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Joann Canafax
Joann Canafax, Veterinary Assistant
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 85
Experience:  Lots of hands on and much studying
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3 Y.O. Shih Tzu lost use of hind legs

Customer Question

I have a 3 y.o. Shih Tzu mix. She is a very lively and loveable dog. She started with a limp one day and about 2 weeks later lost complete use of her hind legs. That was 2 weeks ago. Our vet has treated her with Manitol, prednisone, and a pain med. There has been no change. The vet said to give it time and the dog will walk again. Is there anything else I can do or you can suggest? She has lost all her will and energy.
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Joann Canafax replied 11 years ago.
There are mobility aids that can be bought that can assist with your dogs condition. also
Glucosamine can be very beneficial to help lubricate the joints. You can find the information on this --
Hope this helps!
Joann Canafax, Veterinary Assistant
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 85
Experience: Lots of hands on and much studying
Joann Canafax and 2 other Pet Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  amanda replied 11 years ago.
one thing you can do to help reduce the muscles deteriation is range of motion excercises 2 to 3 times a day for 10 min. bend and flex her legs kind of like she is riding a bike apply presure to the pads of her feet like and bend them like she would if she were walking most dogs are very tollerant of this and will allow you to roll them on there backs to work both legs at once.
if you know the cause is inflamation along the spine and have an idea where you can do warm and cold compresses to reduce the on it to reduce the inflamation but for that i would consult the vet first
Good luck
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Joann Canafax's Post: Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX check with the vet on the glucosamine. She usually runs and plays like a puppy and is a house dog. I don't know why or how this happened. Xrays show nothing. Have you seen this before with a recovery?

Thanks again, I'll accept your answer for payment.
Expert:  NancyH replied 11 years ago.
Joanne was right on with her suggestions but I had a thought on this too for you.
If this happened shortly after a rabies vaccination I know of some folks who have had excellent luck working with a veterinary accupuncture program for their pets. I believe that one of them also did hydrotherapy - swimming the dog in a therapy tank let it use the muscles without any impact on the back. There has been some concern with some rabies vaccinations in the last couple of years that a brand (I don't know which brand) of vaccine was impacting rear mobility in some dogs (if it was all the dogs it would be easy to figure out the problem but it is only some).
But people have seen some situations where a dog gets a rabies shot and subsequently develops paralysis in the rear that with hard work and time and therapy can be reversed.
No matter what the cause or your pet's problems if conventional medication hasn't help then you could always try the alternative approach to see if that would make a difference.
Hope this helps you!

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