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Ask Joan Your Own Question
Joan, Vet Tech
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 18370
Experience:  Vet Tech for over 35+ years working w/Dogs/Rescues
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Sudden hunched back and waking on "tip toes". Not very

Customer Question

Sudden hunched back and waking on "tip toes". Not very mobile and resistance my to moving much if at all. Tried to pick up and whined. Ate dinner normally. Not sure about last movement
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. The Veterinarian will know if the dog will be able to digest that. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Digest what?
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the dog?
Customer: No
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Joan replied 1 year ago.


My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 30+ years. I would like to assist you.

What breed of dog do you have?

Age of dog?

Has the dog been trying to eat items like grass?

Any vomiting attempts?


Licking the air?

Drinking a lot of water?

Anything else unusual?


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
7 year old pit bull. Does eat grass and sticks. Haven't seen vomiting attempts. No pacing - very timid movements for a normally super athletic and active dog. No licking the air or excessive water drinking.Just quite sedentary and moving slowly when he does move. Almost on his "tip toes" walking so lightly on his back feet. Tail also tucked under which is very uncommon. Thx
Expert:  Joan replied 1 year ago.

Thank-you! I am very concerned about Bloat in your Dog. Pit Bulls have a broad chest and are on the list as a good candidate for this problem. This is a link that talks about Bloat: Bloat if not addressed immediately can kill a dog. The hunched up appearance and the fact he went down so quickly after eating, is sending up red flags. Please get him into the ER asap. I like to err on the side of caution in this situation. He may not be showing sign and I cannot examine him. A hands on exam I feel is warranted. If you need an ER Please supply a State and Zip code.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He had symptoms before eating a good meal. Has been walking gingerly all day. His stomach is not bloated, distended nor sensitive to touch.
Expert:  Joan replied 1 year ago.

I am very concerned the two times we see this behavior is Blot or a back injury. Was he running today or jumping where he could hurt his back? A back injury could also cause this type of a problem. Please listen to the abdome for somach sounds to be sure you do hear them. If absent then it still could be bloat. I would like to rule that out. Could you also run your hand down the spine and see if he flinches. I will stand by.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Not sure what stomach sounds are but I did hear bubbling and a burp. Also spine touching and pressure he was unresponsive to at all points.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did try to examine him on a surface by lifting him up arms in front of his front legs and in front of his back legs and he let out a loud whimper - which he has done 3 times in 7 years. My arms behind his front legs and in between his back legs (more pressure on his butt rather than directly on the lower ribs/stomach area) and he was fine with that
Expert:  Joan replied 1 year ago.

The stomach sounds you heard was a blessing, because absence would have meant bloat. So now we need to look at a possible back injury. hip or leg injury. He is showing pain, but we cannot locate it. If he gets worse tonight, the an ER Vet will be needed. I suggest crating him and minimizing his activity, to help keep him quiet. You can try a rice sock on his spine and area where he seems to show pain. A rice sock is a tube sock filled with Rice and tied off and heated in the Microwave. Shake it out and wrap in a towel and apply to the areas. This will offer relief if the spine or joins are in pain. He will require a hands on exam if no better tonight or tomorrow first thing to be checked out thoroughly. I would make sure he is urinating ok.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you
Expert:  Joan replied 1 year ago.

You are welcome! I wish I could pin this down but where the pain is coming from is the big issue and I cannot palpate or check areas that would normally be examined.


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