Basset Hounds Forum banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Just wondering if anyone could shed some light on my situation....I have a male basset, almost 7 years old, weighs about 60lbs. About 10 days ago he started to experience some pain in his lower back (toward his tail). He was fine in the morning and then at lunchtime he started to act like he was in pain....his tail between his legs, trouble getting up and down the stairs, not playful, etc. So we took him to the vet that afternoon (we thought he had eaten another rock like he's done 3x before) but the x-ray showed nothing. The dr. then felt his back and he yellped in pain so the dr. felt like it was an injury to his back (pulled muscle, disc issue, etc.) So he gave him a cortisone shot and put him on a non-steroid anti-inflammatory. He was great the next day and a half, but then he was back to where he started. So I called the dr. again, he prescribed a different anti-inflammatory plus a muscle relaxer for the pain. All last week he was on this medicine and did not seem to get any better, but not any worse either. Then Friday his back legs were very wobbly to the point where he was having trouble standing up and we would have to pick him up to take him outside. Then Saturday evening it got worse and by Sunday he couldn't stand on his hind legs. He pretty much dragged himself around. So I took him in first think yesterday morning and the dr. has him on a high dose cortisone drip for 48 hours. He is pretty confident this will work. He does not seem to be in any pain and he does respond to me tickling his pads so I know he has some feeling in his legs. All along, he still has had a healthy appetite, but I've had to bring his food and water to him because he just can't get up to get to his food. Does any of this sound familiar to anyone? My husband and I are just a little puzzled because it seems to have come on so fast. Any ideas or suggestion would be appreciated.
Thanks again.
Ashley
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,410 Posts
I'm sorry to hear of your trouble. I don't have any experience with this, hopefully someone else will share some info and links. From reading your post, I'm sure the first round of meds made him not feel the pain, and therefore he was more like his old self, until they wore off. It's great that you're working close with your vet to get this treated. Is it possible that he suffered an injury? Where we live, it's been so cold with all the snow and ice, that if one of mine started to have these troubles, I would suspect a back injury caused by a fall or something. Best of luck, hope your hound buddy is better soon!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,249 Posts
Poor pup and you all. :(

All I know is it's really good he's in the vet. I can't give any kind of details because I don't know that much about it, but I do know bassets can get into trouble very quickly and get all kinds of odd things going on just because of how they're built - the long back, etc.

So It's impt he's at the vets and it's going to be impt he be as immobile as possible until everything clears up.

Good luck! :(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,902 Posts
Welcome, Ashley, I'm sorry to hear about your basset. One of my bassets, Amber, experienced similar problems. She was fine when my husband left the house to run an errand, and less than an hour later, when he returned, she couldn't use her rear legs.

Back injuries in bassets can have serious consequences like paralysis and incontinence, because of the composition of their disc material and the type of degenerative changes seen. In bassets, and some other breeds, when there's an injury, it tends to present acutely and dramatically.

Depending on the severity of the injury, treatment recommendations may include surgery or more conservative treatment including steroids and rest. During treatment, it's best to restrict the basset's activity to prevent re-injury.

If there's no improvement, other types of testing may be indicated, to rule out other causes for these symptoms.

Here are some links to information on Intervertebral Disc Disease in dogs.

Canine Intervertebral Disk Disease (Patricia J. Luttgen, DVM, MS, prepared for the Dachshund Club of America, Inc.)

Intervertebral Disk Disease, Canine (Vetcentric.com)

Intervertebral Disk Disease (Long Beach Animal Hospital)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks to all for your thoughts and advice. I'm happy to say Henry is finally home after 4 days at the Dr.'s. The diagnosis is a ruptured disc and he is on strict bed rest for 3 weeks. Physically, he really doesn't look any better to me, but from a neurological standpoint the Dr. said he is doing much better. He said to expect a very slow recovery. For about three weeks he needs his back legs supported by a sling or harness. Right now, we're using a towel wrapped under his tummy to kind of carry him when whe take him out to use the bathroom. Does anyone know of any products on the market for this specific purpose? I came across one called "Bottoms Up Dog Leash." Anyone every head of this?
Thanks again for all your help.
-Ashley
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,960 Posts
Sorry to read about your boy Henry. My Toby had back problems at age 11 and although no completely paralyzed he dragged his back legs and fell over walking. Treatment was a steroid and 1 month crate rest.

Here's a website with various assistive products. HandicappedPets.com I'd check with my vet prior to ordering something to see what might be the best for Henry.

Sending healing thoughts to Henry. Keep us posted on how he's doing.

[ February 14, 2004, 02:39 PM: Message edited by: Barbara Winters ]
 
E

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Johnbootie,
If it is indeed a RUPTURED disc,it is unlikely that rest will cure the problem.There are many words used to describe the pathology of disc problems.The real crux of the matter is whether the disc is just bulging(a bulging or herniated disc),or it is truly ruptured(fragmnted).A standard xray won't tell you this.It takes an MRI or myelogram to truly diagnose the state of the disc(it is soft tissue and standard xrays don't show the disc).

