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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 26224
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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I have a Chihuahua X that weighs about 10 lbs. She yelps

Customer Question

Hi, I have a Chihuahua X that weighs about 10 lbs. She yelps when her left leg/shoulder area is touched and often times limps - doesn't put any weight on that leg. Other times she runs around like nothing is wrong. Is there anything I can give her for the pain or do for her? Should I take her to the vet or just let her rest more? This has been going on for about 4 days. Thanks for any help you can offer.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?
Customer: No wound or any breaks in the skin
JA: What is the dog's name?
Customer: Katie
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Katie?
Customer: We have another chichuachua X, male, same weight - he plays very aggressively with her and I think it may have been caused when they were playing
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 7 months ago.

You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 7 months ago.

I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. Katie's "on and off" lameness is more indicative of a "nerve pinch" than structural damage in her limb. How old is Katie, please? I would consider cervical (neck) degenerative disk disease (a "slipped disk) in such a miniature dog.

Supportive evidence of a disk may include vocalizing when approached or lifted, having trouble jumping up or down and navigating steps, ataxia (“drunken sailor”), trembling/shaking (pain responses), a change in posture such as the neck held rigidly and head lower to the ground or a"hunch" in his back, and a change in behavior - a normally social dog becoming aloof or, conversely, a normally aloof dog becoming "clingy". Katie's vet will want to carefully palpate (feel) about your dog's spine looking for areas of hyperpathia (increased sensitivity) suggestive of a disk. Conservative care involves the use of a nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID) such as carprofen or meloxicam, a narcotic analgesic such as tramadol, and a skeletal muscle relaxant such as methocarbamol or diazepam. These drugs are usually administered for at least ten days. Most simple disks will remiss within a few weeks. It's important to keep these dogs as quiet as possible lest they hurt themselves further. Aspirin dosed at 10 mg/lb with food twice daily is OK in a pinch. You must avoid the toxic ibuprofen and naproxen in dogs.

Should paresis (weakness) or paralysis arise in any limb(s), he'll need the attention of her vet at your earliest convenience. Such dogs are then surgical candidates for spinal cord decompression. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 6 months ago.
Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Michael Salkin