How Long Can A Dog Live With Hip Dysplasia?

How Long Can A Dog Live With Hip Dysplasia?

Hey there, pet parents! Ever wondered, How long can a dog live with hip dysplasia? Let’s dive into the world of our furry friends and explore the ins and outs of this common condition.

Discover the factors that influence their lifespan and how you can ensure your canine companion lives their best life despite hip dysplasia challenges.

Humans and canines have an exceptional bond. Pet dogs are not merely pets but also a part of the family. Any dog owner would feel extremely worried to see their pet dog sick. However, we all should understand that every living being gets sick, and that is something no one can escape.

Still, we can significantly cure many illnesses by taking the right actions at the right time. Suppose your pet dog comes across a specific health condition, and you diagnose it at its early stages and treat it immediately. In that case, it will reduce the risk your pet may face.

Several illnesses can be commonly seen among dogs regardless of breed; hip dysplasia is one such issue typical for several dog breeds. How serious is this condition? Will it threaten your pet’s life? If your dog is diagnosed with hip dysplasia, how long can it live? To sort out all the doubts, keep reading. 

Hip dysplasia is not a medical condition that will put your pet dog’s life in danger; hence, it does not necessarily shorten your pet’s expected life span. However, this condition shouldn’t be left untreated.

Hip dysplasia causes discomfort in your pet dog, and keeping it untreated could worsen things. Therefore, as soon as you spot the symptoms of hip dysplasia, make sure you take the dog to get treatment. The good news is this condition can be healed via proper treatments.

If you treat the dog on time and take good care of it, your pet will enjoy the maximum possible lifespan they own, even though they are diagnosed with hip dysplasia.

Canines age differently compared to humans. Generally, the average lifespan of a dog is around 10 to 13 years. Still, multiple breeds live below and above the given range. Either way, if you need your pet dog to live up to its maximum life expectancy, you should ensure it is in good health.

Like humans, dogs also undergo health concerns; some can be life-threatening while others are not. Hip dysplasia is not a critical or life-threatening health issue for dogs. It does cause certain complications, yet hip dysplasia alone doesn’t risk your pet’s life.

Still, it is mandatory to take proper action if your dog is affected by this health issue. Treating the dog on time will allow recovery of hip dysplasia so your pooch can happily and actively enjoy its regular life.

How long can a dog live with hip dysplasia?

As said earlier, the life expectancy range of dogs differs from one breed to the other. Some breeds live around 7 to 10 years, while others may live around 10 to 15 or a little above that. This is primarily determined through the genetic formation of the dog breed.

The bottom line is regardless of the breed, as long as your dog is happy and healthy, it will enjoy its maximum life expectancy. There can be exceptions that minimize their total life expectancy; the best example would be illnesses.

If your dog is experiencing a severe health issue, it may die below the expected age range. However, many such diseases are curable, so if you act soon, you can significantly reduce the potential risks.

How about hip dysplasia? Will this shorten your pet dog’s life? If so, how long will a diagnosed dog live? To understand this issue, first, let’s clearly understand what hip dysplasia is.

A dog’s hip joint consists of two parts, namely, the ball and the socket. Hip dysplasia is a deformity of the hips where the ball and socket of the hip joint grow at unequal rates. As a result of this unequal growth, it creates a loose and unstable joint.

There is no precise root cause behind hip dysplasia; however, this is a genetic abnormality most of the time. As mentioned, any dog breed might get affected by hip dysplasia; however, this can be most commonly seen among large dog breeds.

Typically, dogs get diagnosed with hip dysplasia during their growth stage, around three to four months; nevertheless, sometimes, adult dogs also develop hip dysplasia due to osteoarthritis.

Dogs are typically highly active animals; they love running around, playing, and having fun. If your dog is diagnosed with hip dysplasia, you will see significant changes in the dog’s activity level.

Suppose you notice your dog is limping, lying in the same position for an extended period, lacking coordination, and hesitant to walk. In that case, that might signify your dog is experiencing hip dysplasia.

Suppose this unusual behavior occurs suddenly and continues for a considerable period; you must take the dog to a veterinarian to get a proper diagnosis. What if your dog is diagnosed with hip dysplasia; what impact would it make on your dog’s life?

