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Dog fell, unable to walk

(23 Posts)
ifitsnotanarse Sat 01-Nov-14 14:04:34

Our 11mth old spaniel cross (possibly labrador) was playing out front with my DS yesterday. She got caught on her long lead, tripped over and was unable to get back up. We took her to the vet straight away. X-rays revealed no fractures, she does not seem to be in pain, but is unable to bear weight on her back legs and right front paw. She is on fluids and receiving anti-inflammatorys for any possible trauma. Vet thinks she may have hit her head and has suffered a brain injury.

There was no change this morning and the vet has said to wait until Monday. Pup did not eat anything until we arrived to see her this morning. She was happy to see us, tried to get up and is able to (weakly) wag her tail.

Has anyone experienced something similar and how did it turn out? There is a huge possibility that the vet will recommend putting her to sleep if there is no change.

Triliteral Sat 01-Nov-14 14:29:08

Was she able to wag her tail yesterday? If there has been any progress, then there is a good chance there will be more. If there is none, then the outlook is less good. I used to be a vet in an emergency clinic. Have seen a brain injured dog go from unconscious and fitting, to very weak, and back to eventual normality but it did take several days. Your dog is much younger so it is definitely possible.

I wish you all the best and hope it all goes well.

Molecule Sat 01-Nov-14 14:37:01

Our very feisty pomeranian was attacked by creatures unknown in April (he'd either cornered our cat or met a mink as he had small puncture wounds on his head). He was in a bad way and the vet wanted to send him to see a neurologist as she feared brain damage and thought he needed an MRI/CT scan (I can't remember which). Would this be an option for your pup?

I'm afraid I refused as it was going to be incredibly expensive - £2000 plus treatment so probably nearer £4000, he would be very stressed out by it all, even in his desperate state he was unhappy at our vets with my daughter there, and I thought if he had brain damage and only semi recovered, we might be left with the nasty bits of him rather than some of the sweeter ones (which he doesn't have in abundance).

Anyway he was on a drip for two days and did improve a bit, was sent home once he bit the vet, but when he came home he kept collapsing and took a few days to recover, but he did recover and is now back to his usual feisty self. So there is hope, but obviously all brain injuries are different. Fingers crossed.

cheerupandhaveaglassofwine Sat 01-Nov-14 14:48:27

Was the weak tail wag possible yesterday or is that an improvement today

Can you go and visit a couple of times over the weekend, if the dog has suffered trauma and is also confused about why the legs aren't working seeing familiar faces and trying to wag and get up will surely give you both hope

The dog is probably in as much need of hope and encouragement as you are

Not sure how dogs minds work but must be thinking why have they left me here and why don't my legs work anymore, familiar faces and comfort and encouragement can surely only help her recover faster

ifitsnotanarse Sat 01-Nov-14 14:54:22

Thanks for your replies.

Triliteral she could wag her tail yesterday. Not a lot though. She did seem brighter today and was able to scootch around. She did try to get up, but no joy.

Molecule the vet made no mention of an MRI/CT scan. And probably won't either - they seem to be quite practical about things IYKWIM. I stupidly did not organise pet insurance for her - kept meaning but that's of no use now - and feel horribly guilty that I'm worrying about a huge vet's bill on top of this.

I think if worst comes to worst that I will take her home for a while and see how she does. I'm forever complaining about her (poo in garden, ripping things to shreds, eating the furniture) but honestly, am so upset that this has happened to her, and her only a pup still. We won't get to see her again until Monday, so I left her with DH's T-shirt and her tug toy; I'm hoping that the smell of home will help in some way.

She stole some cooked ham on Monday (only discovered this on Tuesday when I asked DH what he did with the leftovers!); could this have had an effect on her? There was no vomiting but she has been very thirsty since. Or could it be caused by ticks? There are plenty of ferns when she walks. Am probably clutching at straws but am desperate for something that is treatable.

ifitsnotanarse Sat 01-Nov-14 14:58:44

cheerupandhaveaglassofwine Vets are closed until Monday, and it will most likely be the afternoon when we see her next as the vets preform surgery in the mornings. She was definitely more alert (to my mind) this morning, and when I popped back with the T-shirt. She even tried to get out of the cage when I had to leave.

I just want her home.

SistersOfPercy Sat 01-Nov-14 15:47:59

No advice but I have everything crossed for you.

Molecule Sat 01-Nov-14 15:48:19

arse I know just how you feel! I felt awful having refused the treatment, despite the fact he's really not a very nice dog, and all six of the family didn't sleep for the two nights he was at the vets. Dh is a farmer so not given to great shows of sentiment, but even he was missing the little sod. When he got home it was poached chicken for him for a few weeks, and we were all delighted when he showed the first signs of wanting to get back outside to attack his enemies. Incidentally, he arrived with us aged 10 months with all his horrible behaviour already established, our dogs are usually paragons of virtue.

cheerupandhaveaglassofwine Sat 01-Nov-14 16:08:20

As well as being pains in the backside spaniels are very tough dogs and even if yours is a cross and only part spaniel it won't give up

Fingers crossed for you that when you go back to the vets on Monday it is showing signs of improvement

muttynutty Sat 01-Nov-14 16:24:39

You must get her referred to a specialist asap whereabouts are you?

