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Hip Dysplasia in Cane Corsos


Canine Hip Dysplasia (CHD) is an orthopedic problem, which can result in remodeling of the femur, wearing away of the acetabulum, and other arthritic changes. Although CHD is primarily an inherited defect, the severity of the disease is influenced by environment, e.g., growth rate, diet, and exercise.  CHD is one of the primary health problems in Cane Corsos. There are several excellent articles explaining CHD in detail listed under the "General" category below. Early preventive steps can be key in reducing the severity of expression of CHD - maintaining a slow growth rate and good muscle tone, and never allowing the dog to become over weight.

Today there are several screening techniques and certifying agencies available to help breeders eliminate affected dogs from their breeding programs including the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA), the Institute for Genetic Disease Control (GDC) and PennHIP.   While there is alot of controversy as to which one is the best or most accurate, each provides breeders with a method for assessing the actual structure of their dog's hip joints. For more information on current screening techniques go to the "Diagnosis and Certification"  section below.

Until there is a DNA test to determine who the unaffected carriers are this disease will continue to plague our Breed and the only way for now to keep it in check is to at least know who the affected dogs are.

Not all dogs with CHD are doomed to live a crippled existence. Some dogs whose radiographs show obvious signs of CHD live active happy lives without surgical intervention and sometimes without any treatment at all. If, unfortunately, yours does not fall into that category there are many treatment options to consider. Please take a minute to look at a few of the nonsurgical treatments that are available such as Acupuncture, Chiropractic Adjustment and Nutraceutical Supplement Therapy. These alternative therapies have helped a great many dogs with CHD lead a relatively pain free life. Some surgical options can only be performed at a young age and your dogs' size activity level and pain tolerance should be considered when you discuss options with your Veterinarian. The OFA site at  has an excellent general overview of surgical procedures. Your Veterinarian is your best source for options for YOUR dog. For those times when a little 'help' may be necessary please refer to the web sites listed at the bottom of this page under "Mobility Assistance Items" for harnesses, slings, traction boots, support carts, etc.

Also available at this website is a roster of Cane Corsos that have passed OFA certification. You can also query for the latest OFA information on the OFA web site. This information is invaluable when you are trying to decide on a puppy from a potential breeder or when deciding on a sire or dam for a future litter.

You should always verify the hip scores which breeder claims their dog have.  If you do not wish to do a query on OFA ask the breeder for a copy.  PennHIP does not make it's scores available but again, ask the breeder for a copy.


        Hip Dysplasia - Understanding the condition and its treatment
        Three part article by Fred Lanting, "A Brief Introduction to Genetics": Natural Selection & Survival of the Fittest, Dominance and Polygenic Traits, and What's Ahead?.
        Eight part series of articles by John C. Cargill, MA MBA, MS and Susan Thorpe-Vargas, MS
        Five misconceptions about canine hip dysplasia

Diagnosis and Certification

        Orthopedic Foundation for Animcals (OFA)
        Order forms, brochures and a video free from OFA

        Comparison of OFA and PennHIP
        Hips - Elbows - OFA by Dr. Catherine Priddle, DVM
        The Importance of Good Positioning on Canine Hip X-Rays
        OFA without Anesthesia - List of Veterinarians
        GDC - Institute for Genetic Disease Control
        Synbiotics - the PennHIP method of hip evaluation
        PennHIP - Questions and Answers
        Foreign Hip Evaluation Schemes
        Comparison of three methods of evaluating hip dysplasia

Treatment and Care

        Hip Dysplasia Treatment Options
        Glucosamine and Chondroitin
        Dr. Henry De Boer Jr. on Canine Hip Dysplasia
        Hip Dysplasia & Spondylosis - Alternative Treatments
        Complementary and Alternative Veterinary Medicine
        The Senior Dogs Project
        Adequan Canine for Degenerative Joint Disease
        Ester-C: Miracle Cure for Hip Dysplasia???

Mobility Assistance Items

        Custom Fit Harness and Boots
        K9 Carts
        Wheelchairs for dogs
        Doggon Wheels



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