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Dr. Margo
Dr. Margo, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 504
Experience:  12yrs as veterinarian
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Our dogs behavior today is strange, hes walking backward

Resolved Question:

Our dog's behavior today is strange, he's walking backward all around the house. He's not his normal self, slower, maybe confused.
Submitted: 5 years ago via PetPlace.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Margo replied 5 years ago.

hsmith814,

 

I have some questions first for you.

 

How old is your dog?

Does he get into anything around the house? trash?

When he is outside is he always supervised? Can he get out of your yard?

Is he on any medications?

Has he ever had any other health problems?

 

Dr. M

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Max is 8yo.
No trash, no chemicals, etc. Very well behaved.
He has access to the backyard only and has for years, nothing changed like clippings or gardening or chemical use for months.
Rimadryl 100mg, as needed. We just gave him one. He usually gets no more than 1ea, 1x per week, sometimes none.
He had pancreatitus in April 2008, he also has a tyroid condition, but he's not on meds for that.
Expert:  Dr. Margo replied 5 years ago.
Customer

 

What type of thyriod condition? Dogs are usually low or hypothyroid?

Do you know what his level is?

Why is he not being treated for that?

 

Dr. M

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
hypothyroid
no
I don't know. g/f's dog and I've never challenged that practice. It doesn't make sense to me.
Expert:  Dr. Margo replied 5 years ago.
Customer

 

Do you think he is having any trouble seeing?

What do his pupils look like?

Are they even?

 

Dr. M

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
No.
Pupils are 3/8", when I flashed a flashlight towards his eyes the pupil got smaller. They appear even. He's now laying on our bed and staying there. Normally, when we leave the room he jumps down and follows us. The look on his face is like he is sad (I don't know if that helps).
Expert:  Dr. Margo replied 5 years ago.
Customer

 

Has he had any urinary accidents/fecal accidents recently?

Done anything else out of character?

 

Dr. M

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
No accidents related to urinary or fecal.
No. But, just now when he heard the front door open he got up off the bed.
Expert:  Dr. Margo replied 5 years ago.
Customer

 

In regard to a dog walking backwards I would want to know if they are having trouble seeing (which you checked pretty well.)

 

Are they in pain? You said you use rimadyl and usually painful animals are not confused.

 

The last big area of interest would be neurologic. Confusion would also fit as well as walking backwards. Untreated/severe hypothyroidism in dogs can lead to seizures and neurologic problems. Hypothyroid dogs have been described as having a "tragic expression" the sad face you described. This can be due to poor muscle tone to the face and poor tone is usually related to a neurologic problem.

 

I would recommend calling the veterinarian and suggesting a recheck of his thyroid level as well as a thorough exam. Because this is not the only diagnosis that fits what you are seeing. But from the history you provided it seem likely. Don't wait too long as I would worry about him possibly having a seizure.

 

Untreated hypothyroidism can also cause wt gain and poor immune function. Maybe you can get more information that will convince all parties involved to get him on treatment.

 

If I can answer anything else please let me know.

 

Dr. M

Dr. Margo, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 504
Experience: 12yrs as veterinarian
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