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Dr. Amanda
Dr. Amanda, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 799
Experience:  Associate Veterinarian
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Our dog is a 6.5 year old husky mix breed. She has been past

Customer Question

Hello: Our dog is a 6.5 year old husky mix breed. She has been for the past 2 months getting stiffer in her rear end. In saying this she was real heavy for a long time but she now since the start of summer like June has lost more than 20 lbs and runs approx
3km per day faithfully some times walking sometimes having a swim in our pond. It is weird that she is now so stiff as she exercises so much. Tonight the oddest thing happened she started to run and limped on the back leg. She has also developed 2 not quiet
lumps just in front of where her back legs go down. The lumps are almost on her back. She has also in the past month started to sit almost sideways, like not square. We looked up the anatomy of a dog and thought this may have to do with her kidneys. I must
stress she is on no pain, no loss of appetite, drinking lots of water, smiling as per her usual self and has never been ill in her life except bronchitis last year and had a tooth removed last year. We need to say we live in a remote community in the Yukon
and am a 5 plus hour drive from a vet or any services. And the vet appointments are 2-3 weeks away. Do you think this could be serious?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Amanda replied 2 years ago.

Hi,

My name is***** and I am sorry to hear that Maddy is getting stiff in the hind end. It sounds like you are on the right track, though, with helping her lose weight and encouraging daily exercise. I would wonder, based on your history, does she have arthritis in her lower back? This is a very common place to see arthritis in large breed dogs and is actually more common than hip or knee problems.

For the short term, I would recommend starting her on a glucosamine/chondroitin supplement. These are available on-line from a variety of sources. My personal favorite is Dasuquin, but Cosequin is also a good product. I am not a fan of the generic versions of these products as you cannot guarantee the quality of the products. I would also recommend starting fish oil (about 6000mg/day) to reduce joint inflammation.

Lastly, I would recommend taking her to your regular veterinarian. Ask them to perform an orthopedic problem to determine the source of her stiffness and they can talk to you about starting prescription products such as Carprofen (NSAID) or other anti-inflammatories, adequan injections to improve joint health, a diet change to a joint health diet (there are nice products on the market by Royal canin, Purina and Science Diet). They will also likely recommend blood work and x-rays of the painful areas such as the hips and spine.

Good luck to you and Maddy,

I hope this answer helps you. Feel free to contact me if you have any further questions.

Dr. Amanda

Kansas State University

College of Veterinary Medicine Class of 2001

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She does take and has been taking a pill from the vet called Recovery witch is a mixture of Glucosamine, msm, chondroitin sulfate, green lipped mussel, enzymes blend, yucca, calcium, zinc hyaluronic acid & vit e. I have fish oil in liquid form how much in a syringe should I give her at a time and how much a day? She eats vet food for oral health so I will switch it to joint stuff next time I go in as soon as they will give me an appointment.I hate that they dont make allowances for us to come in anytime cause we r so far away. So I should not panic is what your saying? Does this seem to be an infection or anything like that?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I am curious how this just happend one day she was fine and the next stiff like she was 500 years old. Sometimes her back end in the am dont work or she needs a push to get on the couch too. Breaks my heart shes my baby.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I have pics of her sitting sideways if u need to see them
Expert:  Dr. Amanda replied 2 years ago.

Thanks for the update. Several answers:

Fish oil- I would aim for about 6000-7000mg per day split into two doses. I would have to read the label to know how much volume to give, but this dose is much higher than the standard dose. This high dosage has been shown to reduce joint inflammation much more so than the lower dose used to improve skin health.

I would not panic at this time :-). I would suspect that she strained something when running or playing and is slow to recover. This is where the NSAIDs can be very helpful, but I know that you don't have any on hand. There are NO over-the-counter anti-inflammatories that I recommend for dogs. Aleve and Advil will actually kill your dog. Aspirin can be minimally helpful but can cause a very upset stomach. I would also slow her activity down to slow walking for 30-45 minutes daily and minimize running or wrestling with other dogs in the household.

Other more severe differentials include a spine infection, a blown disc in the back or severe bladder infection, so I would try to get her to your regular veterinarian sooner than later, but I would not panic and drive down there tomorrow.

When you said she is sitting sideways, I was able to picture it exactly. This is a common position for a dog with any hind-end pain, from the spine to the knees.

I am getting ready to log off for the evening, but I will be back tomorrow and will check in on Maddy.

I hope she is able to sleep well,

Dr. A

Expert:  Dr. Amanda replied 2 years ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Maddy. How is everything going?
Amanda Mouradian-Dar
Expert:  Dr. Amanda replied 2 years ago.

Hi, How is Maddy this evening? Is she moving around better? Were you able to have your regular veterinarian examine her to evaluate her joints?

Also, if you would consider rating our conversation, I would greatly appreciate it.

Best Regards, *****