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Why Does My Pomeranian Limp?


It is not uncommon for dogs to have issues that lead to limping; however with toy breeds it is even more prevalent. 

You may need to take your Pom to the veterinarian, however before you call to make that appointment, let’s go over the various reasons that could apply in regard to why your little ball of fluff is limping on either the front or hind (back) leg.

Sometimes it is a simple matter that can be dealt with at home…And sometimes it is a huge red flag to seek professional medical help… So, let’s see if we can sort out what happened to your Pom and why he or she is hitching a leg up.
Reason 1- The cause of a limp may be stemming from the paw(s). There are 2 issues that are not uncommon with the paws that can cause a Pomeranian to favor one over the other or to walk with a faltering step. The 1st is damage to the paw pad. The pads are made of skin, very thick skin in fact, however being skin they are susceptible to damage and injury.

The common reasons for paw pad injury are: burns and embedded elements/splinters. Burns can happen so quickly and it is an element that many owners don’t think about. Picture this…It is a beautiful sunny day, the air is warm and nature is just calling out to you to take your Pomeranian for a walk. You attach his harness, put on your sandals and as you are about to leave the house you realize that it is such a nice day that you don’t even need to wear a sweater…. You and your Pom trot down the street, enjoying the day….

Now, you have some sort of shoes on…Your Pom is walking barefoot! It is true that canines have thick skin on the pads of their feet, however this does not mean that they are indestructible. Pavement can really heat up! If the weather is above 75 F (24 C), it is recommended to place your hand down on the ground to see if precautions should be taken. If it does feel very hot, you don’t need to skip the walk as there are things that you can do.

On hot days, you may wish to keep a schedule of walking in the early morning and the late evening. Before 10 AM and after 7 PM are good times to go out in the summer, as the sun is not so bright and the ground has cooled off.

It can also help to try and stay in shaded areas or at least take frequent breaks in the shade.

The other type of damage is from embedded objects, with tiny pebbles being the main culprit. When outside on the grass or when walking on the sidewalk, tiny rocks can become stuck in between the paw pads, causing quite a bit of pain and a limping problem. This is also a common problem for those that walk along the beach (or any areas that has sandy shores).

The very best thing that you can do to protect your Pomeranian from hot tarred roads and tiny pebbles getting stuck in the paws is to put some cute doggie shoes on him or her…. Shoes for dogs are trendy and fashionable, but they ALSO serve a serious purpose! With the right shoes, you can walk or hike just about anywhere, preventing burns and keeping your Pom safe from particles.

The other issues that can cause a Pomeranian to limp stems from long hairs that grow out between the pads. It is one area that many owners don’t think about when grooming their Pom. However, sometimes long hairs will grow there, pulling on the skin and causing pain when the dog walks…and this can cause a Pom to limp or favor one leg.

This can be easily fixed with some simple grooming… You will want to clip hairs to be EVEN with the bottom of the pads… Do NOT try and snip fur that is between the pads. Only trim what is growing PASSED. If the skin looks very irritated, it should be looked at by a veterinarian, as the pull of the hair may have caused a breakage of the skin and there is a chance that it has become infected.

Therefore, based on the reasons discussed, do please check your Pom’s paws for: burns, injury, splinters, embedded sand or particles and/or long hairs if your dog is limping.
Reason 2 - Injury, unfortunately, can happen easily to this tiny toy breed dog. The Pomeranian breed is prone to both luxating patella and hip dysplasia (both of which will cause limping and this can affect not only puppies but adult dogs as well). While a Pom can be predisposed to this condition, just the wrong movement or too much impact when jumping can cause it to happen.

 It can happen while running or while jumping down from a sofa or other household furniture. Many owners do not notice that something is wrong until days later. This is because often a dog will only let out a little yelp when the mishap occurs…It is only 2 to 3 days later when the area begins to swell that the pain sets in…It is then that a Pomeranian may begin to limp and/or show other signs of discomfort.

If you suspect this is the reason, it is very important to bring your Pom to a reputable and experienced veterinarian’s clinic where testing can be done. If either of these injuries is suspected as the reason for the limping, x-rays and other diagnostic testing will be done.

Reason 3 - Other medical reasons - This can range from a simple pulled muscle to a severe kidney infection. Because the reason for limping can actually be very serious, we highly encourage Pomeranian owners to seek treatment with the veterinarian. It will cost money, however we strongly suggest that all owners have a fund set up, so that if an injury or medical issue occurs, there does not need to be any hesitation to bring a Pom for help.
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