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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19331
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)
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My dog won't move and when I try to lift m he yelps, he's a

Customer Question

My dog won't move and when I try to lift him he yelps, he's a pitbull. I took him to the emergency and they said that he probably pulled a muscle. He woke me up wimpering and he won't move. He won't lift his head or try to move he just looks at me.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 11 months ago.

Hello. Thanks for the question.

Sorry for the long wait.

It sounds like they are treating for suspected back pain. This is usually due to a herniated disc in the back. These can be quite painful, as they are in people. Rimadyl and Gabapentin is the combination I also like to use in these dogs. Gabapentin can be dosed in a range. I give anywhere from 5-10 mg per kg body weight (2.5-5 mg/lb). I'll give it 2-3 times daily. You may be able to go up on that dose that you're using.

If the combination is not enough, then I'll add a muscle relaxant (Methocarbamol) and/ or an opiate pain med (Tramadol). That may be what needs to be done here. You could probably call the ER vet and they could call in a script to a local pharmacy. Tramadol is a human med, so you could just get it at any human pharmacy. Typically within 3-5 days of starting the meds, these guys are much more comfortable. Within 1-2 weeks, they're usually back to normal.

I hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
When I tried to lift him up from under his arms is when he yelped. Would that be a problem with his back? What could have caused that? My husband said that he did the same thing a couple of weeks ago and he did the same thing. He keeps licking his mouth and when I petted him, he looked like he was having a hard time breathing. His neck was going in and out.
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 11 months ago.

When you go to lift him, it probably puts pressure on the back. It's a common time to yelp in these dogs.

When it happens is always the question- the truth is we usually don't know. It probably happens during normal activity.