The bulging or ruptured disc presses against large nerves that come off the spinal cord(or on the spinal cord itself).The pressure can cause permanent damage and/or paralysis.Many bulging discs can heal,but ruptured discs cannot.So,you need to be sure the diagnosis is correct.If it's ruptured,the basset most likely needs disc surgery.We had a 5 year old male that had surgery for this.I've had it myself.I even got to scrub in on Erwin's surgery(I'm a health professional,so the surgeon at U of Tenneessee vet school didn't mind).Erwin had a pretty complete recovery,though it took a good 6 weeks after surgery before he walked again.

Good luck!
 
E

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
sorry,double post

[ February 19, 2004, 01:15 PM: Message edited by: Erwin's Mommy ]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Thanks Eriwn's mommy. He really has not shown any improvement, he's pretty much remained the same so I made an appointment with the Dr. first thing tomorrow morning. Do you have any suggestions on what kind of questions I should be asking? Thanks again.
-Ashley
 
E

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Yes,I'd want to know if any test had been done to truly see if the disc is ruptured(MRI or myelogram).If not,the diagnosis is based on clinical signs(symptoms),which,as far as I know,cannot diagnose the difference between a herniation and a ruptured disc.Time is of the essence because pressure on nerve roots or the spinal cord can cause more damage the longer it remains..Do you have a vet school nearby for a referral?

A second opinion may be in order.One commonly done test is to pinch a toe on a rear foot Really,REALLY hard.If there is no response to pain,it's not a good sign.Any flinch,however,is good news and disc surgery would have a good chance of success for a ruptured disc.And I reiterate,a fragmented disc cannot heal itself "back into one piece).

[ February 21, 2004, 04:13 PM: Message edited by: Erwin's Mommy ]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Josie's "potential disc" injury

Josie, my 10 year old Basset Hound, woke up about 1 week ago yelping and in a lot of pain. I had NO IDEA what was going on. I took her to my vet, and in looking her over, we found her to have a lot of pain around her neck. He mentioned a potential disc injury and we decided to treat her with 2 pain killers (one with an anti-inflammatory). She had about 4 days left of the anti-inflam./pain med and had finished the other paid med. and within the past 24 hours has gone down hill rapidly. Today she has hardly been able to stand on her own and can't walk much at all. I took her back to the vet and he mentioned two options at this point. Try prednisone, or referral to a neurologist/neurosurgeon. I chose the steroid option first. I am trying that and I am PRAYING it works. I am terrified at the thought of needing to go to the neurologist and not being able to afford the recommended treatment. I also can't imagine putting her through that kind of surgery at her age. I have been praying through all of the tears. She is so pitiful. I'm having to carry her outside to try to use the bathroom. She reminds me of Bambi on ice and it is so sad. :(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,271 Posts
Good luck. My beloved Stomps had that happen to him a little over a year ago. He suddenly lost all control of his hind end. After intensive care at the vet's and even a session in a hyperbaric chamber (he had a seizure in it), he was getting absolutely no better. He was about 13 at the time, and MISERABLE. I couldn't put him through any more and had him euthanized. My vet only did x-rays, and could see nothing wrong with his spine. I wish I'd known about the MRI back then; it wouldn't have changed the outcome, but it might have made it easier for me to make the final decision (and less guilty afterwards). I'm hoping for the best for Josie. And to you--it's so hard to watch a dog that can't walk.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Roscoe hurt his back due to stairs and jumping off the couch. He injured it this past Christmas eve. The injury sounds similar. All I know is, patient and bed rest is the best cure. I made a makeshift brace for Roscoe that I am willing to mail to you if you like. It wraps around his hind legs so that you can help your Basset to go outside to use the restroom. This past Wednesday, Roscoe no longer uses the brace and is walking on his own. Not yet 100% but he's getting there. 4and 1/2 months of rehab has helped. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Thanks so much for the responses. I am soooo sorry to hear about Stomps. I have been torn apart this week. It's such an emotional time. My vet is telling me I need to give the prednisone a chance before I get too upset about any alternatives. I haven't had an xray or MRI. It seems like it would be a disc problem and I know I would have to have an MRI to determine that. If the prednisone doesn't work, I just don't know if at her age, I could put her through surgeries, etc. and financially I don't know that it would even be an option. I hope it doesn't come to that decision. Things aren't improving at this point but I am holding out hope and saying many prayers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Thank you so much for that info. I have tried coming up with something myself to help support Josie (for bathroom purposes). I haven't had anything yet that works. I tried a sheet. She doesn't appear to have much use of her front legs at this point either. It's actually hard for her to even stand at all. I try to help support her just to stand up and use the bathroom. Was is just Roscoe's hind legs or was he having problems on all 4 like Josie? I really appreciate the offer on the "sling" you made. If you think it could work with her not having much use of any legs, I could certainly give it a try. This forum sure has helped me with hearing similar stories and the support. I'm thankful I found it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,271 Posts
That brings up a good point--one of the reasons I had to give up on helping Stomps was because the vet said his front legs had a significant amount of arthritic changes. And the vet didn't think surgery would help him. Stomps was always wanting to patrol the perimeter, and he wouldn't have been content to just hang out in the house. So it's good to have a look at the dog's front end and keep his temperament in mind when making a decision about what to do.

P.S. I tried to edit my previous response to include well wishes for the original poster as well, but they didn't take.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top