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Tag: hip dysplasia

Does what’s in the mix really matter?

Now that I know Ace is a “Rokita” mix (50 percent Rottweiler, 25 percent Akita, 25 percent anybody’s guess), what can I do with the information?

And what of Elliot? Does knowing his somewhat fuzzier lineage — 25 percent golden retriever, 25 percent boxer, and 50 percent unknown — provide any information that might be helpful to him and his owners?

The experts at Mars Veterinary, makers of the Wisdom Panel MX mixed breed analysis, say yes — that knowing what’s in your mutt can help you better understand his or her behavior, and better be on the lookout for potential medical problems.

With Ace, they say, I should be aware of the potential for hip and elbow dysplasia, as both of the known breeds in him are prone to that. I should keep him on the lean side (something I’ve been unable to do with myself), and consider supplementing his diet with glucosamine, for optimal joint health. Also, since Rottweilers and Akitas are both prone to cataracts and other eye problems, I should keep an eye on his eyes.

With Elliot, hip dysplasia is also a concern, as, later in life, is cancer, which has a high incidence in boxers and golden retrievers. Elliot, based on the breeds found in him, could also be predisposed to skin issues, allergies and hypothyroidism.

Depressing as it all sounds – I, for one, would rather not know what afflictions lay ahead for me – I’ll admit that the information is somewhat useful.

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World of Pets Expo starts today

The World of Pets Expo starts today at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium — a great chance to see the latest in pet products and learn more about your dog, cat, bird, snake, hamster, fish, frog or ferret.

Exhibitors will be touting thousands of products and services for pets, and some of the country’s foremost authorities in the pet industry will be presenting seminars and demonstrations about pet care and training.

Entertainment includes AKC agility trials, which will be going on all three days, grooming contests and demonstrations on everything from drug detection to dancing with your dogs, featuring the Boogie Woogie Bow Wows.

They include a talk by animal nutrition expert Richard Patton, PhD, lead nutritionist for K-9 Kraving, on the connection between diet and behavior (noon Saturday), and a seminar on hip dysplasia by Daren Roa, DVM, DACVS, of Chesapeake Veterinary Surgical Specialists (1 p.m. Saturday). Animal communicator Terri Diener, of Petspeak, will be holding two seminars, one on pet loss, and one on communicating with your animal.

Workshops and seminars take place all three days, You can find the full schedule here.

General admission is $9 for adults and $5 for children under 12. Admission includes all seminars and entertainment.

As for bringing your dog, well-behaved pets on a leash are welcome at the expo, but the organizers offer this note. “Due to the large number of pets performing in the many demonstrations and seminars, we believe you will have a greater enjoyment of the Expo, if you do not bring your pet.”

New therapy treats dogs with their stem cells

A German shepherd named Schultz has been having his own fat cells removed, shipped to San Diego to have the stem cells extracted, then having those injected back into his hips to treat dysplasia.

The experimental therapy, being tested by several veterinarians in western Pennsylvania, is promising, but expensive: Depending on how many joints need injections, the cost ranges from $2,400 to $3,000.

But, as veterinarian Mike Hutchinson, owner of Animal General, points out in a recent Pittsburgh Tribune-Review article, that’s still less than half the cost of hip replacement surgery.

“Basically, we make an incision behind the dog’s shoulder and take out a couple teaspoons of fat,” Hutchinson said  “We pack it up and ship it to Vet-Stem, they separate out the stem cells, send them back to us and we inject the cells back into the dog, where he needs them.”

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