I am no vet but spinal injury can be repaired and I would want to look at all options and not just wait and see with such a young dog.

QueenofLouisiana Sat 01-Nov-14 21:18:37

We had a similar situation with our collie in May. For no apparent reason she was suddenly unable to walk on her back legs or wag her tail. She had been running for a ball, then nothing. We had to reverse the car over a field to pick her up.
We did have an MRI scan done- £2000 give or take a few pounds. She had snapped a vertebrae and the fluid had affected her spinal column. She could (just) flick a tail out the way to poo, she was aware of weeing but couldn't do much about it.
Recovery took 10 weeks or so. We did physio on her 3 times a day, walked her with a sling, kept her on total cage rest. We had the place her feet for her to stop her damaging them. We had to keep her on a strict diet as she can't support excess weight- she is 3.5kg lighter now than when she had her accident.
Now she is ok. A bit stiff at times, has a wonky walk- especially when she needs a pee! She just looks like she's had a large gin. She is happy and everyone who sees her can't believe how good she looks.
Sorry- a huge essay. I would have wanted to hear from someone who had been through this with a dog when DMutt hurt herself. If you want ideas for the physio etc, just me.

QueenofLouisiana Sat 01-Nov-14 21:20:03

This is her tonight, snoozing through the fireworks.

Scuttlebutter Sat 01-Nov-14 22:53:54

Two of our greyhounds recently had a high speed impact with a tree while chasing a squirrel. One was very badly injured. She had no use of her legs. Our vet referred her to Langfords (University of Bristol vet school). She had a CT scan and was an inpatient for around 10 days. She had damage to the spinal cord caused by a piece of disc shooting out at high speed. Since then, she is on an upward trajectory of recovery, now walking, trotting and only a bit wobbly when crouching. She is continuing to regain strength and mobility each day.

As others have said, I feel it's really urgent you see a neurologist asap and get the appropriate scan so you know what you're dealing with. To give a ball park figure - for our dog's inpatient care at Langford including the scan we paid around £2K. Once you've seen the specialist you will have a much better understanding of your options. Can I emphasise that along the way, both our own vet and the wonderful team at Langfords did not put any pressure on us to have anything done that we were not comfortable with, costs were explained at every stage, and all our questions were answered with kindness, courtesy and professionalism. I'm honestly really surprised that your own vet hasn't encouraged you to see a specialist at this stage.

Aked Sun 02-Nov-14 12:10:51

I echo what the others have said. The option of referral to a specialist should be given to you. It is up to you to refuse that, even if on cost grounds.

Your vet should not just say PTS is the only solution, even if he knows your financial status. All options should be laid out for you to decide, and a good vet will guide you with, but not force you into the best decision for your circumstances.

Going by the nature of the injury, I would very much doubt it is related to anything she ate last week, or ticks.

I really hope you get an outcome you are happy with. Poor little dog, I have everything crossed for her.

Molecule Mon 03-Nov-14 17:03:04

Any news of your pup arse? I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

ifitsnotanarse Mon 03-Nov-14 18:24:29

Good news to update. Ddog is managing to stand with a bit of help. The vet thinks she suffered a bleed on the brain or close to where the spinal column meet the brain. She is on asprin to prevent clots, steroids and fluids. They want to keep her in for a few more days while she is receiving steriod injections.

Thanks QueenofLouisiana and Scuttlebutter for your stories and glad to hear that your Ddogs are doing well. Very cute pic QueenofLouisana.

If we were loaded we would get MRI/CT done, but unfortunately we are not, and as I said in my op pet insurance was stupidly still on my list of things to do. We are just very, very happy that Ddog is improving as were dreading the vet telling us it would be better to put her to sleep.

Thanks for all your support.

QueenofLouisiana Mon 03-Nov-14 21:24:03

Yay!!! Good news!

ifitsnotanarse Mon 03-Nov-14 21:36:05

And Molecule glad your Ddog is doing well too!

Molecule Tue 04-Nov-14 09:38:13

So glad your pup is improving, here's our beastly pom, looking as if butter wouldn't melt......

ifitsnotanarse Tue 04-Nov-14 16:42:33

Two cuties Molecule. smile

ifitsnotanarse Wed 05-Nov-14 22:34:49

Another quick update

Ddog is home. Very wobbly on her feet and tires quickly. She is rather confused as to why she is unable to run around without falling over. That said, I twice caught her on the sofa when my back was turned. blush How she managed to climb up, and so quickly, I do not know.

Cheeky pup just tried it again as I was typing. She is such a devil, but absolutely loves lying on the sofa and must have missed it while at the vets.

Molecule Thu 06-Nov-14 09:35:05

That's good. Pom couldn't jump on the sofa for ages (but it is 3x his height), we were all delighted when he managed it, but tbh he has lost his nerve a bit, we find now if he thinks about it he can't pluck up the courage to jump, and asks to be picked up. Only problem with that, if you don't hold him in quite the right way he lets you know with voice and teeth, then snuggles down next to you as if nothing has happened.

Recovery will take quite a time, the first few days Pom would collapse and struggle to get up, but he did improve all the time till now (other than sofa jumping) you would have no idea what he'd been through.

Floralnomad Thu 06-Nov-14 09:38:53

Sounds like she is coming along nicely ,hope it continues . molecule your dog sounds like a real delight !

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