Author Topic: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!  (Read 7053 times)

Offline Lula The Goofy Newfie

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Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« on: May 22, 2008, 02:00:46 am »
Hello all wonderful newfie/big dog owners!

Our darling Lula (the goofie newfie) just got diagnosed with hip dysplasia.  We love her to death and want to do all that is best for her.

She was limping on her left leg and we took her to our vet.  There was a 'sub' vet that proceeded to check the legs, turn her and pull the 'ok' leg, now we have sever problems with the leg that was showing no signs of problems. 

Our vet informed us that they will cradle a leg that is hurt, and alternate over time between both if they are inflicted.  None the less we are seeing problems in both hind legs.

We demanded a full xray and it was deemed she has HD in both.  We were shown the xray with no guidance (other than put her on glucosamine tablets) and told to seek out our university (local) vet for they are more trained in this area.

Feeling lost... we are concerned that our regular vet could not offer us any additional information.  I have full faith in the local university veterinary hospital, but would like to have a better understanding of what our options are before we go into the consultation.

Any advice is appreciated.  Should we have her on a certain food? Should she be taking certain supplements? Should her exercise routine follow a distinct regiment? Should we do full hip replacement (she is 11/mo old)? Should we seek out opinions aside from the local university? Should she have certain 'comforts' at home? Should her daily activities be different?

We were told to give her aspirin for pain but don't want to create internal problems or make her dependent on something.  After a HD diagnosis (and no direction from the vet) what should be our next steps?

Thank you for any and all guidance.  We love our goofie newfie like our child and appreciate any input.
Hills Sir and the Sundown and a Dog large as myself, that my Father bought me.

Emily Dickinson, responding to an acquaintance's question in a letter: "Who are your companions?" She went into reclusion when only 32, preferring her Newfoundland's company to that of humans.

Offline Lula The Goofy Newfie

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2008, 02:08:06 am »
I have looked in the health area of the site but there is so much information it is hard to weed through the best guidance, thank you again for anyone who replies to this post, it means the world to us! (and our goofie newfie)!
Hills Sir and the Sundown and a Dog large as myself, that my Father bought me.

Emily Dickinson, responding to an acquaintance's question in a letter: "Who are your companions?" She went into reclusion when only 32, preferring her Newfoundland's company to that of humans.

Offline patrick

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2008, 03:35:39 am »
Often this diagnosis is overwhelming but Hip dysplasia is simply arthritis of the hips and treatment is the same as for humans with arthritis.  Her weight should be kept on the lean side and exercise should be in moderation.  ASA and other anti-inflammatory should be only when needed not necessarily as a routine as they all have side effects and can be rough on the stomach.  Glucosamine can work wonders but usually takes a few weeks to see the results. It increases the joint fluid and helps the cartilage heal itself- it is the wear and tear of an arthritic joint that causes the pain and glucosamine helps keep this at a minimum. And even when she improves she should be kept on it throughout her lifetime.  It is less expensive to buy yourself than to buy from the vet.  You can obtain from Walmart for instance.  Minimum daily dose should be no less than 1500 mg.  Other things to help are fish oils, chondroitin, msm, hyaluronic acid, vit C- all are anti-inflammatories. Adequan injections by the vet is a form of super glucosamine as well- some will use that to get started then switch over to a maintenance dietary form. Many if not most dogs can be managed without surgery and lead relatively comfortable lives.

Offline AnnaCrew

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2008, 05:08:33 am »
Please, do not panic! 11 mo seems that it can be quite treatable. First thing is - weight loss - keep her on diet, she must be on lean side. (Less weight, less burden for joints).

Glukosamine and I believe also coated vitamin C helps a lot.

Third - no stairs, steps, jumping, long, tiring walks/runs. It still could be just growing thing and with limited/well balanced excercises and glukosamine treatment can be kept under control.

It is scary, but not really dramatic thing - I read once that there are breeds (like English bulldogs) where something like 80 % dogs have HD.

And there had been cases when completely healthy and sound elderly dog had been X-rayed and terrible HD discovered. So please, do not panick now and think positive!

http://ozolkalni.blogspot.com/
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Offline Winslow 151

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2008, 09:11:42 am »
Hi,

Sorry to hear of the HD Diagnosis, to me, it sounds like you are well on your way to managing the problem, just by taking an active part and researching what can be done!!

So Good for you and Lula!!  ;D

Here is a link to an all Newfie forum, there are plenty of knowledgabble people there on the subject of HD and Newfs and just newfs in general!.

http://www.newf.net/index.html
« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 09:12:11 am by Winslow 151 »
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Offline newfmom

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2008, 12:06:25 pm »
I'm sorry to hear about your baby being diagnosed with HD. I just joined the forum today and ironically the reason I did was to find some support for what we have been going through with our 6 month old newf Ashes. It's been a terribly rough adventure since we adopted her on December 29th 2007...to make a very long story short, she tore her ACL and avulsed her Tibia (lower leg bone) 2 days after we brought her home...4 and a half months and 4 surgeries later we thought we had finally corrected the knee, as good as could be expected, when she fell lame again on monday. Today she had more xrays done and her knee looks great (thank goodness!!!) but her hip is dysplaced in that leg now.

