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Hip weakness
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Hip weakness

I have a 14 year old shepherd that is experiecing extreme back leg weakness.  I have had lots of shepherds in my day and I know what hip dysplasia is.  He doesn't seem to be in pain but he falls down alot.  He also drops poop now and then.  I know something is pressing somewhere.  When he lays down, his right leg just randomly shoots out now and then.  I have some Rymadel(spg) from other dogs but I have always used it for pain.  Other than this problem, he is very healthy.  He can lope a little as long as he stays straight.  No turning.  I know he's getting senile but I refuse to put him down unless he is in pain.  He takes a little extra work on my part but that's ok.  I am not working right now and have 8 other dogs, 7 of which are strays.  I will find the money to get him to his vet if you can't give me any advice.  I know you can't diagnose him.  Thank you for your opinion!  blythe7007
Tags: weakness
Type of Animal
:  
Dog
Age of Animal
:  
14
Sex of Animal
:  
Male
Breed of Animal
:  
German Shepherd
Last date your pet was examined by a vet?
:  
January 10, 2010
City
:  
Terrell
State/Province
:  
TX
Country
:  
USA
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It could be spinal disc disease, hip dysplasia, knee arthritis, degenerative myelopathy or a combination of more than one of the above conditions.  Since your dog does not appear to be that painful he may have degenerative myelopathy.

Degenerative Myelopathy is a non-painful progressive disease that can occur in German Shepherd dogs.  Please google the article: Degenerative Myelopathy of German Shepherds by Dr. Roger Clemmons, Univ of Florida Veterinary Medical School.  Dr. Clemmons was one of my professors.  See if the description of the degenerative myelopathy symptoms sounds like your dog.  Although there is no cure for degenerative myelopathy, Dr. Clemmons protocol has been found helpful in stalling the progression of the disease, along with acupuncture.
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