Canine Hip Dysplasia in South Africa
-Dr. Mark Rubinsohn
Canine Hip Dysplasia (CHD) is a developmental disease seen most commonly in larger, well fed faster growing dogs.   It causes a painful hip joint with persistent and unrelenting lameness. It is usually present in both hips, but the degree of severity may differ in the two hips. Although adverse environmental factors can influence hip joint development, CHD is essentially a disease with a high degree of heritability. It is a condition that may require medical treatment and often radical medical treatment. Eventually it may require Euthanasia of the dog.

Clinical Signs

Causes Diagnosis Grading of Hip Dysplasia

South Africa: No signs of hip dysplasia
                     Transitional / Borderline - very minor incongruity

Europe:       Nine different areas of the hips are evaluated, each obtaining a score of 0 = normal to 6 - Very bad. Thus the best hips score 0/0 and the worst 54/54


*   Resectioning of pectineal muscle or tendon - the most common method used in less severe cases - affords significant functional improvement and reduction of pain within 24 to 72 hours but will not stop the further development of arthritic changes and thus  lameness may return later in the dog's life,  especially  in colder weather.
*   Resectioning of femoral head -for severe dysplastic arthritic changes. This is occasionally done on both sides and is generally more successful on the lighter type dogs
*   Reangulation  osteotomy  of the pelvis or femoral head. This surgery is the best best for cases performed between four to eight months and is not worse than grade II or III.
*   Hip prosthesis which is expensive and to date results have not been impressive.


*        normal: normal matings led to 18 percent dysplastic offspring;
*        normal: dysplastic matings led to 59 percent  dysplastic offspring.
*       dysplastic: dysplastic matings  led to 87  percent dysplatic offspring.