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Hip issues in Golden Retrievers

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#1 Wineandchocolate

Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:00 PM

Our 13-yr old Golden Retriever is starting to get a little bit wonky in the hips.  When he's been lying down for a while and then gets up, his rear end seems to be a bit wobbly and bow-legged; after a few steps it tends to be back to normal.  He doesn't appear to be in any pain (ie. no whimpering, yelping, etc.).  I know the obvious thing to do is have him checked over by a vet, but I'm hoping others can share their experiences with a dog of this age and breed?  Is this the beginning of the end?  Is he likely to be in any pain?  What could we expect over the coming weeks/months/years in terms of his mobility, etc.?  (In case it's relevant, we have had him since he was 8 weeks old and got  him from a registered breeder.  I can't remember his 'hip scores' but I  do remember they were excellent).

He is otherwise in reasonable health but is of course slowing down a bit (ie. can't walk as far or as quickly as he once did).  He is starting to get cataracts, doesn't seem to hear as well as he used to, and occasionally loses control over his bowel motions (in the sense that he just does it wherever he is in the back yard, whereas he used to go to his 'designated area').

Anyway, the immediate concern is his hips/mobility.  Can anyone share their experiences please (good or bad)?  


#2 Meandkids

Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:12 PM

Hello there fellow retriever lover!

My boy is almost 12.  He had OCD (freying of cartilege) in his knee when he was a bub and two opertaions.  He has always known pain and has always limped.

He now has arthritis in this knee (no surprises) and also his back hips.

He has always been on Glucosamine (which gives pain relief in much the same manner as aspirin).

On the advice of our Vet, he is having weekly Cartrophen injections (stimulates cartilege production) and has commenced 4000mg fish oil per day.

I think arthritis comes with old age in this breed.

The Vet said that he will eventually need stronger, regular pain killers.  But you know what, he's happy and beautiful.

It's sad whenthey get old before your eyes, isn't it? I think I'm going through a bit of grief over this at the moment.

Try the glucosamine (1000mg/day) and fish oil (4000mg/day) to see if that helps ease his pain.  If that doesn't help within say a month, I'd go the vet.

Good luck!

#3 Wineandchocolate

Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:15 PM

Thank you Rose38.

Excuse my ignorance, but is it just 'human' glucosamine and fish oil or is there a special variety for dogs?

#4 SeaPrincess

Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:23 PM

Mum and Dad's 12-y-o golden retriever also has arthritis.  4 or 5 years ago a vet wanted to do very expensive exploratory surgery and possibly even more expensive remedial surgery, but my parents declined - they were actually overseas and the dog was being looked after by a friend whose children were feeding it all their scraps.  She had put on a stack of weight and when my parents got home and she lost it, she was a lot better.

Mum limits her walks now (in distance, not frequency), and doesn't take her to the river because although she loves it, the cold water makes her arthritis much worse.  She does have daily medication but I don't know what it is.

#5 Lucygoosey1

Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:28 PM

My golden also had a problem with his knee,  he had surgery when he was 5.  He lived till he was 9.  But I do remember at one stage his other knee had a problem and he had some injections to help.  

#6 heffalumpsnwoozles

Posted 29 November 2012 - 10:17 PM

Yes, you can just give dogs regular human grade glucosamine. It comes in tablet, capsule or powder form. My labrador has always been very happy to just gulp down the tablets when they're added to her food, but won't eat the capsules so we have to open them and pour the powder over.

I find she does better on a mix of glucosamine and chondroitin (she has elbow dysplasia).

#7 la di dah

Posted 30 November 2012 - 06:14 AM

No retrievers here but fish oil was really good for my big dogs. Made a lot of difference in their arthritis in old age, the human tablets.

#8 Epitome

Posted 30 November 2012 - 07:40 AM

I don't have a retriever - but a poodle who was once too pudgy and then had 6 puppies (a lot for a toy!) so the extra weight made her knees a bit dodgy

We've been using sasha's blend on her food for about 18 months and she's now more mobile than ever, doesnt get so stiff afer being stationary and her coat and skin are in great condition

Its expensive (about $60 a tub) but its making a huge difference.  Pet Stock sell it, so maybe worth a go?

#9 casime

Posted 30 November 2012 - 07:52 AM

It's sad when they get old sad.gif

I find that keeping some Meloxicam (or Metacam) on hand is good for my old girl who's starting to get arthritis (13 years old).   On the cold days when she's looking a bit sore she gets a dose of it, and she's back to bouncing around like a puppy again within a couple of hours. She's still competing in agility, albeit no where near the speed she once was.   A vet can order it for you (you will need to see them for a consultation though for them to prescribe it).   Ask them to order the Meloxicam (some vets prefer Metacam because I think the incentives from the company are better) and the large size, as it's a lot cheaper than the Metacam (although the same active ingredients.  It will keep in the pantry.

#10 Meandkids

Posted 30 November 2012 - 06:47 PM

Hi Mummy 2907
Yes, we have always used human glucosamine and now have started human fish oil.  We buy it at the Chemist.

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