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How Can I Tell if My Dog Might be Lame?

 **Lameness  head nodding up or down, hiking or dropping one hip more than the other, swaying motion of the spine, carrying a limb or not putting full weight on a limb

Dogs with lameness may also have:

  • Difficulty rising from a sitting or laying down position

  • A stiff gait during the first few steps after rising

  • Difficulty jumping up on furniture or into vehicles

  • Reluctance to go up stairs

  • Bunny hopping gait while running or going up stairs 

  • A stiff gait

  • Reduced motion of the joints


Figure Hip luxation joint position.png

How a dog stands can tell us a lot.

This dog is shifting the left leg under the body to bear more of the weight.  Note that the right limb has the toes and knee externally rotated, and the hock internally rotated.  The yellow arrow indicates a "bump" in the pelvis, which is a dislocated hip. 

How a dog sits can tell us a lot. 

This dog is sitting asymmetrically with the left hind leg in a more extended position.  This may indicate a cranial cruciate ligament rupture. 

Figure Not sitting squarely.png
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