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Old August 25th, 2009, 04:47 PM
mysherry mysherry is offline
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Hip Dysplasia in 1 year old Shih-Tzu

Hi, I just got a 1 year old Shih-Tzu from what now I know is a puppy mill.

He has lots of behavior issues, he's not socialized at all - I can barely pet him (although he follows me everywhere), he growls at my children, snaps at other dogs and is not house trained.
He doesn't even know how to walk on a leash.

I was ready to deal with that by providing lots of love and training but today when I took him for a vet check I found out he has hip dysplasia and requires a surgery immediately.
Did anyone else was in a similar situation? Was the surgery successful? Can the dog live a normal life (and keep up with some young children who like to run and play) after such a surgery?

Any input will be appreciated!
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Old August 25th, 2009, 05:38 PM
joeysmama joeysmama is offline
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I don't have any advice regarding the hip dysplasia but I can tell you that your dog's personality sounds very much like Joey's. He was a 2 year old rescue when we got him. He'd been found abandoned, uncollared, and unkempt on the FDR Drive in New York City. From the looks of him, googly eye, very bad bite, rough coat etc. he was most likely a puppy mill dog at one time.

He was insecure and followed me everywhere but he wasn't the kind of dog who looked to be pet, except in greeting when anyone visited. That was also the only time he was friendly to anyone other than me. If anyone tried to pet him too quickly he would startle and try to bite. He didn't just growl, he "went gremlin". I loved him to pieces and spent the 5 years we had him being very very very very careful that he was never put in a situation where he might bite someone. Well except for my husband. LOL! Poor Tom, he was always trying to bite Tom, who also loved him very much and protected him. We knew he had issues that weren't his fault and our kids were well into their teens by then.

I don't believe in rehoming dogs except in the most extreme circumstances, the death of the owner etc.

I would advise you to think carefully though about the situation with your dog and your children. He can't help being who he is so maybe you need to find a good trainer who can help assure you that you won't have a bad situation on your hands.

FYI...we didn't re-home Joey after those 5 years. God did.:sad:
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Old August 25th, 2009, 05:40 PM
joeysmama joeysmama is offline
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I meant to add that Joey was also a shih tzu, but in retrospect I wonder if there wasn't another breed in there. From what I now know about shih tzu's that's not the normal temperament. I think Lhasa Apso's are supposed to be more skittish than shih tzu's but who can say if an animal has been abused?
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Old August 25th, 2009, 05:41 PM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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What type of surgery are they proposing?

Is your dog symptomatic of the hip dysplasia? Is he limping, having trouble getting up or getting down, painful when walking? If he's not symptomatic, you can wait on the surgery. Arthritic changes accumulate with time, but generally anything as radical as surgery is not recommended unless the dog is symptomatic--some dysplastic dogs never show symptoms and never require surgery.

If surgery is done, yes the dog can live a normal and active life afterward. We inherited a 5-yr-old springer spaniel who was dysplastic (we knew of the problem before we inherited her) and had both her hips replaced. We have pics of her at age 11 chasing our 11-wk-old setter puppy around in the yard. She died just short of her 15th birthday of unrelated causes. The surgery, although expensive, was the best thing in the world for her
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Old August 25th, 2009, 07:07 PM
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MyBirdIsEvil MyBirdIsEvil is offline
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I would get a 2nd opinion. Not sure why the vet is recommending surgery if the dog isn't showing any symptoms other than an indication on x-rays (he WAS x-rayed right? if not that's a red flag towards that vet...). Also some vets aren't very good at reading x-rays and finding hip dysplasia, you can get false results, so you might actually want to have an orthopedic specialist look at some x-rays instead. If the dog isn't positioned properly during x-ray it can look like there's malformation where it's actually normal if the vet isn't very good at reading the x-rays. BTW 1 yr old is often too young to know for sure there's hip dysplasia unless it's severe, in which case you'd likely notice your dog doesn't walk right. Generally dogs aren't 100% diagnosed until 2 yrs old.
Again, like I said, if there weren't x-rays done (you didn't mention any, which i found odd...usually vets will x-ray and then point out to you the problems), you definitely need another vet.

