Worldwide medical and scientific journal for animal health professionals

Issue number 27.3 Orthopedics

Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease in dogs

Published 14/11/2019

Written by Darryl L. Millis

Also available in Français , Deutsch , Italiano and Español

Avascular necrosis of the femoral head – more commonly known as Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease – is a commonly occurring problem in small dog breeds. Professor Millis presents an overview of the disease and the preferred options available for treating the condition.

Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease in dogs

Key Points

Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease is a degenerative condition of the femoral head and neck that leads to collapse of the femoral head and neck, secondary osteoarthritis, pain and lameness.


The condition is found in toy and miniature breeds of dog less than one year of age.


The treatment is generally femoral head and neck excision, although total hip replacement is an option.


Postoperative pain management and physical rehabilitation are key for successful use of the limb.


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