Lucas has been limping and holding his left hind leg up since Christmas. Michael and I thought he had over done it with his new Christmas toys, playing tug with his sister, and jumping from the chair to the couch. But he is still showing favor to that back leg. And since we will be kenneling him while we are in the hospital for Gabriel's arrival, we decided we better get his leg looked at. We were thinking it wouldn't be anything too serious, and then we could at least tell the kennel that we had it checked out and not to be alarmed. After all, it hasn't seemed to slow him down and he doesn't necessarily seem to be in pain. He's still begging for food, jumping up on his hind legs, flinging himself from the couch to the chair and back again, and chasing his sister.
We got an appointment at Russell Animal Hospital this afternoon and took Lucas in. He is such a shy and whiny boy at the puppy pediatrician's office, which is so opposite of his personality at home. The doctor quickly diagnosed that Lucas has a Patellar Subluxation, and then confirmed it with some X-ray's. It means his knee cap slips around and causes damage to the structure of the knee bones and tissues. Right now, his condition is only stage 1, which usually doesn't indicate surgery. But because he is so young, the vet said that if we did surgery now that she would expect success due to his age in recovery. And then we could prevent additional degenerative knee damage and from him getting early onset arthritis. I would hate to think of him having a poor quality of life and having a chronic achy knee at such a young age if we don't fix it.
The vet is going to send us an estimate in the mail for the surgery. It would be a 6-8 week recovery, and actually, it might be most convenient to have it done while I am on maternity leave so I can be home for his recovery.
Don't worry! We have sufficiently been spoiling Lucas and giving him extra love and attention. And he is sucking it up! And he is starting a regimen of Glucosamine and Chondroitin. It's a big pill, but wrapped in human food it seems to go down easily.