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Old 03-14-2012, 08:51 AM   #1
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Unhappy Delilah was born without a kneecap...

I took Delilah to the vet this morning because she has been limping. I thought it was luxating patella or a sprain, but instead they told me that she doesn't have a kneecap on her right hind leg. Apparently, it's genetic. They told me that there isn't much that they can do... even if they refer us to an orthopedic doctor. The doctor said she will continue to limp but as long as she isn't in pain, it's okay. She is already showing signs of arthritis and you can tell from the x-ray that the large bone under the kneecap (I believe it's the Tibia) is starting to show some wear and is flattening out compared to the other one. They aren't going to give her NSAIDS until it's absolutely necessary.

I just can't believe we didn't know all this time. She turns 3 next month.

Have you ever heard of a dog that was born without a kneecap?
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:54 AM   #2
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Not heard of that but I know all kinds of birth defects do happen. I hope the docs can find a way to keep her comfortable. Do they ever provide dogs with an artificial patella if damage is happening without it?
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:56 AM   #3
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Wow! Can't say I have....
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:02 AM   #4
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I have a friend who's lab got their elbow surgical fused to do extensive damage from a freak accident. He is still super active.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:04 AM   #5
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You should notify the breeder since it is genetic.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:23 AM   #6
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I would still go for an evaluation with a board certified orthopedic surgeon......

American College of Veterinary Surgeons
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:31 AM   #7
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I would still go for an evaluation with a board certified orthopedic surgeon......

American College of Veterinary Surgeons

Vet. schools do amazing things with replacements and prosthesis joints....I would be contacting vet schools, ortho surgeons (specialists), and the breeder, so she is aware she has a breeding pair that may be throwing a genetic defect. She can follow up with puppies she has sold to others to see if any of the littermates were affected.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:34 AM   #8
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I'm sure it is possible to provide a dog an artificial patella. I'm planning on calling around to find one. Thanks for the website.

I'm also planning to call the breeder to inform him of the situation once I find all of her paperwork.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
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I'm sure it is possible to provide a dog an artificial patella. I'm planning on calling around to find one. Thanks for the website.

I'm also planning to call the breeder to inform him of the situation once I find all of her paperwork.
Keep us posted! This is an interesting case...I would like to hear what a specialist has to say.
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:14 AM   #10
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Oh my goodness! I have never heard of that before.
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Old 03-16-2012, 06:22 PM   #11
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I took Delilah to the vet this morning because she has been limping. I thought it was luxating patella or a sprain, but instead they told me that she doesn't have a kneecap on her right hind leg. Apparently, it's genetic. They told me that there isn't much that they can do... even if they refer us to an orthopedic doctor. The doctor said she will continue to limp but as long as she isn't in pain, it's okay. She is already showing signs of arthritis and you can tell from the x-ray that the large bone under the kneecap (I believe it's the Tibia) is starting to show some wear and is flattening out compared to the other one. They aren't going to give her NSAIDS until it's absolutely necessary.

I just can't believe we didn't know all this time. She turns 3 next month.

Have you ever heard of a dog that was born without a kneecap?
Interesting for sure, thank you for sharing. Do you notice any symptoms associated with the missing knee cap?
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Old 03-16-2012, 07:45 PM   #12
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I have never heard of it. I agree that it would be a good thing to talk to a specialist. You just never really know what they are capable of doing. New things come along daily! I would really like to know what you learn.
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Old 03-16-2012, 11:39 PM   #13
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I definitely would get a referral to an orthopedic vet. There are new and exciting things happening all the time in orthopedics and your vet may not know o the latest and greatest as most would not unless they are the ortho specialists. At least you will know you are getting the best info available and they can follow your Delilah as the arthritis worsens.

I haven't heard of it either, but there are lots of things beyond my experience. But did you know that human babies are born without kneecaps? They do not appear in humans until 2-6 years old! So, I wonder if dogs are born without them too and develop them sometime after birth as a rule? Maybe your pup just didn't form the one after birth as intended?
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Old 03-17-2012, 06:59 PM   #14
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Interesting for sure, thank you for sharing. Do you notice any symptoms associated with the missing knee cap?
The only thing that I have noticed is her limping. Other than that, nothing. I felt both of her knees and the one that has a missing kneecap has a huge groove. She doesn't seem to be in any pain though.

I'm still calling around to find an orthopedic vet/surgeon to see her. I'm mostly looking in the Atlanta area even though it is a two hour drive because I can't seem to find anything in my area.

I tried googling her condition but I don't think there is a name for it. I only found two other dogs without kneecaps. In these cases, both of the kneecaps were missing. One gets around with a "bunny hop", and the other one can't walk at all. Delilah doesn't seem to have any major problems right now, even though the vet said it will get worse with time. I think that her good leg has helped her out a great deal over the years.

I'm still trying to find the breeder, but he seems to have vanished into thin air. =/
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Old 03-18-2012, 07:21 AM   #15
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I hope you can find someone that can help her. I would have thought a vet would have found this during a physical checkup. Sending good thoughts your way.
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