dog limps after playing fetch- is this normal?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by thewobsers, Sep 16, 2009.

  1. thewobsers

    thewobsers Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 20, 2008
    near toledo ohio
    Oh dear, we finally decided to get a puppy- hes a black german shepherd, he's 20 months old, and such a great dog. The people who had him prior really trained him and our 5 year old and 2 year old are the masters over him already. Well, we have a concern, we were throwing a ball in the yard and he would chase it and bring it to us... after a few days of doing this for short periods of time he is favoring/limping on his right side. Both front paw and back leg.
    I examined, palpitated, and even applied pressure to both legs and he is sore but no crying out from him. Have been applying essential oils to the legs but worried if there is a possibility of more wrong... is this normal behavior for a dog and he will get better over time? we have been taking it easy on him since he started limping and not playing ball with him just walking with him in the yard. He still wants to play ball but we wont give in since we want him to heal.
    HAs anyone had any experience with this? I will take him to the vet if it doesnt get better, but i know it will cost a small fortune, so hoping it wont be neccesary. we have only had him for 3 weeks and we are so crazy about him. any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 17, 2009
    My Coop
    He could have bruised his foot on a rock or something. Or he could have just strained the leg. If possible give him a nice warm soak with some dead sea salt or Epsom Salt. That helps aching muscles.

    Other than that, I have no idea.
  3. duck walk

    duck walk Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 13, 2009
    white springs, fl
    if this keeps bothering the dog, you may want to have a look at his hips...GS breed seems to have a lot of hip trouble...
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Twenty months seems a little old for it, but GSDs are prone to a condition called panosteitis.


    adolescent GSD is limping! What should I do?
    Don't panic. You probably *do* want to take your pup into a vet certified in orthopedic problems and reading x-rays just to make sure you can eliminate hip and elbow dysplasia from the cause of the problem. (Of course, that's true of all GSD puppies since early diagnosis/treatment of dysplasia is important to your puppy's healthy life even if you don't plan on breeding.) But... most likely the vet will confirm that your pup has panosteitis, an inflammation of the long bones in the legs of adolescent pups. It's fairly common in GSDs. It's also known as "long bone disease", "shifting leg lameness" and "growing pains". "Pano" can be detected and diagnosed by x-ray.
    Onset can be from 5-12 months (occasionally later) and last until 18 months or more. Though it is uncomfortable for the puppy, it almost always grows out of it. The lameness need not be limited to one leg. Pano is generally considered to be a polygenic trait with limited heretibility (1).

    Our GSD pup, Jax suffered a mild case of it at 19 weeks and it lasted about a week with him. I continued his daily walks, but discouraged him from being overly active (leaping and running). It cleared up as mysteriously as it showed up.

    ETA: To avoid heartbreak in your future, it's a good idea to know the condition of your GSD's hips even when no problems are noted. Our pup will have his intital hip x-rays at six months.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2009
  5. KDbeads

    KDbeads Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 20, 2009
    East Central VA
    Pano is a thought, a little old for it at 20 months but it's been known to hang around through 24 months in some dogs.
  6. Boyd

    Boyd Recipient of The Biff Twang

    Mar 14, 2009
  7. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY
    Could be a torn ACL
    The vet would know
  8. kagedgoddess

    kagedgoddess Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 11, 2009
    our dog is a gs/lab mix and he would limp a little when he was younger, after playing frisbee or ball. after a little while he would be back to normal, he never acted like bothered him or anything so we never worried about it. he's 3 now and we havent seen him do it in a long time. but maybe since yours is pure bred and everyone else is saying go to the vet, maybe you should?
  9. greyhorsewoman

    greyhorsewoman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 3, 2008
    Endless Mts, NE PA
    I agree with gritstar. If it doesn't resolve itself in a few days and/or reoccurs, you're best path is to consult a vet. You need to know what you are dealing with. Since you have only had the dog for a short while, did you get any type of contract from the breeder?
  10. rodriguezpoultry

    rodriguezpoultry Langshan Lover

    Jan 4, 2009
    Claremore, OK
    It appears ours was a bit more serious than with yours at this time. When we played fetch with our lab, he would run after the stick, but wound up falling every time he turned to give it back. Apparently it hurt him so bad he started yelping.

    We found out later that he had hip dysplasia. He's 13 years old now, but he never fetched again when he hurt himself. Go hunting with him, heck ya he'll bring it back, but throw a stick and he's not running out there for that.

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