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Linda Simmon
Linda Simmon, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 4641
Experience:  MVB MRCVS
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Our 7 yr Parson Russel Terrier is ''skipping'' her left back

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Our 7 yr young Parson Russel Terrier bitch is ''skipping'' her left back leg !
JA: I'll do all I can to help. Can you tell me a little more about the Terrier's situation? How long has this been a concern?
Customer: She used to do it as a puppy (1 skip every month) but now she has recently been doing a few yards with it up. If she's chasing a ball she still runs full out (very fast indeed with her longer legs) and may not ''skip'' for some time afterwards.
JA: Does the Terrier do this all the time or only sometimes?
Customer: Totally random as far as I can see but daily at some time.
JA: Have you tried anything so far that helps the Terrier with this behavior?
Customer: Yes, I have been massaging her leg in various places to see if it impromes her gait, but she still does it. She's a very fit dog and doesn't seem to be bothered about BEING OUR 3 LEGGED FRIEND!
JA: What's the Terrier's name?
Customer: Wait for it,.... Cleopatra.
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know?
Customer: Sometimes when she stands normally at rest I see her calf mussel trembling as if she is pumped up to go,

Hello, you are through to Dr Linda, a UK based vet.

Thank you for your question.

There are a few things that could be causing Cleopatra's limp including:

  • A patellar luxation (knee cap that pops in and out of place)

  • Partially torn cruciate (knee) ligament

  • Hip dysplasia

  • Arthritis

  • A chronic muscle strain

  • Etc

A vet visit is needed to examine her.

The vet will perform an orthopaedic and neurological exam and will assess for e.g. knee stability, swelling and any muscle wastage.

They may need to do some testing such as an x-ray.

What we do will depend on what is going on but treatment options may include anti-inflammatory medicine, rest, exercise programs, joint supplements, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy and/or surgery.

With any mobility issues, it is sensible to keep your dog strictly rested, avoiding high jumps and steps. They should also be kept trim rather than over-weight.

I hope this helps and please let me know if there is anything else,

Take care,


Linda Simmon and 2 other Vet Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 days ago.
Thank you, ***** ***** if resting helps. She's a full speed or nothing dog.
I understand.
Distractions like frozen Kongs, lick mats, snaffle mats etc can help!

This is just Dr Linda checking in.

I hope you were happy with my reply and please let me know if I can be of any further help.

All the best to you and your pet!

Stay safe,