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Discussion Starter #1
We just took Abby to the vet for something quite unrelated and after having examined her fairly thoroughly the vet told us that Abby has "Lateral Patella dislocation" in both hind legs. He said that it is not unusual in Bassets and that it was nothing to worry about...easier said than done. The vet (who is Japanese) was struggling with his English (although I have to give him an "A" for effort...and it is certainly better than my Japanese!), but I am not sure that I understood exactly what this is. Can anyone explain to me:

1)What is "lateral patella dislocation"?
2)What treatment is necessary?
3)Is it hereditary/genetic?

Thanks for any answers!
 

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Lateral patellar luxation is a condition where the patella (knee cap) can be moved out of position to the side of the knee, away from the midline. I have also heard what your vet told you; that patellar luxation, while surprisingly common in bassets, is not often symptomatic. If it's not symptomatic, it probably won't require treatment, but best to follow your vet's advice on this.

Having said all this, one of my bassets had symptomatic patellar luxation which required surgical repair, so there are occasional cases in bassets that *do* require treatment.

Here are some links discussing patellar luxation.

Medial and lateral patellar luxation
What is patellar luxation?
Patellar Luxation
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Betsy

Thanks for the info and the links. I guess it would have helped in my searches if I would have got the spelling right!

Anyway, it doesn't seem too serious now as Abby does not seem to avoid putting any weight on either hind legs. I guess we will just have to keep a watch on it.

One question, however, considering that this is congenital, is whether or not the breeder would have known that there was a possibility (probabilty) that Abby would have this disorder? Not that there is anything that we could do about it now, but it would go to prove (as if that were necessary) that the pet industry in Japan is indeed extremely commercial and that pet well-being has no place in the listof priorities.

But I guess that it also answers our question of whether we would like little Abby's or not, and I guess the answer to that now has to be "no".

[ August 22, 2003, 09:23 PM: Message edited by: Abby ]
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Just an update after a trip to a different vet to get a second opinion. Well, it only gets worse....

Apart from the lateral patellar dislocation in both hind legs, Abby also has epiphysiodesis (premature physiclosure) in the front legs. As we were sufficiently worried by this, we asked the vet to x-ray her hips to and this confirmed that she also has hip dysplasia.... It never rains, it pours as they say.

Abby is a great dog, we all love her dearly and we will provide her with all the care she needs (surgery looks pretty certain somewhere in the future), but I am absolutely furious with the store that sold us Abby and the breeder for being so irresponsible. Japan being what it is we have little comeback and as I said in an earlier post, the welfare of animals is not rated that highly.

Another issue was raised during our visit to the vet. We asked that she be spayed as we would not want her to have puppies now. The vet said that this was not necessarily a good idea as dogs that are spayed generally put on weight. Bassets being what they are with regard to weight problems and with Abby's joint problems, he felt that this may be counter-productive. I would be interested to hear your thoughts.

[ August 23, 2003, 02:01 AM: Message edited by: Abby ]
 

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Hip dysplasia is somewhat similar to patellar luxation in bassets; it's not an uncommon diagnosis, but we don't know how to predict which bassets will go on to become symptomatic.

As far as spaying goes,it should make things easier on all of you. You can control Abby's weight by controlling how much she gets fed. Most of my pets are spayed and neutered, and none of them has weight problems.

Speaking of the pet industry in Japan, I recently saw a distressing piece on CNN about chihuahuas as fashion accessories in Japan. :(

Barking Mad Over Chihuahuas

[ August 23, 2003, 05:42 PM: Message edited by: Betsy Iole ]
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Betsy, once again thanks for the info. For some reason or another Japanese vets are not big on spaying, but we will probably see if we can find one who will do it without causing too much fuss.

Thanks also for the link. Unfortunately that's only the tip of the iceberg. I enjoy living in Japan, but for a people who are considered and who consider themselves to be so civilised, their attitude towards animals is very callous.

My wife and I rescued a cockatoo from a pet store about 6 months ago. She was a little bit of an ugly duckling as she has a slightly deformed beak and some missing claws, but she has a great character. The shop she came from was absolutely disgusting, full of cigarette smoke and her cage had not been cleaned in ages. Unfortunately there were many other birds there who were probably just as worthy of being rescued, but knowing how keen the Japanese are on perfection, we knew that this cockatoo (we called her Tsuki, which is Japanese for moonlight - she is all white with a yellow crest - but it also means lucky) didn't have a chance of being bought, so we did. We haven't regretted it, but she is very raucous sometimes and we probably have more to fear from neighbours complaining about her than about Abby barking!

Anyway, that was a little OT, but thanks for the info all the same. It is much appreciated.
 
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