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Back Problems

I have a 6 year old beagle who seems to have damaged her neck. I have taken her to the vet several times and they cannot find anything wrong on x-rays. They think it may be something wrong with one of her disks, but say doing exploratory surgery for $1500.00 is the only way to find out. This is not an option because it is out of my price range. Right now they currently have her on prednisone and muscle relaxers, trying to see if keeping her off her feet may help. She seems to go in spurts. When we let her out of the kennel sometimes she walks fairly well, and other times her head is low and her back is hunched. She also seems to have problems with one of her front legs more than the other, aswell as to be suffering from muscle spasms. I am at my wits end trying to figure out what to do. Is there anything else that may be causing these symptoms that my vet may have overlooked?


Heather, sorry to hear about your pets problems, obviously he's in pain and it's frustrating not knowing why. Sure there are some other things that can cause those signs that is why your vets want to do an "exploratory" surgery, they have a rule-out list from arthritis to tumors that they want to check out. Another idea is to find out if there are any human hospitals in the area that are willing (after hours) to run a "magnetic resonance imaging" or "mri" on your dog. They are noninvasive ways to look inside your dog. Cost wise they may or may not be any cheaper but its worth a try. Until then it sounds like the conservative medical combo of relaxants and anti-inflammatories is appropriate. One other thing, while I don't have any experience in veterinary "alternative" treatments, I have had some clients report good results with acupuncture in some back-problem dogs. good luck.

Dr. Mike

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