My MIL has a collie that we bought and raised until a couple of yrs old and we knew he had hip dysplasia since we got him, x-rays showed pretty severe malformation. He still shows no signs of pain, doesn't limp or anything, just walks kind of stiff-legged because the hips don't rotate normally. There's no reason to operate unless it's causing the dog issues.
Small dogs often don't have pain or negative symptoms with hip dysplasia because there's not a lot of weight being put on the joints.

What you can do is prevent them from putting strain on their hips. Don't let them lay on hard surfaces or walk/run on slippery surfaces. Make sure you don't let them get overweight. Don't let them do strenuous activities too much that will strain the hips.

Surgery is usually a last resort for when the dog is actually in pain and can't function normally, not just a correction for the malformation itself when it's not causing issues.
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Old August 25th, 2009, 07:21 PM
t.pettet t.pettet is offline
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Hip Dysplasia

One of my poms (Tiffy) who is now 8 was from a mill out of Cardinal, Ont. She was diagnosed shortly after she came to me to foster. At 7 mos she had both hips done because she was limping and had problems manouvering stairs. The vet diagnosed a genetic fault from in-breeding, even wrote a scathing letter to the breeder and the SPCA reporting the kennel. Tiff does fairly well walking but tends to not stretch her back legs in the normal long gait of running, she keeps both back legs together and uses them simultaneously. We did alot of aqua therapy (up to 3 times a day) for the first 3 weeks after surgery and that definitely helped her heal quickly. For a dog born with the condition and at her present age she seems pain free and quite mobile.
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Old September 2nd, 2009, 04:07 AM
mttdal1 mttdal1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysherry View Post
Hi, I just got a 1 year old Shih-Tzu from what now I know is a puppy mill.

He has lots of behavior issues, he's not socialized at all - I can barely pet him (although he follows me everywhere), he growls at my children, snaps at other dogs and is not house trained.
He doesn't even know how to walk on a leash.

I was ready to deal with that by providing lots of love and training but today when I took him for a vet check I found out he has hip dysplasia and requires a surgery immediately.
Did anyone else was in a similar situation? Was the surgery successful? Can the dog live a normal life (and keep up with some young children who like to run and play) after such a surgery?

Any input will be appreciated!
Hi - I feel for you and the situation you and your dog is in. I rescued 2 Shih Tzu's and being that they were from a puppy mill originally they were in-bred to try and produce the smallest dog possible without regard to their well being. My smallest one @ the age of 3 displayed early signs, I was able to avoid a hip replacement surgery on her as my vet carved space out of her femur, she is doing very well now. From what I understand catching it early prevented her from having to have a the more extensive replacement. talk to your vet and see if he recommends anti inflammatory meds or some glucosomine in the dogs diet if you have to wait to have any surgery done. It helped my lil girl quite a bit.
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Old September 2nd, 2009, 08:56 PM
mysherry mysherry is offline
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Thank you

I wish to thank everyone for their response.
I will have x-rays taken to know exactly what the problem is and what we should do.

I know that thre is a problem since the hips popped during the vet's examination, and the dog walks funny.

I will keep you posted after the x-rays.

What I wanted to know is if after a surgery, the dog requires any medications for the rest of his life, and if he will be able to live an active life (keeping up with my young kids).
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Old September 2nd, 2009, 09:18 PM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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If the surgery goes well, the fix is a physical one and no follow-up meds are required. However, you might still opt to give the dog a chondroitin/glucosamine supplement to mitigate any arthritic changes that might still occur after the surgery. Our springer was so much more active after getting her dysplastic hips totally replaced that 6 years later she was playing with our new puppy by chasing him around the backyard. There are a number of different surgical routes that can be taken--the vet can tell you which would be most appropriate for your dog if it becomes necessary.

But I'd keep in mind two things--first, use an orthopedic surgeon with lots of experience with hip dysplasia and second, be prepared for a fairly long recovery period of restricted activity and regulated exercise. Following the surgeons post-op directions to the letter is critical to a successful outcome.

Good luck with your dog, mysherry!
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