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Bone Growth Damage In Dogs

Bone growth plates are cartilage growth centres for young bones, and are located at the ends of the long bones. They are the knobbly joints we see in fast growing pups. The bones grow at the ends, not in the middle, and damage to the growth plates at either end of the bone can slow down the growth rate of the bone.

To understand what can happen, I'll talk about the foreleg of a greyhound I had problems with.

There are two bones in the forearm of a dog, and, naturally, they both grow at the same rate. My pup apparently fell and cracked the growth plate in one of the bones in his lower forearm, just above his wrist, when he was about 9 moths old. By damaging the growth plate the bone grew slower than the other bone alongside it. The damaged growth plate produced new bone at a slower rate than the other bone alongside it.

The two bones are connected at either end at the wrist and the elbow. What happens is that the slow growing bone acts as a splint for the strong growing bone, but it can't stop the good bone growing faster. By having nowhere to grow to, the good bone develops a curve in it, which can be seen quite clearly in looking at the dog in profile. You will could see the distinctive curve forward just above the wrist.

It didn't appear to hamper my pup too much, as he went on to be a handy city class sprinter and stayer, named Roller Blader . But who knows, he may have been even better if it had not happened in the first place.

I want to end this particular blog post by giving credit where it's due. I was conversing with Thai at FameDiamonds and the chat inspired me to write this. FameDiamonds is a good Vancouver based diamond shop in British Columbia and they have been very good to me through the years. Thanks for the idea guys! Ok, I'm formally signing off for the evening. I'm exhausted. Until next time!

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Posted in Other Home Post Date 01/11/2016


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