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What to expect after spinal surgery?(5 Posts)
After a total freak accident yesterday I rushed DDog to the vets as I suspected he had badly broken his leg. Turned out it was a spinal injury and he had a CT scan followed by surgery on his spine today. Depending on how he is overnight we are hoping to collect him tomorrow or Sunday, and wondered if anyone knows what to expect regarding his recovery?
He had a disc removed. I've read a 6-8 week recovery period with minimal exercise is normal, and the surgeon said he may have severe reduced mobility for the first few days but if anyone has been through similar and could advise on how we can plan for this? E.g. do we need to get a crate, will he need constant supervision (I work from home so happy to do this) etc. Thanks in advance.
I'm so relieved he's ok and will be coming home, we thought he wouldn't be. He's only 7 and the centre of our universe
Oh poor thing. Hoping for a speedy recovery.
We haven't had that although at one point our daft dog ended up being investigated for spinal injury after a bad fall but fortubately he didn't require surgery.
We have however had other operations which required limited mobility in order to recover. What we did was have a room (on the ground floor) with a mattress on the floor. We could sit and sleep with him and he was able to move about a bit without jumping on or off anything. Effectively we just lived in the room for several weeks. We took him outside every now and again for toileting but put him on a lead (I used a slip lead as easy to get on and off quickly) so he couldn't run about outside.
Not sure how appropriate this will be but my dog had a spinal injury and became paralysed. She didn't have to be restricted as she couldn't move. Anyway we were recommended a memory foam bed, also had a supportive harness (front and back) can't offhand remember the make but your vet will be able to tell you. Had handles to make it easier to support her or carry her. Fortunately we were in a position where she was never left alone, I definitely think someone there all the time is pretty important, else you'd have to crate to make sure they stay safe. Anyway, no jumping for a while, good luck with that. There's a load of stuff online (mostly relating to dachshund) that I found helpful. Just Google disc disease or spinal injuries in dogs.
Also expect problems in the elimination department, either incontinence or unable to go as it may take time to get back to normal.
And remember nerves take a long time to heal. Took my dog 6 months to get back on her feet, but she made it.
But also remember that dogs are remarkably resilient - they'll find a way round even if it means racing off down the garden on 3 legs! You may well have to provide support like spot says (even just a towel held under their belly to support them, though a proper sling / harness would be miles easier). A crate may be a good idea for the first few days if the vet says minimal exercise as your dog will likely have other ideas. And if they give you any exercises to do make sure you do them fully - that sort of thing makes a huge difference (more with paralysis type issues to be fair). Good luck!