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9 Yr Old Husky Mix Has A Neurological Disorder, Not Arthritis, Help :)


easywolf32
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Hi All,

My 9 year old Husky Labrador has arthritis, he has suddenly stopped running, very lazy to get up, avoids stairs, does not run anymore, etc.

I am guessing this can happen to a Husky Mix. He is 70lbs. 

Is it ok to ask the vet for anti inflammation medicine?

If you guys know any other good ideas for treating arthritis please let me know.

Thank you all so much.

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(Just copying and pasting my post from the other thread, so others can see it and add on to things, if need be. :) )

 

In any case, my boy developed early-onset arthritis at 4 years old (he's 8 now), so I have quite a few ways to deal with it:

 

- He gets 2 joint supplements daily. I use 'Pet Naturals of Vermont: Hip + Joint XL' (XL because he is over 75 pounds.)

I find the joint supplements really help with his daily movements, although it took around 3 weeks for improvements to show.

 

- When he gets flare-ups (you'll know them when you see them...mine can't stand up or move around and he cries and cries and cries), he gets a quarter of a tablet of Deramaxx (anti-inflammatory from vet) a day and he's barely in any pain.

Flare ups for mine last anywhere from 1 day to 4 days. Before, when he was given half a tablet, he doesn't have ANY pain at all, and he is more prone to push himself and run around...so I only give him half a tablet when its really bad.

A quarter of a tablet is enough to take the majority of the pain away, and I feel like a jerk for saying this, but I'd rather he's in a tiny amount of pain than in NO pain, end up pushing himself, and worsening his arthritis to the point he can't walk anymore and has to be PTS. 

 

- His exercise is drastically reduced. Any more than 50 minutes-an hour of exercise a day and he's really sore, cranky, and if overexercised he usually gets a flareup soon after.

 

- Related to the above: he's walked on asphalt (roads) and grass/dirt. Not sidewalks, as that's made of concrete and concrete has less give and is therefore more stressful on joints (this applies to people as well).

 

- To compensate for the lack of exercise (in order to not put as much stress on the joints), you can get your dog to swim. Swimming is excellent: no impact, great cardio, and is a great workout for all dogs (and people too!). Unfortunately my boy hates everything to do with water.

 

- Mine was switched from TOTW: prairie formula to the salmon formula. It has more omegas in it, which I understand is helpful on the joints.

 

- His weight is kept down. His healthy weight is 76-77 pounds - the weight I try to keep him at is 75 pounds. I find the less he weighs, the less amount of flare-ups he gets and the lesser their duration. 

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Yes, an x-ray is the only way to tell for sure. It's really too bad you don't have insurance - as it won't be covered if you try to get insurance now (pre-existing condition...like what happened to me). 

 

Oh, and his latest flareup (last summer) was the worst (BE WARNED: very sad and scary!): He suddenly couldn't stand up (or sit up for that matter.). He was given a half a tablet - it didn't really help. Because he couldn't move upstairs to sleep, so I had to stay up with him. I eventually fell asleep on the couch when I gave him another half a tablet (ignoring the advice of my vet)...that extra half a tablet really seemed to calm him down.

 

The next morning (vet's was closed and we don't have $400 to drop on the emergency vet, as this isn't covered by insurance), we had to carry him to the car via a makeshift stretcher (bed sheets) because all he could do was lie down and scream. I really thought I was going to lose him that day - NEVER have I seen a dog more in pain than that. And I don't want to see it again - ever.

 

That one he was still sore for a week afterwards - used up the rest of the Deramaxx I had in storage so had to get some more! 

 

So yeah, didn't mean to scare you...just to prepare you for what you may have to face..

But keep in mind he has had arthritis for 4 years...and that flareup was brought on by overexercise when he wasn't conditioned for it at all (my fault, at that point didn't know overexercise was one of his triggers)

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Wow great info, thank you again! I will store this somewhere! Do you think Deramaxx is the best anti-inflammatory med? I wrote a whole bunch of them, I found them from here: http://www.2ndchance.info/arthritis2.htm

 

This is also a nice site to get ideas http://www.handicappedpets.com/

 

Some other nice links I found today:

 

http://www.leospetcare.com/hip-dysplasia-and-arthritis-in-dogs-are-not-the-same-thing/

 

http://www.2ndchance.info/hipdysplasiadog.htm

 

http://www.srdogs.com/Pages/care.fr.html

 

http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/lengthening-your-senior-dogs-life.html

 

http://www.2ndchance.info/olddog.htm

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That first link you posted is excellent - it listed quite a few things I forgot about (ramp, bed, they feel worse in high humidity and right before rainfall).

 

Before getting extra things like the ramp and the bed...I would make sure your dog has arthritis. Get the x-ray, its the only way to know for certain. But make sure your vet explains to you the risks of putting him under...

