Dog limping is a disorder of the musculo – skeletal system (both muscle and bones) and is most likely caused by motor or nerve impairment secondary to muscle impairment. Dogs limp because of pain or a mechanical problem with a leg. As a result of injured hind leg, a dog may shift its weight to other unharmed hind leg while standing still, when moving, and may nod or drop its head as weight goes onto the other leg. Same as the hindquarters, it will be dropped when the sound leg is placed on the ground. If a dog is standing still on the ground and holding the other leg off the ground, the problem is most likely to be the foot. If it places its foot gently to the floor or drags the leg, the injury is likely to be on its pelvis. Here are the six common causes of dog limping:
- Arthritis. Is inflammation of the joints where bones meet and mostly due to lack or loss of elasticity of the ligaments that support the surrounding joint for easy and painless flexions and contraction.
- Bone fracture. Usually a result of a road accident or falls, causing sudden severe pain and inability to put weight on the leg, which may be visibly deformed.
- Dislocation. Accidental injury of one or more bones that form a joint can cause bone displacement. The hip and shoulder joints are frequently affected.
- Sprains. Damage to the ligaments or tendons supporting the joint by being overstretched or torn through wrenching and twisting its ankle.
- Strains. Muscular damage. Muscles are commonly torn or damage by sudden wrench or twisting movement particularly in active dogs or racing dogs.
- Inflamed swelling between the toes. Some dogs are subjected to a sporadic swelling in between its toes (inter-digital cyst). Mostly on front legs and maybe caused by clogged sweet glands in the paws or buried lice in between toes. Affected dogs show lameness, swelling in between the toes on the upper side of the paw, and licking on the swollen site.
These six causes of dog limping can be prevented and treated. A daily exercise can make your dog’s muscles and ligaments toned. Regular physical check up will surely keep away those harmful external parasites in between dog’s toes and if dog limping becomes chronic, much better if you go to your nearest Veterinary hospital for further diagnosis so your furry companion will get all the attention that he needs.