Hind feet knuckle over from DM - Page 1

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by Juno11 on 11 December 2021 - 13:12

Does anyone know of any dog orthotic devices or boots that work to stop knuckling over the hind feet? My GSD is highly suspected of having degenerative myelopathy and showing symptoms. He started knuckling his right hind foot a year ago and its happening in both feet.

by Gwyny P on 12 December 2021 - 17:12

We found some suitable boots at Team K9 for our Shepherd who developed DM.

He actually wore out the toe fabric the first few times he used them.
We coated that part with Shoe Goo = a very durable glue for shoes.

Sadly, once DM takes hold it goes fairly quickly.

We actually lost Cooper one year ago today.

He failed quickly all in a day and died at home in front of a warm fire.

It was painful to see that he knew he was failing and watch his face.
A blessing that we did not have to take him to be put down however.

He died at home on his own terms, 20 minutes after my daughter had raced home from work to be with him.

Blessings on you and your doggy.

by ZweiGSD on 12 December 2021 - 18:12

If you are on Facebook the Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) Awareness Group is a good resource.

If possible do underwater treadmill therapy. It seemed to help my GSD immensely.


by Hundmutter on 13 December 2021 - 03:12

Putting them in a 'cart' will stop the feet getting hit, and prolong active life, but it sounds as though it may be too early for that yet. Possibly manufacturers of such doggie wheels can suggest / recommend peripherals like boots ?


by TIG on 14 December 2021 - 19:12

Hi Juno, sorry to hear re your boy's difficulties, How old is he?

You may want to research Dr. Clemmons protocol. Dr. Clemmons was the primary researcher into DM for 30+ years and developed a protocol using high doses of anti-oxidants that can sometimes put a significant pause in DM. I used the prescription elements and some of the supplements but not the diet( today I would find a way to feed raw) with my last dog that had DM and was lucky enough to achieve a good quality of life for him for a significant time. He was 14 when I lost him.

In Gsds we see 2 types of DM. Early onset ( 5-7 yrs) rapid progression ( often 6 mo - 1 yr); Late onset ( after 7 typically 9-11) slow progression dog can live a number of years).

The protocol seems to be more effective for the late onset cases. Here are some links 



Springtime supplements has a great supplement, Tonic Blend, that incorporates many of those suggested by Dr. Clemmons and is easy because they are combined in one product. It's what I used for my boy.  https://www.springtimeinc.com/product/tonic-blend/natural-supplements-for-people

I believe Dr Clemmons retired from the Univ of Florida but Now is in private practice. You might consider a consult with him.

Sent you a pm



by Jenni78 on 29 December 2021 - 19:12

Before looking for boots and resigning yourself that it's DM and there's nothing you can do, do an MRI if you can afford it. I have yet to MRI a dog with these symptoms thought to have "DM" and not find an actual reason (herniated/bulging/ruptured discs, Hansen type DD, etc.). If surgery could be curative, you may not lose him.

by astrovan2487 on 29 December 2021 - 22:12

100% What Jenni said. Seems like every GSD I hear of with rear end issues thats not hip dysplasia is diagnosed with DM. The only way to actually diagnose DM is a necropsy, and who's going to spend that kind of money on a dog thats already dead? Not many, so there arent nearly as many confirmed DM cases as you'd think. IVDD, Lumbosacral Disease, CES, all can look like DM, are very common in GSDs, and all have treatment options that may save your dog if thats what it is.


by Hundmutter on 30 December 2021 - 03:12

What Jenni & Astrovan say is absolutely accurate; but I see no reason why you should not find him boots (or wheels) to help protect his toes in the meantime / in any event.

by maofryan on 31 December 2021 - 16:12

DM is an autosomal trait. The test to determine carriers (or those who carry both genes and will ulimately become paralyzed) costs less than $50. There is NO EXCUSE for a breeder to NOT test their dogs, Im my opinion there is NO REASON to breed a carrier. If carriers are not bred, the trait will disappear.


by Hundmutter on 01 January 2022 - 03:01

Wish I had your confidence in that, Maofryan. Too many GSDs worldwide are bred by the ignorant and the money-grabbing, these genes will stay in the population just as those involved in HD, ED, and epilepsy do.


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