 

Deramaxx is the only one we've tried, so I can only give an opinion on that. It's quite expensive though...our vet charges $150 for a 20 or so tablets (not sure on the amount? I know the tablets are quite big, and its kinda a small bottle...).  I'm sure, if you ask, your vet will provide cheaper alternatives if you cannot afford it.

 

I want to point out something said in the 1st link too: 

All dogs receiving any NSAIDs should have a blood chemistry/hematology profile run prior to beginning the medication so your veterinarian will have a reference point to refer to if drug issues develop later. (It is safest to have those same tests repeated every six months to monitor how your pet is handling the medication – particularly its liver and kidneys.)

 

That's important - although mine gets a full panel every year because he doesn't take his pain meds every day...only when he has flareups. 

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So I went and they gave me Metacam (60$ for a 16-30 day supply) which I hear works pretty good, it's in liquid format, anyone have any great ideas how to give it to him orally?
 
I also got some Flexadin Glucosamine, Chondroitine and Harp (All in one tablet) samples to try... Not sure how I will give him these huge tablets he's very picky and already refused one.
 
But I wonder why they say:
 
"Glucosamine / Chondroitin Products
 
Chondroitin is processed cartilage (proteoglycans). Glucosamine is one component of proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycan. A common source of glucosamine in supplements is processed shrimp and crab shells and livestock bones. Both form portions of your pets joint cartilage. It became widely used as a treatment for arthritis after a number of poorly designed studies conducted in the mid 1980s by the product’s Italian manufacturer, Rottapharm. (ref)
 
Sadly to report, more sophisticated recent studies, have found these products to be worthless in treating arthritis in human beings (ref). There are many manufactures, vets and physicians who will tell you that the glucosamine/chondroitin products they sell are better in some way than the ones that were tested. But none have been able to back up those statements with hard facts."
 
I also got some Topagen spray for his small paw infections as well as a Flexadin/Vetoquinol pamphlet with some nice exercises/massaging tips.
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So I went and they gave me Metacam (60$ for a 16-30 day supply) which I hear works pretty good, it's in liquid format, anyone have any great ideas how to give it to him orally?
 
I also got some Flexadin Glucosamine, Chondroitine and Harp (All in one tablet) samples to try... Not sure how I will give him these huge tablets he's very picky and already refused one.
 
But I wonder why they say:
 
"Glucosamine / Chondroitin Products
 
Chondroitin is processed cartilage (proteoglycans). Glucosamine is one component of proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycan. A common source of glucosamine in supplements is processed shrimp and crab shells and livestock bones. Both form portions of your pets joint cartilage. It became widely used as a treatment for arthritis after a number of poorly designed studies conducted in the mid 1980s by the product’s Italian manufacturer, Rottapharm. (ref)
 
Sadly to report, more sophisticated recent studies, have found these products to be worthless in treating arthritis in human beings (ref). There are many manufactures, vets and physicians who will tell you that the glucosamine/chondroitin products they sell are better in some way than the ones that were tested. But none have been able to back up those statements with hard facts."
 
I also got some Topagen spray for his small paw infections as well as a Flexadin/Vetoquinol pamphlet with some nice exercises/massaging tips.

 

For the Metacam, you can try to mix it in with his kibble? Personally I've never given my boy any liquid medication.

 

I have to hide his tablets in globs of Cheez Whiz (he doesn't like peanut butter...), otherwise he will not eat them...even though they claim to be 'beef flavoured'. 

 

The Pet Naturals of Vermont product I mentioned earlier works really well for mine...I researched a lot of brands and they were the ones I thought to be the best. He eats these ones directly out of my hand, thankfully! No 'fooling' with cheez-whiz is required! 

 

I had read before some brands of 'joint supplements' are not as good as others - thankfully the first brand I decided to trust (Pet Naturals of Vermont) worked out really well. Sorry I forgot to mention that before.

Hopefully this other brand will work for you - but remember it'll probably take around 3 weeks for you to notice a difference.

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So I went and they gave me Metacam (60$ for a 16-30 day supply) which I hear works pretty good, it's in liquid format, anyone have any great ideas how to give it to him orally?
 
I also got some Flexadin Glucosamine, Chondroitine and Harp (All in one tablet) samples to try... Not sure how I will give him these huge tablets he's very picky and already refused one.
 
But I wonder why they say:
 
"Glucosamine / Chondroitin Products
 
Chondroitin is processed cartilage (proteoglycans). Glucosamine is one component of proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycan. A common source of glucosamine in supplements is processed shrimp and crab shells and livestock bones. Both form portions of your pets joint cartilage. It became widely used as a treatment for arthritis after a number of poorly designed studies conducted in the mid 1980s by the product’s Italian manufacturer, Rottapharm. (ref)
 
Sadly to report, more sophisticated recent studies, have found these products to be worthless in treating arthritis in human beings (ref). There are many manufactures, vets and physicians who will tell you that the glucosamine/chondroitin products they sell are better in some way than the ones that were tested. But none have been able to back up those statements with hard facts."
 
