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- the syndrome of the deformation of spine and bones of extremities which is complicated by osteochondrosis and arthrosis- arthritis in the large and extremely large species of dogs.

By Stanislav and Laura Khegay

    We are Laura and Stanislav Khegai, the owners of the tribal nursery of the Central Asian Shepherd dogs (CAOs) "ROYAL GIFT of ASIA ". We are occupied by this specie since 1989, since we purchased the Akgushs granddaughter and the Gaimots grandson in Turkmenia. We acquired more than 10 Uzbekistan dogs, 10 Turkmenistan, 4 Kirghizstan, 3 Kazakhstan and 2 Tadzhikistan dogs during past years. Three dogs of our nursery became the Champions of Russia, one became the Champion of Kazakhstan and more than 15 dogs became the Champions of Uzbekistan. The greatest victories of our dogs become the Nik Hans victory on the Main Cup of the Millennium in 2000 and Hans second place on the World Cup in 2004 in juniors class.
    We have grown tens of puppies during past years. Many of these puppies became champions but considerable greater amount of these ones of "our abstruse cultivation " became invalids or working dogs despite of very large exhibition prospects were seen in the beginning of their life. This was happened despite the fact that our command consisted of the tandem of two kinologist- experts and also veterinary surgeon and doctor, despite that we re-read the mountain of literature about puppies feeding and raising.
    By examining the information dedicated to CAO, by analyzing photographs and taking part in the exhibitions, we focused attention on the fact that great amount of dogs have a pathology of supporting - moving apparatus (SMA). It can be from the slight deformations and the disturbances angular the articulation of joints to the rough pathology that makes dogs with invalids. The owners of the puppies ask their questions to us with these problems very often. They acquired the puppies which ancestors and parents had ideal extremities but these puppies grow in dogs with the caved in spins and curved bones of extremities. The fight with this phenomenon remains urgent for the majority of the amateurs of species which impelled us to share our own studies on this problem.
    Being studying this problem we focused attention on the fact that there are many scientific publications on the theme of SMA pathology in the puppies of large and extremely large species. It is clearly marked that the unbalanced nourishment and mass excess are the most frequent reason for this pathology. But this fact is no more than the shake-up of air for the majority of dog breeders because in these publications are not reflected both the diagnostic criteria and early signs of its appearance which precede SMA pathology. The mechanism of the pathology appearance and the changes in the dogs exterior connected with it are not reflected in these publications too.
    We did not find the works dedicated to this question among the accessible to us literature and this fact impelled us to investigate this problem independently.


    First of all, we decided to produce the simulation of the processes which occurs with animal during overloads and to describe them.
    The dogs skeleton participates in the most varied physiological processes. It ensures shielding and respiratory functions, participates in the blood circulation and hemogeny processes. The supporting and moving functions of the skeleton greatly interest us in the borders of the present article.
    The whole skeleton and its components, as any support, have maximum permissible value of static and dynamic loads. In case of animals, the overloads compensating mechanisms are started in contrast to the constructions of the inanimate nature.
    Let us examine the phenomena which occur with the loads of those directed toward the spine from top to bottom. If loads are within the limits of physiological standard - spine remains straight line further increase in the loads over the standard can be compensated by the tension of muscles and bonds. An increase in the loads caves in spine but if they are short-term then is passed without the consequences. Prolonged overloads lead to the irreversible changes. The back of dog is constantly caved in; in the sagittal section of vertebra instead of the square we have a trapezoid. Muscles, tendons, cartilages of joints and disks are degenerately changed, i.e., is observed osteochondrosis of spine.
    By analogy it is possible to simulate possible changes in the front and rear extremities and pelvic belt.
    Front extremities: load from top to bottom descends through the blade, arm, forearm, wrist and metacarpus to the paw. Due to the fact that the blade and arm is monolithically connected with powerful musculature with the chest and forearm stands vertically, the weak components of this construction are elbow joint, metacarpus and phalanx it is finger. Prolonged beyond the limits loads lead to arthrosis - arthritis of elbow joint, cave in metacarpus and are made themselves those dissolved fingers. Even the deformation of the bones is possible.
    Rear extremities: load to the top -downward through the hip joint, thigh, shin, fetlock joint and metatarsus is transferred to the paw. Due to the fact that rear extremities have more powerful musculature and segments that its forming are located at angle to each other so for them the mechanism of the overloads compensation appears somewhat otherwise. Prolonged overloads are compensated due to an increase in the tone of muscles of basin, thighs and shin, which in turn cause to increase the angular knee and fetlock joints, the inclination of basin and sacrum and a change in the mill of tail. Analogy is common known. It is much more easily to us to hold large load on the straight lines than on the halfbent feet. Prolonged and beyond the limits overloads more frequently damage hip and knee jointy; extremity is straightened and it becomes longer. It is possible also the deformation of the bones.
    In connection with the fact that the bones forming pelvic belt, form the monolith, intensified by powerful bonds and muscles, overloads can be compensated for long time period. But a change in the inclination of basin and sacrum and landing of tail is encountered fairly often.
    We described here only most noticeable changes in the exterior. In the essence, more scrupulous analysis will reveal that the prolonged heavy overload damages absolutely all bones, joints, muscles, tendons, and in the heavy cases it influences the work of all organs and systems.
    We gave name to the described syndrome. We named it "Alexy Syndrome ".

