Why Is My Dog Limping?

Common causes and remedies

One of the most common questions asked by dog owners include the following. Why is my dog limping? My dog is limping on its back leg, why does it mean? Just like humans, dogs also break bones, sprain muscles, slip discs and tear ligaments which cause limping and impaired movement.

What causes my dog limping?

There is a number of reasons why a dog may be having movement issues. Some are more serious than others and some require immediate attention while others require time for healing. Here are a few common reasons why your dog may be limping.


Trace your dogs footsteps back. While playing or running around the house, they may have injured themselves.

Infection or Inflammation

This is a common reason and often not really easily seen from the naked eye.


While usually arthritis is chronic in dogs, it comes on slowly, but it can also be sudden. Watch out for jarring or involuntary movements. Read more about Arthritis in dogs.

Degenerative Diseases

Dogs too suffer from issues with ageing. 

Preventive care for your limping dog

Your dog is now limping a bit, or has been gradually increasing the amount of limping. You don’t really have a serious problem yet, but you wanna take measures to prevent future major health problems for your dog. You can do the following:

Proper conditioning

Keeping dogs active, healthy and eating well, as well as conditioning them to do exercise, will reduce risk of trauma related limping. 


If they get injured and you feel like they are in pain, hold them still or in your arms for a few minutes. Often they will feel better and act like nothing happened. In the case of a major injury, you would have prevented further damage by restricting movement.

Regularly checks

Dogs get injured by a splinter, piece of glass, or any other foreign object. It can lead to infection or more serious issues. It’s a good practice to regularly check your dog for signs of invasion on their limbs. By doing this, you can prevent serious limping issues.

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My dog has chronic limping or major trauma injury. How can I help make their life easier?

If your dog is limping and it’s unavoidable, you should find ways to treat it or at least make their lives easier.  Rest is encouraged along with certain products made just for this reason. Visit your veterinarian to discuss the possible causes and treatment of long lasting issues.

Purpose of this article is to provide information. To ensure the health and well-being of your pet, always consult any question or concerns with your veterinarian

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