Pablo's funny walk
Pablo, a 12 week old Chihuahua, is a very friendly and relatively healthy puppy. His only problem being that he had a bit of a funny walk but this did not stop him doing anything.
Pablo was actually found walking around a country Victorian town by the council and placed into the local pound. He did not have a microchip and no one claimed him after the required time. Luckily he was rescued by Second Chance, an organisation run by one of our veterinary nurses, Marisa.
Nurse Marisa brought Pablo in to have a thorough clinical examination by one of our vets. It was found that Pablo's right hind leg below the knee felt a bit unusual but not painful to Pablo. The muscles around this area felt under developed from a lack of use. An x-ray was advised as some of the concerns at the time were that the limb could have been either broken, and then healed incorrectly or that it hadn’t developed properly due to a growth deformity.
Growth deformities can in some cases be genetic in origin, whereas in others it is due to malnourishment during the vital growth phase in a puppy’s early life. We recommend premium growth formula foods especially designed for the rapid growth phase of puppies and it is advised to feed this from when the puppy is weaned at about 6 weeks old until they are around 9-18 months old (breed dependent). It is also vital to ensure that your puppy is wormed correctly to ensure that intestinal worms are not a cause of malnourishment. Please discuss with your vet or vet nurse about the best food and worming treatment to select for your puppy.
The x-ray revealed an old fracture that had, despite Pablo's difficult start in life, stabilised itself. The concern was that the bones were not well aligned and that a surgical procedure would be required to prevent ongoing problems with Pablo’s right hind leg. In this age of modern technology, it is quite easy to get a second opinion from a specialist so a copy of the x-ray was emailed that day.
The reply came quickly with the advice that there seemed to be adequate stabilisation at present time and that a surgical procedure would not be beneficial at this stage. It was further explained that it would be advisable to let the bone completely heal and then to reassess it when Pablo was about a year old, when all of his bones were fully formed. In Pablo’s favor as he is a small dog, he may just learn to cope with the bone not being completely aligned but still be stable.
Pablo was then desexed, microchipped, vaccinated and rehomed with a foster carer. He is such a happy little fellow, he loves a cuddle and I am sure he does not know what all the fuss is about.