We’re now giving our Roxie glucosamine supplements to try and help her joints. We basically have an off the shelf “human” variety that contains glucosamine hydrocloride and chondroitin sulfate. The only other thing we should probably be giving her is methyl sulfonyl methane (MSM) but we haven’t found out how much yet. All of this should help with her joint pains
On the weekend we discovered that Eukanuba Large Breed Puppy food contains both glucosamine hydrocloride and chondroitin sulfate. I just took a quick look on their website and it says that the concentrations are glucosamine not less than 375 mg/kg and chondroiton sulfate not less than 35 mg/kg. It’s a little on the low side from what our vet told us but it’s better than nothing. Too bad we went with the Iams Large Breed Puppy food for the last 4 months. Oh well. We’re trying to decide if we should bother switching Roxie to the Eukanuba or not. Since we’re also considering cartrophen vet as a possible long term option for Roxie’s hips, we might not bother with the Eukanuba because we can’t use both cartrophen vet and glucosamine at the same time.
Well, we’re learning a lot with Roxie and if (when) we have another large breed dog, we’ll be taking a lot of this into account when we make decisions.
If you’re thinking of getting a large breed puppy, make sure you factor in the cost of pet insurance for at least the first 18 months of their life. We opted out of the pet insurance as it seemed so expensive at the time and now we’re kicking ourselves. We have a St Bernard Labrador mix and both breeds are known to have hip dysplasia. We gambled and lost as our Roxie at 6 months has grade 4 hip dysplasia – as bad as it can get.
Once your dog gets to be full grown, if it’s in good health and has no signs of major things like hip dysplasia, you can probably stop the insurance. We know better now. If and when we have another large breed dog, we’ll be getting insurance for at least the first 18 months. Too bad for Roxie no one really told us to get insurance and why. If we had insurance then it wouldn’t be such a big deal to consider $12,000 in major surgery to help fix Roxie’s hips. It also wouldn’t be such a big deal to have her on medications costing about $3/day.
Oh well, you live, you learn. We still have a healthy, happy dog, she just has no hips.
Heck, it’s only money.
Well, Roxie has grade 4 hip dysplasia. Basically it means she has no hips. The hip is supposed to be a ball and socket setup. Picture a socket shaped like a teacup. That is what a good socket should look like. Roxie’s is more like a dinner plate. It doesn’t do such a good job of keeping her leg bone in place.
Anyways, we’re going to see what we can do for her. Our vet is calling a bunch of places for us to find out what can be done and, of course, how expensive it’s going to be. Hip replacement is an option but it’s quite expensive and there are no guarantees.
She’s on pain meds for the time being. That is making it sort of interesting because she’s pain free and running around like a little puppy. We’re hoping that a couple weeks or months of pain meds will allow her to build more muscle in her rear. That should help stabilize her joints a bit more. Either way she needs more strength in her legs if we do get to the point of surgery.
Did you know that a Saint Bernard – Labrador mix is a big dog?
That seems to be one of the only things people can say when they find out what kind of dog Roxie is. Well, that and also that she is cute. ;) It’s sort of funny now that we hear it so often. We’ve made a bit of a joke out of it now. Someday I’ll have to try to play it up a bit and tell the people they’re crazy. There’s no way our 3.5 month old dog is going to get any bigger! She’s full grown! hehe.
Anyhoo, Roxie is now easily over 35lbs. She’s starting to respond to voice commands (with some help from a pocketful of kibble) and is doing beter when we go for walks. She’s almost to the point where we’ll need the head collar as she’s just recently started pulling. Up until now it’s been a struggle just to get her to walk more than 5 feet at a time.
Lots more fun to come!
Well, we wanted a big dog and it looks like we’re going to get one. Roxie weighed 22lbs as of Friday night. That’s almost a pound a day since we brought her home! She also seems to be longer/taller now. When she jumps up against the baby gate, she can now rest her front paws over top of the gate. Crazy!
Anyhoo, we went to SuperPet today since they are moving and have 20% off everything in the store. They also had a huge sale on other stuff as well. We picked up a ton of new toys for Roxie, including a whole slew for $2 each. Great fun! She’s going crazy right now running from toy to toy trying to figure out which is best. ;) Hopefully she’ll be stimulated enough. :)
Update: When weighed Monday night, Roxie was 25lbs! Gack!