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How Do I Know If My Dog Has A Broken Bone?

Your dog is a beloved family member of your family, and you never want anything bad to happen to them. Unfortunately, illness and injury can occur in dogs just as they can in humans. Today, our Stuart vets tell you how to know if your dog has a broken bone and the steps you can take.

A broken bone in a dog is most likely to occur as a result of an impact (such as being hit by a vehicle) or a fall. Dogs that are young, older, or those with various health issues may be more prone to fracturing bones for innocuous reasons as well. Here, we'll learn how to tell if a dog has a broken bone and the steps you should take.

How Do I Know If My Dog Has A Broken Bone?

If your dog is indeed suffering from a broken bone, the affected limb may display:

  • Poor range of motion, signs of joint pain or stiffness
  • Swelling and bruising around the joint
  • An asymmetrical appearance, (one joint looking deformed, swollen or otherwise out of place)
  • Shortening, bending, or twisting of the joint

Never try to replace a dislocated joint! Always visit a veterinarian as there is a very high chance you will cause further damage.

Should your dog have any of the above symptoms and you suspect they may be suffering from a broken bone, follow the steps below to get them the help they need.

1. Remain Calm

A lot of shattered bones are visible. They will pierce the skin and may result in a troubling, bloody mess. Your dog is afraid and in pain, and you are probably alarmed as well. For the good of your dog, however, you must remain cool enough to handle the situation until your pet has been examined and treated by a veterinarian.

If you see your dog acting abnormally, or if she refuses to walk on a certain limb no matter what, she may have a broken bone. When a dog chews on anything hard or bites its skin, some broken bones originate inside and never break the skin.

Depending on the severity of the injuries, she may be in shock, so proceed with caution when attempting to assist her. Move your dog to a secure indoor area.

2. Call the Vet

If your dog has fractured a bone, they must be assessed and treated by a veterinarian as soon as possible. Your vet is likely to schedule an emergency visit for you, but be aware that you may have to wait a while if the vet is already booked for the day. If you have to wait, consider taking the time to remember as much information about the incident as you can. Was it a slip and fall? Was your dog injured in any way? Is there a chance of other injuries, or is this the only one? This is information that will prove very useful to the vet.

Do not attempt to set the bone or apply any creams, ointments, or sprays to the injury. If your dog is bleeding profusely, bandage the wound with a clean towel or an old shirt and apply pressure to halt the bleeding. Because animals tend to lash out when in pain, many dogs may attempt to bite. Keep yourself safe. Contact your veterinarian for further advise.

3. Let the Vet Take it From Here

The veterinarian will assess your dog to determine the degree of their injuries. The vet will recommend either having the bone mended, setting the bone, or, in extreme circumstances, amputating the leg based on a variety of variables. Your dog will almost certainly require X-rays of the affected area to determine the type and extent of the fracture.

The Recovery Process

It will most likely take several months for your dog's bone to mend. Until your dog has healed, she should not be permitted to run, jump, or play. With the cast on, your dog may require an e-collar (cone) to keep her from licking or chewing on the cast.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Worried your dog may be suffering from a broken bone? Contact Animal Care Extraordinaire immediately. We can assess your dog and make recommendations on treatment options.

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Our Stuart vets can't wait to meet you! Our welcoming and accommodating team is passionate about the needs of your pets. Reach out to us today to book your pet's first appointment.

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