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Hip Pain In German Shepherds

Provide A Comfortable Bed

German Shepherd Hip Dysplasia: Warning Signs, Treatment, Prevention

Hard floors and thin dog beds are no place for a German Shepherd with hip and joint pain.

Hard floors and thin dog beds are no place for a German Shepherd with hip and joint pain to relax or sleep for hours on end.

German Shepherds with arthritis or hip dysplasia often have their worst moments:

  • after theyve been lying down for a while
  • first thing in the morning after a nights long rest

You can help your German Shepherd with the transition from the floor and reduce their hip pain by providing them the right bed. Invest in an orthopedic bed to support your dogs aching body that is thick and well-padded and made for dogs with aches and pains, like this plush orthopedic dog bed.

Getting your dog onto an orthopedic bed not only gives them joint support to relieve pressure, but the bed also helps keep them warm. The warmth from drafts or cold nights sleeping on a floor can reduce inflammation and help support the joints while your dog sleeps comfortably.

Heres A Simple Test: Stand And Look Down At Your Feet If Your Toes Point Outward Rather Than Straight Ahead Your Hip Muscles Are Probably Overworked And Need To Be Stretchedwhat Can I Give My German Shepherd For Hip Pain

If youre lucky, you wont notice your hips are tight until youre trying to do the Half Pigeon pose in your yoga class. But if youre not so fortunate, your tight hips are making themselves known every time you so much as walk to the bathroom or sit on the couch-expressing themselves in the form of lower back pain and muscle stiffness. Tight hips can even shorten your stride, slowing your 5K goal time!

Its a common issue, says Prevention advisor Rob Danoff, director of family and emergency medicine residency programs at Aria Health in Philadelphia. For people who sit a long time at work, the hip flexors and rotators become tight, and the gluteal muscles become weak, he says. This combination negatively affects our ability to walk, maintain proper posture, and the stability of our spine.What Can I Give My German Shepherd For Hip Pain

New York City-based yoga teacher Amanda McDonald agrees that tight hips are a widespread issue: Hip openers are actually the most-requested moves in my yoga classes. If you never move in certain directions, she says, youll reduce your range of motion over time.

Make Sure That Your German Shepherd Is Kept Warm:

Have you ever broken a bone?

If you have, then were sure you are already familiar with the aches and pains that can come along with the cold winter months, and believe it or not, plummeting cold temperatures can also affect the joints of your dog.

Though theres no one scientific explanation thats able to explain why cold temperatures can have this effect on the joints, one of the most probable theories is that a drop in temperature can cause tendons, muscles, and tissues to expand, which can then put pressure on the joints.

For this reason, in order to keep your German Shepherd as comfortable as can be, and to also prevent the chances of hip pain from setting in, youll need to make sure that you are keeping your dog warm all year long.

However, during the winter months, you should make sure to place extra cozy blankets in his bed area :

You can also consider a padded mat for him to lay on if he likes to alternate between his bed and the floor. The SIWA MART Dog Bed Pad Mat is a great option to consider.

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How To Prevent Hip Dysplasia In Dogs

At this time, there is no known way to prevent hip dysplasia in dogs. It appears to be a hereditary condition, and many dogs, especially large and giant breeds, are born with it.

Its recommended to start joint supplements for high-risk dogs as early as 3 months of age to ensure good joint health and protect the cartilage of the joints.

You should also work with your vet to make sure that you keep your dog at a healthy weight. Maintaining a healthy weight can reduce the amount of stress on a dogs joints.

The Issues With Bad Breeders

critique dog

When looking for German shepherd puppies, make sure the breeder checks their parents. Otherwise, look for another breeder.

You might need to learn about the reasons why you should make this call:

  • Many breeders dont check the hips of the dogs. As long as theyre sure its a German shepherd, theres nothing they will do.
  • Bad breeders tend to breed dogs that are 2 years old or younger. You may confirm that their parents dont have hip dysplasia, but they may be not old enough to show signs yet.
  • They breed German shepherds knowing that they have the genes for hip dysplasia, all for commercial purposes.

These three issues push these breeders to lower their prices. The normal price ranges from $700 $1000. It may be lower from a breeder who knows of the hip issue of the German shepherd.

This is why its crucial that you buy from a good breeder. In addition to more expenses, you might have less play time with a German shepherd suffering from hip dysplasia.

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Live A Healthy Lifestyle

Keeping your dog at a healthy weight can greatly reduce their joint pain. An overweight or obese pet puts more strain on their joints. Maintaining a healthy diet and keeping fit are key to your dogs overall health.

A low impact exercise like swimming is ideal for dogs suffering from joint pain. Hydrotherapy can deliver excellent results for dogs with hip dysplasia. Swimming increases strength in their rear legs. Allowing your pet to work their muscles, helping them to stay fit without placing any additional stress on their hips.

Tight Hips May Also Be Caused By:

  • standing after long periods of sitting
  • A tipped pelvis, which creates a structural imbalance
  • Postural habits like leaning over into one hip or leaning forward into both hips when standing
  • sleeping all night on the same side of the body
  • having one leg longer than the other
  • Tight hips may also flare up when you perform lower body exercises, like squats and deadlifts.

