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Story of the Month - September 2009



This is the story of Deiter, an 8 year old smooth miniature Black and Tan that went down while our family was attending a wedding out of town on April 21 of this year. He was completely paralyzed after going for a walk and we took him immediately to the vet at Pet Smart in Springfield Missouri. The vet tested and found no Deep Pain Response and offered to take X ray s and referred us to the U of Missouri Vet school where she said they would do immediate surgery.

She told us without the surgery Deiter would probably never walk again, less than 2% chance. We declined surgery due to expense, the fact we were 12 hours from home and the odds after surgery were no better than 50-50. She game him an injection of steroids (less than 2 hours after he went down) and gave us a prescription for Prednisone. After this prescription was done every 2 weeks he went on anti inflammatory. He went into immediate crate rest and the only major setback was a bout of chewing on his paw. We had to get an anti-itch prescription and buy booties to prevent further chewing.

We had visits with a couple of vets to find someone near our hometown and found that not all vets are up to speed on back problems with vets as we were told by three vets that the best alternative would be to put him down. My wife actually took Deiter to the vet to evaluate putting him down as he was incontinent, didn't like being crated and wouldn't sleep. She was so stressed that she was willing to take the vets advice. Thankfully, she went to Dr Roberts at Nonantum Veterinarian Hospital.

She got down on the floor and called Deiter out of his kennel…he scooted over and she evaluated him on the floor and told my wife that the dog was happy and wanted to live. We then found this website and the rich links to sources and advice. He is only occasionally incontinent and getting better daily…..the best news is that he is now walking wobbly about 50% of the time and increases this daily., He is now happily playing with his brother and hopefully will continue to improve. Even if he had not improved we were accepting his fate and diagnosis of not walking. After finding the body wrap and cart from Doggone Wheels our life returned to a new normal.

Lessons learned are that the faster you react when the dog goes down, the better the potential outcome. That is true whether you opt for surgery or conservative treatment. Find a vet that is knowledgeable and will take the time for your unique situation. If you opt for conservative treatment, crating is most important. We have shared this website with Dr Roberts and she has referred us to an acupuncturist for further treatment.

We are happy with our decision and our future with Deiter and his brother Baron.


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