Submitted on 2014/02/13 at 8:23 pm
My dog had FHO almost a year ago. He was slow to gain muscle tone but everything looks good now. The doctor said to make sure he wasn’t rough housing and not to run for a specified amount of time. On our walks I would go back and forth across the street so he would get a good distribution of inclines (not much is flat near me).
My worry is that the leg he had the surgery on has a slight rotation outward, sometimes as much as a 30 degrees outward. And it makes me cringe when he rotates on it. My question is, is it normal for that to happen, and if not how could I correct it?
P.S. His name is Lou Dog and he is a border collie/lab mix
Hey Ryan 🙂
From what you describe, your dog is still compensating for pain by rotating his knee laterally, outward. I suspect he hasn’t yet built up muscle equal to the other thigh either…? If he isn’t using the leg consistently and building up from a very basic plan, only increasing slow walk time by 5 minutes, up to 30 min, (so that would take several weeks), then working on more muscle-building exercise, he won’t be able to build muscle progressively and well and use the leg with less pain.
That may make total sense, or it may seem like a vague answer…depends on how you understand exercise physiology, I think.
Typically we all try to push things faster than they are naturally designed to comply…and people really push the animals because our pets, especially dogs, are eager to make us happy and get about “normal” lives.
So, they end up ahead of themselves with lingering injuries and pain.
It sounds like you did well with basic recovery parameters…when you feel the thighs, are they equal in size? Get behind him and cup your hands loosely over the femur/quads and slide them up and down, from flank to knee. Also, stand and cup your hands, thumbs down, over the hams and slide your hands up and down. Usually the quads develop faster and more equally than the hams.
It really sounds like LouDog could use some pain meds or you could start with ice and vibrational massage prior to each walk to see if that’s enough pain help. Then start back at 2-4×10 min super slow walks daily with no additional running around. To alleviate the pain rotation or the functional deficits, I suggest you start back closer to the beginning so he may achieve success and THEN if/when he gets to a sticking point, a point wherein he is rotating again, you will know what to address…
Hope that makes sense-
POSTED BY REHABDEB | FEBRUARY 20, 2014, 1:14 PM | EDIT