As comprehensively explained, hip dysplasia is a joint disorder, and this will cause pain, lameness, and weakness in your dog’s legs. The dog will face difficulties walking, running, and overall being active.

The symptoms of hip dysplasia could worry dog owners and make them question how badly it will impact their pets. Dogs diagnosed with hip dysplasia can live up to the maximum lifespan if they get treatment on time.

Therefore, you should not be worried if your dog has hip dysplasia. Still, you have to treat them to avoid potential negativities. If your dog is diagnosed at the initial stages, hip dysplasia can be prevented through minor procedures.

However, the more you leave the dog untreated, the more intense the procedures will be. Therefore, even though hip dysplasia alone will not cause a significant threat to your pet dog’s life, you must get them treated on time. 

How long can a dog live with severe hip dysplasia?

If you notice sudden and frequent changes in your pet dog’s walking patterns and activity level,’ you should carefully figure out why. Do not hesitate to get professional help if you suspect something is wrong.

If you do not treat hip dysplasia at its early stages, cartilage erosion will progress, and the pain will be severe; moreover, this could also eventually lead to the joint’s complete loss. 

Suppose a dog faces severe hip dysplasia; still, this health concern will not shorten your pet dog’s life. Dogs with severe hip dysplasia can still live up to their maximum life expectancy.

Given that hip dysplasia isn’t life-threatening, you cannot ignore treating your pet dog because severe hip dysplasia is not easy for your pet to deal with. On the other hand, even though this doesn’t threaten your dog’s lifespan, it will reduce the quality of its life.

Your dog will find it difficult to walk, run, and stay active as they usually are. Your pet will be lethargic, and due to the lack of activity and discomfort, there are tendencies where the dog might develop other health complications that could negatively impact its life span. 

Can a dog live with hip dysplasia without surgery?

Is surgery mandatory to treat a dog diagnosed with hip dysplasia? Can they survive without surgery? Sometimes, hip dysplasia cannot be cured completely.

Yet, several treatment methods exist for hip dysplasia, and the veterinarian will determine which form to use after examining your pet. Some cases of hip dysplasia can be treated through exercises, medications, orthopedic braces, and changes in diet.

If you diagnose it in the initial stages, there are many chances that you can treat the dog without performing surgery.

Even though it is possible to treat your dog’s hip dysplasia without going into surgery, there could be extreme cases where surgery is a must. If your dog has severe hip dysplasia, exercise and diet will not likely fix it.

Extreme cases of hip dysplasia usually require surgery, and the type of surgery will also change from context to context. Some of the most common surgeries for hip dysplasia include Femoral Head Ostectomy (FHO), Double or triple pelvic osteotomy (DPO/TPO), and Total Hip Replacement (THR).

As mentioned, hip dysplasia is not a life-threatening health concern, yet it significantly impacts the quality and comfort of your pet’s life.

Therefore, it is crucial that you properly diagnose the issue and get the dog treated according to the recommendations of a veterinarian. If not, the chances that your dog will suffer in the long run will be high.  

Final thoughts 

No dog owner would like to see their beloved pet getting sick. However, illnesses are unavoidable, yet most of them are curable. This article focused on hip dysplasia: a joint dysfunction in dogs.

Hip dysplasia is an orthopedic condition; therefore, this issue will not reduce your pet dog’s usual life expectancy. Some cases of hip dysplasia are minor, and they can be treated without performing surgeries.

Still, there are extreme cases that require surgeries. Hip dysplasia is not a condition that you should take lightly. Although it is not a terminal illness, it can negatively impact your pet.

Therefore, the smartest thing to do is to take your pet to a veterinarian as soon as you spot the symptoms. 


  • Lisa Watson

    Lisa W. is a practicing certified veterinarian (BVetMed Hons in Veterinary Medicine) who graduated from Royal Veterinary College, UK. One of her research fields is mixed-dog breeds and their temperament, behavioral issues, and genetic health concerns. Also, she gathers data about purebred dog breeds and their origin, lifespan, and genetic conditions. Lisa is a loving dog parent who is keen to share her expertise with other fellow dog parents.

    [email protected]

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