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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our 16 week V has always been small. He is currently 22lbs, but his front legs seem very short and his leg joints are very pronounced. Our vet office has one vet who thinks he may have dwarfism and one who just wants to wait and see I suppose that it doesn't matter, but we got the dog to run so this could be a big concern. (Also I can't imagine a second V puppy at this point! But I do want my big V running buddy. That was the whole point...)

Regardless, he's part of the family, but it would be nice to understand whether and when to worry. We'd also want to tell the breeders, of course, but don't want to be concerned prematurely. Admittedly, we're just judging him based on pics we've seen online. Any thoughts?
 

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I would encourage you to speak to your breeder. Ask he or she is they have seen this before, my breeder was surprisingly knowledgeable about growth and development. I'm sure one of the tenured forum members may have more advice.
 

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From the owners I've spoken with, their pups with dwarfism still run, and enjoy all things other vizslas do.
Is your puppy any relation to Teals Milo?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the comments. I don't believe there's any relation. The concern about running is just about long-term effects from long runs, but it's good to hear that it maybe isn't an issue. We'll certainly do more digging if it turns out to be dwarfism. He's happy and otherwise healthy, so we'll deal with the curveball if necessary. It's just funny because we went with a V specifically because we wanted a bigger dog and a training companion. Life...
 

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You can type dwarfism in the search bar.
And the other posts on it should come up.
I also believe a person at New Hope vizsla rescue, has done some research on it. You could reach out to them, for any questions you have. I believe there are two types of dwarfism.
 

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You should definitely contact the breeder, and with better pics.

What are you feeding and how often? And who's the breeder?

When they're young, they often look "funny", the chances of a quality breeder with a well know rep breeding puppies with this..although possible, are low. Also, if the dog actually does have some physical impairment that interferes with it's intended purpose, a quality breeder should offer a refund or replacement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks. We'll monitor and reach out to the breeder. He's eating about 1 3/4 cups of Acana puppy divided between three feedings. (I'm a bit loathe to mention the breeder just because of the nature of the internet and (mis)information). He's a great pup. We just want to make sure that we don't (A) worry unnecessarily or (B) miss something that we could be addressing.

And, just because who doesn't like V pics, I've attached two more. The first shows his leg "issue" pretty well.
 

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He is very cute.
By the first picture, its time to call your breeder. Your regular vet needs to also give you a referral, to a orthopedic specialist. Its only because it takes a specialist, to get a confirmed diagnosis.

Every breeder is great, when things go right. It's when something goes wrong, you find out who is really a good breeder.
 

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Just as reference picture.
This is Shine at 16 weeks. Not a great picture, but a good one for showing the length of legs at that age.
If your on Instagram, look up Gatsby_the_vizsla
He's a wonderful vizsla that has dwarfism.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the picture for comparison. Hunter has always been small, but that's striking to see! Our vet isn't particularly familiar with Vizslas, which is why I wanted to post some pics here. We have calls in.
 

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I had wondered if it was from the pituitary gland, but that type of dwarfism doesn't show up till 3-4 months.
If he was always small, I'm guessing he was born with it. I would have thought, the breeder would noticed the difference in him. Maybe he just thought, he was the runt of the litter.
 

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small size alone would not be the worry, some of the Westminster BOB winners actually started as the smallest in their litter, it is much more the structure and move u should watch. do u have any other vizsla people around you u could compare notes with in person? just in order to have more data points, i would seek for that too. breeder hospitals/vets can also tell you whether it is just a smaller size and goofy puppy posture (latter one happens often too).
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks gabica- you're right. It is about more than size, and thats good to keep in mind. Both his parents were about 45 pounds, so the concern is as much about his leg shape as it is about his overall size. We're getting X-rays and are reaching out to the breeder. I hope it all works out, but there are certainly much bigger issues that people are dealing with in life.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
A bit of an update. Xrays show an angular limb deformity in both legs. The growth plates are all still open, but one bone in each leg is just growing faster than the other. It looks like it isn't dwarfism, but still a problem. Now we wait for the ortho...
 

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Hopefully it doesn't cause him any mobility issues, or possibly something that can correct itself over time.
Did you hear back from your breeder?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
We'll see what the ortho says. Dr. Google is not kind (but she never is). Worst financial case, corrective surgery on both legs at great expense. Worst emotional case, return the pup and start over. It sound like really rolling the dice w/o surgery. This can develop into a debilitating problem if the bones do not correct. But all the growth plates are still open, so who knows. It is just a big gamble financially and for the pup.



We contacted the breeder earlier and need to follow up now that we have a diagnosis. The breeder indicated that they'd handle the issue as they should, but you never know until it comes to that.
 

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I've had orthopedic vets give me better news, than what I was hoping for.
So keep your fingers crossed, until then.
 

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just wanted to tell how much i admire that you make all these steps to figure what is going on. shows how much you care, really a great hope for your pup. keep us posted please.
 
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