Saturday, July 14, 2012

Now I Know


Chou's x-rays were taken two days ago. They were read by a radiologist who sees a lot of OFA  x-rays. My vet described to me, by phone, what is in the radiology report:

Shoulders, elbows, and spine are normal.
Moderate subluxation in both hips, with left side worse.
Cups are shallow.
Musculature in hind diminished.

Which is to say, she inherited HD, Hip Dysplasia. I am devastated.

Chou Chou runs a lot, but because she doesn't push off on her hind legs  -- because of pain I didn't know about, she trots -- she has diminished rear muscles. 

I am going through an "anticipatory grieving": I am worried about Chou's future. How long will it be before she is seriously affected? When will the HD impair her ability to take long walks or to go upstairs to sleep at night. I think of Mimi, who developed mobility problems late in life; but Chou Chou is so young! It is so sad to think of my puppy being in pain.

My vet wants me to wait until I have two orthopedic surgeons' reports before we start making changes. There are surgeries that only work for small dogs, so I'm not sure what options I have. And there are physical therapy programs to keep her muscles strong and improve her gait, like underwater treadmill. Right now I just feel lost.

My contract with the breeder says that if my pup has hip dysplasia, I can return her and get a new puppy ... who could do such a "trade in"?? I love Chou Chou. I will do whatever it takes to help her (I know it will be expensive, but the pet insurance I started last year will help). I will do my best to keep her pain-free and happy. She gives me so much joy. My beautiful puppy who runs a little funny. 

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