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 jadedangel57 Your Own Question
jadedangel57, owner
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19675
Experience:  breeder/ vet assistant.
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
jadedangel57 is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Puppies are just over 3 weeks and not walking. The litter

Customer Question

Puppies are just over 3 weeks and not walking. The litter was small for a Golden retriever, 2 puppies. They gained weight nicely and I think are to big now (now almost 5 lbs).earlier they looked like turtles, wide and almost flat, wide rib cages. Weight gain has slowed down some.
They are now able to elevate on their front legs and are trying to walk. They can't get their legs behind them to walk. We have put obstacles under the whelping mat ( very good surface for the mat) and that helped. Worried about them walking so late compared to previous litters. Tried to show them food and removing mom some . (ie trying to control their food intake.No interest in food but its there for a few minutes and then removed
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Lisa replied 9 months ago.

Hello! My name is ***** ***** it will be my pleasure to help you with your dog today.

Expert:  Lisa replied 9 months ago.

How many litters have you had previously?

Have they been vet checked right after being born?

How is the mother doing?

Are they nursing/etc normally?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
2 litters
Puppies are born by C-section. That did look at them at three days old when they had their dewclaws removed. Have them back when they were two and half weeks old to go over the situation and that's what he suggested the sling to remove their weight and help them get strength in their legs. Also Valentin them on their hind legs for short periods of time. We did this
Expert:  Lisa replied 9 months ago.

I'm actually unable to do a phone call right now, so I'm going to go and opt out of this question and see if another expert is available to do the call.

Please don't reply to this, or it will lock the other experts out.

Expert:  jadedangel57 replied 9 months ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

it will likely take me between 30-45 minutes to type up my reply I hope you can be patient.

Expert:  jadedangel57 replied 9 months ago.

It sounds like the pups have swimmer pup syndrome. One of the main symptoms is a wide almost flat chest along with an inability to walk by the normal age. You can read more on this here:

The solutions recommend are ones that are recommended to try and help pups with swimmer syndrome.

The mat of course should be one that provides lots of traction so I’m assuming that is the case since you said it was a great mat.

There should be some nice soft bedding in the whelping area to help cushion the chest so the chest isn’t flattened even more. Some owners will attempt to keep the pup on their side in order to promote a more normal chest patter. Other methods include cutting holes in the elastic of some socks and making like a tube with holes for the legs to attempt to keep them in a more normal position. I haven’t had much luck with this method though some owners claim it is helpful.

They now make rear leg hobbles that may help. I found this one online.

The hobble along with using a sling to help them remain up might help the best. Since the pups are over 3 weeks of age now, they can regulate their own body heat. Thus you can do swimming therapy to help strengthen the legs as well. Just be sure to keep the pups in a draft free area after swimming and dry them thoroughly.

Give these techniques a try and see if you don’t see some improvement.

I hope this information is helpful to you. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer positively so I am compensated for my time.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Expert:  jadedangel57 replied 9 months ago.

You are very welcome. I wish you luck with your pups. In many cases, with therapy they become mobile in a few weeks. I would not repeat this breeding in case it is genetic in nature.