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Story of the Month - September 2008  



Here's the "tail" of Tanner, our 5 year old Tweener longhaired dachshund. (I’ll turn it over to Tanner, as he wants to relay the story in his own words)

“On Saturday morning, May 30, I was in a lot of pain. I went over to my daddy so he could see what I was feeling. He saw the pain in my face and felt the quivering in my belly so next thing I know, I’m going to see my doctor. She wasn't sure exactly what was wrong with me, (since I put on such a brave face in front of the doc), but she gave me a prescription for pain medication as well as a powerful steroid.

After we got home, daddy put me on my blanket. I slept for a while and he thought I was better. We all went to bed that night and when daddy got up to check on me at midnight, the pain was worse. I was dragging my rear legs and I couldn’t walk like usual. Daddy freaked out when he saw me, and he carefully, but quickly, took me to the emergency room. (I felt so bad for daddy. My mommy was out of town and he had to handle this on his own.)

Dr. Kim took a look at me and told daddy I have a problem in the middle portion of my back. She said something about IVDD I think! She wanted to run some tests and take lots of pictures. She told daddy that I did have “deep pain sensation” and that was good. Daddy gave me some tearful kisses as Dr. Kim picked me up and took me in that cold back room with lots of lights.

Tests were run, and she called daddy with the results and diagnosis. Dr. Kim advised daddy that the surgery was necessary but was very expensive. She said it would cost as much as $4900! Wow! Here it is in Dr. Kim’s words:

“Neurological exam revealed problem in the middle portion of the back (T3-L3) affecting the hind limbs. Over a short period of time Tanner became unable to move them voluntarily. Pain sensation to both hind limbs was intact.”

“A myelogram was performed on Sunday, June 1, to try to determine precise location of the problem. The contrast material was injected into the fluid bathing the spinal cord and could be seen well in the lower spine. There was loss of contrast in the lower thoracic spine, consistent with compression from a herniated intervertebral disc. Surgery was performed over 3 disc space(s). A large amount of disc material was removed from beneath the spinal cord.”

Ok, it’s me Tanner again…anyway, I came home on June 5, and over the next 8 weeks I concentrated on recovery in my crate. Going potty was quite traumatic and I actually didn’t poop for 2 straight days. I remember mommy and daddy being pretty stressed over the whole thing. I had this sling thing under my rear to keep me in the air because I couldn’t walk on my own. I was given new items with my breakfast such as Ester C, Glucosamine, COq10, Vitamin B complex, vitamin E, and fish oil. I had a canine massage therapist visit me on five occasions and I got a thorough massage concentrating on my back legs. (She said I was a great patient, however, I did pass gas a few times. Pardon me.) I also had two acupuncture treatments where they stuck pins into me and hooked me up to an electrical device for 20 minutes. Daddy and mommy put me in a doggie life jacket and we all got in the pool to swim. They worked with me and I started moving my back legs on my own! That was really cool! It’s been 10 weeks now and I’m getting around fine. I’d say that I’m about 80-85% from where I was before that frightful day when I couldn’t use my back legs! I don’t jump anymore and mommy and daddy carry me up and down the stairs. That’s fine cause I can hear their heartbeats as they carry me! I love that the best! They love me lots I think!

Before I go, I want to thank Dodgers List for giving my parent’s advice and encouragement as we journeyed through my healing process. Their questions were answered and their concerns were comforting. Dodgers List, you are a blessing and you made our healing process less stressful. God Bless you all!

Love you, (wet sloppy kiss…lick, lick)

Tan Man




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