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Peg has a broken toe


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Peg came out of her crate lame after her run Sunday at Rural Hill. It looked like a foot/toe issue by the way she was walking but we couldn't find anything wrong at and nothing caused her discomfort. We thought she strained something or stepped on something and a good night's rest would take care of it. Tonight she was still lame and I noticed one of her toe nails was sticking up more than the others on her back feet. When I really looked at this toe (one of the middle toes on that paw) I found that the lower part of her toe (nail, cuticle area, and bone) was loose. I could easily bend it up. I'll be calling the vet tomorrow to see what he says.

 

Has anyone dealt with broken toes before?

 

Mark

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A neighbor saw me walking Duncan as a puppy, and told me a very sad tale of woe. Turns out she had had a Border collie who broke a toe chasing a squirrel (!). The vet put a cast on the leg. The dog worried at the cast. The toe went gangrenous. I'm going to leave the rest to your imagination. She wished she'd never put a cast on the dog, that's for sure.

 

Best wishes to Peg for an uneventful, and swift, recovery!

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My dog Kyzer had a broken toe (or severely sprained--because the treatment was the same, we didn't X-Ray it) in July. He was on pretty strict crate rest for about 10 days--leash walks only. We gave him Rimadyl for three or four days and had him off from stockwork for 3 or 4 weeks I think. He healed fine. In his case, the bone wasn't loose just very sore.

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Hi Mark, very sorry to hear about Peg's toe. I do hope the vet gives you good news!

 

My BC, Sketch, broke a toe (outer digit) on a rear leg, a spiral fracture actually, in 2 places. She broke it diving for a toy during agility training.

 

My vet custom fit a splint for her and I took her back for weekly exams and to re-splint. Sometimes the splint had shifted or was broken even upon removal/resplinting. Her leg, from the hock to her toes, was splinted and it took 6 months for her to heal. (Her recovery was hindered due to an infection at a site where the splint rubbed.)

 

I can offer this advice: CRATE Peg. If she requires a splint, keep it dry. I double ziplocked and rubber-banded Sketch's leg when we went outside, wet or dry. Don't allow Peg to do anything more than a slow, flat-footed walk. Carefully examine her toes ( peaking out through the bottom of the splint) frequently for signs of swelling, and sites where the splint might be rubbing Peg's leg / toes. And do not hesitate to go back sooner than scheduled for a re-check if you suspect anything - you know Peg better than anyone!

 

I do hope Peg's toe isn't seriously injured!

 

Kindly,

Kate Jones

 

 

 

 

 

Peg came out of her crate lame after her run Sunday at Rural Hill. It looked like a foot/toe issue by the way she was walking but we couldn't find anything wrong at and nothing caused her discomfort. We thought she strained something or stepped on something and a good night's rest would take care of it. Tonight she was still lame and I noticed one of her toe nails was sticking up more than the others on her back feet. When I really looked at this toe (one of the middle toes on that paw) I found that the lower part of her toe (nail, cuticle area, and bone) was loose. I could easily bend it up. I'll be calling the vet tomorrow to see what he says.

 

Has anyone dealt with broken toes before?

 

Mark

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Hmmm...how about my little rescue pup that managed to break 3? <_<

We splinted it. Very simple. Like already mentioned, kept it dry, restricted movement and in 5 weeks all was well. Like brandnew! All 3 of them... :blink:

We will not discuss how this happened.... :D

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Does it seem painful when you play with it? I have 4 guesses from your description.

1. broken toe

2. dislocated toe

3. torn ligament

4. broken nail up inside

 

I would think a broken toe would be quite painful if you squeeze where the bone is. When my dog dislocated her toe she pretended she was fine so I would still throw a stick (she didn't think the fact that she was 3 legging it should mean the game ends). It didn't feel loose though - it felt fairly firm and I could pop it back into place. She didn't like it but it didn't seem extremely painful. For that the specialist said no hard running for 6 months and try to keep her quiet - ie no jerking or jarring foot motions.

We had a dog at work recently who broke its nail from the base where it attaches. Ended up doing a "declaw" on that nail because it was too damaged to leave. It was broken far enough in that we couldn't see anything looking from the outside other than the nail felt loose - I could grab it and kind of twist it side to side like it wasn't attached to anything inside.