I also got some Topagen spray for his small paw infections as well as a Flexadin/Vetoquinol pamphlet with some nice exercises/massaging tips.

My 15 year old sibe was given glucosamine (1500 mg) and chondroitin (1200 mg) each day. I have arthritis and this is also what I take (x2). I can tell when I don't take them, and I could also tell when I'd forgotten to give them to my Sibe. I should add that he received the same pills I take, that is to say, human grade.

 

Currently I have a 12 year old lab/rottie cross. He is now on the same for his arthritis. Again, I can tell if I forget to give it to him. He becomes less playful and groans when he gets up. One thing I would like to note is that our vet gave me samples of g/c for the lab/rottie. I thought I'd give them a try and could IMMEDIATELY tell the difference between the human and animal grade in the dog.

 

Just something to consider.

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That's good to know guys!, I tried putting some peanut butter on the gluco-chondro tablet and he didnt go for it... He's so picky with foods, I might have to crunch it up and feed it to him some other way.

 

I wonder if I should wait to see if the anti- inflammatory will go good (So far it is! He's already walked up the stairs faster, he's already asleep and not moving around or breathing harder) to see if there will be any effects before starting the gluco..

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Our young boy, only 1yr 3months, has hip dysplasia. Now its not arthritis yet, it will turn into it as he gets older.

We give him GlycoFlex Glucosamine Soft Chews (2 a day). We get them off Amazon, they are $27 for a 120pc bag. I think they are chicken & liver flavor, and he eats them up with no problems.

We also now feed him Prescription Diet J/D Canine Mobility food.

My wife works at a vet, the GlycoFlex was recommended by one of the techs that work there, and the food they said is the best you can get for it. Its been a alittle over a month since we started him on everything, and he is 100% better then he was. Moves, runs, and jumps a lot more now.

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Unfortunately Wolf is not doing so good after 3 days of Metacam... He looks very sluggish and tired... He acts a bit better after the medication but I don't think it's having a big effect... What the heck could be wrong with him?

Heartworms? Old Age? Lyme Disease? Inner Ear infection?

What do you guys think of a 9 year old Husky-Labrador mix acting like this?

How could he stop running and acting normal in one day just like that?

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Theres a good chance nothing else is wrong with him, just has bad arthritis.

My wife works at a vet and said that Metacam is more of a pain reliever then anything, so it makes sense that he feels better after you give it to him, but once it wears off the pain comes back and he slows back down.

Do you have him on any Glucosamine products? Glucosamine helps with the joints.

Have you gotten any kind of joint or mobility food? Those will also help.

You could try Adequin injections. Its like a cortisone shot for humans.

Also, you could try just giving him plain Aspirin as a temporary pain reliever. It has to be just plain Aspirin though, not Ibuprofen or Advil or any of those. The dose is 5-10mg per 1# of dog.

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No matter what joint supplement/food you give them, it will take time to take effect. It took 3-4 weeks for Suka's joint supplements to take effect for him (and that was giving 3 tablets of the stuff...the regular dosage is 2 tablets a day)

 

The Pet Naturals of Vermont product I mentioned earlier, easywolf, has glucosamine as well as MSM. (The ones Suka is on)

 

Mine isn't on any specialty food, his isn't that bad. 

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Polee has some HD and has had 2 cruciate ligament operations in the passed couple of years.  She's had Rimadyl in the past for pain relief and now has a kibble which contains glucosamine and chondroitin that help significantly with her mobility and allow her to keep up with her new little brother

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The problem with Wolf is that he is the ultimate picky dog when it comes to food, it freaks me out. He will eat good meats that we give him and will eat his food after a walk only, usually. It's going to be extremely hard to give him these gluco pills/tablets, should i cut them up and put them in his chicken...he might spit them out and totally freak me out.........

 

Today, around 10 am, he fell down the stairs while I wasn't home when they went to walk him outside. I gave him his metacam at 8pm.

 

I took him out afterwards and he was limping, his right back leg...  He seems to become alive when he is out though. 

 

Since the morning he's developed a red sore left eye now...At this point, I am freaked out, what the heck do I do now...Stop the metacam, bring him back to the vet?

 

Should I go get him checked for tick disease? Lyme Disease? Heartworm? WHat the hell is wrong with him? I should have gotten his xrays done before giving him metacam...it hasnt even been confirmed he has arthritis...I'm starting to lose it

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Don't panic. Take him back to the vet, get it confirmed what is wrong with his hips, which x-rays will show. And have them check out his sore.

