View Full Version : Dysplacia In Labs

02-24-2012, 08:28 AM
I just forund out that my 7 month old Lab pup has Dysplacia in her 2 front elbows. It's not severe yet but she definetly has a miss in her step. The option for surgery is available but the chances for long, normal, pain-free life don't sound like they are in the puppys favor from what I'm told.

That being said, the cost of surgery is not an issue if the outcome was more certain than what I'm being told. I've had 2 labs in the past (1 lived to 13 and the other was 14) with no health issues so this Dysplacia thing is new to me. The family has grown very attached to her and she is fitting in very nice. She is showing signs of being the best hunting partner of the 3 labs I've had to date, the other 2 were great also.

I want to give her a fair chance to see what plays out with this but don't want to put her through a lot of pain and rehab if I'm going to be faced with an unavoidable decision a couple years down the road. Any info or experiences anybody could provide would be greatly appreciated.


02-24-2012, 08:40 AM
You might find this helpful.. http://www.thelabradorclub.com/uploads/elbowdysplasia(1).pdf

My experience is the younger the dog the better the prognosis.

02-24-2012, 09:30 AM
Did you get her from a breeder? For down the road, ask if the breeder has had the stud and dam xrayed-most people now will screen hips and elbows, the parents are graded based on if they have dysplasia or not, and if they do how severe it is.

Again it is a screening tool to help breeders make better choices, but generally dogs that are not dysplastic have a lower chance of producing it obviously.

Some more info here (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals). Menu on the left lists some info for ED.


Only thing I know is you will want to watch her weight-dogs with dysplasia do not need to carry any extra around, it is a fine balance of trying to get enough exercise when movement becomes restricted and trying to keep the extra pounds off.

02-24-2012, 10:10 AM
That is why many of us who have been in the retriever game for many years always tell people to only buy from a reputable breeder for a displastic pup wil usually be refunded or replaced. Back yard breeders do not want the expense of having parents certified by guelph or OFA to show no dysplasia in the parents but often do want near the same price for their pupppies with no guarantee or even papers. Without tracing the parents and grandparents back many generations it is impossible to predict the liklihood of dysplasia or many other congenital problems. It is always sad to hear the family didn't ask the right questions at the time of purchase only to get bad news on health when already attached to the pup. having said that the weight issue already mentioned is good advice as are environmental hazards you can control. No rough play on slippery surfaces (linoleum, ice etc) limit hard work (jumping, excessive running, joint stress etc) until the joints are perfectly formed and matured (18 months) and hope it is mild so only discomfort. If it turns out the dog is in constant pain you wil be required to make tough decisions on surgery or euthanasia at a very young age. Sorry to hear.

02-24-2012, 03:32 PM
All working/hunting dogs that are to be bred should be x-rayed at about 2 yrs.