View Full Version : I have the worst luck - Another dog with luxating patella

28th October 2006, 05:43 PM
Merry just went for her annual vet visit and the vet said she has a luxating patella. I had noticed a problem with her in the last 3 weeks, but I thought it was because Pippin stepped on her accidentally going down the stairs.

I just cannot believe this and I am so disgusted with Pippin and Merry's breeder that I could spit.! icon_nwunsure

Pippin and Merry share the same father and their mother's were sisters. Pippin has already had juvenille cataract surgery this summer before he was 3 years old and the eye vet says Merry has cataracts too and a 50/50 chance hers will progress to need surgery.

Then later in the summer Pippin started limping and I learned that he has a grade 2 luxating patella and a grade 1 heart murmur. Now the vet says Merry has a bad patella too!

I just cannot believe this! That backyard breeder should be put on trial. I have told her about the cataract issues from the start and she wants to believe it was a fluke. Since I told her Merry has the same cataract issue, she will not even talk to me now. So there is no point in me telling her about the luxating patella issues.

Anyway, I just needed to vent. I love these dogs and will go down whatever path I have been given with their health. I have learned from my mistakes and my next 2 dogs were from a breeder that did all the health testing on the parents, but I will have many years of issues with my first two and it stinks! :( :x

28th October 2006, 06:04 PM
How frustrating for you and sad for your pups! I had a dog that was diagnosed with lux pat at about 18 months. I contacted the breeder and she was very concerned. She spoke to my vet, paid half of the surgery/fees (there was no way I'd part with my dog and she knew it), and crossed the parents off her paired breeding list. We communicated during the entire pre and post surgery process and recovery. I guess I was lucky and I'm sorry that you and Merry have to go through this. Is there any group or organization that you can file a report/complaint to help prevent others from dealing with this breeder?

Good luck!

28th October 2006, 06:47 PM
Oh Charleen,

Poor you and poor Merry :( I wish there was something I could do or say to help you but I know there isn't :(

People like that breeder should be euthanised - and not painlessly either !

Makes me so angry to think that they care so little about the pups they are producing. They don't deserve any dogs at all :(

Give the babies a hug from me and the boys :hug: . Will Merry and Pippin have to have surgery on their patellas? Poor little loves :(

28th October 2006, 08:31 PM
Merry & Pippin's breeder isn't an evil person, just an ignorant one. Before Pippin's cataract diagnosis, I was going to her house and having P & M play with her cavaliers. It was really nice.

Then after Pippin's diagnosis and my giving her the eye vet's diagnosis that it was hereditary, the breeder will not talk to me anymore. I was nice about telling her, but I guess she doesn't want to know. This past May when Merry was diagnosed with cataracts, I mailed her a copy of Merry's eye vet diagnosis and asked her to please stop breeding the dogs that were carrying this hereditary weakness that afflicted Pippin & now Merry.

At this point I do not know about surgery. But I have heard great things about a vet that is about 30 miles away. This vet actually works out of the same vet clinic that my friend Janet takes her dogs to. This vet is known in the surrounding area for his diagnosis and care in this field. Luke's breeder took Luke to him for patella clearance testing! Small world. Luke & Jolly's breeder lives 2 1/2 hours away and this was who she went to for the testing.

I was thinking of making an appointment for Merry & Pippin to hear what the expert has to say. What do you think?

28th October 2006, 11:16 PM
charleen--so sorry about merry and your frustrating experiences with your first breeder! How sad that she would be defensive about the information and not want to know.

i think it's great that you are not far from a vet with an excellent reputation in the area. If it was me, i think i would want to get that vet's opinion on the prognosis and treatment recommendatiions, i would feel more confident with a specialist's opinion.

good luck whatever you do!

29th October 2006, 12:21 AM
I was thinking of making an appointment for Merry & Pippin to hear what the expert has to say. What do you think?

I'd say I'd go ahead and do it. Are they covered by insurance? I would go hungry to get my babies the care they needed though and I'll bet you're the same - most of us on here are icon_whistling

29th October 2006, 01:44 AM
I'd say I'd go ahead and do it. Are they covered by insurance? I would go hungry to get my babies the care they needed though and I'll bet you're the same - most of us on here are icon_whistling

Unfortunately it hasn't gotten to the point where i'm losing any weight yet... :roll:

29th October 2006, 01:11 AM
The Canine Inherited Disorders Database --http://www.upei.ca/~cidd/Diseases/musculoskeletal/patellarluxation.htm -- recommends that any dogs with patellar luxation not be bred, nor should their parents or littermates.

