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Common causes for a medial luxating patella in dogs

A luxating patella in dogs – or to put it more simply, a dislocated kneecap, has no definitive cause other than a library of evidence to show the most common breeds are more likely to experience this particular condition.

However, let’s understand what causes the patella to luxate and then try to understand what can be done and how serious it is:

  • Causes of luxating patella in dogs

The kneecap or patella can move from side to side in a groove. A ligament exists between the bottom of the kneecap to the bone below the knee joint. This patella ligament keeps the knee in place.

A luxating patella in dogs occurs when the thigh muscles contract, forcing the patella ligament to be pushed too far inward to the knee joint. This force yanks the patella against the groove in which it is situated. Over months, the groove will wear down and the knee cap will become loose within the groove and can become displaced.

  • What are the signs of a luxating patella in dogs

If you notice your dog limping or using its forelimbs to move forward while leaving its hind leg to lag behind, it is a sure sign that something isn’t right – and this could be a luxating patella.

Some dogs learn to push it back into place and then they walk well for a while – but this is just for a short period before the area becomes so worn that it causes so much pain and discomfort that they’ll soon fall down again. This disorder usually occurs early on in a dog’s life, which gives you hope that it can be remedied. However, if you leave it for longer, and your dog experiences arthritis, there could be possible complications.

  • Can a luxating patella be cured?

In short, yes. There is hope to have your dog’s patella’s groove fixed. However, in cases with arthritic dogs, it may include other procedures or medications. This is what your dog will go through in the surgery:

  • First, the patella ligament is surgically and permanently attached to a better location at the point of patella ligament.
  • Second, the groove will be made more deep so that the knee cap can fit neatly in place without moving.
  • Third, the casing around the knee joint will be constricted.

This is a surgery option that is the most effective way to help your dog recover from a luxating patella.

  • What breeds are most likely to experience a patella to luxate?

Certain dogs are more likely to experience a luxating patella. These include the following breeds:

  • Basset hound
  • Chihuahua
  • Pug
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Maltese Poodle
  • Australian Silky Terrier
  • Cocker spaniels

With this information, you can be better equipped to notice the signs of a luxating patella in your dog, and then you will know what steps to take.

The best advice is, as soon as you notice it, bring your dog into our professional animal care hospital so that you can end your dog’s suffering and have him or her running and loving life again in no time. Call us today for an appointment.

Related Tag: Medial Luxating Patella Dog