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Juno's Jodhpurs

Juno's Jodhpurs

December 3, 2009
Posted in: Dogs | Reading Time: 5 minutes

DSC03627Following up on yesterday's post on why Juno will be riding in rather than pulling a sleigh, this week, we found out that Juno has hip dysplasia. On a scale of 1-10, it's a 6. This of course is independent of the illness she had last month with an unexplained fever. You see, when the doctors explained what they thought that illness and fever may be, they explained the symptoms of autoimmune arthritis, I had got to thinking, "Gee, she's always been a little like that."  Never having had a Sibe, nor a dog with hip issues, I didn't really know what to look for. She was always unstable on the stairs, but then again we have wood stairs. When Loki play attacked her she'd either cower or kick his ass. I never "bought"  her "cower" as a lack of confidence. Something told me it was more.  I've been watching her in the year and a half that I've had her and there are so many subtle behaviors that she displays that shows me she's a confident, non fearful dog and Loki always bowed to her desires in the house. So when I'd see her "cower" from his play attacks one minute and the next minute out-run him or kick his butt, things just didn't add up. I also noticed she loves being pet, but whenever my hands were on her hips she'd immediately start licking them. She also sat to one side all the time and we joked about her "low cal platz" where she slide from a sit into a down, being sure to never really expend too many calories in the act of laying down.


I had scheduled a visit with her infection specialist for a follow up and she included a consult with an ortho because they were concerned about her joints. But I couldn't wait that long for the consult. So, instead, this week, I scheduled an x-ray of her hips, knees, ankles and low spine with my personal vet, Dogtor Hilary.  When we took her in, she was so sore they had to sedate her just to take her x-rays. Usually, Juno is very compliant when a doing any procedure and it was obvious to them she was too painful.  While she was out, Loki got some accupuncture (seriously, but that's another post). The X-rays confirmed it. Juno's beautiful jodhpurs were dysplastic.

It's likely that the dysplasia is genetic. She is only 2 years old. At only 12 months of age (before she was mine) she did a weekend of running and pulling an ATV on a sled team of huskies. That type of exercise with hips pre-disposed to this would have likely made it quite worse since her bones were not finished growing. In addition, we have been doing agility with her which is not good for her either.

Her knee joints look relatively good, but there was still some mild inflamation in them, indicating who knows what. I doubt we'll ever really have a confirmed diagnosis of bacterial infection or autoimmune arthritis, since they're both quite similar in symptoms---her response to antibiotics could have been entirely coincidental.  We go to visit her hospital infection specialist and the orthopedic surgeon on Tuesday. I'm glad I already ran the x-rays so we're ahead of the game in terms of timing. The sooner we know stuff the better. It's likely this will be a maintenance issue. Our regular vet, Dogtor Hilary, said they'll probably recommend what she'll want to do, which are cosequin injections, glucosomine and some other supplements to help keep the cushioning in the socket and hopefully help the head of the femurs remain round as they are now instead of grinding down to flat. But she definitely wanted a consult with an ortho before proceeding with any program for her.


 Juno Belle shows us that hip dysplasia doesn't make jodhpurs any less sexy!


Exercise will be encouraged but rough playing will be kept to a minimum. Sorry Loki. Biting Juno's scruff will have to be at her descretion. Then again, it always has been! No changes there.

Likely they will recommend low impact exercise to build up hip muscles, and, get ready: swimming! Ever since I saw Honey the Great Dane swim, I've wanted to do it with my dogs too. Now's a great opportunity. Juno will likely hate it at first, but I'm very confident I can get her to like it. She's become the type of dog that really wants to work and "do" stuff. It's likely I'll need hot dogs and tri-tip the first few times but I'm pretty sure eventually enjoy it. I've seen evidence of some huskies who like to swim!

The worst part is I'll have to change my training tools from skillets and rolling pins to a wet noodle. One must always modify training tools for the disabled.


"What's that you said about swimming? You'd better make sure my gumdrop nose does not get wet or it will melt!"


This photo is for The Thundering Herd. Go ahead. Say something. I dare you.


"Where you talking about moi and my fur alterations?"


"Talk to the Jodhpurs, Herd."

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19 comments on “Juno's Jodhpurs”

  1. Woo tell 'em Girrrrrrl!

    And whilst they are at it, they khan talk to my pantyloons too!

    Woo have some furry special pawrents to khare sooooo furry much!

    I think woo will also benefit from your furry frig, 50" HDTV, pool boy, and oh so much more!

    Maybe woo need to take a vakhation somewhere furry special!

    Soooo many things to make woo khomfy and kept in the style woo deserve!

    PeeEssWoo: Sistas in PantyloonJodhpur Solidarity!

