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Success Stories

Savannah, October 2002


At only 4 months of age and 27 pounds, this striking yellow Lab was surrendered by owners who felt they could not provide for her healthcare needs. Savannah, born near Neenah, Wisconsin, on May 21, 2002, was acquired from a breeder on August 17. A physical exam just days later revealed a malnourished puppy with bowed forelimbs. Her diet was adjusted, and basic healthcare, including vaccinations, intestinal de-worming, and heartworm preventive, was administered.

A few weeks later, Savannah was seen to bunny-hop when ambulating at a pace faster than a walk. She also displayed stiffness after rest. Radiographs revealed bilateral hip dysplasia with evidence of degenerative joint disease, and a healed fracture of the left femur. In addition to her orthopedic problems, she was diagnosed and treated for demodectic mange. Despite all of Savannah's previous nutritional deficiencies, her bloodwork was normal.

Her weight and the angles of her forelimbs improved with proper nutrition, but lameness in her left rear leg continued, with increased stiffness after resting. Consultation with a board-certified veterinary surgeon produced a recommendation for surgery and stabilization of the hips and 1000 mg of glucosamine/ chondroitin sulfate daily. Surgical correction to improve the angle of the hip joints would not only stabilize the joints and provide support, but also prevent severe arthritis that would inevitably result if only medical therapy were continued.

There were two options for surgical repair. A Triple Pelvic Osteotomy (TPO) was one possibility, and Juvenile Pubic Symphysiodesis (JPS) was the other. JPS is a less invasive option that can correct the angle of both hips with one surgical procedure. JPS is most effective at sixteen weeks of age, which was Savannah's age at that time, making JPS the treatment of choice.

Fortunately for Savannah, a number of individuals and organizations worked together to ensure that her veterinary needs were met. Among them was LABMED, which was happy to join Savannah's team to provide a portion of her veterinary fees. It is gratifying to see that the dedication of so many made it possible for this lovely lady to get her very own second chance!

Update, March 2003

Today, Savannah is doing well, enjoying her new, forever home, and adoring family (who have renamed her "Daisy")."

Blackie's Story | Murphy4's Story


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