Hip Dysplasia in Dogs

Why do my hips hurt? Canine Hip Dysplasia is common in some dog breeds. Learn what it is, and if your pet is at risk.

We received another excellent question from a Pet Assure reader:  Does hip dysplasia in dogs occur in certain breeds, or at a certain age? You asked, and here is the answer!

In the simplest terms, hip dysplasia is an improperly formed hip joint. The joint is too loose, which results in painful wear and tear to the socket and joint. It is an inherited condition that tends to affect larger dog breeds, such as German Shepherds, Great Danes, Retrievers and Saint Bernards. However, all breeds can develop the condition. In terms of when it occurs, each case of hip dysplasia is different. Hip dysplasia can begin to develop in a five-month-old puppy, or it can hit when the animal is much older. It can be difficult to tell if your furry friend is suffering from the condition, as the symptoms can be very mild sometimes. Some signs, or symptoms, include:

  • Stiffness or soreness when getting up
  • Being hesitant to exercise, stand on hind legs or walk up stairs
  • Limping or walking funny

If you notice these behaviors in your pet, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian.

While there are no products to prevent the development of hip dysplasia, there are several treatment options. Typically, a combination of a healthy diet, exercise and joint supplements will help most dogs. There are also surgical options, such as a complete hip replacement, for younger dogs with an advanced case. As always, maintaining a healthy weight can help your pet be as happy and healthy as possible.

For more information on hip dysplasia, visit the Pet Assure education page.

Does your pet have hip dysplasia? Tell us about it in the comment section below!

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