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Category: Dog Veterinary
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My 2 yr old Bernese Mtn dog lands on his front feet pasterns.

Customer Question

My 2 yr old Bernese Mtn dog lands on his front feet pasterns. Are there exercises that can i do with him at home to help improve this?
Thank you!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  brisadog replied 2 years ago.
Hi, I can help you with your question today.
What you describe is carpal hyperextension/carpal laxity. This can be due to trauma or can be seen in some large breed dogs for know identifiable reason.
In very severe cases, we may need surgery (arthrodesis). In milder cases, you can attempt physical therapy. Graded exercise (starting slowly and working up gradually) and walking should be encouraged on surfaces which provide a secure footing. Massage and passive joint manipulation (moving the toes, carpi and elbows through normal range of motion) can be helpful as well. Support bandages are NOT recommended, as this prevents normal use of the muscles/tendons which are a necessary part of the process of correction.
Please let me know if you have further questions. I am happy to continue until I provide the service that you seek.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
graded exercises?? what does that mean, ie examples.....up hills, sideways on a slanted surface, swimming.....
Expert:  brisadog replied 2 years ago.
Graded just means that the amount of work is increased over time. Going up hills will be good to work his flexors. Swimming in general is great exercise without impact, but will not do much to target the hyperextension.

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