We've also seen a few dogs who have damaged either tendon or ligaments on the feet and because of it, one of the toes on the foot will be more flat footed and the nail will be angled up. Its usually fairly flaccid the dog can't "dig in" with that toe.

 

Hopefully its a simple fix and she's feeling better soon.

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Sounds like a ligament tear. If the toe is popping up then it is probably the flexor ligament (on the underside). I think surgery is an option if the tear is not complete but I don't think it has a good success rate as ligaments don't have great blood supply & don't "repair well".

 

Years back a vet I worked with at the ER would say..."It'll heal eventually but I'm afraid s/he'll not be able to play piano anymore." :rolleyes: So crate rest may be all that is necessary- depending on the level of repair you want.

 

If it is a ligament injury (and you want to more than just let it heal as is) I would suggest you investigate Prolotherapy. Sprite injured her cruciate (strained or partial tear)3 years ago and Prolotherapy "fixed" it without any surgery. We treated both knees (her patellae were loose too- mild) and she hasn't been rear legged lame since- she was routinely lame prior to this.

 

Like others have mentioned. If you decide to surgically repair a torn ligament then strict immobilization is a must (usually it is splinted post-op). Not sure if Ron Fallon is still practicing up your way but he is/was a really great mobile surgeon. If surgery is your choice I would certainly consult a surgeon for an opinion.

 

HTH,

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One of my young dogs actually severed her digital flexor tendon, though higher up than the foot. She had to have it surgically repaired. She was at the trial doing her exercises, etc....Hers was a complete severe and it has been ultrasounded twice and now shows that it is completely healed though they always heal with scar tissue.

It has been almost a year and she is almost back to normal. My rehab vet cautioned me against using prolotherpy for a tear/sever in a tendon as she told me that there are studies indicating that it is not beneficial in a case such as mine, that may appy to you as well.

I have a whole wealth of knowledge gained over the last year regarding tendon tears and rehab, it if turns out that is what is it!

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I've had 2 dogs break toes in the last couple of years. One dog had a toe that was a clean break and it healed in about 8 weeks. She was leash walked for a couple of weeks and crated and then allowed outside by herself. She was very good about protecting it while it healed. By 8 weeks she was fine. The other was a hairline fracture on an 8 month old puppy. He healed in about 3 weeks. Neither vet that treated wanted to do any sort of splint, etc though I guess there are things they can do. No lasting effects with either dog.

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Just saw this mark. Im so sorry! Gael broke her toe when she was young but it was a traumatic break that wasn't going to heal without help. My ortho vet went in and put a plate on it. I'm glad he did as she's never had any trouble with it, and Gael is pretty hard on herself. I have heard of some dogs having ongoing problems, but i think it's more likely if it's an outside toe. I hope Peg's heals up well.

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Hi Mark-

 

Sorry to hear. FWIW, my Riff broke a toe when he was 2 yo- front foot, one of the middle toes. He was rested, but no cast. He was also treated with a fairly long course of antibiotics as the vet was concerned about an infection in the toe bone. It did heal with a big lump on it. He would come up lame on that foot for several months afterwards if he worked extra long or hard on very hard ground. Very rarely still does, but a day or two of NSAIDS takes care of it. He's 10.5 now & altho the foot is pretty ugly, it doesn't seem to bother him.

 

Good luck.

 

Lori

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Vet says the toe is NOT broken or dislocated. It's likely a soft tissue injury and she is to be rested (no "ripping around") but not 100% crate rested.

 

The vet says he has seen other dogs that have the toe lifted up (compared to others) and in some dogs it returns to normal and in other dogs it stays in this lifted position.

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Yeah, the not ripping around is the tough part. It's been close to six weekes since Phoebe did some soft tissue damage to one of her middle toes on a front foot. I had to be very strict on her activity though, as she's a bit of a maniac, even when outside all by herself. She was sound enough to run at Rural Hill, though I did notice a few gimpy steps after she ran. She seems fine now, though I still leash her for the first part of any group walk we do, as that's when they're most likely to tear around like a bunch of fools....

 

J.

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