Tramadol experts can you answer some questions please.

(17 Posts)
pinkbraces Mon 01-Feb-16 10:42:06

Ddog is a 6 year old lab/poodle cross. At nine months she was diagnosed with mild hip dysplacia but so far this hasn't given her many problems. About 5 months ago we noticed that whenever we took her on a very long walk (2 hours or so) she would be limping on her front left leg for a couple of days and then it would go.

We took her to the vet just after christmas as she seemed to be limping more and more on her front paw (in fairness we were walking a lot more than normal with her as both my DH and I were off work)

Vet prescribed Tramadol to be taken three times a day. I am not very keen on giving her this amount of medication unless she really needs it and I was wondering if I could just give her the tramadol when she needs it, rather than a definite three times a day.

Just for background she has Addisons disease and is on daily medication, the vet did say that there were other drugs rather than tramadol but they would interfere with the Addisons meds.

Sorry for the epic post but I wanted to give all the history.

If anyone can give me some advice I will be very grateful

MaynJune Mon 01-Feb-16 10:48:21

Absolutely not an expert here but my dog had tramadol after an injury.

The vet told me to give her it every day for a few days then reduce it till just when needed.

SuzyP36 Mon 01-Feb-16 10:51:31

Not an expert at all but an owner of a 10 year old lab with mobility problems now and again. We use an anti inflammatory every day and the tramadol just as and when we need it. I was never keen on giving it either but I know when he needs it now

TheLuckDragon Mon 01-Feb-16 11:04:29

Not an expert either but my yorkie is on tramadol twice a day for luxating patellas (dislocating knees). She was on 3 but we felt it was too much. She has to have hers otherwise she is aggressive due to the pain. Doesn't seem to be affecting her adversely in any way and she has been having them every day for about 6 months. Hope that helps.

Floralnomad Mon 01-Feb-16 11:39:32

Has the vet investigated the actual problem ?

Wolfiefan Mon 01-Feb-16 11:43:29

I had a cat on tramadol. 2 a day for arthritis. So three a day for a bigger dog doesn't sound excessive.
I agree about wanting investigation if possible. You need a diagnosis. Would hydrotherapy work for eg?

pinkbraces Mon 01-Feb-16 12:25:29

We haven't had any diagnostics at all, just Tramadol. That could be my fault though as my vet knows I am not keen on her having an anaesthetic as she had a bad reaction to one a couple of years ago and she needs an anaesthetic if she is to have an x-ray.

I think I might go back and talk to the vet.

thanks for your advice

Floralnomad Mon 01-Feb-16 13:01:19

I only asked because my dog had intermittent lameness in front last year and after X-rays was diagnosed with a soft tissue injury ( ie they couldn't find anything) and we just had to rest him for several weeks . As a precaution I've also stopped doing any agility / jumping with him as I don't think that was helping .

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 01-Feb-16 13:06:40

Yes you can use Tramadol as and when you need it, but your vet maybe trying to break the pain wind up cycle before decreasing the dose. Tramadol has an eight hour activity hence giving it three times a day.
There is more than one size of Tramadol a cat is likely to be on 10mg capsules whereas a lab cross is likely to be on 50mg capsules.

pinkbraces Mon 01-Feb-16 13:19:35

She doesn't actually appear to be in pain, just limps quite badly after long walks. The vet says she is probably masking the pain. I really wanted an anti-inflammatory to use whenever she limped but he was not keen as she also sometimes takes prednisolone and the anti-inflammatory doesn't react well with the prednisolone.

I think my vet believes me to be quite neurotic cautious about her as she has had so many issues since we got her, hip dysplacia and Addisons but also massive cyst which erupted in the middle of the night which resulted in five days in doggy hospital and a weird eye thing which resulted in specialist treatment.

He is however a very good vet and I do respect what he says but he is very old school and I sometimes feel intimidated by him.

I have painted a picture of a very doddery, clumsy, ill type of dog and she really isnt, she is actually a loony, run around dog that melts your heart smile

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 01-Feb-16 16:58:48

Preds and non-steroidal anti inflammatories are really not a very good mix at all so your vet is right there.

AnUtterIdiot Tue 02-Feb-16 22:09:51

She's limping because it hurts, OP. When people and animals limp it's almost always because it hurts to walk the way they normally do. I sort of understand why you think the way you do because it wasn't until I broke my leg that I fully understood it (because I couldn't not limp when I was recovering).

I think Tramadol may be one of those drugs that has a cumulative pain relieving effect when taken regularly.

You should take your vet's advice or get a second opinion but personally I would start by giving her the Tramadol and seeing if it stops her limping.

tabulahrasa Tue 02-Feb-16 23:32:00

That to me seems a really long time to leave a limp without investigating it tbh...and limping is a sign of pain btw, dogs don't just limp, they do it because it's painful.

Lonecat will know for definite, but I'm sure they can do x-rays under sedation rather than a full anaesthetic? So different drugs.

Assuming they're 50mg - 1 three times a day seems like a low dose to me, just for reference my 38kg dog is currently on 4 twice a day, alongside other painkillers.

AnUtterIdiot Wed 03-Feb-16 14:27:33

Sorry to come back to this but it's been niggling me since my last post: why do you think she might not really need the tramadol? If my vet said my dog needed a particular medication that would be good enough for me to at least see if what the vet suggested worked.

Dogs are very brave with pain and would much rather go out with you even if it hurts than not, but it's not fair to take that as a sign that they don't need medication. I don't doubt your good intentions but it makes me feel very sad to think of your dog in pain and not getting her meds because of a vague feeling on your part that she doesn't really need them.

Also, if she only limps after walks over a certain length then you could just not take her on the really long walks if you really don't want to give her the Tramadol?

pinkbraces Fri 05-Feb-16 11:43:17

I am giving her the Tramadol, I just want to investigate other options really.

I am not keen on giving long term meds unless she really needs them as she already takes 6 daily tablets for her Addisons. But, I would never ever withhold meds she needs. The reason I think she might not need the meds full time is that the limp is very intermittent, it really only tends to occur after a very long walk. We now avoid very long walks.

I am going to leave her on the Tramadol and complete the course that the vet has given us and see what happens then.

Thanks for all your input.

tabulahrasa Fri 05-Feb-16 11:51:42

"I am not keen on giving long term meds unless she really needs them"

That's fair enough and if you can manage it by working out how much exercise she's ok with then that'd be great, but if not, I really would investigate it.

If it's just a short course then it's just for making her comfy till it settles down and it's not likely to be anywhere near the maximum dose if it's one tablet, unless she's tiny.

AnUtterIdiot Fri 05-Feb-16 23:41:53

Oh OK, fair enough. I hope she improves.

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