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Treating Hip Dysplasia In Dogs

At Kedron Veterinary Clinic, we use radiography to obtain an accurate diagnosis of the internal bone and soft tissues. Once the condition has been discovered, there are multiple treatments available, including:

  • K-Laser Therapy wavelengths of laser light induce a photochemical reaction, increasing circulation, reducing inflammation and minimising pain
  • Acupuncture improves blood flow and increases the amount of metabolic waste a pets body can remove, alleviating pain and improving their range of motion
  • Medication anti-inflammatory and pain management medication can help reduce the symptoms and increase motion

The most important thing an owner can do to help slow down the condition is proactive weight management the less weight placed on the joint, the slower it will wear away.

Prognosis For Dogs With Hip Dysplasia

The Best German Shepherd Hip Pain Home Remedies: Natural & Safe Solutions

Dogs with hip dysplasia often lead long, full lives, especially with treatment. If you think that your dog may be affected, talk to your veterinarian. Treatment options and lifestyle changes you can make to keep your dog comfortable well into old age.

Parnells Glyde Mobility Chews are a joint supplement with strong scientific backing, containing the unique combination of green-lipped mussel , glucosamine, and chondroitin to promote healthy joints. GLM contains beneficial nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Combined with glucosamine and chondroitin, GLM can help decrease pain and preserve joint function. Glyde Mobility Chews are the only joint supplement with proven levels of these key ingredients to help maintain youthful mobility throughout your dogs life. With Glyde, protecting your dogs joints throughout their life is as easy as giving them a daily chew that they think is a treat.

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Give Them The Gold Standard Glucosamine

Go for the gold with glucosamine for the win!

If youre looking for the gold standard in joint pain relief for German Shepherds here it is


Glucosamine helps relieve disease symptoms, such as pain and stiffness, and glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate combined are especially effective against arthritis.

There are two popular forms of this potent supplement:

The tablet is by far the easiest to give your dog, and the best known of the supplements manufactured on the market for home use is this maximum strength Cosequin Max.

As a matter of fact, Cosequin is a number one veterinarian-recommended brand. Cosequin Max contains a therapeutic amount of active ingredients that are shown to have a significant impact on joint care, specifically made to reduce joint pain.

If youre looking for one of the best German Shepherd hip pain home remedies, this is a must-have product to treat pain and discomfort as supported by clinical veterinary studies.

Repair And Prevent Cartilage Deterioration

We mentioned cartilage a bit earlier.

And were talking about it again because cartilage is an incredibly important part of your dogs hip joint. When your dog moves, cartilage helps cushion the joint.

But it can become damaged when your dog has hip dysplasia.

Thats because the femoral head doesnt sit properly in the hip socket.

Over time, this cartilage deteriorates, causing pain and inflammation.

Another word for this cartilage deterioration? Arthritis.

Fortunately, certain active ingredients can help maintain joint health and reduce the likelihood that the secondary condition of arthritis will form as a result of German Shepherd hip dysplasia.

In particular, the active ingredients of chondroitin and glucosamine for dogs help maintain cartilage health.

These two naturally occurring substances work together to not only repair damaged cartilage but also prevent it from deteriorating in the first place.

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Why Are German Shepherds Prone To Hip Dysplasia

While its true that any dog can be affected by hip dysplasia, it is most commonly seen in medium, large, and giant breeds.

Genetics also play a crucial role in increasing the risk of hip dysplasia in dogs. Nearly 20% of German Shepherds suffer from the condition and the probability is even higher for dogs whose parents had hip dysplasia.

Another reason is bigger dogs put more strain on their joints and often go through a period of fast growth when theyre puppies. The pressure on the joints can manifest itself to the development of hip dysplasia.

As mentioned above German Shepherds are such large and active dogs, they are at a higher risk of developing hip dysplasia that is triggered by potential hip injuries.

Symptoms Of Hip Dysplasia In German Shepherd

hip dysplasia diagnosis / pet insurance

A good German Shepherd owner spends a lot of time with their pets so as do you. If your German Shepherd is not comfortable walking or sitting due to some reason maybe they might have hip problems as they show some signs which you have to observe.

If your German Shepherd is facing the problem of hip dysplasia then they will show some symptoms like lameness in the hind leg, swaying, weakness, pain, decreased thigh muscle, loss of interest in playing and jumping, limping, or favoring one leg.

The sign of hip dysplasia can be seen when your German Shepherd is as young as four months of age while the rest develop it as they become older.

If you are the owner of a German Shepherd then you must know the common symptoms however these symptoms may vary depending on the severity of the disease and how long your German Shepherd has suffered from hip dysplasia.

Here are some other symptoms of hip dysplasia that may also relate to German Shepherd hip problems :

It is well said prevention is better than cure, so we must look at the preventive measure we can take to avoid hip dysplasia in our German Shepherd.

