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Old January 5th, 2015, 06:16 PM
Teodor Teodor is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 1
young labrador elbow dysplasia

Hello,

I am writing you with the hope that I can find a solution for my dog as this forum has been recommended to me by a friend who I very much trust.

I have a 1,8 years old labrador retriever (his name is Cloud). A few weeks ago we went to x-ray in order to check for dysplasia (please see photos attached). The doctor told us that is seems he has elbow dysplasia/osteoarthritis to both of his legs (the right one being in a more advanced state). I tried getting some advises from other surgeons but I received a lot of contradictory opinions or they told me this is not their specialty.

What I would kindly ask from you is an advice about how serious the problem is and how we need to proceed; does he needs surgery or not (if so, when it will be a good time), what are our options and how much these options would cost.

Also, if possible I would like to know what are the chances that, after the surgery, the problems will reappear, at a later stage in life, given the fact that he is very young?

I am looking forward to your answer or a recommendation who to contact.

Thank you in advance and Best regards,
Teodor
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Old January 5th, 2015, 11:34 PM
MaxaLisa MaxaLisa is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: California, usa
Posts: 1,040
I'm sorry to hear about the problems that your dog is having

Last time I looked into "elbows", was a long time ago. Back then, there weren't good surgical options for elbow dysplasia like there are for the hips, I don't know if things have changed. It's definitely something I would want to do a lot of googling and seeing what type of experiences out there people are having. For a consult, I would go to a local university, if you have one close enough to you, I'm not sure what you have available where you live.

What I would do immediately though, is get him on an aggressive joint supplement program, which you may have to play with awhile to see what works. I like starting with a known quality product, like Cosequin (I don't know much about dasequin, their other main joint product), and use a loading dose. Then I would add a more whole food product, like one of the glycoflex's or the springtime products. Other helpful ingredients that aren't in the cosequin would include MSM, hyaluronic acid, etc. Working up to larger amounts of vitamin C (sodium ascorbate or ester C) is also said to help. For flair-ups in pain, where there is inflammation, I use cetyl myristoleate, but I don't like to use that on a regular basis after using a couple of bottles, if it can be helped.

My preference is to also use a chiropractor to make sure that all joints and skeletal structures stay in shape, but some aren't comfortable with that (www.avcadoctors.com).

There is an injectible, adequan, or cartrophen vet available in some places outside the US), that can help with joints, I don't know if it helps much for elbows.

All of the above help protect the health of the joint, and contribute to the health of the joint. Some dogs can live their lifetime on these supplements, with added care not to stress the joints, and maintaining moderate exercise. However, at some point, you might have to use some pain killers, which are not healthy for the joints, and I would do what I could to keep from using them on a regular basis as long as I could, and if you do use them, blood testing is needed to keep an eye on liver and kidney function, and I like to combine them with liver support supplements. As the dog ages, sometime owners will use acupuncture or chiropractic if they didn't use it before.

One thing I would never do is give the lyme vaccine, as it can cause damaging arthritis. I would provide a quality food, minimal vaccines.

I can't read xrays, particularly elbows, so I don't know how serious it is. I do know that it's heartbreaking when you have a young dog come down with serious joint issues that compromise their ability to get around. But if he hasn't been on any joint supplements, the chances are good he will have a good response.
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