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Discussion Starter #1
I have noticed recently when Harley and I are on a walk that his one back paw will sometimes drag for a second. It doesn't happen alot, but maybe a couple times each walk. His nails are trimmed, thought that might be it. Any suggestions or ideas?
 

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I would get a check up. It could be damage to a nerve in his back or it could be the start of degenerative myelopathy.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I will do that. Wasn't quite the answer I was looking for.....
 

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Duke does the same thing. On walks, in the house while playing or walking around, and even during training. It's gotten progressively worse since I took him in Jan 2012. I recently pulled him from IPO training until we get it figured out.

The vet wanted us to do a DM test. I'm ordering the test in the next few weeks. From my understanding, it's just a swab test that you send it... it comes out to about $70, and you can get it from a few different places. I'm probably going to go through OFA since I have good experience with them for the most part.

I'd run a DM test on Harley, just to clear that out. If that comes back clear, then I'd definitely say talk to your vet and see what else could be causing this. Like Jocoyn said, nerve damage is another reason for a dog to drag it's paws.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Called the vet and they want me to bring him in tonite at 7:00. Will post after. Thank you everyone for the quick responses.
 

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Called the vet and they want me to bring him in tonite at 7:00. Will post after. Thank you everyone for the quick responses.
That's great that they got you in so quickly!! Definitely keep us all updated on what the vet says.

Lots of positive thoughts for Harley. Hopefully it's nothing too serious!
 

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Ok I don't know if I feel much better. First he is up to 91 pounds. That's almost a ten pound gain since fall. Next he did a physical exam of back legs moving them all around and feeling everywhere. He said all seems to be fine. Fever of 103. Lyme test, negative. Said to try anti-inflammatory med for two weeks, in case he might of tweaked something. If no improvement then talk about some xrays. What do you think?
 

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Ok I don't know if I feel much better. First he is up to 91 pounds. That's almost a ten pound gain since fall. Next he did a physical exam of back legs moving them all around and feeling everywhere. He said all seems to be fine. Fever of 103. Lyme test, negative. Said to try anti-inflammatory med for two weeks, in case he might of tweaked something. If no improvement then talk about some xrays. What do you think?
I would say that's a safe, and acceptable route. But, If it were me, I would still order a DM test. You don't need a vet or anything to do that. Just take the swabs, send them in to where ever you purchased it through, and then in a week or so you get the results. At least you can either get an answer or clear your mind from that option.
 

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I would say that's a safe, and acceptable route. But, If it were me, I would still order a DM test. You don't need a vet or anything to do that. Just take the swabs, send them in to where ever you purchased it through, and then in a week or so you get the results. At least you can either get an answer or clear your mind from that option.
Where can i get the test from?
 

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How old is your boy? Where do you live? There are many things that may cause this.


Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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I would also ask for a tick panel as tick disease can cause these symptoms - that was one of the things they did with my workup.
 

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I would also ask for a tick panel as tick disease can cause these symptoms - that was one of the things they did with my workup.
That's a good idea. I'm putting that on my list for Duke's visit as well. Thanks for pointing that out.
 

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Ok I don't know if I feel much better. First he is up to 91 pounds. That's almost a ten pound gain since fall. Next he did a physical exam of back legs moving them all around and feeling everywhere. He said all seems to be fine. Fever of 103. Lyme test, negative. Said to try anti-inflammatory med for two weeks, in case he might of tweaked something. If no improvement then talk about some xrays. What do you think?
This sounds like a good plan to me.

FWIW the DM test doesn't do anything except indicate if a dog carries a genetic marker for DM, and even if he carries it, it doesn't mean he'll get it. There's some question as to the type of DM a GSD gets and if the genetic marker picked up with the test that's currently available is valid with GSDs or not. I may be wrong, but it's my understanding that Dr. Clemmons GSD DM test is no longer available. Unlike most problems, DM is diagnosed by exclusion, if the vet excludes all other problems for the symptoms, then it's probably DM. I lost my first WGSD to DM, it's a sad, dreadful disease, the only good thing is that it seems to be pain free.
 

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arycrest, you summed up the differences/concerns between the tests very nicely. The only truly accurate way to diagnose the disease is post mortem.

But, yes, it can be so many things. These are pathways we took:

-spinal stroke (one side/sudden onset)
-tumor
-disc compression (that is what we think Grim had but I did not do the MRI/myelogram because surgery was not going to be an option)
-tick disease
-spondylosis (spinal arthritis)
-degenerative myelopathy
 

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...
But, yes, it can be so many things. These are pathways we took:

-spinal stroke (one side/sudden onset)
-tumor
-disc compression (that is what we think Grim had but I did not do the MRI/myelogram because surgery was not going to be an option)
-tick disease
-spondylosis (spinal arthritis)
-degenerative myelopathy
Added to this list Cauda Equina and Lupus Mediated Polyarthritis can also exhibit similar symptoms.
 
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