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Our new foster, Martina, has a very crooked foreleg. She does favor it a bit when walking, and the knee area appear knuckled over, while the foot itself is turned sharply outwards. Being as new to bassets as I am, I'm not sure what this might be. She has no pain in the leg that I can determine. Rescue said they see a great many of these, and it is a birth defect. Also, when she is walking, the kneecap area appears to be moving around. Any idea what this might be, and do I need to have it checked myself? The rescue organization had her vetted, but had no comment as to the leg. She runs fine, plays and jumps with no problems I can see. I know I'm a worrywart, but if it's something that needs to be fixed, I'd like to know.
 

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Without x-ray and possibly an MRI it is not possible to tell what is the exact cause of the problem. But conformation problems in the front assembly of basset hounds is quite common. One of the most if not the most difficult tasks of a breeder is obtaining and mantaining a proper front in a basset. Give that bassets are prone to Elbow displasia
Elbow disease is a problem of growing dogs and the clinical signs of the three main problems are somewhat similar. The earliest problem recognised was UAP. The German Shepherd Dog and the Basset Hound are the two main breeds involved, although any middle size or larger breed may be affected.
and elbow incongruity

[ February 07, 2005, 02:12 AM: Message edited by: Toughynutter ]
 

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Looks like it could be an angular limb deformity, which happens when one of the long bones in the lower part of the front leg stops growing prematurely. The other bone continues to grow and bows (curves) as it grows, because of limitations due to its attachment to the shorter bone that has stopped growing.

This condition in puppies requires major surgery, but it is generally not corrected in older bassets, once they're finished growing. The leg and front assembly are at risk for the development of arthritis as the dog ages. One suggestion for dogs with this condition is to keep the dog lean so as not to unduly stress the leg and front.

If the dog is an adult, as long as there doesn't appear to be lameness or pain, you can probably run it by the vet during your next routine visit.

[ February 07, 2005, 10:40 AM: Message edited by: Betsy Iole ]
 

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Our last basset had something similar. She passed on last year at the ripe old age of 12! It looked awkward, but didn't seem to bother her too much. She liked going for long walks too.
 

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We've had quite a few bassets with this problem come through our rescue group. For the most part, it doesn't seem to give them any pain - and yes, keeping them lean is the best thing you can do for your basset, leg problems or no!
 
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