Weak Knees-What should I do for a hound pup, three months old, that has weak knees; has gone over on them and can hardly get around after exercising a little and when standing or sitting down his fore legs tremble and I cannot straighten his legs out with my hands. It seems to be right in his knee joints. This trouble cam on after being allowed to exercise hard all day. Would you advise plenty of exercise or keep him confined until his legs get strong?
This ailment is called “rickets” and hard to overcome. As a rule puppies of the larger breeds only are thus afflicted and the cause may be insufficient nourishment of brood matron while in whelp, or too scanty bone-food supply of the youngster from time of weaning so that growth of body is faster than that of bone and ligaments, hence falling over or enlargements of joints in legs to prevent locomotion. Puppies afflicted with worms (practically all have them more or less up to one year old) sometimes get weak in legs by system being sapped and when exercise is extreme ailments just as you describe follow. Treating for worms can do but good in any event; Haberlain’s Tonic Pills should be given night and morning for ten days or two weeks; good nourishing food supplies, not omitting some raw lawn beef each day, or better still, a large joint bone with some meat on to gnaw at. Beef and bone are required to supply bone-food in a growing puppy. The daily ration of raw beef should be about four ounces, should this act too freely on the bowels, however, then give the meat cooked and in that way you can regulate action of bowels to a nicety. Very gentle exercise should be given only, and the puppy must never be tired out at any time. Vigorous rubbing by hand the affected joints twice a day (five minutes at a time) will be found beneficial. Patient should be kept warm and dry, but away from hot stove.
Harding, A.R.. 3001 Questions and Answers. Columbus, Oh: A.R. Harding, 1913.
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