We gave name to the described syndrome. We named it "Alexy Syndrome ".
    ) symptoms that appeared at the early stages of the disease:

        1 the fingers of the paws begin to disperse with fan
        2 metacarpuies begin to cave
        3 it is planned the cow's mill of the rear extremities
        4 the spin begin to cave
        5 the knee and fetlock joints begin to be straightened
        6 is planned the highly-backawn
        7 change the motions

    ) symptoms that appeared with the progression of diseases:

        1 the fingers of the paws disperse by "fan "
        2 metacarpuies can cave in to the degree the "fin of seal "
        3 sags the back
        4 the knee and fetlock joints are rectified almost to 180 degrees
        5 highly-backawn
        6 damage of large joints accompanied with pain and lameness.
        7 osteochondrosis of spine.

    We desire to accentuate attention in the fact that SMA overload lies at the basis of this pathology and the developing with the progression diseases of changing in exteriors, deformations of the bones, damage of joints and osteochondrosis are the consequence of overloads. These changes should not be confused with the genetically caused special features of exterior and osteochondrosis, arthrosis - arthritis and deformations of the bones of another etiology.

    Thus, the Aleksy Syndrome is a disease caused by SMA overload. It can be finding more very often in the large and extremely large species of dogs; it is accompanied by characteristic changes in the exterior of animals, by deformation of spine, and also front and rear extremities; in the heavy cases it is complicated with osteochondrosis and arthrosis - arthritis.
    Unfortunately, it is difficult to correct even the majority of the initial symptoms of SMA pathology. The prospect for victories on the prestige exhibitions will be spectral for 95% of class, thoroughbred puppies and these dogs will supplement the cohorts of tribal spoilage. It is annoying, that the spoilage is not because the parents or their ancestors had such defects but as a result of the errors of cultivation. The analysis of the current state of problem makes possible for us to assert that the majority of the reclamations which obtain nurseries are caused precisely by this reason.


