Here is the story of Galaxy, a non Kennel Club (KC) registered puppy whose parents had not been health checked for Hip Dysplasia.
On 21st January 2006 we noticed a classified ad for chocolate labrador puppies. I called, my fingers crossed in the hope they would have a female bitch available. The gentleman on the phone was very well spoken. He assured me that although the pups did not come with KC papers, they were fit and healthy and that both parents were KC registered and that a pedigree would be provided. At £400 I thought that was an average price, and not so so cheap that it set alarm bells ringing.
On 22 January 2006 my husband and daughter made the trip to the breeders as planned and returned with a very small choc lab. She was clean bright eyed and very bouncy, we were given a copy of her pedigree, which now, because of recent events, I question its authenticity. Galaxy showed no visible signs of discomfort at all, she settled in well, was so easy to train we all loved her to bits in a flash.
14th September 2006 Galaxy was taken for her appointment we dropped her of in the morning and was told they would call us when she was ready to come home. Never once did I think it would be as bad as it was. At 4pm I was in the consultants room fighting back the tears, Galaxy has chronic canine hip dysplasia.
I don't have medical expertise, but looking at the x ray you could clearly see the hip sockets had not formed correctly and that the joints were nowhere near the hip sockets. She was given pain relief and referred to a specialist with instructions for short 5 minute walks twice a day, and no playing with Daisy. We had to wait until 18 September for an appointment. In the mean time I had called the kennel club who explained to me that all though both Galaxy’s parents are KC Registered no hip or eye scores were available. That is when I knew for sure that the breeders were not what we thought they were.
Meeting the Specialist
We started Hydrotherapy that week starting with 2 minutes for each session then building up from there. After week 3 we had to stop, whilst in the pool she was getting so tired and costing her back legs that she began to topple in the pool and had to be pulled out.
Thurs 19th Oct back to the Willows, nothing had changed Hydrotherapy was not an option anymore and so her 1st op was booked for 14 November.
At home we cleaned the conservatory for her purchased a large crate which we put in lots of bedding for her, had a ramp made to go over the steps.
We had to keep the dogs apart and take Galaxy out on the lead, using the belly belt for toilet breaks. This was the hardest part, after 3 days she wanted to up and go! Limited walks, no weight gain and no playing with Daisy for approx 8-12 weeks! Gradually after her 2nd check up we were allowed to let her out of the cage for longer periods, no going up the stairs so a stair gate put up. As we have wooden floors we had to purchase carpet runners to put all over the house.
Regarding the breeders I contacted them to inform them of Galaxy and that it would be advisable to have his dogs scored his reply my dogs are sold as seen I have never had a problem before and put the phone down! I contacted the KC again informing then of what had happened and they said we could not do anything but that they would make a note in case anymore complaints come through.
Galaxy is lucky; I dread to think what would have happened to her if someone who could not afford insurance had taken her home, so far we have spent in total almost £6,000 which we have had to pay out and then claim back off the insurance, but she is worth every penny. I thought that as her parents were KC registered that all would be ok.
Galaxy will be on medication and limited walks for life because of her arthritis; if it gets too bad then we will have to do what is best for her which will cause broken hearts for all the family.