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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 19676
Experience:  Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 18+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
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my old dog is walking sideways. he did this about 2 months

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my old dog is walking sideways. he did this about 2 months ago and was fine the next day. he is also licking his foot around the ankle.

Hi courtney,


I think the two are unrelated. It's possible your dog is suffering from vestibular disease. Symptoms include standing with legs spread out, swaying, head tilt, abnormal eye movement, walking sideways, falling over and may include vomiting. There are a few things that can cause this condition such as an ear infection, some medications and old age. Have your Vet check your dog for this condition.

Here are some great sites on this condition:


The good news is that if this is the problem and it is due to old age, the condition normally resolves itself over a few weeks. Your vet will most likely prescribe dramamine or bonine to help with the symptoms. You can read about dramamine and bonine usage, precautions and dosage here:


You should check your dog's leg where he is licking. It might be a cut, sore or other injury which may need vet attention. If you don't find any obvious problem, then this may be the start of acral lick dermatitis. You can read about this here:

You can read about some treatment methods on this site:


If you do find an injury, it is likely to need vet attention, but if it is a simple wound, you can cut the hair from around the wound, soak the paw in epson salt and warm water, cleaning with hydrogen peroxide and using triple antibiotic ointment or Neosporin to help aid healing as well. If you don't use a collar, baby socks or larger socks on the paws taped at the top may prevent the licking and allow the paw time to heal.


Hope this helps.


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