As the owner of a small Chihuahua breed of dog, you would never think it could fall victim to hip problems, known as hip dysplasia. This condition is unfortunately common in many larger dog breeds but the Chihuahua is also prone to hip and knee problems. As the owner of three Chihuahuas currently and a few that have gone on before us, I am privileged to say that none of my dogs have suffered from this condition.
Hip problems (hip dysplasia) is a very painful and crippling disease which weakens your dog’s hip. Hip dysplasia (HD) is due to abnormal development of the hip joint and can be mild and crippling or very severe and arthritic. It is more common, not only in larger dogs, but older dogs as well, though some puppies under 6 months developed this disease due to genetics.
HD in your Chihuahua is caused by the pelvic bone and the femur joint. When the collective tissue which cushions and lubricates the joint grows excessively, HD develops. Most times, HD in Chihuahuas is a result of genetics as well as environmental such as diet, weight gain and rate of growth.
Some of the signs that your Chihuahua is experiencing hip problems are lameness in the back legs, unsteady walk, and difficulty getting up or lying down, doesn’t want to run, jump or play. If you notice any change in behaviors of your dog, call your veterinarian immediately and give him a full history of the symptoms you have noticed.
In diagnosing your Chihuahua, your veterinarian will study his gait as he moves around. He will also move your dog’s hip joint to feel the range of motion; he will be listening for a clicking sound of the hip joint popping out and a grating sound of bone rubbing on bone which indicates cartilage loss. X-rays will be taken to confirm degree of hip dysplasia and any arthritis.
Treatment will depend on your Chihuahua’s age, severity of the problem and financial considerations. Some treatments may involve weight loss, exercise and anti-inflammatory medication to ease the pain and inflammation around the hip joint. In more severe cases, surgery may be necessary. In very young dogs, there is available surgery which fuses the bones of the hip joint to correct the dysplasia. Other surgical procedures are the triple pelvic Osteotomy, a total hip replacement and a femoral head Osteotomy. Depending on the condition of your Chihuahua with hip problems, your vet can help you with the best treatment option for your dog’s needs. These surgeries will provide your dog a better quality of life with great mobility and alleviated pain.
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For Vet assistance in the Rockford area, you can check out – http://www.rockfordvetclinics.com/, http://bellwoodvets.com/, http://www.petswelcome.com/illinois/rockford/veterinarians.html
For all your pets needs in Rockford, go to your local PETCO – 6305 East State Street, Rockford, IL 61108, (815) 229-0184 – http://www.petco.com/ or your local PETSMART – 6320 East State Street, Rockford, IL 61108, (815) 397-7880 – http://stores.petsmart.com/result-details.php?store=493 – PETLAND, (815) 332-4200 – www.petland.com/
For all your grooming needs of your small sized dogs near the Rockford area, just write to Pup-E-Luv Grooming at [email protected] with any questions and appointments.