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Has Anyone here dealt with a dog diagnosed with a pinched nerve in the neck?

  1. #1

    Has Anyone here dealt with a dog diagnosed with a pinched nerve in the neck?

    My husband and I are seniors with a shy 12 year old female shepherd mix named Misty. I think she is GSD and sheltie but we've never had her tested.



    I apologize for this long post in advance. Misty has some arthritis in her hips, not uncommon at her age but otherwise she has been well until a few months ago when she came out of her 'den' - our walk-in closet - and her front legs suddenly folded and collapsed and she fell. She had a hard time getting back up but seemed better and could walk (somewhat unsteadily) again. We made a quick appt with out vet (our daughter is a tech there) and she was diagnosed with the neck problem. The slight pinch showed up on x-rays.

    She has become more and more unsteady since then (several months) and her right front paw knuckles under. Added to all this she has been taking Rimadyl for most of a year for the arthritis which may or may not be a factor in all that's been going on, the vets want her to take it but it worries me a lot. Some time after this diagnosis she began acting unhappy and as if she was in pain and having poop accidents in the house, one time going up to a visiting friend and pooping right in front of him. Very odd behavior for our usually shy dog. We added gabapentin to her meds and that seemed to help her. Later i researched the Rimadyl side affects and we decided, against the vet's advice, to discontinue that drug. Pain did not appear to return and she seemed brighter and to have a more cheerful attitude. She still walks very unsteadily and falls down a lot; feet slide out on tile floors but even on carpet she staggers and collapses.

    A few days ago she stopped eating most of her food. She has always eaten slowly but never had an appetite problem. Then she had diarrhea and fell into it and we went to the vet who didn't see anything new but gave her fluids, and meds to calm down her digestive system. This morning she still didn't want to eat but the vets said they really recommended getting some food into her any way we could and giving her a Rimadyl. So my husband coddled a couple eggs and she ate that with some plain canned chicken and the Rimadyl and the rest of her meds (proin, levothyroxine, gabapentin, dasaquin, an antibiotic and anti-diarrhea med). So far so good. She's still staggering, panting some, sleeping a lot, otherwise good attitude.

    Any thoughts on all this? We know she's old and w're probably going to have to make the hard decision sooner rather than later, but we want to do the best we can for her. We do have to take into account that we're older and have limited strength and energy and limited funds.

    Thank you for reading!

  2. #2
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    Sorry I've never encountered such problem and I'm sorry to hear about your Misty. It's good that you're trying to get her to eat. You mentioned that your daughter is a vet tech...can she offer any help? I'm wondering if some of the medications have side effects that are affecting her. I'm only familiar with dasaquin that I give my Jake to help with his urinary condition. I hope things get better for Misty and please keep us posted. Welcome by the way
    “Save a life and save a stray”

  3. #3
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    I am not a fan of remadyl, if I have to give them anything its deramax, its in the same family but without the side effects. Gabapentin was developed for people with seizures, then they found it helped arthritis in dogs but I don't know how effective it is. I would suggest you take her to a vet that does acupuncture. The acupuncture will open up the blood vessels and get the blood flowing like it should. Also if its just a little something out of whack the vet can maybe snap it back into place.

    She's an old girl so the best you can hope for is to keep her comfortable. Try the acupuncture, it can't hurt and may help.
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

  4. #4
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    Hi Sian12- Benny dog over here has taken the following product daily for about four years now to relieve chronic inflammation (and pain) of an old bone injury from a car accident that happened before I met him. Its common use is for people with arthritis.

    Green-Lipped Mussel Extract, 500 mg, 60 Capsules, produced by Amino Acid & Botanical Supply

    Benny weighs 18 kg (39.68 pounds) and the dose he takes is 1/3 (one third) of a capsule daily. Every three days, I cut the end off of a capsule and divide the contents between three little squares of bread. Then I close each bread piece to make a homemade "capsule", give Benny the first, and freeze the other two for use in the next two days. This supplement makes a huge difference for Benny, and I've never had any trouble with it over the years.
    Last edited by Dog Force One; 10-27-2017 at 08:07 PM.

  5. #5
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    My older dog, a Standard Schnauzer was also on Rimadyl for arthritis. He did have an issue with a disc in his spine, either pinched or dislocated, and could barely walk, was in a lot of pain. The vet gave him Prednisone for a short period of time until he was back to normal. He was a big dog, 60+ pounds, so it wasn't easy for us to help him up, etc., but we did what we had to to make him comfortable.

    Your dog is taking meds I'm not familiar with, but I do know that when dogs become elderly, they will have issues with incontinence, lethargy, etc. You can use a Glucosamine/MSM supplement also for pain from inflammation due to the arthritis, but right now your girl seems to be getting more than her share of pills.

