Hip dysplasia (HD) scores, based on the five grades, as defined by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale, were compared between anaesthetized (group 1, n = 3839) and non-sedated non-anaesthetized dogs (group 2, n = 1517). Each dog was radiographed in the standard ventro-dorsal hip joint extended position. Each radiograph was evaluated by the same reader blinded regarding the dog's status of anaesthesia. Results showed that there was a significant difference in hip dysplasia prevalence between group 1 (22%) compared with group 2 (9%) (P < 0.005). This difference was the result of a lower rate of hip-joint laxity assessment and the measurement of Norberg–Olsson angle <105° in group 2 compared with group 1. The acetabular and femoral morphologies were not significantly different between the groups. The data confirm that the scoring of dogs for HD on standard radiographs with the hip joints extended is influenced by anaesthesia.