What is that noise? I hear it every time I push on Dakota’s rear end to get her to sit. On top of it, sometimes I actually feel the bones pop. Given that she is a year old and still can lay on the floor with her legs sprawled out behind her, I wouldn’t normally be concerned. But, given that she is a Labrador Retriever and they are well know for hip dysplasia, a dollar amount keeps flashing in my mind.
From everything I have been able to read, hip dysplasia is common in large and giant breed dogs. An overview of hip dysplasia states:
Difficult to prevent and treat, canine hip dysplasia is among the most studied and the most frustrating diseases in veterinary medicine. Canine hip dysplasia is a developmental orthopedic disease in which an abnormal formation of the hip leads to looseness in the hip joints, causing cartilage damage. Progressive arthritis can result, and when it does, it can be crippling. Hip dysplasia is not the same thing as arthritis in the hips rather, it is the most common cause of arthritis in the hips. (http://www.workingdogs.com/vchipdysplasia.htm)
A former German Shepard of mine had gotten it but at a ripe old age. Dakota is only a year though so I am more concerned. Since Dakota already weighs 88 lbs, we are going to start to get her a little leaner. She is not fat at all but all muscle – either way she can stand to lose a little. We just want to make sure that there isn’t too much weight on her hips to aggravate it at all. Sure, there may be no problem at all but why risk it.