Ask a Dog Vet and Get Answers to Your Dog Veterinary Questions
How old is your dog?
Has this episode just come on suddenly?
Take a look at your dogs eyes.......are they flicking, side to side?
Is his head tilted to one side?
Any vomiting or diarrhoea?
6 months old.
He is six months old. It came on very suddenly. He was okay the night before. No, his eyes are not flickering side to side. His head seems to tilt sometimes when he is trying to walk. There is no sign of sickness and he has a good appetite. Although there is no flickering of his eyes, they seem to be slightly recessed.
Has he been ill, vomiting or diarrhoea?
Is he up to date on his vaccinations?
No illness and yes to his vacs
He is with four other dogs from the litter...no others are ill.
Is there any dischareg or smell from his ears?
No foul smells whatsoever
What breed / type of dog is he?
Half mountain cur and lab
Does he seem in any pain anywhere?
No, that is what is odd!
This is going to require a hands on examination from your vet to decide what is going on here
He sounds like he has neurological abnormalities
These can sometimes come from an inner ear infection, that effects the center that controls balance in the brain
At first, I thought it might be a broken hip. He whined when I first touched his hind end but I determined that he was just letting me know of his frustration. I did notice a scar from a snake bite but none of the symptoms that I know of are present. Any thoughts on that?
I considered that possibility. Should I do antibiotics?
It would be better to get a diagnosis, as to what is going on before just trying antibiotics
And is the damage permanent?
It will depend, what is happening and why
If this is being cause by inflammation then signs should improve as the inflammation improves
Again though, I checked his ears thoroughly and saw no signs of infection. Do middle ear infections not necessarily show external signs?i
No , just from a look from the outside it can be hard to tell. Your vet would use an otoscope to check the ear drum
If it isn't caused by a middle ear infection what is the prognosis.
Again, sorry to be vague, but that depends on the cause of the problem. If it is inflammation that will go down then his prognosis is good. If he has compression of his spinal cord, caused by a physical abnormality that is leading to this incoordination, then that might require surgery
You are not being vague..all things considered. I thought that there was a possibility of injury to the spinal column and perhaps he was hit by a motor vehicle when I was not at home. Yet he doesn't seem to be in pain. We'll see.
You would usually expect to see bruising and pain associated with an injury with a vehicle
For clarity, I live in the country and have a circular drive. It would have had to be a visitor. With that having been said, One last thing before I let you go. Could it possibly be from a bite? Snake or insect?
Toxins from a bite could lead to these signs. I'm from the UK and so don't have to deal with the ferrocity of beasts you have there. With adder bites in this country, we see nasty wound necosis and breakdown.
I would have expected that if a toxin could lead to serious ataxia, it would have also given other more general signs such as vomiting, diarrhoea etc
So the symptoms are not conducive to a bite. Well, I will take him to the vet and hope for the best. As you suspect, I have been around and handled animals quite a bit..but was hoping for a miracle because I am dog poor, LOL Cheers.