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Old 06-10-2012, 03:36 PM   #11 (permalink)
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We think that Daisy has DM ,she is 12. She has some great days and some really not good ones. We get her to walk and she still chases her brother and the neighbors livestock on her side of her fence. After a really busy am she naps more. The personality changes she will not sleep in her bed ,she was always a nester but I think her decrease in mobility have made her not want to be somewhere that she may not be able to get out of. I am so sorry about your girl. I think your right that losing the things you love to do takes away from the quality of your life, I know they recommend walking for dogs w/ D/M. Take care .
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Old 06-17-2012, 11:42 AM   #12 (permalink)
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My Zeke is 13 we made the choice to try surgery to help relieve his spinal pressure. Its not going well almost wish I didn't have the surgery, but I also know that he wouldn't have made it much longer without the surgery. He's 3 weeks into the back surgery and he's not walking well at all. We are keeping him on crate rest to keep him still just going out to potty. But he keeps getting fluid pockets that have to be drained or he can't walk at all from the pressure of the fluid.

Its a hard thing to see your pet go from so active to not even wanting to move. As everyone says not in pain just annoyed when he can't just up and run like he used to. Enjoy your time with him try to slow down the progression with anti infammatories and pain meds when needed.

Our dog is part of the family and he picks up on our stress so we try to act as if nothings wrong with him at times I get so upset and cry and he knows.

Good Luck with everything.......Its hard to have our pets get old and slow down and come to realize it will soon be time. But I know we gave him a good life and he's loved. We're not giving up on him yet he's a fighter and we'll hang in there with him until he's in pain then we will do the right thing as hard as it will be.
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Old 11-17-2012, 06:17 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default my dog sammie

This same thing is happening to my 9 year old female, sammie. She was diagnosed with hip problems about 3 years ago.
About 2 months ago...i noticed that she started to limp. Then it went to dragging the back leg which affected her paw. I bought her boots because she had wore down her nails.
Now her hips are crossing and she is a mess. If i tell her to go slow and I hoist her up...she can walk. But when she gets excited or tired....her legs twist and collapse.
Now she slides around the house with her front legs.
She does walk a little bit daily...but for the most part...she tries but doesn't get too far.
I took her to the vet...but he said a sloppy hip. Is this something treatable or is she just going to keep losing her use of those back legs?
She is 9 and about 100 lbs. Her mind and crazy and silly spirit is still in tact.
SHe is funny and wonderful, eating and going potty outside. Vet put her on prednisone...and that was a mess.
So what are your thoughts?

Paula k
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Old 11-17-2012, 07:06 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Im sorry to hear. Hopefully it turns out better than the things being discussed
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Old 11-18-2012, 02:22 PM   #15 (permalink)
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DM quite frequently is a catch-all dx, a process of elimination. Unless EEG is done on the affected muscles, one cannot be sure.

I used to work for (IMO, the Best) vet neuro/ortho. Referrals only from other vets. I was amazed at the number of owners who came in with their dogs in a rear-end cart. Most (yes, Most) of those left walking. Cauda equina affects the lower spine. Regular vets will mis-dx it & the animal winds up in a cart. We could operate, sometimes using plates & screws, & the animal returns to normal.

