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funny gait

Beetlecat
April 19th, 2005, 05:50 PM
My dog's gait doesn't seem right. I'm still not sure what's wrong with it but I'm sure it's not quite proper.

The first thing I noticed was when we were out walking on an off leash trail. He was a bit in front of me and I noticed that he seemed to almost be knocking the paws of his hind legs together when he moved. I couldn't see well enough to say if they were actually brushing up against each other, but he was certainly walking on his back legs closer than the space between his hips would leave you to believe.

I'm thinking of getting the sidewalk wet and then walking him across it, so I can hopefully see what his track looks like.

And just today when we went rollerblading, he was walking with his ass end hung over to the side. So rather than walking by stepping *into* the track of his front feet, he was putting his back feet *in between* the tracks of the front feet.

I know he sometimes walked crooked like that as a pup, because when I walked him on a long lead, it sometimes dangled and he walked crooked so he didn't step on it. Now I wondering if he's walking crooked so that I don't hit him with my rollerblades.

In any case, do you think walking crooked will hurt him in the long run?

I already run him a far bit on cement, which I don't like to do, but without a car, rollerblading is the only way to get anywhere for us, a regular walk wouldn't be sufficient. I do try to keep him at a fast walk or lower.

I'm a little worried about hip displaytia since Ky is an active breed, and constant pain when moving wouldn't be very fun (or very good) for him.

He also likes to lay down 'frog legged' on his belly with his back legs sprawled out, when he's chewing.

coppperbelle
April 19th, 2005, 07:34 PM
I am not familiar what kind of dog you have or the age of it. If you are concerned and I believe you are make an appointment with your vet. Hopefully it is nothing however remember that dogs have a high threshold for pain and although he does not appear to be in pain, he may be. Making him run beside you may make the situation worse.

Safyre
April 19th, 2005, 09:43 PM
Take him to the vet.
There are people that would say that his hips are fine because he can do the frog legs thing, but thats just not correct.
if his gait is off, or different in some way, MAKE AN APPOINTMENT WITH THE VET. Ask the vet to watch the dog walk, and ask if an xray would be apporpriate.

SnowDancer
April 20th, 2005, 10:59 AM
I don't know what kind of dog your pup is. If he were a Dachshund I would immediately say dog is starting to paralyze due to Dachshund disc disease. Hip dysplasia would be my second guess. I would waste absolutely no time. Call your vet and describe the symptoms. I am sure they will tell you to get there fast. I am really hoping your dog is not a Dachshund.

mona_b
April 20th, 2005, 11:02 AM
PLEASE get him to a vet so he can get xrayed.This needs to be done.Do not put it off.

raingirl
April 20th, 2005, 11:06 AM
so the frog leg thing is a bad thing?? Odin does it and even did it at the vet office, and they said that was great because it meant he had good hips flexible hips.

mona_b
April 20th, 2005, 11:10 AM
No it's not a bad thing....Yukon always layed that way.Tron doesn't lay that wa anymore cause of his touch of arthritis.Other then that the his were great.And we all know GSD's are prone to hip problems.

Safyre
April 20th, 2005, 09:09 PM
Sorry if I was unclear
Frog Legs is not good or bad, just a normal behaviour for dogs.
i had heard that it was GOOD if they could do that, as it meant good hips, but thats not always true, They can still do the frog legs even with bad hips.

WeeZee
April 25th, 2005, 06:27 PM
Please don't delay in taking your dog to the vet for xrays. She will know by a good feel if your pooch has a hip issue, and will most likely suggest xrays (the only way I know of is under anesthesia)
You need to know sooner than later what condition your dog is in. If you do find she has a condition like hip dis, how she is exercised etc. is knowledge you need know now.

It is not always obvious at first - they sure don't react to pain like we do - they accommodate.

but if there is something wrong - and we all sure hope that there is not - it is best to know very early so that adjustments to excercise (maybe supplements & meds) can help keep your pooch happy, heathly and active.

Beetlecat
April 25th, 2005, 07:23 PM
I know several of you say to take him to a vet, but I've decided that his weird gait is actually caused simply by a pair of bowed back legs that he's (apparently) had for quite a while, and I just never noticed.

Having bow legs is not vet worthy, since there's nothing they can do about it anyways. Perhaps they will straighten as he matures. If not, that's fine. He can still run and jump.

And, after some reasearch, I've found that he runs crooked sometimes (called crabbing) because his legs are too long for his body. (or his body is too short for his legs) Once again, this is nothing a vet can fix.

His parents have no history of hip dysplatia (so far) so there has been no precedent set. If he ever shows pain or lameness, I'll take him in, but right now he's hale and healthy and I do not believe it is necessary.

DogueLover
April 26th, 2005, 08:33 AM
I had C`Zarr checked out when we first got him because he looked cow hocked to me and I was concerned about hip dysplasia. He is only 18 mos old and he has grown even since we got him. He also gets a lot more exercise now and that has helped him to straighten out his back legs. Our vet told me that he needed to have a lot of exercise so that he would build muscle tone to hold up that humongous frame of his. ( He weighs 160 now!) .
Keep an eye on it and if he is still young and growing just watch that he does straighten out. I have seen other dogs that have this problem but most of them do it as puppies, and eventually outgrow it. ( they remind me of lanky awkward teenage boys. )
Here is a pic of Zarr after our walk, as you can see he gets quite tuckered out. :)

Beetlecat
April 26th, 2005, 09:51 AM
Cute boy :D

What's a little confusing to me is how, when standing, Ky's legs are (to my eye) straight. It's only whe he's running that he brings them closer together... perhaps it's simply another gait compensation for long legs/short body.

He's not 'bunny hopping' so I still don't think it's Dysplasia, but I'm going to continue to research and keep an eye on him. This thursday I will be able to get someone else to walk/run him around so I can get a better look at different angles.

Unfortunatly, I don't have a regular vet and I don't think most vets take kindly to someone walking in and asking for a free consultation without bringing the dog, otherwise I'd ask a vet's opinion. But at this point I simply can't afford a vet to charge 100 bucks just to look at him and tell me he'll need furthur testing. Perhaps I could research the prices, and then just ask for x-rays and nothing else.