Disc healing


The body has ability to self-heal a disc

Requires time and little movement

Terms used for a disc episode: slipped, herniated or bulging disc, or pinched nerve.

What to expect during healing of the disc

Conservative Treatment:

DAMAGED DISCS take about 8 weeks to heal and form secure scar tissue during  conservative treatment. The critically important job of the owner is nursing care. Setting up a recovery suite and providing room service fo for your patient! There are no medications that help the disc to heal —only time and limited movement of the back and neck with 100% STRICT 24/7 STRICT rest. When a dog walks and moves, the vertebrae move, tearing down the important scar tissue that is forming to stabilize the disc rupture. Anytime out of the recovery suite is a dangerous time for a healing disc. Only potty time and vet appointments are a necessity to be out of the crate. Be diligent about crate rest, cheating on crate rest promotes damage to the disc: no chiropractic therapy, no couches, no sleeping with you, no baths, or water therapy during the 8 weeks of  conservative treatment’s crate rest. Keep the recovery suite in the middle of family activity so there isn’t a feeling of isolation. Most dogs prefer a wired crate or an ex-pen for better visibility.

Very STRICT rest means:

  • no laps
  • no couches
  • no baths
  • no sleeping with you
  • no chiropractic therapy!  WHY: https://dodgerslist.com/2020/04/22/chiropractic
  • no physical therapy
  • eating and drinking inside of the suite with bowel attached at head height.
  • no dragging or meandering at potty times


Crate rest is not your dog in a cage.

It’s a “recovery suite” with room service!

Owners who provide the correct principals of limited movement to allow the disc  to heal (aka: herniated, slipped or pinched nerve), can very often avoid an expensive surgery.


Followed by 4-6 weeks of surgeon-directed crate rest (including the PT directives)

Because offending disc material has been surgically removed, often water therapy or water treadmill can be started during the post-op crate rest period.


This information is presented for educational purposes and as a resource for the dog IVDD community. The coordinators are not veterinarians or health care professionals. Nothing herein should be interpreted as medical advice and all should contact their pet care professionals for advice. The coordinators are not responsible for the substance and content contained herein and do not advocate any particular product, item or position contained herein.

©2020 Linda Stowe, founder of DODGERSLISTcom and FACEBOOK.com/Dodgerslist