Spondylosis Options - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-20-2014, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Spondylosis Options

Hello all. I have a 13 year old with really bad spondylosis and I can see that it is progressing. He also gets ulcers so I have to go sparingly on the nsaids. The vet has him on gabapentin and previcox. I also give him fish oil but he is in pain. Have any of you had surgery for this? I'm worried sick about how much pain he might be in and just don't know what to do. I think I will look for a new vet after the holidays. Sometimes I give him xanax when he is crying at night but the vet would never prescribe that, I know. When do you know when they have had enough? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

PS...the previcox is costing me a fortune. Do any of you have vets that prescribe meloxicam instead, or any other meds? One vet had him on tramodol but this one doesn't think it works. I also have to feed him hamburger and cheerios because he is sensitive to the additives in dogfood. He is 135 lbs and this is breaking me, financially.

Last edited by SirBeowulf; 12-20-2014 at 02:15 PM.
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-20-2014, 02:29 PM
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Maybe look into a natural anti inflammatory method instead of medication?

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-20-2014, 03:49 PM
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Spondylosis is often characteristic in older dogs.

I think conservative management is best as opposed to operations. Also a 13 year old dog (depending on breed) could be at the end of its life. Especially if a GSD.

Maybe try physical therapy if you know of such a professional.

If you can find a physical dog therapist that indeed also has a qualification in human physiotherapy (rare to find) you will be better off.

Do NOT seek Chiropractic Care for this type of condition...

Swimming should also ease the dogs pain and build some much required strength.

A hot water bottle can also ease the pain... Cold causes much pain for arthritic dogs.

If the dog is really struggling to move at all and is always in pain.. Maybe its time to let her go.

Last edited by Lykoz; 12-20-2014 at 03:54 PM.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-20-2014, 06:51 PM
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You might do a search on this forum for Duralactin or Microlactin. My dog has hip dysplasia, not spondylosis, but both conditions can involve inflammation. Hans is on a couple of joint supplements but once he reached age 3, his play/train sessions became very short-6 or 7 minutes.
I always let him decide when he's had enough and after that short amount of time, he'd grab his toy and head to the house. I added Duralactin and now he is still going strong past the 30 minute mark. He is actually only on 1/2 the recommended dose.
It is natural and can be used with or without NSAIDS, according to their website.
It is advertised as helping chronic inflammation. I can tell a huge difference. It is the only recent change I have made.
Might be worth looking into.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-29-2014, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for the replies. There are no physical therapist for dogs around her but there is one an hour away. I have tried natural anti-inflammatories (tumeric, fish oil, tart cherry) and they don't seem to work. Are there some I'm missing? I have not hear of Duralactin or Microlactin. and will check that out. He has good days and has been doing pretty well, but sometimes he cries at night. I don't think it is time to put him down yet.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-29-2014, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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I was wrong about his age. I think he is only 11.
I do try a heating pad once in a while but he usually won't be still for that.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-29-2014, 04:42 PM
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are you sure it's spondylosis and not a slipped disc? Spondylosis from what I understand (and having a gsd who had it), is fusing of the vertabraes in the spine, which cuts off the nerves that run thru those vertabraes, when the nerves are cut off, there is no pain, because they have dead nerves..Mine had 1/3 of his spine fused when we discovered it, he was totally normal acting prior to taking a slip in the yard, and xraying..

Anyhow, this was quite a few years ago, he swayed, used the wall to hold him up , would fall over, knuckle under, my vet was giving him 'no time'. I wasn't ready to give up on him, looked up Dr Belfield, and did a little of my own additives as well..I don't remember the amounts (my gsd was LARGE as well, 32" at the shoulders and 125 lbs of lean body)..but I had him on Vit E, C, D, MSM with glucosamine, hylauronic acid, and Rimadyl. Maybe something else, but can't recall now, but the only NSaid I had him on was the Rimadyl .

Anyhow, whatever it was, worked for him, he did a total turn around in about a month, no he wasn't "perfect" and I monitored him closely, but he returned to jumping on the couch and getting on my bed, going upstairs, so that was a "good" sign.

Back then, there was little to none PT's around, so I swam him when I could..not alot, just minimal exercise.

He lived another year and half, unfortunately, he decided to roll around in the backyard, and the fusing 'cracked', so I had to put him down

I would suggest a couple things, look up Dr Belfield, his concoctions are more for dogs with DM, but it's worth a shot. And look up Degenerative Myelopathy , sometimes some of the treatments for 'that' help with spondylosis.

I might add, Kodi was NEVER in any physical pain, because those nerves were basically 'dead', so no feeling..

Good luck to you, it's a rotten disease, especially when the mind is still there but the body doesn't want to cooperate..

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-29-2014, 04:46 PM
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oops should have added, ask your vet about the meloxicalm the HUMAN form of metacam. It is Sooooooooo much cheaper..I got it from walmart, 90 days for like 10 bucks.

The thing with the meloxicalm is, you have to figure out the dosage per the dogs weight.
When I had my other gsd on it, she weighed around 75lbs, the dosage my vet figured out for her was, the 7.5 mg pill, one HALF per day. It comes in different mg's, and it's not the same dosage as the metacam,,you have to figure out the what dosage of meloxicalm=the dosage of metacam the dog would get..

so a 90 day supply would last me 180 days..

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-29-2014, 07:17 PM
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1. Acupuncture -- vet-acupuncturists are worth finding for older dogs with back issues (treatment costs $50-$100 per session, depending on the region and level of expertise of the acupuncturist).
2. Cold laser therapy (not offered by every vet clinic, but there's likely a larger clinic in your region that invested in the machine)
3. For fish oil, were you giving a high enough dose for anti-inflammatory properties? We worked up to 4,000 mg (divided between two meals) for my old one and could have gone even higher. (You won't get the effect from just giving a 1,000 mg capsule...)
4. Adequan -- it's mostly for joints, but I've seen it help some dogs with spinal issues, so it's worth talking to the vet about

Also...you might also dig through the archives for Gatorbytes & Carmen's chicken bone broth recipe (using chicken necks and sternum bones) -- the Type II collagen/hyaluronic acid in it may be helpful for arthrtis of the spine, as with other arthritis.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-29-2014, 11:01 PM
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http://www.veterinarypracticenews.co...ased-Medicine/

Not an actual study, but good information. And as someone who has seen the proof in the pudding. I say go for it. And there is some mention of the studies that are happening.

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