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Dog is limping.

Species: Dog
Breed: rottweiller
Age: 5-8 years
Denaro has had a limp in his left front leg for about a month, it goes from a noticable limp (after even short walks) to mild almost non existant. I have had him at my vet numerous times ($800 spent so far) he has had blood taken and analized (nothing showed) he has had xrays (my vet said it may be an arthritic episode but suggested I have the xrays looked at by a specialist which I also did) the specialist said that his joints looked fine...I put him on a more stringent diet at their advice (he was heavy but not overly) and we trimmed his weight down healthy and gradual. He has been on metacam oral suspension ($80 per 32ml) which seems to work at times but even after lengthy rest and very minimal excersise the problem persists...he is active, normal energy level, great appetite, stool is normal, gums and teeth clean and pink, eyes clear and whites of them clear as well, temp normal...I have tried to find an answer to this to no avail and I am reluctant to throw more good money at this for what I can only describe as guesswork on the part of my vet. I have even consulted a second vet who wants to do the same barrage of tests and xrays. What can u suggest


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Hi and thanks for your question. This sounds like a frustrating situation. Unfortunately I have had cases like this too. While *usually* do find the cause I have had some lameness cases that we simply can't figure out the answer for.

It sounds like your vet is doing all of the same things that I would do.

If this were my case, I would likely want to repeat some xrays (assuming that it has been a few weeks since the first ones). There are some conditions where we don't see radiographic changes early in the disease, but after a period of time we can see changes. Unfortunately one of the things that I would be looking for is evidence of osteosarcoma which is a bone cancer that can be common in rotties.

Another possible thing you could do is to ask your vet to refer you to see an orthopedic specialist. This appointment will likely cost about $100-$200 but if there is something unusual going on with Denaro's leg than a specialist has a better chance of being able to diagnose it.

If you live in an area where there are a lot of ticks you can ask your vet about the possibility of lyme disease causing these symptoms.

I'm sorry that this is so frustrating! If doing more tests is just not an option right now then what I would recommend (if it were my case) is to continue with the Metacam long term. You could ask your vet about a similar drug to Metacam that is called Previcox. I find it works as well as Metacam but usually costs less. You can also ask your vet about glucosamine supplements.

I really hope he is feeling better soon!

Dr. Marie

---This question was asked in our Ask A Vet For Free section.---



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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Thank you for your prompt reply, I will go in for another batch of xrays I had another rotti who had lymphosarcoma and had to be put down when he was 7. I am hoping this will not be another scenario like that thanks again for your advice


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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.