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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 2952
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
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My dog is 17, will be 18 next month. She is loosing her

Customer Question

My dog is 17, will be 18 next month. She is loosing her balance, like her back legs don't want to work. Her head starts falling to one side when she is laying down. Her appetite is falling off since yesterday. Is she dying? She doesn't seem to be in pain.
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dwight Alleyne replied 8 months ago.

Hello my name is***** and I am a licensed veterinarian with over 9 years of experience. I am hoping to help you with your pet Pepper today. Since I can’t physically exam your pet, I may need to respond with several follow up questions so I can best help you. Remember there is no limit on how many questions you can ask to in order to clarify any information I have provided regarding your pet. I just have a few initial questions to ask to gather some more information if you don’t mind? How long has this problem been going on for? Is she currently on any medications?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
She had had some bad days where she seems out of it, the last couple have been different. We took her to the vet and her white blood cells were up so she gave us an antibiotic.
Expert:  Dwight Alleyne replied 8 months ago.

Thanks for the additional information. Did the antibiotics seem to help at all? Based on what you are describing it sounds like she may have some type of degenerative disease. This means part of her system are starting to break down, most notable her nervous system. The loss of balance may indicate that she may have a a disease called vestibular disease. The vestibular system is the part of the brain responsible for controlling balance. Many older dogs will start loosing that function and therefore lose her balance. The degeneration can also occur in the spinal cord as well which may explain the lost of function in the hindlimbs. Despite these signs it doesnt mean she is dying but you may have to look at her quality of life. If she is struggling with normal activities that may indicate that her quality of life may be poor.