West Highland White Terrier
1 year
What Happened
Femoral head/neck excision

Angus is a beautiful West Highland White Terrier who presented to us 
with lameness last year. The lameness had been ongoing for at least five 
weeks and was causing him pain when running and restricting his ability 
to get in and out of the car.
On examination it was clear that the right hip was causing Angus a lot 
of pain so we decided to take a hip x-ray. It is very unusual to have 
severe hip pain in such a young dog but taking the x-rays gave us the 
The x-rays showed an obvious difference between the top of the thigh 
bone on the left and right sides. The head and neck of the thigh bone on 
the right leg was deformed and misshapen. This caused friction between 
the socket of the hip joint and top of the thigh bone with every 
movement resulting in pain and discomfort.
This condition is called Legg-Calve-Perths disease and is a genetic 
condition well documented in Westies. The blood supply to the head of 
the thigh bone is interrupted causing the bone to die and resulting in a 
rough and irregular boney surface. The only treatment options for Angus 
were surgical removal of the head of the thigh bone or an artificial hip 
replacement. Given the small size of the bones involved a hip 
replacement was possible but technically difficult and would require 
referral to Birmingham. Angus’s owners decided that he should have 
surgery here to remove the head of the thigh bone and make him more 
comfortable. The large, strong muscles of the back and thigh would then 
strengthen up over time creating a false joint.
Angus had a full general anaesthetic and an epidural prior to his 
surgery. The head of the femur was removed and the edges of the bone 
smoothed off. The muscles were closed over the deficit and the skin sewn 
Angus had one month of cage rest and restricted exercise following his 
op. He is now moving better than he ever did prior to his op. He is 
getting in and out of the car well, climbing stairs normally, running on 
all four legs and generally enjoying life to the full.

angus 1
Angus 2