    First of all, should be elucidated the concept of mass excess in connection with the puppies of large and extremely large species. In the case of small species, the obesity and mass excess are synonyms; in our case this is not true. The osteoarticular system overload begins in cases where the imperfect bone apparatus, muscular and ligamentous system does not maintain the weight of the rapidly growing organism. I.e., problem can arise also in the puppy that does not have fatty deposits.
    Naturally, the question does arise: with what weight indices does appear the risk of obtaining SMA disturbances in the puppies of species SAO? Our experience makes possible to recommend the following weight indices depending on the age of puppies. Moreover one ought not to approach the upper limit without having an experience of the extremely large species puppies raising since this experience will make possible to estimate the possibilities of puppy to maintain these or other loads.
        Just born puppy - 400-600 grams;
        1 month old - 3-4 kg;
        2 months old - 7-9 kg;
        3 months old - 12-15 kg.
     unfortunately, it is not possible to give more precise weight indices after three months because of the spread of the growth of puppies and to the large dependence of their weight on the constitutional special features.
        4 months old - 35-40% of parents weight 10%;
        10 months old - 60-70% of parents weight 10%;
        1 - 1,5 years old - 70 -80% of parents weight 10%;
        2 - 3 years old - 100% of parents weight 10%.
    Thus, the preventive maintenance should begin from the intrauterine period. Nourishment by pregnant female boughs must be well balanced. Pregnant female must not be thick. We assure that for the newly born puppies with the weight of 400-600 grams of more have more chances grow by healthy, beautiful animals, than in those monsters that weigh more than 700 grams. Why to create prerequisites for the heavy kinds with the mass of complications and to begin the life of puppy from obesity with all escaping from it consequences?
    As a rule, owners rarely allow poor nourishment of puppies in the nursing period in recent years. More frequent we have opposite phenomenon. Owners begin unjustifiably early and excess lure for obtaining the puppies of "marketable form ". Such puppies to one month already reach weight of five kilograms and more. The imperfect ligamentous apparatus and weak musculature do not maintain constant load and the extremities deformation occurs. We want to focus special attention of owners to this moment: the reason for deformations is more frequently not rachitis and the disturbance of mineral exchange, but the mass excess of the puppy. The sleek puppy obtaining good food products cannot have the deformations caused by rachitis. More frequent these deformations are connected with the mass excess.
    Usually the SMA pathology in the period from one to three months is encountered rarely since the small linear dimensions of puppy do not make possible for it to collect critical mass. Problem appears more lately because the growth of puppy occurs in the arithmetical, and the increase in the mass connected with it - in the geometric progression. In our opinion, the most dangerous period for the puppy is the period between 3 and 8 months when the swift increase in the weight occurs; the unripemuscles and ligamentous apparatus cannot hold this increase in the weight.
    During this period one should separately strictly follow the weight indices and the symptoms of SMA overload. The puppys body had not contained the excess fat. Clinical description of this period puppy: very energetic, eternally hungry, bony, the muscles above the arm - blade and femoral region are relief, and in the region of chest the outlines of edges visually are outlined.
    The given figures reflect the averaged indices and to use them it follows very thoughtfully. If puppy at the age of two months weighs 7 kilograms but it appears excess well-fed then, possibly, grows middle-sized dog. And vice versa, if it weighs 9 kilograms but it appears very thin - very large dog grows. But if in the first case it is possible to obtain SMA disturbances then the secondly - large dog with the ideal exterior. During the estimation of the parents weight one should be evaluated their physiologically substantiated weight which corresponds to their increase and constitution. Do not calculate the weight of puppy on the basis of the weight of 110 kilograms if the fairly grown fat puppys daddy suffers because of this cardiovascular insufficiency.
    Special attention should be given to correct feeding. Puppy must obtain the sufficiency of meat, fish, eggs and lactic acid products. Only in this case muscles with a good tone and the strong tendons will cover puppy. The puppies grown to some porridge the same porridge have instead of the muscles and the tendons. Defective nourishment with the excess weight together creates all prerequisites for the appearance of SMA pathology.
    We do not recommend the taking of the puppies (especially this it concerns males) from the dogs that have the very large sizes (about 80 cm and above) if you do not have an experience of the raising of exhibition dogs. You have more chances to reach fiasco how to obtain highly-class dog.
    Owners, who cultivate small SAO, by increase scarcely higher elbows, can use technology for the cultivation of small plump decorative dogs.
    The majorities of professionals, which prepare their wards for the exhibitions, use principle "all or nothing ". Extreme cultivation is conducted on the face of the possibilities of puppy. So that the puppy would maintain these loads they are used the most varied and far from always inoffensive means. Training dog for the victories occurs to the detriment of its health. Countless many dogs of this cultivation become invalids. We have a desire to stop such dogs amateurs and to give to into their hands the tool, which makes it possible to grow class and healthy dog. We hope that the information presented by us will allow the amateurs of large dogs to grow their wards beautiful and healthy.
    We desire the great success and victories on the exhibition rings to all our readers!
    P.S. Just few words in addition. We want to focus your attention on photograph from our site http://www.cao.orexca.com/.You can see on them both the source material and end product obtained employing our procedure.
    The males height: Nik Han - 82 cm.; Chuk - 84 cm.; Sherhan - 82 cm.; Chak - 84 cm. and Han - 87 cm.

    Tens of others dog have an height from 80 to 90 cm. Dogs from our nursery lives in Belgium, Belarus, Greece, Kazakhstan, Kirghizstane, Korea, Russia, USA, Slovakia, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Finland and Japan.
Translated from Russian by Andrei Avtukh
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