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Dr. Bruce
Dr. Bruce, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
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Experience:  15 years of experience as a small animal veterinarian
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My 3 year old English Bulldog started limping on his back leg

Resolved Question:

My 3 year old English Bulldog started limping on his back leg for apparently no reason, no injury, etc. He does not seem to be in pain.... Not wimpering or anything. What could this be?
Submitted: 7 years ago via
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 7 years ago.
Hi Dwgp6168,

At this point in time, a rear leg lameness as you are describing could be due to a couple reasons.
1) Stifle/knee injury - this is in all honesty the most common. Could he have torn a cruciate ligament, or another ligament in the knee? This is the most common injury.

Here are links on those.

2) Orthopedic injury. This is an actual fracture of any one of the bones in the back leg or pelvis. This is always a possibility and can usually only be confirmed by radiographs.

3) Hip luxation. Not a common injury, but the one injury that truly is the most optimally treated if identified very soon after occurring. The reason for this is that gives the best chance to place it back with best chance of not requiring surgery. Usually they are in pain if this happens and totally not putting weight on the affected leg.

4) General soft tissue injury - this is like a deep muscle bruise or twist of a joint. Pretty common and usually gets better with time and rest.

In all honesty, with your little one you have two options. Veterinary exam now to further evaluate the source of the lameness or give him some time and rest to see if it improves. If choosing to rest and see how that helps - you need to restrict all activity to so that it has a good chance to not be further traumatized. A kennel is the best for this.

Dr. Bruce and other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you....I actaully took my pup to the vet today and said he strained his knee, maybe a partial ACL tear. Got some meds, he's resting and hopefully will be playing again soon. Thanks again!!!

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