Got a 4+ year old femal lab. She's pretty stout, about 80 lbs. Definitely a great companion for my GF and I. She's a very happy dog, loves to be around people and other dogs alike,
The Lab loves to chill out and will chose chilling over playing. We initially thought it's because she came from a puppy mill, had a litter of pups early in life which has mellowed her quite a bit.
The problem is this. When she gets up, she limps on her left front leg for about a dozen steps, then after moving around a bit she's fine.
We think that this malady is limiting her, like she wants to do more but knows that she'll be in pain so just stays put to circumvent the discomfort.
I think she's having joint issues, again it's not in her rear legs as hip displagia would normally present, it's in her front leg.
Here is my plan to assist with her discomfort.
Increase activity, take her and my Husky on regimented walks every day.
Initiate regimen of Glucosamine and monitor for one month.
Begin Massages two times a day.
Get her up and moving more often.
Monitor her weight to ensure that she's not gaining any more, and assess if weight loss is helping her joints.
Get her to the beach at least once a week to make her swim.
Now, I've seen dogs, labs especially, who have weighed more than she does and be just as active as any Jack Russel. To look at her you wouldn't recognize obesity, she very muscled and damn strong. I'm just concerned that early puppy-birth along with her body mass has permanently damaged her joints to the point where she cant enjoy her life to the fullest.
So am I on the right track? Is there more I can do for her? Is there something that I'm planning to do that is contraindicated in this case?
We are planning a visit to the vet after about a month of the above mentioned regimen depending on the results.
Thanks in advance for your input,