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My two year old maltipoo started L hind leg intermittent…

Customer Question
My two year old...

My two year old maltipoo started L hind leg intermittent skipping suddenly about 2 1/2 months ago. I palpated and found nothing. Persisted. Went to vet - xrays negative for hips, knees - not sure how much of spine they got and no lateral. Tried NSAID and rest for two weeks without any change. Referred to ortho who thought maybe its a partial ACL tear. He couldn't get the patella to slip and said there was a small effusion. He injected hyalurlonic acid and I rested her in a pen for 1 week. Then turned all the furniture upside down for 5 weeks. No jumping, blocked off the stairs, took her on short walks only. Still the same. Here's the weird part. She never does it in the house, She's fine at a complete full on run and gallop too. It seems to only occur with the fast trot that generally only occurs on walks. The number of steps in between skips is completely variable. But it always starts immediately as we start out and she trots.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. What seems to be the problem with your dog?

I gave up on the exercise restriction now. She never acts in pain. But, I get the feeling in the last two weeks that she prefers to run. We haven't run in a long time (due to lazy mom) and now we are running (about a 9-11 min mile pace, she mostly seems like a fast gallop). She really wants to run at the end of the walk.

Veterinarian's Assistant: What is the dog's name?

Bailey

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Bailey?

No. healthy happy pup.

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Dog Veterinary
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
also, it could be my imagination, but I think she's having trouble jumping. She seem more insecure about it lately and missing more. My bed is really high. It hasn't been a problem since a pup. I think it now seems that she can't quite get the hind legs up with confidence. But again, subtle and I can't be sure. She jumps just fine when she's excited or playing. Never skips with play and is very active without evidence of pain. She's never lame after a walk, even if she skipped a lot. She usually wants to play ball and is very excited when we get back. I usually throw the ball for her until she gets hungry.
Answered in 4 hours by:
3/28/2018
Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago
Richard Rawling
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 973
Experience: Veterinary Surgeon at Tameside Veterinary Clinic
Verified

Hi, i`m Richard, a veterinarian from the UK. Hopefully I can help today.

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Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago

Has the lameness worsened or improved over the last few months, or has it stayed about the same?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
The same. I'm not sure if lameness is the correct term. she just skips when she's walking in a trot. When we get home there is no lameness she can run jump and seems perfectly fine; but the skipping never goes away it's been the same after the 5 weeks of rest as it was before she rested
Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago

Is it always the same leg? Does she ever skip with her right hind leg?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
always left. And immediately on starting our walk
Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago

Does it worsen with exercise? Does she stiffen up?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Well yes, during the walk. The longer the walk, the more the skipping. she seems happy. No stiffness after walk. She's very excited when back and she'll jump and run full throttle when e get home. Similarly, if we run together during the walk, no skips
Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago

Does she ever seem stiff after rest?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
No. She seems normal. Sits and rises normally. Doesn't stick left out in sitting. Leans on left knee with right off ground when urinates and when going down stairs, she also leans left and floats the right. I doubt a partial ACL could handle all that?
Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago

If she is only a slight dog then a partial ACL tear could well handle that. There may be some low grade/fluctuant inflammation within the joint causing the skipping. With a partial acl tear it is often a case of waiting for it to develop into a full tear before opting for surgery. The other diagnostics would include taking some joint fluid from her left knee for analysis and considering arthroscopy to visually inspect the ACL for signs of damage. However, given her breed and the signs you are describing, I would still be very suspicious of a medial patella luxation, given the signs you are describing. It is however impossible for me to tell without a physical exam. Did your ortho specialist recommend any further investigations?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ok, didn't realize partial ACL tear could handle. And similarly, a partial ACL can handle full throttle runs and jumps?Yeah, I keep thinking this is p.lux, maybe it only pops out with certain physics of trot?No. I question him. Is it helpful to inject hyaluronic acid after a tear?I'm going to second ortho for opinion next week.
Dog Veterinarian: Richard Rawling,
 replied 3 months ago

Hyaluronic acid can help with joint repair. A partial acl tear is simply when the ligament starts to fray. The ligament is still intact and may still have good strength. However it is often a matter of time before the ligament snaps and becomes a fully ruptured acl. With a small dog, the stresses on the ligament are much less, unless there is a traumatic injury.

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