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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 30338
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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She woke up this morning not herself. Less energy. Not eating.

Customer Question

She woke up this morning not herself. Less energy. Not eating. She is peeing and had a bowel movement. Vet checked her out. Didn't find anything specific. She is now shaking beside me. I have her in a blanket
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Cleo a shih poo. 8 years old
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Cleo?
Customer: Vet gave her gastrointestinal food she ate but she is generally not herself. She was limping last week. Took her to vet. No issues. Seems better now. Healthy
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Dog
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Will someone answer soon about Cleo
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 11 months ago.

You're speaking with 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 11 months ago.

I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. It appears that Cleo's vet will need to become more aggressive in the search for Cleo's malaise. Cleo's symptoms of lethargy, anorexia, and shaking are important symptoms but they're not pathognomonic (specifically indicative of any one particular disorder). I would begin with a diagnostic panel of blood and urine tests and if nothing untoward were found, consider spinal and/or musculoskeletal pain (particularly because she had been limping and is now shaking - a pain response, often) such as might arise from degenerative disk disease (a "slipped disk") in an 8 year old Shih Poo.

May I have an update on Cleo, please?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
This morning ate a small bites of gastroenterology food. Had pee.
No shaking or limping but off and on in past week does limp. That comes and goes.
Skin turgour seems good
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 11 months ago.

Is her recurrent lameness in a front or hind limb, please?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Hind limb usually the left leg
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 11 months ago.

Thank you. We need to consider that a hindleg isn't where the primary problem lies. As mentioned above, a slipped disk needs to considered. A disk can cause the intermittent hind leg paresis (weakness).

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 (pain responses), a change in posture such as the neck held rigidly and head lower to the ground or a"hunch" in his back, and a change in behavior - a normally social dog becoming aloof or, conversely, a normally aloof dog becoming "clingy". Cleo's vet will want to carefully palpate (feel) about Cleo's 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), she'll need the attention of her vet at your earliest convenience. Such dogs are then surgical candidates for spinal cord decompression. In summary, careful palpation of Cleo's spine +/- blood and urine tests +/- spinal X-rays should be considered. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thank you very much. Very full complete answer
I appreciate
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 11 months ago.

You're quite welcome. I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience. You can bookmark this page for ease of return.