But it takes myelogram, radiographs & sometimes spinal fluid analysis. Please have a vet experienced in these fields check out your dog. Symtomatically, it may 'sound' like DM - but insist upon the RIGHT diagnosis, based upon qualified testing. (BTW - cauda equina is a known problem with GSDs. Don't fall into the mentality that says DM is the problem here without accurate tests.)
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Old 11-18-2012, 04:58 PM   #16 (permalink)
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thanks for the informative message. I did alot of research on the web last night. I will be calling the vet back tomorrow.
I have 2 shepherds and my older girl ended up with a perianal fistula 2 years ago. I was at wits end and did many treatments with her. I spent lots and lots of money. She is in remission at this time and now this with my younger shepherd.
I am a widow and on a limited income. My husband and I had and took care of many pets together as a team.
Its very overwhelming to take care of 2 shepherds, a cat and 4 birds alone and work a 40 plus hour work week and take care of a home. I am on a limited budget and all my animals are seniors now. So....I said I would be there for all of them through li fe. I love them all dearly and take care of them to the best of my ability and the best of my financial ability.
The tests that you talk about or that I read about last night on the web...amounted to thousands of dollars and surgeries and dog carts and slings have my mind all boggled up. I feel i owe it to my pets to give them the best care that I can. They have the love...and they are all happy.
My shepherd scout is 11 and sammie is 9. My cat is 19.
So i am simply saying that money and vet bills and medicine and all that goes along with these medical problems will always be part of the dilema.
My father who always taught me that things need to stay in balance and animals need to be placed in the right perspective. Keeping a compromised animal alive for my selfish purposes is not what it should be all about. When she ceases to be the dog who can go outside and enjoy the things she did or when she can not control her functions....or even know who I am.....then I need to make some very difficult decisons.
I don't want to start a debate...but money is the only thing that can give a dog a chance to heal or get better or survive or be put in remission. SO...at this time...i will take her to the vet and talk to him about the things that this could be. He can give me his opinions and give me honesty in how much things may cost and I will have to go from there.
These are the things of life that stress me out and sink me into deep depression. These are the things of life that test your heart and love and mind. when scout went through a year of perianal fistuala problems and i spent thousands in medicine and vet appointments. research and reading. making dog food and dog treats and applying concoctions on her butt twice a day, i realized just how much i loved my pets. they have been here for me, slept with me, licked me and surrounded me since my husband died of cancer. i would do anything for them.....anything. but when you don't have the money....and i hate to say it.....when it boils down to the money.....this is the saddest part of owning pets. oprah isn't handing me a check because i have a sad moment in life.
I hope i didn't sound too horrible. these are the things going through my head. things you wrestle with when one of your pets goes down. i do know that she will be going to the vet. i am calling him tomorrow. i will get some answers or some other kind of plan going. i am not going to just give up.
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Old 11-18-2012, 06:28 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I just read up on the cauda that you speak about in your post. It said that they will be in pain.
My dog exhibits no pain or any of those things that the article says. My vet even said that he did not think that she was in any type of pain.
SO could it still be the cauda that you said that it could be?
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:17 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Paula - I'm not sure what your vet means by "sloppy hip". A catch-all phrase, probably. Cauda equina may or may not be painful - no 2 vets agree. But what *I* have seen is painfull response. I have an oversized cat born with this (+bilateral hip dysplasia) & I firmly believe he was in pain before his surgeries. And now, because he's 16, he has arthritis in those joints.

(BTW - I meant to type 'EMG' to test the muscles, not 'EEG'). oops
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Old 11-21-2012, 07:55 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Olivers mama View Post
Paula - I'm not sure what your vet means by "sloppy hip". A catch-all phrase, probably. Cauda equina may or may not be painful - no 2 vets agree. But what *I* have seen is painfull response. I have an oversized cat born with this (+bilateral hip dysplasia) & I firmly believe he was in pain before his surgeries. And now, because he's 16, he has arthritis in those joints.

(BTW - I meant to type 'EMG' to test the muscles, not 'EEG'). oops
FWIW I've had three dogs (all related ... father and his son and daughter) who were diagnosed with cauda equina and all three responded favorably to pain medications (tramadol) and later I added acupuncture and bowen massages which also helped. JR was 13 years/3 months when he was put down (multiple problems), Ringer was 12 years/11 months when he was put down (hemangiosarcoma of the heart), and Honey 13 years/10 months when she was put down (unknown sudden, high fever, coma wasn't expected to live thru the night, in fact they weren't sure if she'd live long enough for me to drive up and be with her when she was put down ... she was alive when I got there so I got to hold her and tell her I loved her but she didn't hear me).
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:30 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I agree that the leg crossing and knuckling under are classic DM signs. :-(

You might want to investigate some of the supplements recommended by Dr. Clemmons for DM -- my vet recommended this site to me, as he respects the work Dr. Clemmons is doing:
Degenerative Myelopathy of German Shepherds

I think Dr. Clemmons also may be connected to Westlab Pharmacy in Florida (a compounding pharmacy that sells the treatment used in Dr. Clemmons studies:
Westlab Pharmacy - Veterinary Patients - Degenerative Myelopathy (I haven't ordered anything from them, but I came across it in my research, when we thought my old guy might have DM last year--turned out he just had bad arthritis.)
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