  2. awwww, sweet Juno, I know this disease quite well. Too well. Abby was diagnosed at 8 mos, and she lived (with artificial hips and treatments) until she was 13 years old. Swimming was great low impact exercise-- but keeping her weight down was a challenge. Silly girl liked her kibble with tomatoes, pasta, and anything she could find on the dinner table. Acupuncture and massage therapy worked, sometimes. I would give her nightly massages to relax and help with pain management-- I still give the massages, but to Sugar every other night. She loves them...hmmm...maybe I'll do a video? Anyhow, I strongly recommend the "slapping with the wet noodle" approach. Just as effective as iron skillets. Just sayin'...

  3. The Herd is in the house. And normally we love the trash talk, because that is what we Sibes are so great at. And trust us, there is lots and lots of trash talk at Chez Herd.

    But on the for real side, we are really glad you got the diagnosis because you can focus on the right activities. Cheoah will be more than happy to help with the swimming lessons because a dog named "Otter" (in Cherokee) loves - and we mean, loves - to swim. Though Sibes generally are known for not wanting to get wet, the Cheese Whiz (there is that trash talk) loves to get wet to the bone.

    But about that skillet / wet noodle thing - we reject the term disabled. Miss Juno might have an extra challenge, but she proves every day with Loki that there ain't no disabled about it (how is that for proper English).

    And we would never say anything about your haircut. It looks great. On a poodle.

    Play bows and Siberian Grins -

    The Herd

  4. My Beautiful Raja had the hip displace ya really bad. It made her grouchy sometimes and she had to take lots of different medicines. I hope you don't have it bad like her. But I loved her, you know, and I still think you are a hottie!


  5. Wow, this was quite the surprise. Like the Herd said, at least now you have a path to follow. We hope she likes the water because it is such good therapy. We have never been in a pool, lake, river, just the stinking rain. But knowing how well you do everything else with Loki and Juno, we are confident you will figure out a way to make her enjoy her new lifestyle.

    Hugs, the OP Pack

  6. Sorry to hear about the HD, though like the Herd said, now you can focus on the right activities - and get some treatment/pain relief, too! I've had mild HD for many, many years but I don't let it get me down. Just focus on what you CAN do, not what you can't!
    Tail wags,

  7. Wooos! I have not visited in a while, and now woo are getting as many diseases as me...hmmm, lets try and not make this a contest, ok??? I hope woo likes the swimming, I doooo!!!!! If=t is fun and woo can get really cooled off. which is why I like it, after a good playtime with the Scampi, I jump into the pool for a swim and cool down.
    I hope woo feel better soon, now that Mom has figured out what to do.
    ~puppy kisses~
    Kira The BeaWootiful

  8. eeee hip dysplasia... Im worried about that with Darwin... not that she or her parents exhibit any signs of it, but just knowing Danes are prone to it. Good thing we have insurance!

  9. Juno...
    The good news is you have a great mom who is extremely proactive and attuned to your behaviors and symptoms. The bad news is Loki will need someone for a romp of rowdiness- enter me and the harry funballs -at least virtually. I love to swim. I've been known to teach a few to swim.. yep. I'd be happy to demonstrate in a video my side stroke. I agree with the herd, Juno is not on the disabled list. Disabled means unable to do essential functions. She is quite capable still but may do it a little differently now.

  10. Poor Juno - that is never an easy thing to cope with and over time your mom will learn the read the 'signs' of when you are really hurting - licking in one spot is always a sure sign - dogs lick like hoomans rub. My mom has arthritis and when she is hurting she is constantly running the sore spot. Tell you mom she might want to do some reading on Canine Systemic Lupus - it might explain some of the other issues.

  11. oouchie Juno! you know you still have sexy jodhpurs.no worries about that:) luv to know how the swimming goes.. would be interested in trying it out myself. big kisses to your mom for finding this out now- to help manage your pain & enjoy a sibe's life.

    scratchies on your head, not your hips.

  12. First off I must say GREAT butt shots!
    Secondly, I sure do hope they give you some good meds that really help. My momma Emily did well with her H.D. on Rimadyl.
    Boy, I bet that swimming would be fun!

    Take care of your pretty self,

  13. I'm sorry to hear about the HD and I hope you will cooperate with the swimming exercises! I know you dislike water as much as I do!


  14. Hey, Juno!! Don't be worried about the swimming! It's a lot of fun and my mom always enjoys watching me because of the way my tail floats on top like a rudder. 🙂 Keep us updated. I'm glad you're feeling better, but I'm sorry you have HD so young. With your caring mommy and a good maintenance plan you'll be okay.


  15. I should probably get both S&K checked. Kat always sits on her hip like that. I am so worried that we could have done this to them because I think we let them do too much running as puppies because we didn't know any better. We ran with them on walks and stuff. It's killing me to see Steve not be himself and I hate the thought that I could have done it to him by not being an educated dog owner. I just hope if it is his hips, we will catch it early enough to help him be comfortable for lots more years.

    The S&K Mom

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