How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dr. Gary Your Own Question

Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16937
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
15010675
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Dr. Gary is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I need someone to help me read my Dog, Bandits X-rays . Please

Customer Question

I need someone to help me read my Dog, Bandit's X-rays . Please see my previous Dog Questions from before... Bandit has now has been off Tramadol and on acupuncture twice...they put him on a bunch of herbal meds and he had blackish diarrhea...we took him off all of that. No more diarrhea..they put him on Gabapentin for pain and Amoxicillian for the Diarrhea.

So I have a few questions.

#1- since he has no Diarrhea does he still need to be on Amoxicillian and is that a good med for diarrhea ?

#2- What do you think of Gabapentin?

#3- What do you see in the X-rays I will upload next.

P.S. - now Bandit is falling on his front legs...
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I'm Dr Gary. I've been practicing veterinary medicine since 2007. I look forward to helping with your questions/ concerns.

Please do post the x-rays and I'll take a look at them for you.

1. I would go ahead and stop the Amoxi if the diarrhea has resolved.

2. I'm a big fan of Gabapentin for chronic pain and nerve pain in dogs. What dose are you giving him? What does he weigh?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Every time I try to upload a pic it is denied access

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

57 lbs 100 mg twice a day

Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Ok no problem.

Honestly, I don't even take x-rays in most disc dogs. The x-rays don't show the discs or spinal cord, so they're not all that helpful. Sometimes we'll see calcified discs or narrow disc spaces, but we don't see a ruptured disc or spinal cord compression. We need an MRI or CT to see those things. The point of doing these advanced imaging is to decide whether surgery is indicated or if we can treat with medical management. If I have a dog that has significant neurologic deficits and a compressed spinal cord, surgery is the way to go.

That Gabapentin dose is pretty low. I usually dose it at 10 mg/kg twice daily. In this dog, I would go with 200 mg twice daily or even 300 mg twice daily if that was not enough. I usually treat my disc dogs with an anti-inflammatory (Rimadyl typically, sometimes Pred) + Gabapentin +/- Tramadol +/- Methocarbamol/ Robaxin (muscle relaxer). I also make sure we're crating the dog and not allowing any running/ jumping or playing for a good 2-4 weeks.

If I'm a week or two in and I still can't get the pain controlled, I'll refer to a neurologist for an MRI and surgery. The main indications to go to surgery are: severe neurologic deficits (paralysis) or pain that cannot be controlled with medications.

I think acupuncture and therapeutic lasers are also good as adjunctive therapy. There's not a lot of research showing that they do a lot, but it doesn't hurt and some patients really do benefit.

If you're seeing falling the front legs as well, then we can assume the disc herniation is in the neck. These dogs are more likely to need more pain meds as they are more painful. I start most of my neck dogs on Rimadyl, Gabapentin and Tramadol right off the bat. If I can't get them comfortable, then they really should have surgery to remove the disc and decompress the spinal cord.

I hope this helps, and I'll keep an eye out for the x-rays.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Were you able to look at my previous questions?


 


he can't be on NSAIDs because his liver is a 1663...although went down to an 1100 (I gave him Milk Thistle...then stopped due to diarrhea and wasn't sure what's causing it, but I am assuming it's the other natural supplements the Accupuncurist gave him))


 


then the tramadol caused severe dysphoria...and major crying...which we though was pain but was really due to the Tramadol.


 


 


I can copy and paste my previosu conversations....or I think you have access to my previous questions from a few weeks ago right?


 


I am thinking of providing a link to dropbox for you to look at the Xrays


 


 

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
I looked at the other threads. I wouldn't be too worried about using Rimadyl. I'd just go with lower dosages than the typical labeled dose. I would go with 25 mg twice daily as opposed to 50 mg twice daily in a dog this size.

If you can't give Tramadol, then I would try Buprenex or even Amantadine. Amantadine is actually an anti-viral med that can be used for pain in dogs.

It's tough to manage these guys when they don't tolerate meds very well. He is a dog that I would say is a good candidate for surgery so that we can go in and fix the problem. It would be a faster return to normal and it will get rid of that painful compressive lesion.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

were you able to look at the xrays?


 


the weird thing is, before we even took him to the vet 10 days ago, he was just stiff, not jumping on bed, etc. we walked him every day...


 


after the vet visit he is now in worse shape and his front legs are giving out...


 


I even asked my vet if they accidentally dropped him or he fell off the x-ray table...she said usually her vet techs would tell her if something like that happened.

Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Those x-rays look good. I'm not seeing any bony abnormalities. The L1-L2 segment looks a little narrow, but that's about it.

It is very common for dogs to first present with pain and then progress to neurologic signs after the visit. This is not because they suffer any trauma at the vet clinic, it's because the injury progresses. If you think about it, there is a disc herniation causing the reluctance to jump and pain. You go to the vet and get x-rays. Over the next couple days, the swelling around the spinal cord and nerve roots will progress. This makes them actually get worse the 2-3 days after they present. If the swelling is compressing the cord, then we also have neurologic deficits- falling, knuckling over, paralysis, ect.

