Patella Luxation is a very common orthopedic disease found primarily in small breed dogs such as the Yorkshire Terrier, Lhasa Apso, Poodle, Bichon Frise, Shih tzu, Chihuahua and other small breeds, although it can also occur in larger breed dogs as well. Clinical signs noted by the owner tend to be gradual changes in the way the pet walks, and often the only sign present is “hopping or skipping” when the pet walks or runs at certain speeds. Most pets do not appear painful to their owners.
The problem occurs when the pet flexes the knee and the patella (knee cap) slips out of the groove it is normally in and thus slips “out of joint”. The repeated action of the patella moving out of this groove lead to chronic wear on the bones of the knee joint and changes in the positioning of the muscles, ligaments and tendons of the knee and the hip joint. Luxating patella is a progressive disease and if left untreated will led to a multitude of joint and limb problems with signs of severe arthritis often when the pet is still quite young. Surgical repair early in the disease process is warranted. If you feel your pet may have patella luxation, please do not hesitate to call us.
At Huntsville Animal Hospital, we have Dr. Jason McLeod who has a special interest in orthopedic injuries and has advanced specialized training in Patella Luxation Repair surgeries. Be assured, if your pet has orthopedic disease or has suffered an orthopedic injury, our hospital will facilitate appropriate treatment and develop a comprehensive plan for rehabilitation and physiotherapy to aid your pet’s recovery and reduce the long term potential complications related to the disease or injury.