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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just found out last week that Yoshi has hip dysplasia. He's 8 months old, and he was at the vets to be neutered. The vet said when he lifted Yoshi's leg up to do the operation he heard a clunk sound. He described it as "pretty major hip dysplasia".

He said there is no need to do an x-ray as he is positive Yoshi has it. He also told us to keep his weight done and walk him 40 minutes twice a day.

Yoshi is a Japanese akita, 26 inches tall, 30 kg at the moment. The vet said his weight is ideal at the moment, and he's not showing signs of pain because his body is still growing and his joints are healing faster than they are being damaged.

This is my first dog and I have read horrible stories of dogs having to be put down due to not being able to walk. I'd rather he died of old age.

I had plans of taking him hiking and hill climbing. Can I still do that? Should I get an x-ray anyway?
 

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Oh no, what sad news :( I'm sorry I know nothing about this but there are many members here who will be able to help.
My post will at least bump your thread up for others to see.
Good luck with Yoshi, your vet will be able to give you more advice too I'm sure.
 

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Posting quickly while my cuppa mashes, is your vet an orthopaedic specialist in any way, or do they have specific knowledge of hip dysplasia? Edited to ask did you go ahead with the neutering?

Is he from hip scored parents and do you have any more knowledge about any history of hip scores/problems within his pedigree?

You'll get a lot more detailed answers the more people know about your vet and your dog, but if it is hip dysplasia, and it is as severe as your vet thinks, I doubt very much if hiking and hill walking would be an option I'm afraid. I have a dog with a repaired cruciate, she has arthritis in her knee joint from it, and I limit her exercise, she's over 7 years old now and I want her to be fit and healthy for as long as she lives, so it's for her own good.
 
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so very sorry to hear about yoshi , I know malmum on here has had the hip replacement operation on her dog she will probably give you some great advice as she did for me only 7 week ago when my Gsd was diagnosed at the age off 2yr old with severe hip dysplasia , its very hard to know what is best , but there lots off very well informed members on here , sorry i cant help much but i had decided my girl was better off PTS as the amount off pain she was in despite the pain relief , and the fact she was falling over . Every dog is different and the treatment path you take will probably be different , its what you feel best for yoshi
 

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I had plans of taking him hiking and hill climbing. Can I still do that? Should I get an x-ray anyway?
Definitely get the x-ray done, don't plan on taking him hiking and hill climbing with you at the moment, small amounts of exercise often is better than taking him for a couple of long walks. However, don't fret that you will never be able to take him on hikes with you, in future you might.

All dogs are different, some have x-rays that show quite bad hip displaysia but can manage ok, and doing things like hydrotherapy and giving them supplements (mobile bones, joint aid etc) helps, others need hip replacement ops, and can go on to live great lives with a new hip (or two). Once x-rayed it's probably worthwhile getting your vet to refer you to an orthopaedic specialist as they will be able to give you the best advice.

Have a look at Malmum's 'Diary of a hip replacement' thread that's a sticky at the top of the forum.

lisa14061975, really sorry to hear about your poor dog. As you say it can be hard to know what to do for the best, bless her, she's pain free now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Posting quickly while my cuppa mashes, is your vet an orthopaedic specialist in any way, or do they have specific knowledge of hip dysplasia? Edited to ask did you go ahead with the neutering?

Is he from hip scored parents and do you have any more knowledge about any history of hip scores/problems within his pedigree?
I don't know if my vet is. He's probably just your average vet. We did go ahead with the neutering.

His parents both have hip scores of 8, and they're both championship winners. I got him from his breeder specifically because I thought they had good quality dogs. I've contacted his breeder about this, and they seem surprised that Yoshi's hips would be so bad because they only breed from dogs with good hip scores. We're in dialogue now about his environment, upbringing etc.

I'm really hoping somehow that my vet is wrong, because I can't see anything wrong with how Yoshi is walking right now. I think I will get x-rays done to give me peace of mind, even though at £117 it's not cheap.
 

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Always seek the advice of a specialist orthopaedic surgeon. Primary care vets don't usually specialise in any particular field - just good al rounders with the basics.

Soulful dog knows all about HD as do I. Read the diary and if it comes to an op don't despair, they recover well and have free lives afterwards.

Sorry about the diagnosis :( I know how bad I felt when Flynn was diagnosed, that's why I started the diary because I felt so alone with no one else I knew to talk to who'd gone through it!

Chin up, lots of HD cases can be controlled with supplements, medication and hydrotherapy. :)
 

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Hip dysplasia CAN'T be diagnosed properly from only a clicking sound and without x-rays.

Have him x-rayed and have them sent in to the BVA for scoring so that if he does have HD then other people know when researching breeders that his line has produced HD.

If it is HD then at least you know now, and you can start supplementing and modifying his exercise routines to give him as long and pain free a life as possible.
 

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I doubt very much the vet could tell if your dog has HD - much more likely his gait would give it away rather than it crunching under anaesthetic, an x-ray will be needed to confirm, this can be done now (it can't be scored until 12 months) but there is a reason that dogs aren't scored under 12 months - there are many changes as the pup grows which may affect the plates.

I would have thought the vet would strongly advise against neutering a big dog at this age, particularly if he/she thought he may have dodgy hips. There are studies which have shown an increased incidence of HD in dogs who are neutered before maturity so it would have been better to have waited until he was fully grown before putting his joints at risk by the additional growth in his long bones which early neutering will cause...

Your breeder sounds like they've done all they can to avoid HD and they will be keen to follow your pups progress. Don't forget there are a number of factors involved in HD - from accidents to feeding, exercise (I would avoid up and particularly down stairs, jumping in and out of the car etc with your pup until he's mature and you have a 'proper' diagnosis)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Our vet actually suggested neutering him at 6 months, but I wanted to wait. My husband wants to do whatever the vet says, so we compromised on 8 months. I'm going to go to a different vet and get a second opinion.
 

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The reason I asked about neutering is because it can affect when the skeletal structure stops growing, in it's simplest terms as I understand it, there is growing evidence to suggest that reaching sexual maturity also indicates to the body to stop growing. If you remove those hormones early, it can result in a dog growing larger than it would have done, I would discuss this with your vets if I were you, as well as getting a second opinion. I hope it's an over reaction from your vets, and that Yoshi just has clicky joints.
 
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