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Dr. Andi
Dr. Andi, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 612
Experience:  I am skilled in small animal emergency, medicine, surgery, acupuncture and complementary medicine.
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What are common foot problems in Great Danes this is the issue

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What are common foot problems in Great Danes this is the issue I have come accross.The way it was explained is that the spacing between all of the bones in both front feet (it is worse on the left foot) are abnormal , rendering the support system of the feet unstable and cannot adequately support it's weight. It almost looks like the base of her leg rolls over her foot.

Have you ever heard of this?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Andi replied 6 years ago.
Hello,

How old is your dog?
Can you explain her foot problem a little more? Does it look like her carpus (essentially this wrist) is farther forward then her paw? Does she walk with her leg bowed in or out?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hi Dr. Andi! Thank you for your quick response. No I didn't notice anything wrong with her but I received a email from the girl that bought her saying this caught me off guard. Here is the email.

 

Hello Jeanna,

 

We went to the Vet yesterday for her follow up worming as you indicated in your paperwork. While we were there I asked them to look at her feet, her gait just looked a little off to me.
They had her walk across the room , the Dr. became very concerned, and decided to do an x-ray.

Their findings were very concerning. The way it was explained is that the spacing between all of the bones in both of her front feet (it is worse in her left foot) are abnormal , rendering the support system of the feet unstable and cannot adequately support her weight. It almost looks like the base of her leg rolls over her foot.

Two Veterinarians and an intern spent a great deal of time with Emma examining her. I asked over and over if this could have been caused by a traumatic event that we were not aware of happening. They responded that because the abnormality is so consistent between every bone on both feet and the fact that there is no dislocation, pain or swelling noted. that trauma is not the cause.

This is the current plan of treatment. Emma is confined to her crate for 1 week. They do not want her running and playing, or bearing weight on her front feet. We are even carrying her outside to use the bathroom, setting her down and picking her right up again. Emma is either in her crate or on our laps at all times. (She is loving the lap part). We take her back to the Vet Friday, depending on the findings, she will then be referred to an Orthopedic Surgeon.

Please know that while Emma is crate confined, she is with us 24/7. We put her crate where ever we are and when I am out doing child activities, Emma is with my Mom, who thank goodness lives next door.


Thanks for your help! Jeanna

Expert:  Dr. Andi replied 6 years ago.
Hi there,

I am not aware of any genetic predispositions in Great Danes that would cause bone abnormalities. I also just researched this on our online database, VIN, and found nothing.

Depending on how old she is, she can develop bone pain from swelling of her growth plates. However, this shouldn't cause her bones to be abnormally spaced. I honestly can't say what this is without looking at the xrays. Also, sometimes, they can have one side of the leg grow faster than the other (this is more common in large dogs) and this would cause her gate to be abnormal. I am not aware that this is genetic, but an orthopedic surgeon would be able to better diagnose this. Some dogs do outgrow this with age, but sometimes they need surgey to correct the inequality of growing. Another possibility is that she has a tendon contracture (this is something foals can get), and this can potentially be cured with a special spling/booty for some weeks.

I would encourage these owners to have an orthopedic surgeon evaluate her and the xrays for a definitive answer. That way, you will also know if it is just an odd-ball, temporary issue or if it might be something genetic and more serious (however, I think that is less likely).

I hope this gives you some direction. Thanks for being such a responsible breeder!
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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for all of your help! By the way she is 8 week old on Wednesday I still have one of her litter mates and everything seems fine with her.