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Thread: My dog seems to be going out in sympathy

  1. #1

    My dog seems to be going out in sympathy

    My faithful companion, a 12yo golden retriever who has had hip dysplasia since a pup, and terrible elbow joints for the last couple of years, has really been struggling lately. I took him along to the vet to see if they could give him something to help with his arthritis and make him more comfortable (I know I'm going to have to make a decision one day, but he still seems pretty happy).

    Low and behold, the vet starts showing me what his back legs/feet are doing (or not doing) and asking a few questions. I'm not normally that slow on the uptake, but all of a sudden it all made sense - he has the start of CES, foot drop and some B&B issues!

    They say dogs take after their owners but this is ridiculous! Its not too bad yet, but I guess it'll just get worse for him and apparently is quite common in larger dogs as they get older.

  2. #2
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    We have a yellow lab when she was 2 David broke his back T-10/11/12 in a four wheeler accident. She completely calmed down and started walking really slow just like David. Now that David has MS and is in a wheelchair, she is 11 years old now but she doesn't want to walk. She just lays there next to him, she will walk when he moves but most of the time she just lays there. If I tell her to come to me she won't, he has to move to make her move. Its kinda sad really.

  3. #3
    I'm so sorry. He's a beautiful dog.


  4. #4
    Dogs with arthritis are often treated with NSAIDS - Rimadyl, Deramaxx, Metacam are some. If that is not possible due to other health issues, or if they do not suffice, often Tramadol (Ultram) is used instead of or in addition to the NSAIDS.

    Sometimes for spinal issues, they try prednisone (not along with NSAIDS of course).

    A great product if you end up needing it to help a dog with bad hips walk (if you or someone are able) is called the walkabout - we called it underwear with handles. It gives the dog some support, and they can still do their business.

    I had a big dog who had similar issues, but he went along quite happily for several years, with some treatment and tlc. He actually died of something else, in old age.

  5. #5
    Im sorry to hear about your dog
    I have had great experiences with Deramaxx and a rescue shepard. The vet did tell me to wait as long as possible before giving it. But your baby is 12 years young? I suppose thats time
    Keep us posted! Happy holidays!

  6. #6
    While I do find this sad on some level, I think its rather endearing and so special for their bonding! Dogs are just amazing creatures!!!


    Quote Originally Posted by MSWIFE1 View Post
    We have a yellow lab when she was 2 David broke his back T-10/11/12 in a four wheeler accident. She completely calmed down and started walking really slow just like David. Now that David has MS and is in a wheelchair, she is 11 years old now but she doesn't want to walk. She just lays there next to him, she will walk when he moves but most of the time she just lays there. If I tell her to come to me she won't, he has to move to make her move. Its kinda sad really.

  7. #7
    I never heard of this. Thanks TAM63 Good info to have.


    [QUOTE=TAM63;1140020]
    A great product if you end up needing it to help a dog with bad hips walk (if you or someone are able) is called the walkabout - we called it underwear with handles. It gives the dog some support, and they can still do their business.

  8. #8
    Tam is very correct. The Nsaid's can cause some other problems with the liver & kidneys, usually bloodwork is done every 3 months to keep check while on them. Prednisone is a wonderful option to help with the inflamation & can be used long term. As far as the sling for helping to hold the back up, I always just took a very long towel. For spinal cord injuries, pet wheelchairs are the way to go but I'm not sure if it's the greatest option in this case with the HD.

    I'm very sorry you're going through this. Your baby is beautiful. When the times comes, you will do what is right even though it isn't easy. Maybe in the meantime, offer him an enteric coated asprin every twice a day to alleviate some pain. Good luck with your decision, it is one made out of pure love.

  9. #9
    I agree - but aspirin can cause problems also. I wouldn't suggest using it without talking to a vet first. It is the least expensive solution.

    Rimadyl costs less than Deramaxx also (not sure where Metacam fits in). I've had good luck with Deramaxx, but the others are ok too.

    Prednisone is also inexpensive, and can cautiously be used long-term. Like any medication, it too can cause problems.

    In our own dogs, our first choice for hips/back is the NSAIDS, with ultram added if needed. Prednisone is only if we have to, or perhaps for acute inflammation. Haven't used aspirin in years, although it can be an option.

    The other reason I would not suggest giving aspirin right now, unless that is the long-term plan, is once you have given aspirin, there needs to be a "wash-out" period (where the dog can't take any aspirin, nsaid, pred, etc) before switching to one of the others - I can't remember exactly how long, but a week or two. So it is best to decide what you hope to stick with, before just trying one of the aspirin/nsaids/prednisone. Ultram is different, it can be used along with any of the others.

    A long towel does work to assist dogs - I agree there too. But with a big dog, I found it much easier on me to use the walkabout. For occasional use, the towel was fine - but I think the walkabout is more recommended if used frequently. I was surprised what a difference it made. My dog used it some, especially for stairs. And I've lent it out a few times, to dogs recovering from surgery etc. Very nicely designed product imo (although, of course, more expensive than the towel).

  10. #10
    Oh, pet wheelchairs - if you choose to get one, I would NOT recommend K-9 Carts East. We had a very very bad experience with them.

    Rehabbers have recommended Eddie's Wheels as a first choice.

    K-9 Carts west I don't know about.

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