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Dr. Bruce
Dr. Bruce, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18793
Experience:  15 years of experience as a small animal veterinarian
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Shih Tzu cannot walk on hind legs, he is 16 years old, had

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Shih Tzu cannot walk on hind legs, he is 16 years old, had X-ray done, no fractures, broken bones or arthritis, blood test was done, had slight anemia, was prescribed with vitamins with iron, it did not improve his condition, had stool test done, it looked normal, no parasites, had giardia test, it was negative. Dog whines and barks quite constantly, was prescribed pain medication and steroids, it did not improve his condition. Dog now constantly licks his tongue out quite often, tongue looks normal, thirst was not an issue. Must bath him after each bowel movement as he cannot walk on his own, must hold his hind quarters up during urination so he do not get himself wet. Eating is difficult for him, as he cannot stand up to eat, often times must be hand fed. When he sleeps he looks very peaceful, but when he wakes up, he constantly barks for quite a long time, he has cataracts in one eye and is somewhat hard of hearing. What are our options in this situation? Our Vet does not seem to know what is wrong with him, he recommended a teeth cleaning and this was done, as the dog had mouth odor. Has something been overlooked? If the dog could walk, a lot of his issues would not be a problem. Please advise, as our vet keeps running tests that do not even seem to relate to our dogs inability to walk on his hind legs. We even built a four wheel stroller so the dog can drag himself around the house.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 6 years ago.



Welcome to Just Answer. Did your vet talk to you about possible spinal cord injury due to a disc compression? How long has he not been walking on his hind legs? Did they do a dental while he was not walking?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Vet did not talk about spinal injury. My dog gradully lost mobility on his right hind leg about four months ago. Dental cleaning was recommended while dog had difficulty walking. Since he cannot walk on his right hind leg, he is losing muscle tone on his left hind leg and can now only drag himself a foot or two with his front legs from where we put him down.
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 6 years ago.
So again, he's not able to move either back leg at this time? He's been like this for how long again?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
It started with slight limping on his right hind leg about four months ago, then loss of mobility to stand on that leg a couple weeks later, total mobility on his right hind leg was lost in about a month. He did not learn how to walk on three legs, and is now unable to stand on his left hind leg either, although he can move his left hind leg.
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 6 years ago.
So he can still move the left hind leg - very well? Does the right leg have any mobility in the joints now or is it locked stiff?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
His right hind leg is limp, we can move it with our hands
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 6 years ago.
Ok. His situation could be one where there is an impingement on the nerves going to that leg. This could be a nerve root entrapment and these can be very difficult to diagnose as they don't necessarily show up on films. Given that this leg is limp and muscle atrophied, it is very guarded for return of function to that leg. To get a diagnosis, it may require an MRI or CT scan. These are pretty expensive tests to follow through with, but they are the next option. Unfortunately, I can't give you a lot of hope that this limb will return to having function to it. It may be a situation where use of the cart and your nursing care at home to help him be as comfortable as possible is the best we have.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
We will continue to nurse him at home, can you tell me if we need to put him on any kind of pain medication, if he start moaning, barking, whining and licking tongue into the air. What kind of over the counter medication can we safely used for our dog without going to the Vet. Can I use liq ASA, Tylenol or Motrin ?
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 6 years ago.
Is he on any current medications?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Lucky was on vitamin liq., kaolin-pectin for diarrhea prn,prednisone liq 5mg and metacam 0.5mg for pain after his teeth cleaning. We still have 1/2 of all his medicaiton.
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 6 years ago.
You can start him back on the metacam for pain relief. It can be given every 24 hours. Just make sure that you don't dose the metacam while on the prednisone. That can cause issues.
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