Dog Veterinary

Ask a dog vet and get answers to your dog health questions

Ask a Dog Veterinarian,
Get an Answer ASAP!

She's behaving out of character. She usually loves going for…

Customer Question
She's behaving out of...

She's behaving out of character. She usually loves going for walks but is just not into it today. First time for this ever.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. What is the matter with the dog?

She's trembling and hiding under the bed.

Veterinarian's Assistant: Strange behavior is often perplexing. I'm sure the Veterinarian can help you. What is the dog's name and age?

Name is***** far as I know she is 10 years. I've had her for 9 of those. Don't know where she came from.

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Gigi?

She's never been sick. I take her for shots every year. She takes heartworm meds.

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Dog Veterinary
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Dog Veterinary Question
Answered in 7 minutes by:
12/30/2017
Dog Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 3 months ago
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,130
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified

Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

I am sorry to hear that your pup Gigi is behaving strangely, trembling and hiding. These are fairly non specific signs of discomfort and/or fear.

Can you take her temperature rectally to check for a fever? Normal temp is 102F, fever is 103.5F or greater.

Please check her mucous membranes (gums). They should be bubblegum pink in color and feel smooth, not sticky.

Is she eating, drinking and eliminating normally?

Any limping or incoordination?

Ask Your Own Dog Veterinary Question
Dog Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 3 months ago

She sounds painful.

If she is eating, drinking and eliminating fairly normally, does not have a fever, and her gum color is good then this is likely due to musculoskeletal pain.

Dogs that are painful will hesitate jumping or climbing stairs, hide and display the sort of behavior she is, either because it hurts to do any activity or because they feel weaker than usual. If she has arthritis then most of the time these pups favor a particular leg.

Unfortunately many dogs are prone to a problem with their intervertebral discs, which are the spongy cushions between the individual vertebrae in their back and neck. These spongy discs can move or rupture and place pressure upon the spinal cord which can lead to pain, and in severe cases paralysis. Disc pain can be intermittent, and if they move just the wrong way nerves get pinched and the pain can be excruciating and sudden.

Radiographs can sometimes be diagnostic but often early on in the disease process, because the discs are soft tissue not bone, everything will look normal. An MRI is the best way of diagnosing disc disease.

If the dog is painful but has no evidence of paralysis we can try strict rest, anti-inflammatories and pain medications for several weeks to allow healing.

If there is evidence or weakness or paralysis then surgery by a board certified veterinary neurologist, as soon as possible, is indicated.

Ideally she would see her veterinarian. I understand that could be difficult to arrange on a holiday weekend.

If this is indeed a disc problem your veterinarian can prescribe a steroid or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory to relieve pressure on her spinal cord and nerve roots, as well as something for pain too, such as Tramadol. And if she is having painful muscle spasms then a muscle relaxant such as methocarbamol as well.

If you cannot have her examined right away she should be closely confined starting now. No stairs, running or jumping. If you have a crate for her I highly recommend using it. The less she moves around the more comfortable she will be and the faster she will heal.

She should go out on a leash to relieve herself. Do not use a collar for her, a harness which more evenly distributes forces if she pulls on her leash is better. You will need to confine her for several weeks, even as she starts to feel better or she may reinjure herself.

Keeping her on the thin side is recommended to decrease stress on her back, but is no guarantee that she won't have another episode. Once a dog has one bad disc the likelihood of another is very high.

If you are interested in reading more here is a link to an excellent article about intervertebral disc disease, its causes and therapy: http://www.petwave.com/Dogs/Dog-Health-Center/Bone-Joint-Muscle-Disorders/Intervertebral-Disk-Disease/Symptoms.aspx

Ideally she would wait to see a veterinarian to take any medication because the prescription medication your veterinarian has for pain will be much safer and work better than any over the counter medications that we take. In fact acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen (Motrin) aren't used in dogs because their effective doses are very close to a toxic dose in dogs.

If you cannot have her examined right away and she is still eating and drinking ok, but is really miserable today the only over the counter anti-inflammatory that can be used in dogs is buffered, enteric coated aspirin (like ascriptin). Aspirin does cause stomach and intestinal irritation and ulceration as well as clotting problems so should not be given for more than 2 to 3 days consecutively and should always be given with a meal. If you choose to use it watch for lack of appetite, vomiting, blood in the stools or dark tarry stools and stop immediately if you see those. Do not use aspirin if your dog has liver or kidney disease or a history of a sensitive stomach or clotting problems, or is not eating.

