Thanks to good breeding practices and the absence of traits that could cause harm to the dog, the Silky Terrier is a relatively healthy breed. Like all breeds, though, there are some genetic conditions to which the breed is susceptible and which need veterinary care. One of these conditions is elbow dysplasia. The word "dysplasia" simply refers to some kind of abnormal development, while the "elbow" part of the condition obviously refers to the dog's elbow; hence, the condition involves the abnormal development of the dog's elbow joint.
In elbow dysplasia, various parts of the elbow joint may develop abnormally, with something like cartilage disruption or failure to fuse being seen often; these abnormalities usually lead to inflammation, an uneven joint surface, arthritis, lameness and joint swelling. Though the primary factor behind the condition is most likely genetic, the exact cause is still unknown; experts believe that more than one gene is most likely involved and that perhaps hormonal factors may play a part in the condition. Rapid growth combined with over-nutrition and trauma may also be triggering environmental factors. [...]