How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Andy Your Own Question
Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30043
Experience:  UC Davis graduate, emphasis in dermatology, internal medicine, pain management
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Andy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Our rescue dog, Buddy will yelp in pain once in awhile when

This answer was rated:

Our rescue dog, Buddy will yelp in pain once in awhile when nothing is around him, he is sitting still and there seems to be no reason. The he will limp toward us holding up his right rear leg and want to be comforted. What could be causing this? and what can we do for him.
Welcome! My name isXXXXX am a 2003 graduate, and currently a Medical Director of a veterinary hospital.

I am sorry to hear about this concern for Buddy.

The most common injuries for a hind leg include:
1. A partial or complete tear of the cruciate ligament in the knee (stifle).
Cruciate Ligament Tear
2. Exacerbation of degenerative joint disease (arthritis) in the knee or hips
Hip Arthritis
Note: Hip dysplasia is early age arthritis due to genetics, whereas, many older pets can have age-related arthritis changes in their joints due to age.
3. Any other soft tissue injury (tendon, muscle, ligament)
4. A fracture
5. A paw trauma, fractured nail, or a foreign body in the paw.

Now, some of these problems listed above are not issues that would be intermittent.
Something important is missing from the list.

For an intermittent limp, something that could cause a sudden onset of yelping, that can also quickly go away would be a medial patellar luxation. This is when the knee cap pops in/out of place.

So, definitely, this is worth a vet visit. if the vet is good at doing basic orthopedic examinations, they may be able to easily tell if the knee cap has laxity and is moving in/out.

That's where I would start. With just a good orthopedic examination, and see what a vet can find. What to do for him? No indication, yet, to start medication.

Start with a exam and maybe some x-rays.

I hope that information has been helpful.
Please remember to select Reply to Expert, if for any reason you need further clarification, have more questions, or were expecting a different type of answer. My goal is to try and provide you the best answer possible.
Dr. Andy

Dr. Andy and 3 other Dog Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you