    You can boil some lean ground beef, drain the water out, and mix it with cooked white rice, that will settle her stomach. You can do that for several days in a row if you like. Good luck, I know it's upsetting when our furkids are ill.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha1 View Post
    My older dog, a Standard Schnauzer was also on Rimadyl for arthritis. He did have an issue with a disc in his spine, either pinched or dislocated, and could barely walk, was in a lot of pain. The vet gave him Prednisone for a short period of time until he was back to normal. He was a big dog, 60+ pounds, so it wasn't easy for us to help him up, etc., but we did what we had to to make him comfortable.

    Your dog is taking meds I'm not familiar with, but I do know that when dogs become elderly, they will have issues with incontinence, lethargy, etc. You can use a Glucosamine/MSM supplement also for pain from inflammation due to the arthritis, but right now your girl seems to be getting more than her share of pills.

    You can boil some lean ground beef, drain the water out, and mix it with cooked white rice, that will settle her stomach. You can do that for several days in a row if you like. Good luck, I know it's upsetting when our furkids are ill.
    Alpha1, can you tell me more about your dog and the spine issue? Did Prednisone solve the problem? I'm looking into acupuncture but I think we need to figure out why she isn't eating first. if something else is wrong inside it may be a moot point.

    I really appreciate everyone's replies!

  7. #7
    Forgot to say my daughter is an enormous help indeed and is asking the vet questions that I text to her. The vet gave her something to keep her from feeling nauseous. Yes, she really is on a lot of pills (just like I am). Proin is for incontinence, Levothyroxine is a thyroid med, Dasaquin is a glucosamine (i didn't know it would help urinary problems as well).. Linda, I will ask about deramax as a replacement for the Rimadyl.. Thank you!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sian12 View Post
    Alpha1, can you tell me more about your dog and the spine issue? Did Prednisone solve the problem?
    Yes, the Prednisone helped relieve the inflammation and pain, I think he was also given Tramadol along with it for the pain. I just looked through his old file (he's passed on now), but I couldn't find exactly what they were calling it, a million different papers in there from vet visits, but not the one I need.

    Anyhoo, I think the disc was injured when he slipped on the ice in winter, fetching the newspaper for us, that's just a guess, I don't know the exact cause of his problem. He just started to sit in the kitchen in a weird way, and he was shaking, he was a big dog and never was a shaker.

    I went over to him to see what was the problem, was talking to him to comfort him, tried to get him to lay down but he didn't seem to be able to do that. I spent some time with him on the floor, brought a thick blanket in there for him, because he didn't look like he was going anywhere until the next morning when we could get him to a vet.

    I helped him stand so I could walk him in the yard, put a leash on him because of his condition, he yelped on and off with walking and movement. Once he urinated, I got him back in the house, had to help him up one step into the kitchen. I spent a lot of the night in there with him so he wouldn't be alone, he usually slept with us in bed. I walked him on a leash for that week in the yard to restrict his movements.

    They did xrays and it definitely was something with his disc, it was inflammed and pushed out of position, so it was getting pinched between his vertebra. The medicine worked very well to relieve the pain, and within a week he was okay again. Sorry I can't give more detail, I asked my husband and he remembers just as much as I do. We're retired seniors so we were able to be home for the dog and care for him, he had a laundry list of issues in his later years.

  9. #9
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    pred is a steroid, and so is the remadyl. They will not give both at the same time, they may give you tramadol for the pain, that is not a steroid. two steroids can be toxic to the liver
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

  10. #10
    Thanks, Alpha1. I'm sorry your boy is gone now.. Misty never yelps in pain, although she seemed to be in pain before we gave her gabapentin (panting, pacing, withdrawing) and I thought it may have been the rimadyl. We are going to take her in for blood work tomorrow, the vets are concerned. We're also retired seniors so we can spend time with the fur-child and fur-grandchildren.

  11. #11
    Hi everyone! I have very good news tonight! Misty is back from spending the day at the clinic with our daughter and some awesome vets and she's almost 100% normal again! I am so thankful! One vet thought it might be atypical Addison's Disease, which is a disfunction of the adrenal gland. The did give her a steroid injection and a bag of fluids for dehydration and she has perked right up. Still drags the front left toes some but all in all she's TONS better, eating again and not staggering as much at all. Thank you thank you for listening to me :-)

    Any thoughts on what to put in a thank you gift basket?

  12. #12
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    The steroid injection will help a lot almost immediately, similar to when they give the Prednisone, hoping Misty continues to feel good and improves. Good to know she's eating too! Please keep us updated on her progress.

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    glad to hear your girl is doing better.
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

  14. #14
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    Good job taking care of Misty.

  15. #15
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    That is great to hear about your Misty! Thanks for letting us know
    “Save a life and save a stray”

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