Elbow Dysplasia

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Cherry
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Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:32 am

Elbow Dysplasia

Postby Cherry » Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:47 am

Hi there!

I posted about this previously, but somehow I cannot log in under my previous account, so I will post the update here under a new account. My blue merle sheltie, Cherry, turns 2 today. She started limping back in May, and about a week and a half ago was finally diagnosed with elbow dysplasia.

I was on another post here recently, which I cannot find, but in it, someone gave me some excellent encouragement and advice. I'd love to find that post if you are the person. Because of that post, we put Cherry on a strong joint supplement, plus green lipped mussel extract, plus doubled her fish oil. We were a bit taken aback by how energetic she was the next couple of days - frisked around in circles. And a bit saddened - we thought she was just a quiet lazy girl, but it looks like she has been in quite a bit of pain. I'm assuming this is why she lay down so much as a puppy - which was one of the reasons why actually we tested her for thyroid issues when she was a year old.

The limp is lessened with supplements but still noticeable, and with the weather change, she's been very subdued for the past two days. It's so hard to watch and realize that she hurts and there is nothing I can do about it. She's so patient and sweet. It's so hard to come to grips with the fact that she's not going to get better, that we can't even do surgery to fix her.

Cherry has elbow incongruency with FCP, two different forms of elbow dysplasia. The combination of those two means that surgery would only be an option (and not a good one) when she can no longer walk well, because the double surgery will cause other problems and destabilize her elbow in a different fashion. The bone that would be cut would cause a large scar mass on one side, and the large fragment of bone that is presently rubbing the cartilage would leave a large gap on the other side, so the opposite side would be unstable. Quite frankly, if we got to that point, we would not put her through the pain of surgery, since the help provided would be minimal.

Cherry is not in unbearable pain right now, but that elbow is sore. Her other leg is turning in at the toes since she uses it to take the strain off her left elbow. And it will get worse in both legs as things progress. I do not want to put her down, but I also do not want a lifetime of progressive pain for her, so I know that putting her down is something that I have to consider. If you have an opinions, I'd love to hear them. I found this quote from the following article particularly hard:

"Depending on the component of elbow dysplasia and the amount of abnormality present at the time of surgery, owners should be aware that arthritis is a progressive disorder and improvement may be seen, but normality probably will not be achieved. Medical and surgical management is often unrewarding. Fewer than 50 percent of the dogs treated medically and fewer than 60 percent of the dogs treated surgically (for FCP) had a satisfactory long-term recovery. "

https://www.ofa.org/pdf/elbowarticle.pdf

Anyway, just wondering if you'd ever had experience with this, or if you had any suggestions.

And here we thought we just had a very calm sheltie. Breaks my heart to think she's been in pain. She's so good natured. Never complaining. She got her CGC at 6 months, got her Novice Rally at 13 months, just got her certification as a therapy dog. We tried agility but I could tell that though she was interested, something was not working right. And then this diagnosis. She's very good at coping I think. She follows me everywhere, and is at this moment lying upside down at my feet. So hard to figure out what to do - let her continue until she no longer feels up to wagging, or stop now.

Funny, I grew up in a terrible situation. And when my mom wouldn't let my abusive step father physically hit me, he would hit my two dogs instead. We had a sheltie, Tucker, and he drove poor Tucker insane. I always swore that someday I'd get a sheltie and give them the best life ever in return for what Tucker went through for me. And now I only get to do it for such a short while, and the kindest thing that I can do for my sweetheart might be to put her down. My heart hurts so much. Thank you for being so kind as to read and perhaps send encouragement or help.
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Anto
Posts: 120
Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:46 pm
Location: South Australia

Re: Elbow Dysplasia

Postby Anto » Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:11 am

Hello Cherry

I just wanted to thank you for sharing your and your pups struggles with us all - brought tears to my eyes. I wish there was some way I could help :(. I am not sure where you are located, but here is Sth Australia where me and my Mia live, there is a lady who specialises in remedial massage for dogs. Is that something that, whilst not necessarily be a cure for your pup totally, might give her some relief?

Please keep us posted on how you get on.

Kindest regards

Antoinette and Miss Mia
User avatar
Anto
Posts: 120
Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:46 pm
Location: South Australia

Re: Elbow Dysplasia

Postby Anto » Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:12 am

Hello me again! sorry, just realised the pup's name is Cherry xo

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