Our surgeon is an orthopedic specialist that is famous in Canada for her abilities and her recommendation s are the same as those listed above...Glucos amine every day and meticam as needed until she gets older and then possibly some injections if needed to try to avoid having to replace the hip. Our newf has been on the suppliments for a few months now for her knee and she certainly has had very quick recoverys from her surgerys so far.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 12:08:14 pm by newfmom »

Offline Newly Newfed

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2008, 12:19:20 pm »
I'm sorry to hear the news.  I haven't had any experience with HD, so I will leave advice on that to be given by those who know what they are talking about.

As for your doubts about your regular vet, I just went through that with my Newf, Sierra, and our vet about a month ago.  She has awful skin issues that make her scratch incessantly.  She pulls out tufts of hair at a time and is literally ripping her skin open.  I brought her to my vet 5 or 6 times and all she said is that she thinks it's an allergy to flea bites.  She offered nothing else and she offered no temporary solution for the itching.  She just sent her home to be miserable.  I decided I wanted a second opinion and felt like I was betraying my regular vet.  Turns out it was the best thing I could have done for my pup.  The second opinion vet, who is now my permanant vet, is absolutely wonderful.  She spent as much time just examining Sierra, as the old vet took for our ENTIRE visit.  She then sat down with me and offered options and took the time to make sure all of my questions and concerns were satisfied.  She seemed annoyed when she heard the old vet didn't do anything for Sierra and said she should never have been allowed to get as bad as she is.  She has also taken the effort to call me and see how the dog is doing.  $200.00 in meds later, Sierra is much better.  We still aren't sure what is causing the itching, but at least her symptoms are being treated and she's not suffering anymore.  Her itching is merely an annoyance to her now, and that buys us more time to get down to the root of the problem.  You can tell she is feeling better because instead of being preoccupied by itching, she now has time to get into lots and lots of trouble! ;D

The wonderful people here at BPO, assured me that even though I liked my vet, it was ok to get a second opinion if she isn't getting the job done.  And I think that by sending my dog home untreated and causing me to literally cry because I can't help her, she was NOT getting the job done.  I would get the second opinion.

I wish you the best of luck and the best of health for sweet Lula.  Sending hugs and slobbery kisses to all of you from me and Sierra.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 12:23:29 pm by Newly Newfed »
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Offline 2newfymom

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2008, 11:57:20 am »
There are a lot of great posts here, and I echo their advice:  Staying thin and getting MODERATE amounts of exercise is the best advice (HD or not!).  Swimming or water therapy works wonders, and they tend to love it.

Giving joint supplements should help a great deal.  Look into Cosiquin--we use it on our Newfs, and it has made a big difference, especially with Nell, who is approaching 11 and has very bad hips.

I know it sounds very scary, but I've had Newfs with HD live to be 13. We're very lucky that medicines and foods are so much better than they used to be.

I would also encourage you to keep looking for a vet you like and can trust.  We have always had 2 vets for our Newfs, one local for the "basics" like shots, emergencies, etc., but we also have our "preferred" vet for things like consultations about HD, arthritis, etc.
There is no better feeling than having a vet you feel good about, and nothing worse than not trusting someone with your fur-kids, so even if it means a longer drive, it can be well worth it.

Good luck, and keep us all posted!
Pat
Nell--almost 11
Annie--still a puppy at 8!
Molly, Sam, Katie: at the bridge, but always in my heart

Offline VdogLover

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #8 on: May 26, 2008, 10:46:06 pm »
Should we have her on a certain food?

One that does not make her fat!

Should we seek out opinions aside from the local university? Should we do full hip replacement (she is 11/mo old)?

If you are not happy with the answers from the local university, then yes. As far as hip replacement goes, I would follow the advice of the vets on this one only they can tell you if shes a good canidate for this surgery. Also only you know if you can afford such a surgery.

Have you contacted her breeder about this? Do you have a genetic health contract?
« Last Edit: May 26, 2008, 10:47:20 pm by VdogLover »

Offline sc.trojans

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2008, 01:04:09 pm »

You have already received a lot of good advice on living with HD - but much of this depends on how severe the HD is and so you really need to go to an orthpedic specialist and get the HD graded first to know what you are dealing with.  You just don't know right now. 

I know I sound preachy on this site by always mentioning this but I think it is important and worth it - everyone here with large and giant dogs should be getting hips and elbows orthopedically certified by PennHip or OFA.  Ideally, we are all getting our dogs from reputable breeders who are also providing us with multiple generations of orthepedic clearance evidence and not breeding those who are not clear both vertically and horizontally on the pedigree.  I know that many of us haven't however and so it is important to bring our young 2 -4 month old pup in for orthopedic "preliminary" evaluation since the earlier you catch something the better - if it is severe, several hip surgeries are only viable options when really young so all the more important.

It sounds like your University is where your orthopedic specialists are so going there is key to understand what you are dealing with.  There are wide varying degrees of HD and mild HD does not require surgery, but diet, supplement, physical therapy care is in order.  Severe HD requires surgical intervention.  Hence the need to know.  By the way, most all giant breed dogs have some form of displaysia - whether hip or elbow so just know it is very common to some degree.  I watch dogs with affected gaits everyday running around at parks, but their owners have no idea as long as their dogs are able to live a good quality of life.

