fracture signs If you think your dog has fallen from a height, or been in an accident, check for these.
Some of these signs also indicate other possible, less serious problems. If you see any of these signs and suspect a fracture, call your veterinarian or emergency animal clinic staff for advice.
There are different types of fractures. Some are more serious that others.
The Limbs and Paws
Is your dog limping?
Is she walking on three legs, holding the fourth one off the ground as she moves along?
Does the leg appear to be set at an abnormal angle?
Is the leg swollen along one of the bones, or very painful to the touch? (Be careful when testing for pain, as she might snap at you.)
If the leg seems to be okay, check the paw. If she won't let you touch it, take her to the vet.
If she'll let you touch her paw, see if there are any cuts, scrapes or other wounds, or any bites. If you see none, and there are no stones or thorns stuck in her pads or toes, or between the toes, assume the worst and take her to the clinic.
Fracture signs for broken ribs include painful or labored breathing, frothy breath (a sign of a possible punctured lung due to a broken rib), and swelling.
If she yelps when you touch her in the suspect area, take her to the clinic.
The Skull and Spinal Column
If the skull is fractured, it's very likely that your dog will be unconscious. If she's not conscious, and she's breathing, don't bother with looking for other fracture signs. Stabilize her and get her to the clinic as quickly as possible.
A fractured vertebra may cause full or partial paralysis, so if you suspect a fracture, see if she can move her legs. If she can't, immobilize her if possible and get her to the clinic.
If you know your dog's fracture signs, you'll be able to diagnose, or at least narrow down, the problem and treat it effectively until she's stable enough to be moved.
Learn how to provide
dog first aid for fractures
so you can reduce the risk of further injury and possible infection.
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