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Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16069
Experience:  Associates Degree in Veterinary Technology.
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My Pug has trouble getting up and is walking weirdly

Customer Question

Hi, my 14.5 year old pug is starting to walk weirdly. It almost seems as if he has trouble getting up and when he walks it looks as if his back legs are struggling to keep him up.
My dog's name is Tiger. He is healthy otherwise.
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  CVT_in_MN replied 2 months ago.
Hi there.
I have a few questions of my own to help ensure I give you the best advice possible....
Is Tiger having any problems urinating or defecating?
How long has this been going on?
Is Tiger on any medications at all?
Does it look like his rear end is getting thinner?
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
He could be having some problems defecating; he was on our walk yesterday, I haven't seen anything today.
He is not on any medications, besides this issue he is healthy.
It looks like his legs are closer together than his normal wide, boxy stance (he is a pug).
He has trouble going to the bathroom when he does, he will walk like 5 or 6 feet while trying to defecate, when he used to just stand in place (if this is relevant).
Expert:  CVT_in_MN replied 2 months ago.
Great. Thanks for the additional information. I really appreciate it.
Unfortunately older dogs do tend to experience a weakening of the hindquarters with some's more obvious in some breeds (such as German Shepherds and Retrievers) than in others, but either way, it's hard to see your pet having trouble and not being able to do much about it.
A couple things you could try would be a Glucosamine/Chondroitin supplement to help with lubricating the joints. You can find this in the health section of any store, and you can actually just give him the human dose.
Also, you might want to talk to your vet about giving him something that lasts a little longer such as Metacam (which is much like aspirin) or Tramadol (which is like morphine) to help him feel a little more comfortable.
It's hard to know if this is simple arthritis or if there is something more going on. Some dogs get spondylosis (which is a narrowing of the spine, which causes pressure on the cord that results in some rear end weakness), and some get osteosarcoma (bone cancer), both of which can present with rear end weakness. Also, there's simple muscle wasting, which happens in a lot of older dogs.
Unfortunately, the only way to know for sure what you're dealing with is through an x-ray of her spine/pelvis area.
It sounds to me like you are a very dedicated parent, but unfortunately aging happens to all of us, and it sounds like this could be what is going on with guy. I'd ask your vet about trying some of the meds and then just do what you can to make him comfortable (I see lots of big, fluffy beds and blankets in his future!).
I hope this helps.

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