The dose for aspirin is 5mg to 10mg per pound of body weight orally every 12 hours (about one half of a 325mg aspirin for an 18-35 pound dog every 12 hours). Always give with a meal. Do not use for more than 2 or 3 days.

Be aware if you choose to use aspirin and it doesn't help your veterinarian will be limited on what they can give as there must be a 5 to 7 day washout period between different nonsteroidals or nonsteroidals and steroids.

You can try alternating warm and cold packs on the area that seems uncomfortable if you can find one in particular, or you can try putting them on her lower back and neck areas for 10 minutes at a time several times a day.

There are other less common causes of back/neck pain such as infections, tumors of the vertebrae or the spinal cord itself or fibrocartilagenous emboli but far and away disc disease is the most common cause of back pain in dogs.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Ask Your Own Dog Veterinary Question
Was this answer helpful?
Ask Dr. Kara Your Own Question
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,130
18,130 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.

Dr. Kara is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

It was so professional, so personally concerned (as we were) and you answered all of our questions. George and I are so happy that I found "JustAnswer" on my Google search -- you are now in my "Favorites" list! And, yes we do love our kitty - she makes our life complete!

Bev & GeorgeBoca Raton, FL

Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help.

Mary C.Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!!

AlexLos Angeles, CA

Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult.

GPHesperia, CA

I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion.

JustinKernersville, NC

Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around.

EstherWoodstock, NY

Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know.

RobinElkton, Maryland

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Dr. Debbie

Dr. Debbie

Dog Veterinarian

904 satisfied customers

Companion animal veterinarian practicing for over 10 years.

Dr. Andy

Dr. Andy

Medical Director

16,147 satisfied customers

UC Davis graduate, emphasis in dermatology, internal medicine, pain management

Dr Scott Nimmo

Dr Scott Nimmo

Dog Veterinarian

10,315 satisfied customers

BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }

Dr. Gary

Dr. Gary

Dog Veterinarian

10,063 satisfied customers

DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)

Dr. Scott

Dr. Scott

Veterinarian

9,615 satisfied customers

15 years of small animal, equine and pocket pet medicine and surgery.

Dr. Bruce

Dr. Bruce

Veterinarian

9,533 satisfied customers

15 years of experience as a small animal veterinarian

Rebecca

Rebecca

Dog Veterinarian

8,299 satisfied customers

More than 30 years of companion animal practice.

