Pet Owners: has your pet ever had back surgery

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Brad Newton, Jun 10, 2003.

  1. Brad Newton

    Brad Newton Second Unit

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    This is the ordeal my wife and I are facing. We have a shih-tzu. She is the best dog we have ever had, and only 3 years old. About a year ago, she hurt her back, we still don't know how that happened. We took her to the vet and they gave her a steriod shot & some muscle relaxer and told us to keep her quiet. She was better the next day, but the 2nd day she had a terrible relapse. We then had to take her back to the vet, this time they kept her in the "hospital" for several days. During this time, she was diagnosed with a bad kneecap. It kept slipping out of place. She finally overcame her back problems, and had the knee surgery. We thought she was as good as new.......now 10 months later, she is in the same situation. If you have never been around a shih-tzu, you are missing one of the most loving dogs around - at least ours is, maybe because she is spoiled. We have been trying the steriods, muscle relaxer, etc again for the last 7 days. Last night, she was in so much pain, that she did not want to be touched.....at all. That is totally unlike her. Even though she didn't want us to touch her, she still wanted to be close to us. It was terrible watching her just stand up in so much pain, that she could not sit or lay down. We took her to the vet, and again they kept her. Now they are saying that this medicine doesn't seem to be working and that we are probably going to need surgery on her disc. We really don't want to do this, but we can't bear to see her in so much pain. Sorry for the ramble, but pet lovers understand, and others will say "it's only a dog". It is only a dog, if you don't have one to love. Just wondering what to exect from this surgery, and how long she will be down.
     
  2. Micah Lloyd

    Micah Lloyd Stunt Coordinator

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    "It's only a dog..."

    Yeah, right. And it's only oxygen: you can do without.

    Our Dalmatian had neck surgery to fix a pinched nerve that had her paralyzed. The surgery was rather extensive. After the surgery, we made a "pen" of sorts of couches and chairs so she had a little space to get up and walk around but couldn't wander off unattended. Several times a day we'd carry her outside to the lawn so she could do her business with some dignity, albeit on wobbly legs. She had a gentle way of letting us know when those times were. Luckily, one of us was always home with her.

    She was ready to be up and around after just a few days. Doctor's orders, though, kept her confined and healing for 7-10 days or so. The end results were nothing short of miraculous. We got back a dog that enjoyed life again. It wasn't cheap, but how can you put a price on oxygen?
     
  3. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    I don't know much about back surgery on dogs, but if it's anything like back surgery on people, the results will probably be a bit of a gamble.

    But what can you do, right? You have to try to do everything you can for her, don't you?

    I would do the same for either of my kitty compadres.

    Best of luck and please let us know what happens.
     
  4. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    My parents had it done on their little miniature Dachsund back in the 80s. She made it thru the surgery fine but needed daily hydrotherapy which consisted of my stepmom filling the bathtub with lukewarm water and "walking" her back and forth with most of her weight supported by the water. Little Lisa made a full recovery and lived another 10 years.

    And YES, it was worth it.

    If my little dog needed the like and I had to sell every piece of ht gear I own and had to watch analog cable and VHS on a 13 inch Apex I'd do it in a hot minute.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you!
     
  5. Rain

    Rain Producer

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  6. Brad Newton

    Brad Newton Second Unit

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    Our vet said that she would come the next day after surgery. That is where our concern comes into play. Both of us work, so we are hesitant to leave her at home alone all day, although she would be in a cage........man I hate to put her in that thing.
     
  7. DustinDavis

    DustinDavis Stunt Coordinator

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    I had a roommate who had a miniature Dachsund and the poor little guy went down in his back. It's apparently common among weiner dogs. He basically lost control of his function from half his back down, couldn't move his legs, etc.

    We took Hans in for surgery and the vet said that we don't know if he will recover or not, and we don't know if he'll recover fully, and that it will take a few weeks to see what happens. During those few weeks, Hans slowly regained feeling and motion in his lower extremities. But at the start, he could not use his back legs at all, and we had to take him out to pee by looping a pair of pantyhose under his back legs to hold them up while we walked him.

    It was really scary, not knowing whether he'd recover and seeing him unhappy, but he did recover fully after a few weeks. That was probably 8 years ago. I love the little guy still.
     
  8. Mike__D

    Mike__D Supporting Actor

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    Not dog or back related, but I can relate to the "it's only a dog/cat/pet" remarks. My cat was diagnosed with diabetes a few months ago, and requires 2 shots of insulin daily. Some friends told me I should just put him to sleep. To that, I say a big FU!!

    Giving my cat shots is as routine as feeding him. He is no different than before, and can live another 10 years. People don't get it I guess.

    Mike D.
     
  9. Brad Newton

    Brad Newton Second Unit

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    Well, it looks like she is going to have to have the surgery. The past few days, she seemed to be improving, but the surgeon said that she had a herniated disc. Looks like 7/11 will be the date. We sure had hoped to avoid this, but I guess we can't. It has been a stressful month, trying to get her back to improve with medication and rest, but it really hasn't helped that much. She has a couple of good days, and then a bad one, that sets her back. If surgery will keep this from happening again it will be worth it.
     
  10. Shayne Judge

    Shayne Judge Stunt Coordinator

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    Good luck. Please keep us updated so we can celebrate once the operation is a huge success!
     

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