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Ask Dr. Meghan Denney Your Own Question
Dr. Meghan Denney
Dr. Meghan Denney, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 968
Experience:  Veterinarian at Kingsland Blvd Animal Clinic
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My dog has a back injury I have her methocarbanol she won't

Customer Question

My dog has a back injury I have her methocarbanol she won't move now
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Veterinarian will know how to help your dog. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Bella 8
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Bella?
Customer: This is a reaggravated injury and meds are what dr prescribed last time but she's acting differently this time not moving all
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

Hi I am Dr. Denney. I am currently reviewing your post now. Please give me a few minutes to type my response. Thank you for trusting us with your question.

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

Can she move her back legs al all?

Is she on any anti inflammatory medications?

Has your veterinarian seen her with this incident ?

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

This issue with back injuries is that they can turn serious and the dog can become paralyzed and need immediate medical attention to have a hope of restoring the function of the back legs. That is why I need to know if she can move her hind feet at all or if she can feel you pinch her hind foot and pull her foot back

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

IF an intervertebral disk has ruptured in Bella this may be an emergency

What is a Disk?

Most people are aware that the backbone is not just one long, tubular bone. The backbone (or spine) is actually made of numerous smaller bones called vertebrae that house and protect the spinal cord. The numerous vertebrae that make up the spine allow for flexibility of the back. The vertebrae are connected by joints called intervertebral disks.

The disk serves as a cushion between the vertebral bodies of the vertebrae. It consists of a fibrous outer shell (called the annulus fibrosus), a jelly-like interior (the nucleus pulposus), and cartilage caps on each side connecting it to the vertebral bones. Ligaments run below and above the discs, with the ligament above the discs being particularly rich in sensitive nerves. These ligaments are called the dorsal (above) and ventral (below) longitudinal ligaments.

There are seven cervical (neck) vertebrae, 13 thoracic (chest) vertebrae, seven lumbar (lower back) vertebrae, three sacral vertebrae (which are fused), and a variable number of tail vertebrae.

Type I and Type II Disk Disease

There are two types of disease that can afflict the intervertebral disk causing the disk to press painfully against the spinal cord: Hansen Type I Disk Disease and Hansen Type II Disk Disease. In Type I, the nucleus pulposus becomes calcified (mineralized). A wrong jump by the patient causes the rock-like disk material to shoot out of the annulus fibrosus. If the disk material shoots upward, it will press painfully on the ligament above and potentially cause compression of the spinal cord further above.

Type II Disk Disease is a much slower degenerative process. Here the annulus fibrosus collapses and protrudes upward creating a more chronic problem with pain and spinal cord compression.

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

Treatment

Once it is clear from the radiographs and neurologic examination that the patient has disk disease, the decision must be made as to whether or not surgery should be pursued. Spinal surgery is very expensive and requires a long recovery period but may be the best choice if the dog is to regain normal function. There are some general rules that are typically applied in making this decision:

  • If the dog cannot walk, surgery affords the best chance at recovery.
  • If the dog can walk, medical (non-surgical) treatment is a reasonable choice but this also depends on how much pain the patient is in, how long-standing signs are, and what sort of treatments have been unsuccessful in the past.
  • The longer the neurologic deficits have been going on, the poorer the results of treatment.
  • If the dog cannot walk but deep pain is present in the limbs, there is an 83-90% success rate for recovery with surgery.
  • If the dog has been unable to walk, has no deep pain perception in the limbs but has only been down less than 48 hours, success with surgery drops to 50%. After 48 hours in this situation, prognosis is much worse and it may not be worth considering surgery.
  • If the dog cannot walk, medical management may still have success though surgery is definitely more likely to yield success.

LOSING THE ABILITY TO WALK IS AN EMERGENCY
DO NOT WAIT TO SEE IF IT GETS BETTER; GO TO THE VET AT ONCE!

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

So If she is not able to walk or use her legs I am recommending that you take her to an emergency veterinary clinic now to be assessed and see if we can save her ability to walk.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
She can walk she doesn't seem to want to move around at Ll
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
She's on metacarbanol
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

That is just a muscle relaxer and dose not do pain control or anti inflammatory

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Think that might be why she won't walk or eat.
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

I would recommend taking her into a veterinarian tonight for mediations to help with pain so she can feel more comfortable because yes it is highly possible her pain level is too high for her to want to eat or walk.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I have tramadol for her
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

Good lets get that on board now.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
This happened before but she seemed more mobile than this time that's why I was wondering if the muscle relaxer could because her to act sedated.
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

No it is more likely that this recurrence of injury is more serious than last time and the muscle relaxer is not enough. If you cannot take her in tonight tomorrow morning get Bella in to see you veterinarian because she needs anti inflammatory medications.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Ok I'll give her tramadol now too. She also had 2 seizures last time and once she was off all meds and better she never had another. Can any of these meds cause seizures? Tramadol, methocarbanol, prednisone
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I have all 3 of those meds on hand for hee
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

No normally those do not cause seizures.

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

At least I have never seen them cause seizures

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Why do you think she might have had seizures she's never had them before or since then
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

I am not sure. It may be related to her back issues. If she has a neurologic issue (causing pain like spinal nerve pain) that can cause seizures, but you would need to see a neurologist for a consult and a MRI to confirm.

Being online I cannot examine her so it is hard to say what caused the seizures last time and hard to say if she will have another one.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I'm def gonna call and see vet in morn. I was just worrying about the extreme lethargy
Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

It is not wrong to bring her into an emergency veterinarian to be assessed. I am worried about her pain level. Hopefully the tramadol will help but it may have a hard time getting head of her pain level.

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

Keep a close eye on her tonight if you are opting to wait until morning.

Expert:  Dr. Meghan Denney replied 10 days ago.

Good luck tonight I hope Bella is ok.

If this was helpful I would be most appreciative if you could take the time to rate my assistance so the site will credit me with helping you.

I am also here for additional questions you may have just reach out to me here and I will be more than happy to assist you.

Kind regards,

Dr. Meghan Denney

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
She seems very relaxed right now my husband massaged her and she hs heating pad on if she seems worse tonight I'll def take her to ER
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
Thanks