< Previous | Next >

Related Dog Veterinary Questions
Puppy is lethargic after eating a small non rawhide bone.
Puppy is lethargic after eating a small non rawhide bone. Vomiting and refuses to eat but is drinking lots of water and still urinating normally but no bowel movements. We just adopted her friday … read more
Dr. John
Dr. John
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
5,051 satisfied customers
Hard stomach, won't eat, drink, or use restroom. Chawawa. My
My granddaughter left bolona rines in the floor. I think Frost ate them yesterday.… read more
Dr. Rachel
Dr. Rachel
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
676 satisfied customers
She won't eat, sleeps a lot, eats grass, her stomach is
She won't eat, sleeps a lot, eats grass, her stomach is making noises, she's whining, & likes her tummy rubbed. … read more
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin
Veterinarian
DVM
3 satisfied customers
My dog swelled a steak bone while. He is eating and drinking
My dog swelled a steak bone while. He is eating and drinking fine. I am worried about obstruction or rupture … read more
Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter
Doctors Degree
14,324 satisfied customers
Are lantana leaves toxic for dogs, my dog eat some but threw
are lantana leaves toxic for dogs, my dog eat some but threw up all fast.i think she got all out … read more
Dr. Jo
Dr. Jo
Veterinarian
BA
2 satisfied customers
My dog was diagnosed with Larygeal Paralysis and is taking
My dog was diagnosed with Larygeal Paralysis and is taking Prednisone. He barks constantly for food and treats … read more
Rebecca
Rebecca
Dog Veterinarian
Doctoral Degree
8,299 satisfied customers
Had diarrhea in his cage, didn't eat his milk bone or dog
Had diarrhea in his cage, didn't eat his milk bone or dog bone last night, diarrhea was watery and brown with like a lump of poop in it. I had to drag him out to get him to go outside this morning, an… read more
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara
Veterinarian
18,130 satisfied customers
My sister's dog, a 6 month old chocolate lab has paralysis
My sister's dog, a 6 month old chocolate lab has paralysis in his hind legs, bloated stomach (possibly full?), excessive drooling, loss of appetite, and loss of bladder. Blood tests are fine, so what … read more
Rebecca
Rebecca
Dog Veterinarian
Doctoral Degree
8,299 satisfied customers
My sister's dog, a 6 month old chocolate lab has paralysis
Second opinion] My sister's dog, a 6 month old chocolate lab has paralysis in his hind legs, bloated stomach (possibly full?), excessive drooling, loss of appetite, and loss of bladder. Blood tests ar… read more
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin
Veterinarian
DVM
3 satisfied customers
My dog wont eat and her stomach is making loud gurgling
Hi! My dog wont eat and her stomach is making loud gurgling noises … read more
Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter
Doctors Degree
14,324 satisfied customers
She just eat 2# of bone in wings and don't know what to do.
She just eat 2# ***** bone in wings and don't know what to do … read more
Dr. Bruce
Dr. Bruce
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
9,533 satisfied customers
Stomach spasms, not eating or drinking, lathargic, weakness
Stomach spasms, not eating or drinking, lathargic, weakness in hind legs, labour breathtaking, feels cold. He's 13 … read more
Expert
Expert
Associate Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
920 satisfied customers
Havanese dog experiences paralysis: walks then suddenly
Havanese dog experiences paralysis: walks then suddenly stumbles forward, or is eating, starts shivering then legs buckle… read more
PitRottMommy
PitRottMommy
Veterinary Nurse
Associate Degree
10,099 satisfied customers
My Dog has a tumor in her stomach, Dora 6 years old, I'm
My Dog has a tumor in her stomach JA: I'll do all I can to help. Some lumps are serious and some aren't. Let's see what the Veterinarian has to say. What is the dog's name and age? Customer: Dora 6 ye… read more
Amber Hinson
Amber Hinson
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
8 satisfied customers
She's having a muscle spasm in her neck/shoulder. Muscle
Hi there, she's having a muscle spasm in her neck/shoulder … read more
Rebecca
Rebecca
Dog Veterinarian
Doctoral Degree
8,299 satisfied customers
My 15+ male pittbull has a large tumor in his chest/stomach
My 15+ male pittbull has a large tumor in his chest/stomach area .i4 is rather large and is pushing against his lungs affecting his breathing considerably, his tummy is very swollen and hard I feed hi… read more
Dr Z
Dr Z
Small Animal Veterinarian
Doctoral Degree
3,715 satisfied customers
Are mandarins toxic to dogs as my Anatolian keeps eating
are mandarins toxic to dogs as my Anatolian keeps eating them down the garden are they don,t agree with him … read more
Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman
Veterinarian
Doctoral Degree
9 satisfied customers
Are fire extinguishers toxic to dogs? He didn't eat
he didn't eat anything. we had to use a fire extinguisher yesterday in our home and our dog is very lethargic and not himself … read more
DocPaul
DocPaul
Doctoral Degree
709 satisfied customers
Disclaimer: Information in questions, answers, and other posts on this site ("Posts") comes from individual users, not JustAnswer; JustAnswer is not responsible for Posts. Posts are for general information, are not intended to substitute for informed professional advice (medical, legal, veterinary, financial, etc.), or to establish a professional-client relationship. The site and services are provided "as is" with no warranty or representations by JustAnswer regarding the qualifications of Experts. To see what credentials have been verified by a third-party service, please click on the "Verified" symbol in some Experts' profiles. JustAnswer is not intended or designed for EMERGENCY questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals.

Disclaimer: Information in questions, answers, and other posts on this site ("Posts") comes from individual users, not JustAnswer; JustAnswer is not responsible for Posts. Posts are for general information, are not intended to substitute for informed professional advice (medical, legal, veterinary, financial, etc.), or to establish a professional-client relationship. The site and services are provided "as is" with no warranty or representations by JustAnswer regarding the qualifications of Experts. To see what credentials have been verified by a third-party service, please click on the "Verified" symbol in some Experts' profiles. JustAnswer is not intended or designed for EMERGENCY questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals.

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x