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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30289
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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My shitzu hurt his back over 9 months ago. After 2

Customer Question

My name is***** shitzu hurt his back over 9 months ago. After 2 treatments of predisone he was able to walk but his tale hardly ever goes up. He is currently on muscle relaxers, and bufernex for pain. He was doing very good until yesterday that my other shitzu got into the room and foght him. He's now back on his side with lots of pain but this time it's his back legs he can't stand on. When this started 9 months ago from jumping off my bed it was his front paws the ones he could not stand on. He was eating and drinking normal but now I have to hand feed him because he can't stand up. He hasn't peed since yesterday and did poop today. What can I do this has me so stressed out to see him this way
Assistant: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: Sorry I detailed everything on my first response
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

I'm sorry to hear of this with Mayda. He's now a candidate for surgical decompression of his spinal cord because his hind legs have become paretic (weak) or paralyzed. His vet will want to test Mayda's conscious proprioception (knowing where one's legs are in space) and nociception (deep pain perception) in order to give you a prognosis for Mayda's recovery. This is what you need to know:

The most important prognostic indicator is the presence or absence of nociception (deep pain perception) in Mayda's hind legs. This assessment is always subjective but apparent loss of sensation suggests the possibility for permanent paralysis regardless of treatment. Approximately 50% of dogs in this condition recover with decompressive surgery.

Approximately 90-97% of dogs with intact nociception, even if they're paraplegic or tetraplegic recover fully or nearly fully with surgical decompression. However, the time frame for recovery is extremely variable - a few days to many weeks or months.

With nonsurgical treatment about 85% of ambulatory dogs and 50% of non-ambulatory (but retaining pain perception) dogs ultimately recover but recovery can be quite protracted - weeks to months.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Sorry My name is ***** ***** dogs name is***** was should get surgery but that it would be over $6,000-$7,500 and I can't afford that at this time. Maybe in the future I can. Rico is a very strong and healthy dog over all but I hurt so much seeing him this way. My vet has him on Buprenex .05 per dose, Methocarbomaol 500 mg 1/4 3 x daily and now on Rimadyle 75mg 1/4 every 12 hours. Would the predisone help him recovery faster? I'm just afraid of giving him too much medication. He is resting now but twitches a lot while he lays on his said.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

No, Mayda, a nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID) such as carprofen (Rimadyl) is preferred over prednisone by neurologists. We see better efficacy with the NSAIDs and there are less adverse effects than with a steroid such as prednisone. The buprenorphine (Buprenex) and methocarbamol are standard of care drugs at this time. I understand your financial constraints. Please continue our conversation if you wish.