german shepherd dysplasia

Common German Shepherd Hip Problems & What You Can Do About Them

German Shepherds are beautiful and elegant dogs. They can be trained as great family dogs or vigilant police dogs.

Unfortunately, these handsome and intelligent animals are prone to hip issues, so it’s important to be familiar with treatment options if your dog experiences any pain in his hips.


Genetic Predisposition for Hip Problems

Hip Problem is Common in German Shepherds

German Shepherds are one of the many large-breed dogs that are prone to hip problems.

Some shepherds are born with a genetic disorder called hip dysplasia, which results in a misaligned hip joint.

They also are more prone to a condition called Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) as they get older and often develop significant pain and weakness in their hips as a result.

German Shepherds commonly develop arthritis, which can cause significant hip pain and inflammation.

Before buying a puppy, be sure your breeder has disclosed information about all of these conditions.

If you are adopting a German Shepherd, anticipate experiencing some of these issues with your new pet.

Prevention is the Best Cure

Preventing debilitating hip pain is almost always less invasive than curing it.

Keep your German Shepherd at a healthy weight, as excess weight can cause or exacerbate hip problems. Your dog should get regular exercise, to keep his muscles strong.

If your shepherd is experiencing some hip problems, consider a non-weight-bearing exercise like swimming instead of running or walking.

Regular massage sessions or acupuncture may help your dog’s joints stay healthy. You might consider a supportive or orthopedic dog bed to relieve the stress on your dog’s joints.

Supplements And Treatments

Many natural supplements can help keep your German Shepherd’s hips healthy.

Glucosamineir?source=bk&t=survivehiveco 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=07267c4569c89ca561f3261a573b45e2& cb=1439323430317 and chondroitinir?source=bk&t=survivehiveco 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=34609918b661824067038c1abc40608c& cb=1439323481558, common supplements found in many pet stores, can help your dog’s body reduce inflammation and repair cartilage in the joints.

Other common supplements include MSMir?source=bk&t=survivehiveco 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=968d5509f4e966160f2619fa5767faee& cb=1439323536788 and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which can help reduce inflammation.

For dogs with more advanced joint problems, consider adding Boswellia to his diet.

Boswellia has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine as an anti-inflammatory and pain reducer.

Check your local holistic veterinarian or pet specialty store to find products with Boswellia.

German Shepherd Hip Medications

Hip and Joint Support for Dogs

Some German Shepherds may benefit from prescription medicationsir?source=bk&t=survivehiveco 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=11924221a4fd83cc4bfd3dbe8f1aa607& cb=1439323613444.

Several effective anti-inflammatory and pain medications are on the market. Your veterinarian can give you advice on the pros and cons of each type.

Some medications are available in oral tablets, others as injections.

Prescription medications often have more side effects than natural supplements, so be sure to talk with your veterinarian about the best pain and anti-inflammatory medication for your pet.

Surgical Options

Some conditions may require surgery to provide pain relief for your German Shepherd Hip Problems.

One of the most common genetic conditions for which surgery can be beneficial is hip dysplasia.

A successful surgery can help reposition the hip joint, remove scar tissue that causes inflammation and pain, and greatly improve mobility.

Ask your veterinarian for a referral to an orthopedic surgeon who can evaluate your dog to see if surgery may be a good option to improve your canine companion’s quality of life.


German Shepherds can be great family pets and amazing working dogs.

Knowing the hip and joint issues your canine companion may face will help you keep your dog happy and healthy for a much longer time.


Last Updated on February 5, 2021 by Shepped Team

2 thoughts on “Common German Shepherd Hip Problems & What You Can Do About Them”

  1. Thank you so much for explaining how hip problems affect a German Sheppard and how best to treat them. Our dog is older than we like to think, and it is becoming evident that her body is starting to hurt. I got on to the internet to learn more, but also to find out if there are ways to do physical therapy with her at home.

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