If it is arthritis or HD, Glucosamine is a must. Its one of the only things that will help his comfort. All you can do then is buy a small bag of Glucosamine chews, and see if he eats them (give them to him as a treat or however you have to for him to take them)...and maybe a small bag of food.

For our boy that has HD, we will probably end up forking out $500+ a year for the rest of his life, just to help him with his hips. It will eventually turn into arthritis and we will continue to give him his special food and GlycoFlex 2 chews. Also if we know he is going to be doing any hard running or exercise for long time, we give him Aspirin before hand to help with his pain.

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Ok Thank you! The vet called me and we agreed Wolf will stay there all day Wednesday starting at 9am, I hope they find the problem. I came home today he was trembling with half an infected eye, could barely stand up, a new red spot on his front paws... I wish Wednesday was tomorrow... He is looking better now though... He always does better when he sees me.

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So I brought him this morning to the vet, and now the girl tells me they really dont think it's arthritis but rather neurological symptoms and to go see a specialist frown.gif... It's the same vet who witnessed his seizure 2 weeks ago. She asked if I wanted to take x-rays but said she thought I'd be wasting my money and pushed to go see a neurologist for an evaluation better, I told her to make the appointment, we'll see from here I guess..

 

He can barely walk anymore.

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These are his symptoms: (In bold)

Paresis/Paralysis or Weakness of one or more limbs
knuckling, dragging leg(s), abnormal gait
monopareseis/monoplegia, paraparesis/paraplegia, tetraparesis/tetraplegia
Balance Disorders
lack of balancehead tilt (twice), circling (Happened once or twice a few months ago), nausea,falling/rolling, nystagmus, tremors(WHen he sees me coming after work), ataxia, Horner's syndrome (one eye is half red/closed, maybe side effect from the metacam, seems to be getting better since I stopped that), hypermetria
Vision Disorders
blindness, walking into objects
Seizures (Once) (episodic & stereotyped)
sudden/violent shaking, paddling, dilation of pupils, unresponsive/staring (Has stared into the wall 2-3 times this month), loss of consciousness, salivating/drooling, stiffness, twitching (Has always twitched, especially when sleeping/dreaming?), involuntary urinatination/defecation
Pain
crying out, holding up limb, low head carriage(3-4 times this month when lying towards me), tense muscles,decreased/limited mobility, changes in appetite
Other Neurological Signs
difficulty swallowing or chewing, decreased facial movement, voice changes, muscle atrophy of the head, collapsing, hearing loss, behavior changes (confusion, pacing (At night mostly), wandering), trismus, dropped jaw

He really seems to come alive when out in parks/nature, for example I took him from the vet and brought him to the park and he nearly started running...but his hind legs are very unbalanced now.

I bought him a humongous bed also...

The vet also suggested to give him some phenobarbital...

I dont think our personalities matched, I was always a not so active person and a husky/mix is very active, that could be the reason too...I grew him up in the countryside his first year, I dont think he did well in the city afterwards...always lying on hard floors, etc..

I might start a new thread tomorrow. We dont think he has arthritis at this point, these vets are very professional with great knowledge, I have an appointment Friday at 11am au the neuro specialist, we'll see how that goes, thx guys.

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My vet had also said if he trembles again that's no good and that I should go ahead and give him some phenobarbital.

Well he just trembled again, I gave him one pheno pill and 15-20 mins later it's as if he just woke up from a long bad dream. smile.gif

He started looking at me like where have I been and thank you...

Then he got up on his front paws and started acting all normal...

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The neurologist really recommended after viewing him and doing all her exams on him that it's to do with the brain as well. She really suggested an MRI scan and you are also spot on on everything. The MRI scan is 2,000$. I am very sad that I do not have insurance for him. I asked her what she would do, and she said I would want to know...

 

I told her to give me levetiracetam and she also gave me cortisone pills. 

 

I told her I would think about the MRI scan because she said treatment afterwards is expensive as well. Can go from 2500-10000...

 

I thought about it and I could not stand last night when he was crying because I am sure he was afraid to pee. Well when he peed in the early morning he felt much better. I bought another harness for his back legs, we took him out this morning again and he peed again.

 

Now I just bought him diapers.

 

He is not walking at all now as well.

 

I thought about it and will do the MRI scan even if I have to work more to pay it off it's better than the other route for my conscious. I was ready to get him euthanised last night because I thought he was suffering of pain, but I am sure it's because he wanted to pee...he has not pood yet though.

 

Big situation but I have to go all the way for this guy. I am trying to find out what are the chances he can walk afterwards?

 

If it's a small bening...can it be cured and make him last a few more months/years..

 

What would you do? He is also 9 years old. I wish I were rich here because this is hurting me a lot now. A lot of pain.. He was diagnosed with Proprioceptive ataxia...http://www.petplace.com/dogs/proprioceptive-deficits-in-dogs/page1.aspx

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