What is Hip Dysplasia and What to do if your Pit Bull has it? The definition of Hip Dysplasia is the inherited condition resulting from an improperly formed hip-joint. Because the joint is loose, the dog’s leg bone moves around too much, causing painful wear and tear.
How Can I Tell if My Pit Bull Has Hip Dysplasia?
For years, the scientific community thought that high protein diets contribute to the development of Hip Dysplasia. However, after further research, it was discovered that the condition was an inherited condition.
Some cases of Hip Dysplasia are so mild that there are no symptoms. However, if your Pit Bull seems stiff or sore in the hips when getting up, there may be a need for concern. Also, if he or she seems hesitant to exercise, stand on their hind legs or climb stairs, a visit to the vet is recommended. Other signs to look for, include limping or bunny-hopping.
One of the most common skeletal diseases seen in dogs is Hip Dysplasia. Gender does not seem to be a factor. However, some breeds are more likely to have the genetic predisposition for the condition than other breeds. Unfortunately, Pit Bulls are predisposed to developing Hip Dysplasia.
At What Age Does A Pit Bull Develop Hip Dysplasia?
Each case is different and it depends on the dog. Hip Dysplasia can begin to develop in puppies of five months old and worsen as they age. Though, there are cases where it does not show up at all until a dog has reached geriatric years. However, in most cases, the condition becomes noticeable in dogs in their middle or later years.
A Veterinarian can provide an evaluation to determine if your dog has the condition. This will likely include a physical examination, radiographs, and manual tests on your Pit Bull’s hips.
After examination and it is positive that your Pit Bull has Hip Dysplasia, it is not the end of the world. You do have options and your beloved pet can still lead an active life.
What are the Treatments or Preventative Options for Hip Dysplasia?
Although heredity does play a significant role in the development of canine Hip Dysplasia, not everything about the disease is hereditary. Evidence suggests that even dogs genetically predisposed to the disease can escape its worst effects if breeders and owners control rapid growth and weight gain during puppyhood.
Lowering your puppies daily caloric intake will slow their growth and weight gain. Research also shows that puppies with constant access to food have a higher incidence of Hip Dysplasia when they are older than puppies who were on a restricted feeding schedule. Feeding a puppy a controlled and balanced diet is probably the best way to manage its growth.
There are also several surgical options, including a complete hip replacement. However, a combination of healthy diet and maintaining a normal weight can help manage the condition. Other ways to manage the condition include exercise, massage, and warm and dry sleeping areas. There has also been a noticeable effectiveness of joint supplements and prescription veterinary pain-relieving medication. Your vet can help you with a daily pain-relieving program that is right for your dog.