Dog limping, which is also referred to in the veterinary world as canine lameness, is a common reason pet owners seek out help at their local Collierville urgent care or emergency pet care facility. This is often because of the suddenness of such an event. One day, your dog may be running and playing as normal in the yard and the next morning you may wake up to a dog that is limping around your home.
Deciding Whether to Bring Your Dog in for Collierville Urgent Care
If this has happened to your pet, then you are likely wondering whether or not you need to visit your local veterinarians' office. It's important to understand that dog limping can occur for several reasons, including both musculoskeletal and systematic reasons. Sometimes a limp may be caused by something simple like a burr between the dog's paws, but sometimes the cause can be more serious and include things like a broken bone or be a systemic symptom of cancer.
When you notice your pet limping, the first thing you should do is to check their paws for any thorns, burr, bits of glass, or any other item that may be impeding their ability to walk without pain. Next, it's important to note whether they are favoring a limb which is avoiding the use of one leg, or if they are completely unable to put weight on a limb.
A dog that is favoring the limb but is able to put weight on it should be put on bed rest for the next 12-24 hours. If their limping persists after this, then call your veterinarian and schedule a visit for the first available check-up. In addition to having something stuck in their paw, common causes of short-term limping include toenail issues, insect bites, and a mild sprain.
However, if your dog is completely unable to put any weight on their dog or only uses the very tip of their toe when standing or walking, then we strongly recommend bringing your dog in for emergency pet care or schedule the very next available check-up at your veterinarians' office. More serious causes of canine lameness include degenerative myelopathy, a fractured or broken leg, or a muscle tear. The last two can become exacerbated if the dog is not immediately seen and the issue remedied--which is why it's important to contact your vet as soon as possible after you notice the lameness.
Contacting Your Collierville Vet About Lameness and Limping
Remember, different pets will have different pain tolerances and some very stoic dogs may even hide their injuries until they become so painful they cannot walk at all. So, if you are ever in doubt, always call your veterinarian for their professional advice.