Elbow Dysplasia in Dogs
Cost of Treatment: $1,550 to $6,025 per elbow
What it is: Medium and large breeds are particularly prone to this genetic condition, which occurs when the bones that form the elbow joint don’t properly come together. A number of elbow-specific diseases are considered different forms of elbow dysplasia. Both elbows are usually affected, although one may show more severe symptoms than the other.
- Pain and lameness in forelimbs
- Thickening of the elbow
- Development of arthritis, or inflammation of the joint
Treatment: Treatment depends on the exact form and stage of the disease. Pain and anti-inflammatory medications are options when surgery is not feasible, as is physical therapy. Surgical correction is often possible in the earliest stages of the disease.
Dogs can show signs of the condition as early as four months of age, while others may not show any symptoms until later in life. Those who appear to develop the condition later may already be suffering from arthritis.
Elbow dysplasia is covered by many pet insurance plans, as long as your dog has coverage before he shows any signs of the condition. Since elbow dysplasia usually affects both sides of the body, policies would have to cover bilateral conditions to cover treatment of both forelimbs.
Return to the Dog Health Problems glossary.