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How Can I Tell If My Dog Has Hip Dysplasia

Initially, you may not be able to tell if your dog has hip dysplasia. Sometimes, there are no symptoms until they begin to limp or favor their hind legs. If symptoms are present, you might see some or all of the following:

  • Stiffness in their back legs
  • A decrease in thigh muscle mass
  • Reduced activity
  • Reluctance to climb stairs or get up
  • Shoulder muscle growth from compensating for the pain in their hips

How To Tell If Your German Shepherd Has Hip Dysplasia

It is important to recognize symptoms of hip dysplasia as early as possible.

These symptoms can vary from dog to dog, and some dogs/puppies may show no symptoms at all until the condition has progressed. Keep an eye out for the following:

  • Limping, waddling, or unsteadiness when walking
  • Swinging both its legs forward instead of moving them independently.
  • Difficulty getting up, lying down, or going upstairs
  • Narrowing hips when seen from behind
  • Reduced activity

The most effective way to diagnose hip dysplasia is with a radiograph or X-ray.

Your veterinarian will x-ray your dogs hips to determine the degree and severity of hip dysplasia. Only then theyll be able to determine the best course of treatment for your dog.

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What If Nsaids Don’t Help

The alternative to NSAID and medical therapy is surgery. There are several surgical procedures available to treat hip dysplasia. The two most common surgical techniques for hip dysplasia are total hip replacement and femoral head ostectomy . Other less common surgical procedures used to treat hip dysplasia include triple pelvic osteotomy , juvenile pubic symphysiodesis, and DARthroplasty. The choice of surgery will be determined by your pet’s age, condition, and lifestyle. Your veterinarian will be able to provide the best recommendations for your individual pet.

How Can I Alleviate My German Shepherds Symptoms Of Hip Dysplasia

Our male gsd with hip dysplasia, what we notice the most.

If your vet indicates it, you can give your pooch pain medications, like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs, to reduce pain and inflammation.

You can help your German Shepherd with everyday tasks, such as getting in and out of the car or bed, avoiding the use of stairs, and monitoring signs that may indicate pain.

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German Shepherd Joint Pain

A German Shepherd with joint pain is generally due to age-related disease.

Nearly all dogs get a little stiff as they get older due to gradual wear-and-tear on the joints that take its toll on their body. Furthermore, as your GSD ages, they generally become less active, so their muscles, tendons, and ligaments lose some of their flexibility and strength.

While there are many reasons why your German Shepherd has hip problems and hip pain which can make them stiff there are some common health issues that you should consider.

German Shepherds, even puppies, may develop conditions that can cause long-term, fatiguing pain, such as:

  • age-related joint or muscular degeneration pain

Did you know that 20% of the canine population over one year old is affected by arthritis ?

Or that 19.8% of German shepherds born between 2011 and 2015 suffer from hip dysplasia in some form ?

But, hip problems arent the end of an active life for you and your dog. There are many home treatment options available to you, even for hip dysplasia.

Why Do German Shepherds Suffer From Hip Pain

Just hearing the words hip dysplasia is enough to send shivers down the spines of owners of large to giant breeds of dog, including those who own German Shepherds.

Unfortunately, this hereditary condition can dramatically impact the quality of a dogs life, especially as it can be quite hard to prevent.

However, even though there is little an owner can do to totally prevent hip dysplasia from setting in, there are a variety of ways that owners can make sure that their dogs quality of life is maintained, and that their comfort levels are optimal.

To break it down, hip dysplasia is a very common skeletal condition that can occur in a variety of dog breeds, although it is most commonly found in large to giant breeds of dogs.

Hip dysplasia can occur in smaller breeds of dogs, although these cases are very rare.

Continuing on, in healthy dogs, the hip joint is able to function as a ball and socket, with the two separate components working seamlessly together.

However, in dogs that suffer from hip dysplasia, the ball and socket are unable to fit correctly side by side, which means that instead of maintaining space between them, the ball and socket rub and grind each other down, which will ultimately result in gradual deterioration.

Additionally, many puppies are often fed food that is specially formulated for large breed puppies, which helps to prevent them from growing too much and potentially causing skeletal disorders such as hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia to form.

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How To Help German Shepherds With Hip Problems

Hip problems plague German shepherds, but helping an individual dog depends on his actual diagnosis. The two most common hip issues affecting the breed are hip dysplasia and degenerative myelopathy, which are very different conditions. Like many dogs, German shepherds are prone to arthritis as they age, which often afflicts the hips.

How To Recognize Symptoms Of Hip Dysplasia

Hip Help?

These are the main signs of HD, but its not to say that all of them will be present at the same time.

  • General pain and discomfort Keeping the hind legs close together to counter poor balanceBunny hopping when running instead of the signature trot of the GSD Struggling to get up after lying down Loss of muscle tone Reluctance to use full range of motion in hind legs General lameness Whining or crying when getting up quickly Not as excited to enjoy regular physical activities Visible signs of depression

Often, dogs will nibble at their hind legs. Im not 100% sure why, but my guess the nibbling helps with pain relief.

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