Everything localizes to the neck at this point. I think that L1-L2 is either nothing or an old injury. If you can afford it, I would see a neurologist and get this resolved with an MRI and ventral slot surgery. They go in through the neck and decompress the spinal cord/ remove the disc material. I would expect a full return to function and resolution of the pain.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I am seeing an orthopedic specialist tomorrow morning. (Thank goodness I have vet insurance up to $7k per incident) They said something about an ultrasound...I need an MRI or CT scan?


 


It's interesting that you are seeing something at L1 or L2. They are telling me he has spondolosis so bad that one bone even formed a circle and that he looks like he was hit by a car because his rib cage didn't looks fractured in one spot and didn't form properly and I think #12 or 13 is where they said where disc damage may be.


 


We have had him since he was around 9 months old. Rescued him from the pound...something could have happened before then but I don't know.


 


A few years ago he had a stiff neck but after thinking about it, I attributed it to him trying to eat food off the stove and cranking his neck to grab it.


 


 


 


 

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Also, I think Bandit was stiff for a while and we never noticed it that much. That's why it is weird that this seems "all of a sudden"


 


also on vet says rest 3-4 weeks, the other tells me "if you don't use it, you lose it" basically telling me to keep taking him on walks so he doesn't get more stiff.


 


 


I am pretty confused.


 


In addition, the orthopedic says it's important to tell them which vet is referring them. I am assuming they get commission. Which makes me very uncomfortable. I know the VCA vets work on straight commission.


 


 


 


 

Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Oh yeah he definitely has spondylosis, but that rarely causes an actual problem. That's not causing this type of pain or spinal cord compression.

I'm not sure what they're thinking with the ultrasound. This all sounds neurologic. I would skip the orthopedic specialist and make an appointment with a neurologist. That is where the problem is.

This is not something that happened when he was young. Everything points to a disc herniation in the neck that happened last week. These are common in dogs. They are also difficult to manage and many of them end up in surgery to resolve the pain and weakness.

I'm in the camp of crating these dogs with discs. Short leash walks (with a harness, not a collar) and crate confinement for 2-4 weeks.

I'm not sure how their pay works. I can't really comment on that.
Dr. Gary, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16937
Experience: DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
Dr. Gary and 4 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Does gabapentin cause crying? I just gave him some and now he's crying

Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
No, Gabapentin does not cause crying. That is more likely due to pain.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

okay, thanks

Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
No problem

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • You are a light at the end of scary tunnel when $ are tight, but people need professional help to turn to for help with their dear pets! Linh Charleston, WV
< Last | Next >
  • You are a light at the end of scary tunnel when $ are tight, but people need professional help to turn to for help with their dear pets! Linh Charleston, WV
  • $1,000 spent at his vet, and I finally get the correct diagnosis from Nancy Holmes for $15 Carol Cedar Hill, MO
  • I think this is the greatest web site in the world. Thanks to all! Judy New Haven, CT
  • I have referred several friends to your web site. I'm impressed with how easy it is to use your site, the Experts available and the quickness of answers. Nina USA
  • I am completely pleased with the quick response that I received in our time of need for our dog, Jasmine. I couldn't believe how quick the response was and I thank you. It's good to know you're there!! Jasmine's Mom USA
  • Please let everyone involved with your site know that your Expert, Dr. Lucy, has saved my dog's life. I will recommend your site to all my pet loving friends. Thank you again for simply being there! Sonya G Easley, SC
  • Last night my Expert spent close to 3 hours working with me on my dog's illness. Thank you so much for this opportunity to share in her care and knowledge! Cathie M Pompano Beach, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Gary

    Dog Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    2534
    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RY/rydergar/2012-6-6_192240_IMG0328.64x64.JPG Dr. Gary's Avatar

    Dr. Gary

    Dog Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    2534
    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/Jav917/2012-2-20_54059_201221802254JoananddavidArchuleta3.64x64.jpg Joan's Avatar

    Joan

    Vet Tech

    Satisfied Customers:

    4544
    Vet Tech for over 30+ years working w/Dogs/Rescues
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/jadedangel57/2011-11-8_193134_janenewsm.64x64.jpg Jane Lefler's Avatar

    Jane Lefler

    Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst

    Satisfied Customers:

    13847
    Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 16+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/ER/ERPetNurse/2011-11-7_1293_b.64x64.jpg Candy's Avatar

    Candy

    Veterinary Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    7108
    Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Former Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BA/babybloo/2011-3-10_62613_DavidandI.64x64.jpg Theresa's Avatar

    Theresa

    A Voice for Your Pet

    Satisfied Customers:

    4704
    19+ years experience in small animal medicine
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/vetforyou/2012-6-20_33122_PearlPhoto.64x64.jpg Dr. Andy's Avatar

    Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    4430
    UC Davis Graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/VetAnswers/2013-4-5_8257_prof10.64x64.jpg Scott Nimmo's Avatar

    Scott Nimmo

    Dog Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    3977
    BVMS, MRCVS.