Hypertropic osteodystrophy is a developmental disease that affects large and giant breed dogs 2 - 8 months old.
Hypertropic osteodystrophy targets the long bones close to the growth plates at the wrists and hocks. These areas become painful and give rise to lameness. The lameness ranges from mild to incapacitating. It often affects both front or both rear limbs. The bones are extremely warm, swollen, and painful to the touch. Affected dogs are reluctant to move. Some dogs develop high fever, depression, loss of appetite, and weight loss.
The cause is unknown.
Bone X-rays show an enlargement of the affected growth plate and increased density of bone adjacent to the growth plate. These findings distinguish the condition from panosteitis and other causes of lameness in growing pups.
There is no specific treatment for hypertrophic osteosystrophy. Symptomatic therapy involves resting the dog and giving an NSAID, available through your veterinarian. Many pups do well with antibiotics, while others are treated with prednisone.
Review the pup's diet with your veterinarian to be sure he is not being overfed. Discontinue all vitamins and supplements. Most affected puppies have one to two episodes and then recover, but permanent bone changes and physical deformities may develop.
Please contact your veterinarian with questions regarding this condition.
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