This will be a wordy post, but I wanted to give a complete update on Mango's BigFoot.
We were unable to get a diagnosis, but it appears to have stabilized. At this point, the vet and I are leaning towards a mechanical failure, possibly bursitis, tendon damage, or some sort of hairline fracture.
While that does not explain why he responded well to antibiotics, I note that his level of activity was severely limited while he was on antibiotics. It is also possible that a structural issue had a secondary infection which would have caused his fever.
Right now, the swelling comes and goes, but never as alarming as the gigantic BigFoot.
Sadly, I am continuing to try and restrict his movement. This is hard on the big guy as he is keen to bounce, chase his ball, and do his dance moves. Even attempts at sedate leash walking often include him popping wheelies and body slamming me. I do indulge him in tennis ball fun even though it is alarming to see the way he bounces and torques his front leg.
His on and off difficulties have caused his gait and stance to be a bit splayed. He is also getting twinges from his left rear leg which has been a chronic problem with him.
Water therapy would be the best thing for him and we do have several facilities nearby. Sadly, the water therapy treadmills are all too small for him and the one place that has a pool involves steps and scary stuff that I know he would not be able to handle (even if they have a life jacket big enough). Due to health regulations (thank you Massachusetts), I would not be able to get in the pool with him and no way some weird lady in a wet suit would convince him to walk down a set of stairs into the water.
The good news is that other than walking funny and some small difficulties getting up and down, he is feeling great and is his usual happy self.
He is currently taking metacam for inflammation and glucosamine for general joint issues.
Since I have had some queries, thought I would just get it all out at once. No worries, Mango will be back shortly with a more entertaining post.