrong, the cancer has often spread to other parts of their body.
Treatment for cancer will depend on the type and location of the cancerous cells, but there’s often a lot of pain and discomfort involved. If your dog has to undergo chemotherapy or radiation treatment, they’re going to feel extremely sick for a while. You may also have to make the very difficult decision of whether or not to put your dog down if the cancer becomes too painful to treat or continues to spread throughout their body.
The best way to try to avoid cancer is to keep up with your dog’s annual veterinarian checkups. These checkups include a full inspection of your dog’s body and help your veterinarian spot potential health problems early on.
A Word About Unneutered Dogs
One more cause of health issues that pet owners should be aware of is the fact that many health issues can be avoided by having your pet neutered.
Sources & references used in this article:
- … of risk factors for degenerative joint disease associated with hip dysplasia in German Shepherd Dogs, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, and Rottweilers (GK Smith, PD Mayhew, AS Kapatkin… – Journal of the …, 2001 – Am Vet Med Assoc)
- … with the development of hip dysplasia as determined by radiographic evaluation in a prospective cohort of Newfoundlands, Labrador Retrievers, Leonbergers, and … (RI Krontveit, A Nødtvedt, BK Sævik… – American journal of …, 2012 – Am Vet Med Assoc)
- Incidence, risk factors, and heritability estimates of hind limb lameness caused by hip dysplasia in a birth cohort of boxers (MAE van Hagen, BJ Ducro, J Broek… – American journal of …, 2005 – Am Vet Med Assoc)
- Genomic prediction of traits related to canine hip dysplasia (E Sánchez-Molano, R Pong-Wong, DN Clements… – Frontiers in …, 2015 – frontiersin.org)