Canine Hip Dysplasia in Dogs; Surgery Isn’t the Only Option


Is your dog suffering from hip dysplasia? Are you afraid that hip dysplasia in dogs causes severe pain to your furry friend? You need to know everything to help your pet. The severity of hip dysplasia might range from no pain, to mild, moderate and dangerously critical.

Sometimes it can also be relieved through home remedies instead of complicated surgeries. To explore better treatment options for your dog, read the entire information given below to understand the condition prevailing in your dog.

Hip dysplasia in dogs, and what is it?

Dysplasia is a word used generally for the ‘irregularity of growth’. There are many types of dysplasia in dogs, canine hip dysplasia, being one of the most commonly found, is basically a joint disorder that can cause severe to extreme amounts of pain to dogs suffering from it.

An ordinary canine hip involves a ball and socket joint that rolls freely when moved. But when a dog develops hip dysplasia, its hip joint becomes unstable and grows into a loose fit as the ball and socket joint can no longer move effortlessly. What’s more, this joint abnormally rubs and grinds together, causing great amounts of discomfort.

How is hip dysplasia developed?

The hereditary disorder has been known to be the primary cause of hip dysplasia in dogs. So far, hip dysplasia has been believed to be only caused by heritable conditions. However, new research shows otherwise. It is now generally deduced that environmental factors are also the cause of canine hip dysplasia. These factors include obesity, growth rate, exercise or excessive exertion on the hip joint at an early age etc.

How do you know that your dog has hip dysplasia?

It is not very hard to recognize hip dysplasia in your dog. Several symptoms are a dead giveaway. These include:

  • Reduced activity
  • Excessive limping
  • Instability of the hind end
  • Swaying pace
  • Signs of discomfort
  • Unwillingness to run, jump or climb

Breeds at a greater risk of hip dysplasia

Various species of dogs are more liable to suffer from canine hip dysplasia. Larger dogs, for example, are comparatively more prone to hip dysplasia but that doesn’t mean that the smaller ones are completely immune to it. If you have a German Shepherd, Saint Bernand, Great Dane, Labrador Retriever, Golden Retriever, or even a Mastiff, and if it shows more than two of the symptoms listed above, you should consult your local veterinarian immediately.

Treatment options for Canine hip dysplasia

There is more than one way to treat hip dysplasia in dogs. Medical treatment for your dog can range from completely changing their lifestyles to having a surgery. Surgeries can improve a dog’s quality of life, but then again, surgeries are most definitely not the best option. Not only are they extremely expensive, but they also require extensive periods of rest and recuperation.

Therefore, surgeries should only be advanced when your dog’s condition becomes severe or critical. The purpose of this treatment is to enhance your dog’s quality of life. This objective can easily be achieved through physical therapy and home treatments, as well. Some management options, including home therapies and exercise, are described below:

Regular swimming regime

Swimming is probably the most effective form of exercise for your dog. It gives your dog a good workout that reduces their body mass and weight without straining their hip joints. Take advice from your vet on a mild exercise regime that would do wonders for your dog’s hip dysfunction.

Engaging in short walks

Short walks are necessary and beneficial for your dog, even if they are suffering from hip dysplasia. These short walks will help them to avoid gaining extra weight. This will lower the impact on the hind end too.

Exercise Routine

Having an exercise routine for your dog is really important. It no longer remains stiff after proper stretching. Also, without an appropriate workout, their hip condition can become more painful. Regular exercise reduces degeneration and induces cartilage growth in your dog.

Using Joint Supplements

If your dog is suffering from canine hip dysplasia, you just can’t do without joint supplements. They help to reduce discomfort and pain. Moreover, they prevent further joint injury and fix damaged cartilage. Joint supplements consist of nutrients that help to improve the structural support of the body and strengthen joints.

Using Dietary Supplements

Dietary supplements are also essential for improving your dog’s hip dysfunction, especially supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids, fish oils, glucosamine and vitamins. These nutritional supplements decrease inflammation and improve your dog’s locomotion.

Restricted Diet

Hip dysplasia might get worse if your dog stays inactive and gains weight. Therefore, along with regular physical activity, you need to restrict your dog’s diet to make sure it doesn’t become more difficult for the animal by increasing pressure on its bones and joints.


The health of your canine companion does not guarantee that it wouldn’t develop hip dysplasia at any stage of its life. Therefore, following the principle of prevention is better than cure, you should take good care of your pet. But if the disease becomes inevitable, you can still keep it under control through proper care.

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