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The pelvis is composed of 4 bones (ilium, ischium, pubis, and sacrum) that form a box to connect the spine to both of the hind limbs at the hip joints. The pelvic box surrounds and protects portions of the intestinal, urinary, and reproductive tracts. Common ailments of the pelvis include malformed joints (termed, dysplasia) and fractures from trauma. Dysplastic hips cause arthritis over time if not corrected. Due to the box-like nature of the pelvis, fractures tend to be multiple and concomitant injury to the internal organs may occur. Dogs with hip pain rise more slowly or limp; their endurance may wane. A healthy body weight is the best insurance to minimize joint inflammation in your pet’s later years. Anti-inflammatory medications, nutritional supplements, physical therapy, and/or surgery may be recommended by your veterinarian to keep your dog’s hip joints strong and mobile so s/he can keep chasing balls at the park.