Your dog is young, but on the verge of being outside the window of some of the treatments so definitely pursue asap.

I rescue Berners and most have HD that come here since they came from puppymills or backyward breeders.  The vast majority have an affected gait, but do not limp and therefore do not require any invasive procedure.  But if we have a limping dog, more often than not, they have required surgery - but not always.

Good luck and please don't blame your vet - vets are not equipped or skilled to diagnose HD or other chronic disease.  This is like going to your HMO for cancer treatment or knee replacement surgery.  You have to head straight for a specialist, in this case orthopedic, who has radiologists trained in reading x-rays and grading HD.  Vets who sit and manipulate the legs to determine ARE archaic however - HD cannot be diagnosed this way and I once had a vet wrench on a golden's hind legs and tell me she had HD (OFA and PennHip disagreed and she was sound) because she yelped.  If you saw what he was doing you would have yelped too.  It was absurd.  So we all have to realize the limits of vets and where to head for the specialist guidance we need.

SC Trojans
with Gracie and Skylar

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2008, 02:52:19 pm »
You never sound "preachy" to me sc.trojans. Or to anyone else, I'm sure.

You've offered some wonderful advice and insight & saved my Rainbow from an unnecessary TPLO Surgery a while back. She's fit as a fiddle.

I always look forward to reading your posts.

Jane

Offline patrick

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #11 on: May 30, 2008, 05:39:11 pm »
I have to tell of my experience in having a 4 month old pup orthopedically evaluated. I had bred this puppy.  2 days after she got her the new puppy owner had taken her on a 2 mile jog and of course the puppy came up lame.  She was taken to the newest and greatest ortho facility, anesthesized and intubated so they could get xrays with of course the proclamation that this 4 month old puppy was going to be dysplastic.  Therefore she of course HAD to immediately have bilateral TPLO surgery at the cost of many thousands of dollars and on and on and on.   
WTH???!!!  Well now got the desperately ill puppy back (she had tracheobronchi tis from being intubated)and was acutely ill for 10 days - it was not 100% that she would survive.. Xrays were obtained and were FINE.  Very nicely formed hip sockets and fairly tight especially for a rapidly growing pup.  The hip dysplasia the puppy supposedly had was actually a shoulder injury. HMMM opposite end of the body- how could that be?

With rest she got better, xrays were repeated as an adult and STILL fine, ZERO dysplasia; she is now 9 years old and still sound as a dollar.  However she continues to have mild problems with her trachea and we swear she is slightly brain damaged probably from lack of oxygen during intubation.  I am a FIRM believer that hip xrays are OK to do but should be done when the dog is through its major growth NOT as a 4 month old when it hasn't even completed 10% of its normal growth.  And if a prospective puppy owner tells me they are getting xrays at 4 months they will NOT get a puppy from me.

Although our dogs are prone to orthopedic problems, I disagree that 'most' giant breed dogs have elbow and/or hip dysplasia.  Perhaps if you are in rescue you are running across a large number of poorly bred dogs? But those of us that are breeding are working very hard to produce SOUND dogs so maybe we are just seeing a different part of the picture. 

Offline Lula The Goofy Newfie

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Re: Goofy Newfie w/ Hip Dysplasia/ Help! just diagnosed!
« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2008, 10:19:51 pm »
Hello All!

Thank you for you wonderful responses, it means so much to Pat , Lula our Goofie Newfie, and I! We have met with the ortho and Lula has been diagnosed (at this stage) with medium HD.  We have had her on glucosamine (etc.) tablets and the difference we have seen is mind numbing! She is like a brand new dog!

Our families both have pools/lakes and we have been working with her on swimming more.  She gets up better, walks stronger, and still loves everyone just as hard! We are not going to do replacements as of now for the results we have seen so far are incredible.  The supplements and change of food have done far more than we could have imagined.  But if it becomes too much too bear for our big sweetie we will do whatever it takes to provide her with an active life without pain.

Did anyone see the Oprah special on Puppy Mills? Not that all or any come from this but the influx of Newfoundland breedres online troubles me.  I just hope that BigPawsOnly can advertise itself, and reach out to all of the big dog lovers out there that need this source for options, opinions, and guidance.  I thank you all.

I thank all who have posted their opinions, stories, and fellow concern for this disorder.  Unfortunately our breeder has been of no help.  Although coming off shining in the beginning we have skepticism but it is what it is.  We love Lula and will do whatever we can for her.

We will frequent here for questions and opinions, (and hopefully provide more positive updates), to help all that battle with this disorder.

We will upload some pictures tomorrow that will show lula the goofie newfie basking in her new strength. 

Thank you again from the bottom of our hearts.

Love,

LULA, Erica & Pat
Hills Sir and the Sundown and a Dog large as myself, that my Father bought me.

Emily Dickinson, responding to an acquaintance's question in a letter: "Who are your companions?" She went into reclusion when only 32, preferring her Newfoundland's company to that of humans.