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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16211
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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I have a 5 yr old Boxer who hurt her Left Rear leg while

Customer Question

I have a 5 yr old Boxer who hurt her Left Rear leg while jumping in the yard an hr ago. She is limping & panting heavily. Doesn't want to walk nor lie down. WHAT CAN I DO UNTIL I CAN CALL HER VET IN THE MORNING?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your situation, and wanted to help.
Now I am very sorry to hear that Starr has injured herself. As long as she has not suffered a severe trauma and can put that leg down (for even a moment), then we can try to soothe her signs until her vet opens. That said, if she cannot put any weight on the leg at all and it looks to be hanging just under her body and shorter then usual; then that would suggest a hip dislocation and would be an emergency that needs seeing (since we'd need to get the femur back in the hip socket).
Otherwise, if we can rule that out, our main concerns will be muscle strain/sprain, ligament (ie cruciate) damage or rupture, or a possible fracture (which are only emergencies when the bone is sticking out through the skin).
In any case, for the moment, our first point of call (which I am glad to see you are addressing already) is strict rest. Therefore, we don't want her jumping on/off furniture, using stairs or doing anything that would exacerbate this strain. Furthermore, for the next few days, we'd want to rest her and just offer a few short lead walks in the garden to do her business and then back to resting. If she is weak on her back end, you can use a towel as a sling (just sling it under her belly and just in front of her hind legs) to help her maneuver as needed.
As well, as long as she is amenable, you can also warm compress her sore leg. This can be done a few times daily to just relax the muscles, soothe the soreness and help reduce any swelling. Just to note, you can make a safe warmer for use as a warm compress by filling a clean sock 2/3rds full with uncooked white rice. Tie it closed and microwave (approx 1-1.5 min). Before use, do make sure to shake to allow the heat to distribute before using as a compress. (If it cools, you can re-warm as required).
Finally, if you feel that she is very sore and we have no severe trauma that could have caused internal bleeding, you can consider offering her a low dose of buffered aspirin. Of course, this can only be used as long as she is on no other anti-inflammatories. This is a mild pain relief that we can use in dogs in these situations. Of course, if she is in severe pain, then we'd prefer a dog specific anti-inflammatory like Rimadyl, Previcox, Metacam, or Onsior from her vet. Still, you can read more about using aspirin and the dose for her size @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/acetylsalicylic-acid-aspirin And if you do give aspirin, remember to give it with or after food and consider pre-treating with an antacid (ie Pepcid, Zantac).
Overall, based on your description, we do need to tread with care. Still, you are on the right track for first aid at the moment. And as long as there is no bone sticking out or hints of dislocation, then we can use the above to try to keep her comfortable until her vet is open and can check what harm she has caused herself.
I hope this information is helpful.
If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!
All the best, *****