Not all cases of patellar luxation require surgery. There are four grades of luxation (see http://www.cavalierhealth.org/patellas.htm for the list and explanations of each level of severity). However, the degree of luxation can get worse, so a grade 1 or 2 may eventually progress to a grade 3 or 4 and require surgery.

All Cavaliers which are expected to be bred should have their knees examined, as close as possible to the mating, to determine whether the dog has patellar luxation. Many Cavalier club's health clinics include patella exams. Also, it is very important to notify the breeder if your Cavalier is diagnosed with luxation, because there is believed to be a strong hereditary relationship, and no Cavalier should be bred if it or one of its parents or any of its full siblings are diagnosed with the disorder. Keep in mind, however, that patellar luxation may be due to an injury or other trauma, in which case it would not be genetic in nature.

Rod Russell
Orlando, Florida USA

Cathy T
29th October 2006, 03:46 PM
I can totally sympathize with you!!! That picture on Rod's posting is of Shelby after her surgery!! The good thing is that luxating patellas are fixable and not life threatening. Expensive, time consuming and exhausting yes!!! I'm more sorry that your breeder is so unresponsive. Fortunately when I told my breeder about Shelby's knees she was as devastated as I was. She also refunded me all of the money I had paid for Shelby. It didn't help matters that three weeks later I had to call her and tell her that Jake had squamous cell carcinoma! Again...she was totally responsive. Again my money was refunded. She felt about as bad as I did. Our relationship was strained for a while...mostly because of her feelings of responsibility. Luckily our relationship turned a corner and we still have a good relationship. I was also sure to let her know that at their last exams both pups checked out great. Gotta share the good with the bad. She is a member of my club and we see each other at meetings and gatherings. We have a good relationship but I wouldn't purchase another puppy from her...and I don't think she would be comfortable selling me one either!!

As far as the knee....you definitely should see a specialist. We tried supplements and exercise first to see if the knee would tighten on its own. We didn't rush into surgery but did it when all else failed. Our surgeon was a gift from heaven. Very very well respected and totally responsive. It helped that she was the one I turned to when it came time to deal with Jake's cancer.

Do see a specialist. See if the condition can be treated with supplements and exercise. If not....then you will need to go forward from there. Know that 92% of the time patella surgery is successful. We had to go through it twice on that same knee but the end result was success.

Oh yeah...meant to mention that once I alerted my breeder to the knee problems the father (whose history I later learned was unknown!) was pulled from her breeding program.

29th October 2006, 11:12 PM
Cathy, what an ordeal! Shelby's surgery and Jake's cancer at the same time! wow. thank goodness the second surgery was successful. I wonder why sometimes it doesn't work. How long did you have to wait after the first surgery before you knew another was needed and she was physicallly ready for it? She looks so sweet in that picture, so vulnerable and so accepting of the situation. i know you got her through it with heaps of love and hard work. Did Jake have his surgery while all of this was going on?

I respect that your breeder refunded your money and pulled the sire out of her program. She probably has learned a lesson from the experience (about breeding stock) but i sure do understand why you wouldn't get another dog from her.

so glad you can look back now with everything going well. As you said, as bad as the patella problems were, thank goodness they weren't life threatening, and you made it through. And Jake too! You had some good healing energy around at the time.

Cathy T
30th October 2006, 02:02 AM
Shelby's didn't work the first time because her bones have an odd curvature and the second time the surgeon put a big stitch in to help hold the correction in place. She went in for the 2nd surgery immediately after her 8 weeks of rehab were up and we realized it didn't take.

Yes, it was a rought month. Jake's cancer was diagnosed 3 weeks after Shelby's first surgery. So I had two pups rehabbing at the same time.

I just want to reassure you, Charleen, that I am so not downplaying a luxating patella!! I was in such shock when I found out Shelby would need surgery and just a mess when I picked her up from the surgeon. She looked so pitiful. Of course, 48 hours later she had me in stitches because she was so back to her normal self. Jake's cancer is what threw a bucket of water on me!

It's just amazing what these tough little guys can go through. It is so much harder on us than it is on them. Looks at dogs who have had a leg amputated and go on to live such wonderful lives. They don't ask for pity and don't need it. I coddled Shelby like mad for the first few days and saw she didn't want it anymore. She just wanted things back to normal.