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Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30355
Experience:  16 years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.
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My dogs back legs have suddenly givien out a couple times,

Customer Question

My dogs back legs have suddenly givien out a couple times, and she has lost balance. She did get a bath last week and may have gotten water in her ear
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?
Customer: No wounds
JA: What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Layla and she is 8 year old terrier chihuahua mix
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Layla?
Customer: Not really
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 10 months ago.

Hi, I'm Dr. Peter. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm reviewing your question now, and will post back with your reply ASAP.

Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 10 months ago.

Welcome! Thanks for asking your question. My name is***** am a licensed veterinarian and I will be assisting you today. First I need to ask you a few questions so that I can be well informed and give you the best advice.

1- Does she have a head tilt?

2- Is she walking like if she was drunk?

3- How long has this been going on?

4- Any pre existing medical conditions?

5- Any vomiting, diarrhea or coughing?

6- Any other symptoms?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
1. No head tilt
2. She has stumbled a few times
3 a few days
4. No
5. No
6. No
Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 10 months ago.

1- To make sure I got this right, she is walking normal yet has show weakness or stumbles with her back legs, correct?

2- Is she eating and drinking?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
She will ocasionally lose balance or her back legs will give out. She fell into her food bowl yesterday. She is eating and drinking normally. Like I mentioned, she was given a bath on Sunday and tried to get out of the tub and a bunch of water got into her right ear.
Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for answering my questions. Please give me 5-10 minutes to type your answer.

Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 10 months ago.

You are right to believe that a dog could develop balance issues if water goes in their ear; part of the nerves that control the system that controls balance (vestibular system) is deep in the ear canal. However, I don't believe what you are seeing in your dog is related to vestibular disease. You see, dogs that have balance issues as a result of vestibular disease will have a consistent balance problem it is not intermittent and all 4 legs are affected. In addition, they may also have a head-tilt. What you are describing is a localized problem in the back legs more likely as a result of things like arthritis of the hips, luxating patella, a pinched nerve along the back, etc. to name a few causes. Unfortunately, on history only I would not be able to determine the exact underlying cause as many different medical conditions share the same symptoms, I am sorry. I would recommend a hands-on examination with your family veterinarian and possibly x-rays of the hips and spine as an initial screening test. Treatment will be based on exam and test results. If cost is a concerned look into your local ASPCA or Shelter where they often offer veterinary services at a lower cost. In the meantime, you can begin to supplement her with Cosequin (glucosamine) long term. You can buy Cosequin over the counter in any pet store, give at label dose.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service - I hope I've provided the information you were seeking, if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions. Kindly rate me when you are done.

Dr. Peter