(Cold Lake, AB, CANADA)
Hello there. Riley (male) will be turning 1 year this month. I am curious to know about his "flat-foot". This primarily would be his front paws. I notice his nails stick out much more than other dogs. I am wondering if this is contributed due to his size. Last time I had him weighed he was 10 months (88lbs).
One of my obedience instructors had said to give him Vitamin C & MSM to assist with bone strength. However, should I be concerned with the flat foot? He seems to be handling everything fine (runs, plays, doesn't complain that he has to move, etc).
Cold Lake, AB
I think I know what you're describing when you say 'flat foot' and in my opinion it's probably more genetic than anything else.
It's difficult to see from this photo but I'm thinking it may be a combination of him having weak pasterns (front lower leg joint) and feet that are 'splayed' rather than 'tight'.
This is what the AKC Rottweiler Breed Standard has to say about this part of the body - 'Pasterns: Slightly springy, strong, not steep. Front feet: Round, tight and well arched..' It seems as though Rileys' pasterns are more angled than they could be, and his feet not as tight or arched as is preferred. BUT most likely this is a cosmetic, conformation problem rather than a big physical issue.
Conformation is mainly hereditary, but diet also plays a role in these big, fast growing dogs. Even though he is a year old, Riley still has a lot of growing to do and at his weight, he's going to be a BIG boy. Make sure he's eating a premium food so that he gets all the nutrition he needs. There are many different opinions about this, but I keep my pups eating puppy food until they're mature and it seems to work very well. Whether you continue to feed puppy food, or change over to an adult formula, just make sure it's good quality. You can also check out the handy canine calorie calculator on the puppy food page I've linked to earlier in this paragraph. It will help you figure out exactly how much food Riley needs each day.
I doubt that this flat-footedness is going to cause Riley any real problems in everyday life. Depending on how angled or weak his pasterns are, he may have some discomfort if he walks too far or jumps too much, but it doesn't seem as though it's bothering him now so I wouldn't worry about it too much.
A premium food should provide all the nutrients he needs, but giving him an appropriate supplement shouldn't hurt and may help. Don't be tempted to give him calcium as that will be counter productive. Vitamin C, Glucosamine and MSM are all good. I'd recommend a product such as
Nupro Silver Joint Support Dog Supplement 5 lb. for Caine, it's natural and well-balanced and will help improve your pups' general health and immune function as well as support his bone/joint growth.
Hope this helps, Riley looks happy, healthy and handsome and I doubt this problem will cause him much trouble. Best of luck with him.