Author Topic: Is there any detriment to exercising your dog as night - knuckling over in adult  (Read 402 times)

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Offline Summertime.and.Azkaban

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-I have two health and maintenance questions, so I decided to make one post and ask both questions at once-

So, for the majority of Rayner's life he's knuckled over. We took him to the vet when we adopted him at five months old and I was told he would grow out of it. Took him again at a year old, brought it up at his rabies vaccination appointment and was told it was likely a congenital deformity of the structures in his wrists and to exercise him exclusively with walks on grass and not to let him run, I think the idea was to stretch and build muscle to strengthen everything. He's now nearly three and he still has difficulty with physical exertion, any more than about thirty minutes of walking makes him knuckle over while standing still and makes his legs shake like he doesn't have enough strength in them to hold them up. When we took him to the vet the last time he told us we could use splints to give him support while he ran or played ball, so that he could have some freedom without damaging his wrists any worse than they already were.

The only problem is I can't find ANY information on carpal flexural deformity in adult dogs. I can't even find someone asking about it online. Our vet seemed to treat it as something that just needs mitigation and not treatment, beyond walking him on grass frequently. He's on a well balanced food (Diamond Naturals now, we'll be switching Purina Proplan shortly because we received a generous gift of 50-60lbs of food and it happened to be proplan) and he has been on appropriate food since we brought him home. I have no idea what his nutrition was like when he was small but I thought that knuckling over was supposed to be something most dogs grew out of when given good food and exercise. I know the shelter had him for a while but I also know they fed him okay food, mostly donations like IAMs and Rachael Ray's nutrish stuff with the color additives, and walked him three to five times a day depending on how many volunteers felt like taking the puppy out.

I'm just a little confused because I can't find anything online about this problem in ADULT dogs. I can find lots on puppies who outgrew it with a dietary change, splints or vitamin supplements but no info on chronic knuckling over that continues into adulthood. Surely Rayner can't be the only dog with this problem. Have any of you hread of or had a dog that knuckled over as adults?


My second question is about exercise, specifically Rayner. Az, Chewy and Nora need little formal exercise, most of them have zoomies while toileting outside have a good run and then come back in. Rayner is the only one who really needs to be walked.

Right now I'm exercising him mainly at night, because the the heat index is getting up to 96 with a humidity of 77% where I live. Exercising him at night is much easier than trying during the day but I feel like he might be missing out.

Is there any detriment to exercising your dog exclusively at night?

Rayner goes out early in the morning or at dusk to work on fun things, right now he's learning to locate fire ant hills by scent so that scouring our acreage for the red menaces won't be so hard. His kennel is in the living room where he gets to watch us interact, watch the baby play all day and watch the puppy and other dogs. He also gets puzzle toys, bones and the occasional time out in the house when the other dogs are up and the baby is asleep. I'm not looking to stimulate him at night per-say, but I don't know if it's fair to take him on walks at night.

We pace the driveway of our RV park, we make ten laps meaning from one end to the other and back is one. We walk about a mile. I walk on the paved driveway and he walks on the grass on either side of the driveway.

Is there anything wrong with physically tiring my dog by doing laps? I know it must get boring and tedious to him, but I've found it to be the easiest way to be consistent in the distance we walk and since I'm allergic to grass I like to avoid walking in it even if I have shoes on. We jog the last lap to mix things up and to celebrate our success (mainly mine, because exercise is not my favorite thing and it takes a lot to be consistent and walk him every night).

Anyone else exercise their dog by doing laps or walking at night? Is it okay to do so?   
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Offline Ariel

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I can't speak to how to best handle exercise and orthopedic issues, but being in much the same climate as you, I am only doing actual exercise once the sun has started going down. The dogs get several potty breaks during the day, but really only long enough to do whatever they need to do and come back inside. After about 8:30 or 9:00 pm I'll take them out and I'll fill Jubi's baby pool and throw a ball for her. At that hour I'm not concerned about the heat so much and the concrete of my little patio isn't going to burn feet either.
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Offline polarmouse

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Hot and humid here, heat index 100+ today so I walk Zoee between 7 - 8 pm and she seems fine. She gets a little burst of energy when we get home but a quick game of ball and she is ready for couch time then sleep.

Offline mommagrizzly

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We usually exercise once in the morning (before it's too hot), but we always do our walk at night sometime between 8:30-9:30.

Most days she will play fetch out in the yard for about 5 min then go in to cool off. We do that a couple of times during the hottest part of the day. Especially if she has been working and needs a fun break when we get home.

But I guess to answer the question we do our big walking at night when it is much cooler so I don't see a problem with it myself.
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