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Deformed leg on puppy.

Species: Dog
Breed: Pomeranian maltese
Age: Less than 3 mon
I have a Pomeranian Maltese that gave birth early yesterday morning. When going to the vet I realized one of the two puppies (the male) had a significantly smaller limb(right front). The vet said she's heard about something like that but didn't know what it was called, nor what to do about it, or what could possibly happen. I went and tried looking up information myself ( antebrachial growth deformity/ angular limb deformity) but all of these describe a longer limb. His front leg is a lot smaller than the rest, I've also noticed his paw is smaller and without nails like the rest. Do you have any information that could help me?


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Thanks for your question. There are a couple of possibilities for the condition that your new little puppy has.

One is something called hemimelia where the puppy is born missing the radius. The radius is the bone between the elbow and the wrist.

Another is something called forelimb agenesis which means that the leg just didn't grow. It doesn't sound like this is the issue as it sounds like there is still some leg there.

And there are other possibilities that just don't have names. There are all sorts of birth defects that can happen.

Many animals with limb defects can get along just fine. In some cases there are surgeries that can help and sometimes we consider amputating a limb if it is uncomfortable for the puppy.

I hope that has helped but let me know if you have more questions.

Dr. Marie.


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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.

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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.