head lifting during sleep


Neuro Corner Answers

Dr. Andrew Isaacs
DVM Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology)
Dogwood Veterinary Referral Center

Primary interests include intervertebral disc disease, seizure management, luxations/fractures of the spine, and surgery for brain tumors



Hello. My baby was diagnosed with ivdd 3 years ago and had surgery. He drunk walked for a bit but now he scoots around happy as can be. Eats, drinks, plays with his toys. I notice when he is laying down and sleeping his little head will bob up and down, some days are worse than others and sometimes it doesn’t happen at all. It’s not like a dream just goes up and down. Does this happen to other dogs? Thank you!


We see upregulated reflexes in the legs from a previous injury to the spinal cord leading to rhythmic movements.  This is something reflexual and not voluntary control.  However, a previous spinal cord injury should not cause movement of the head.



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 https://www.facebook.com/Dodgerslist/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.

©2023 Linda Stowe, founder of DODGERSLIST.com  FACEBOOK,  Instagram, YouTube