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He suddenly will not get on couch, bed or go up the stairs.

Customer Question
He suddenly will not...

He suddenly will not get on couch, bed or go up the stairs. Seems ok coming downstairs so I feel it’s something with back legs

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. What seems to be the problem with the dog?

No apparent injury and I was home so nothing injured him per say

Veterinarian's Assistant: Where does the dog seem to hurt?

Hind legs but only when trying to get up on furniture or steps. Walking fine otherwise

Veterinarian's Assistant: OK. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Expert will know how to help the dog. What is the dog's name and age?

Bubba and he is mixed Aussie cattle with English bulldog 8 years old. Also epileptic and takes phenobarb twice daily

Veterinarian's Assistant: How old is Bubba?

8

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

Nothing else, thanks

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Dog Veterinary
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
3/19/2018
Dog Veterinarian: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 3 months ago
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 34,334
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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Dog Veterinarian: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 3 months ago

I'm sorry to hear of this with Bubba. You're correct to consider his hips that may be painful and we also consider painful myelopathies (spinal cord disorders) such as the cauda equina syndrome (osteoarthritis in the most caudal/toward the tail) spinal column and intervertebral disk disease (a "slipped disk"). Of course, these dogs may simply have suffered a soft tissue injury as well - bruising, sprain, or strain. A disk is most worrisome because it can rapidly worsen.

Supportive evidence of a disk may include vocalizing when approached or lifted, having trouble jumping up or down and navigating steps, ataxia (“drunken sailor”), trembling/shaking/panting (pain responses), a change in posture such as the neck held rigidly and head lower to the ground or a"hunch" in Bubba's back, and a change in behavior - a normally social dog becoming aloof or, conversely, a normally aloof dog becoming "clingy". Bubba's vet will want to carefully palpate (feel) about his spine looking for areas of hyperpathia (increased sensitivity) suggestive of a disk. Conservative care involves the use of a nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID) such as carprofen or meloxicam, a narcotic analgesic such as tramadol, and a skeletal muscle relaxant such as methocarbamol or diazepam. These drugs are usually administered for at least ten days. Most simple disks will remiss within a few weeks. It's important to keep these dogs as quiet as possible lest they hurt themselves further.

Should paresis (weakness) or paralysis arise in any limb(s), Bubba would need the attention of his vet at your earliest convenience. Such dogs are then surgical candidates for spinal cord decompression. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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