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Hello!

I have been at a loss trying to figure out what is going on with my old guy and hoping someone here might have some info. My old guy Bullet is 11 years old. Last year he began this strange shaking and muscle jerking type movement. It only happened at night? He would pace around and pant, and once the abrupt muscle jerking stopped he seemed to settle. The vet didn't know what it was, said it was common for older dogs to pace and pant and prescribed gabapentin to try and help calm him and help with pain if its pain related. Fast forward to now and he is shaking everyday and almost all day if he has no meds :/. He is inconsolable when it happens, and will try and climb in my lap but then just stand on me, not want to lay down, just stand. And nothing I say or do comforts him. He has been to a neurologist 3 years ago when he was doing this other strange head shaking thing, but they didn't think it was a seizure because he was always coherent, never any loss of bowel function, etc. That was his only symptom then also, none of this whole body shaking. They said they couldn't rule out tumor unless I got a CT and said they didn't recommend it because of his age and it would be really stressful for him, and that if they found something they rarely can do anything for them. It also randomly stopped after a year.

But now with this new constant shaking I'm debating if I should take him back in? I just feel so bad for him and don't know what to do. I've tried covering him with blankets and that doesn't make any difference. And he often will get up and walk away to lay down some place else to get it off.

Hope someone can shed some light as to what may going on and what I should do. The vet hasn't been able to figure it out.

Thanks in advance :)
 

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Bassets don't suffer pain very well, and from my experience, will shiver/shake. But not the muscle jerking movement ALTHOUGH Frankie started doing this when older. He'd 'flick' a front leg when lying down and with him, this tended to happen more during the evening. I thought he had a trapped nerve but this was never confirmed. He went lame some time previously and was x-rayed where his hip situation was seen (subluxation) and some abnormalities down his spine including a mass at the top of his spine which my vet felt really needed MRI to confirm what was going on. A procedure we quite frankly couldn't afford - and as my vet said, if it was a nasty, then what! Putting him though all that would be stressful for him too. So we let him be. As said earlier, he finally went off his back legs at which point we all decided it was kindest to let him go. I think it was probably cancer - a tumor (the undefined mass at the top of his spine).

A specialist vet should be able to get to the bottom of what's going on with your old boy. I send good thoughts even if I can't really help.
 

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Bassets don't suffer pain very well, and from my experience, will shiver/shake. But not the muscle jerking movement ALTHOUGH Frankie started doing this when older. He'd 'flick' a front leg when lying down and with him, this tended to happen more during the evening. I thought he had a trapped nerve but this was never confirmed. He went lame some time previously and was x-rayed where his hip situation was seen (subluxation) and some abnormalities down his spine including a mass at the top of his spine which my vet felt really needed MRI to confirm what was going on. A procedure we quite frankly couldn't afford - and as my vet said, if it was a nasty, then what! Putting him though all that would be stressful for him too. So we let him be. As said earlier, he finally went off his back legs at which point we all decided it was kindest to let him go. I think it was probably cancer - a tumor (the undefined mass at the top of his spine).

A specialist vet should be able to get to the bottom of what's going on with your old boy. I send good thoughts even if I can't really help.
Thank you for sharing your experience! That was my main reason for not doing a CT a few years ago was they said it'd be so stressful for him :/. He still enjoys going for walks, if you don't take him one day you hear all about it! And when he's not in full tremor mode he still enjoys playing with my younger hound and chewing on a bone. So I'm just kind of at a loss. I don't feel like he's at the end yet...but just trying to figure out if there is anything I can do for him to help with pain if that is an issue.

Is there a particular type of specialist you took yours to? I guess I'm assuming neuro is the best because of the symptoms but if you have any other suggestions please share :)

Thank you again!
 

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Is there a particular type of specialist you took yours to? I guess I'm assuming neuro is the best because of the symptoms but if you have any other suggestions please share :)

Thank you again!
You are very welcome. No. We didn't opt for a neuro specialist - finally I've found a vet down here in the SW UK who I can trust - and it didn't hurt that he was really into Bassets and especially Frankie. As said, he felt an MRI might shed more light on what the mass was, which x-ray didn't but although I might have scraped the funds together had he been a young boy, he was getting up there in age so we just made him as comfortable as we could under the circumstances. He was on as low a dose of Metacam as I could stabilised him with. There are known side-effects with this, if used long-term, but until the end, when I'd had to put him up to a max dose (with our vet's instructions), he showed no side effects which weren't wanted. At the end, he spent the previous night upchucking, rather dark coloured bile, which may well have been the max. dose of Metacam. And he was on Gabapentin by then too, after he went off his back legs. Frankie was only 10.5 years when we had to say goodbye - and to this day I still feel robbed of the 2, maybe 3 years longer with him. Most of our home-breds made it into their 14th year (with exceptions - cancer). But we can only do as much as is right for us, and for our beloved hounds.
 

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Thank you for the resources. The video of the bulldog in the idiopathic post is what Bullet started doing when was about 8 years old I think, took him to a neurologist and she said it was likely a head bobbing syndrome that she had seen in some breeds, could get a CT to rule out brain tumor but she didn't recommend it at his age, that it would be stressful for him and even if they found something they can rarely do anything about it. This randomly stopped on its own after a year or two. Then last year (11 yrs now), his whole body started to, he would shake/tremor for minutes or hours at a time. He is responsive in that he knows his name but will either lie there and shake or walk around panting while he shakes. And won't take treats or food of any kind when that happens.
 
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