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Ana Bascunan
Ana Bascunan,
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 103
Experience:  Small Animal Surgery Resident at University of Florida
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My dog for a while about a month or so ago had a bath and

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my dog for a while about a month or so ago had a bath and started to shake and not be able to walk and stop after about an hour he would return to normal i got him to the vet after showing signs af knuckling front foot however he is still walking okay after 2 weeks of bed rest he has shown inprovement with prednisolone i hace decided not to do am mri because he is showin g signs of impronement he is walking but weak in that front leg will he recover or could he get worse
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
my veterinarian has him on bed rest and prednisolone evry other day if he is walking how soon do i take him off bed rest or can he reinjure himself
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
am i taaking the right appoach to bed rest since he is not paralyzed
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I am able to care for him just worry that surgery might not be right approach because he is 10
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
When I take him out to potty he can walk but I can tell if it' quite a bit of walking on the leash then he seems week sort of dragging that front foot or sort of weak on his balances
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Unfortunately fortunately the closest mri machine is 4 hrs away
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
if he did have to have surgery which I'm not sure he needs we would have to level him there for a while so I'm hoping he gets bettwer
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
He doesn't actually like he's in pain at first after a bath he would let out a bark but it hasn't happened for almost three weeks
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
He really likes,to play and he always looking for something to do so I feel like I need to keep him quiet anyway
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
He sits up a lot in his bed or cage but he move around a lot in a sitting position almost like he has a hard time balancing himself sitting up but sits up a lot

Hello, my name is***** and I'm happy to help answer your question about Sampson. Boston Terriers are one of my favorite breeds! I'm sorry to hear he is having trouble with balancing and knuckling over in the forelimbs. I'm glad you had him evaluated by your veterinarian. I have prepared some information on neurologic disease below.

Based on your description of his signs, it sounds like your vet was on the right track when they mentioned back or neck pain. Boston Terriers are predisposed to something called Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD), which is similar to a slipped disc in humans. In between each vertebrae there lies a cartilaginous disc which I think of as a jelly donut. Over time those discs can degenerate (like an old, dry, jelly donut) and then with normal activity (jumping down off the couch, for example) the jelly inside the donut can be squished out and pushes on the spinal cord at that level. This compression of the spinal cord results in weakness, incoordination, severe pain, and can progress all the way to paralysis of one or more limbs.

Generally we first attempt medical management of presumed IVDD by giving pain mediation and anti-inflammatory drugs (prednisone), as your vet did. However the most important part of medical management, is STRICT CAGE REST. Cage rest (meaning that he is confined to a kennel 24 hours a day except for short potty breaks outside) allows the body to lay down scar tissue over the site of disc herniation. If we don't cage rest these animals, then the jelly part of the donut can squeeze out more material and their signs can worsen. Cage rest is generally continued for a period of 2-4 weeks from initial onset of signs.

If a dog fails to respond to cage rest and medications, or if their signs worsen despite resting, then we recommend advanced imaging (CT or MRI) to identify the site and cause of the neurologic disease. If it is confirmed to be a disc herniation, then we take them to surgery to decompress the spinal column and to remove as much of the disc material (jelly) as possible.

Aside from IVDD there are a few other possible causes of his signs. He could have an inflammatory disease (meningitis) of his spinal cord, which can be infectious or non-infectious. He could have an infection along the bones of the spine, or he could have a tumor growing in the region of the spine that is causing compression of the spinal cord. The only way to differentiate between all of these is with advanced diagnostics (imaging, spinal tap).

Please let me know if this answers your question or if you have any further questions regarding Sampson!

Is there anything further I can help you with regarding Sampson?

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