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Doc Sara
Doc Sara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 952
Experience:  I am a dog and cat veterinarian with a lifetime of experience in our family veterinary hospital.
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I have a mini dachshund who's just not acting normal. It

Customer Question

I have a mini dachshund who's just not acting normal. It started last night after a big play day at daycare.
He wouldn't jump up and he helped twice when I tried to touch his stomach/side.
Today I took him to the vet. He was there all day. Temperature normal and he was acting fine. Physical exam showed no pain bit his belly was firm. The vet said that was normal when trying to examine dogs.
He's eating normally, no vomiting and going to the bathroom normally.
Problem is at home he's still not himself. He's reluctant to jump on the couch and his belly feels really firm. Still eating and drinking and bathroom normally.
What do I do? My vet says he's fine and to watch him. Do I take him back there tomorrow? Do I take him to an emergency vet tonight?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Doc Sara replied 1 year ago.

Good evening, I'm Dr. Sara. I'm a licensed veterinarian who works exclusively with dogs and cats. I'm sorry to hear that Oskar hasn't been himself. I'm locked in on your question and I'm working on typing out a detailed response for you - there will be a delay of 5-15 minutes while I type. Thanks for your patience!

~Dr. Sara

Expert:  Doc Sara replied 1 year ago.

Thanks for your patience :)

When I see dogs, especially dachshunds!) who just "aren't doing right" combined with tense bellies and yelping when being touched after heavy exercise, I'm strongly suspicious of back pain. dachshunds are the poster children for intervertebral disc disease, which can be a very painful disease. Its symptoms can range from mild pain all the way up to complete paralysis in the back end. Thankfully, the paralysis isn't terribly common, although it does happen. When their back hurts, they will tense up their bellies in order to keep their back still - they are guarding their back. Many owners describe to me that their pet yelped when they tried to lift them from under the belly - the reason their pet cried is because they it hurt to arch their back. In the vast majority of cases, eating, drinking, and eliminating normally means they're stable enough to wait until the morning for a vet. I'd call your vet tomorrow and discuss the potential for back pain - as he sounds like a pretty classic presentation to me. I usually treat these guys with rest, anti-inflammatories, and pain medications. I sometimes even start with an injectable opioid pain medication while they're in the hospital if they've been quite uncomfortable. They usually do recover quite well, but the problem can be recurrent or in uncommon cases it can progress to weakness or paralysis in the back end, which would then be an emergency. I usually recommend keeping them exercise restricted - no activity other than out to potty, no stairs, no jumping, etc.

Please let me know what other questions I can answer for you :)

~Dr. Sara

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