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Does Your Min Pin Have Intervertebral Disc Disease?

Does Your Min Pin Have Intervertebral Disc Disease?


Dogs are man's best friend. Mary has been around dogs all her life and loves every breed she's met. You can never go wrong with a dog.

Does Your Min Pin Have Weak Legs or Back Problems?

The best place to begin seems to be at the beginning. Let me introduce you to my Min Pin. His name is Buzz and he is a two-year-old brown Min Pin and the love of our lives. He came from Minnesota in January 2010 to take over our hearts. He's been to school (puppy kindergarten, manners class, and agility training) and is a most personable Min Pin. Our vet is amazed at how well-behaved he is AND that he never bites! He's adorable and precocious, as are all Min Pins. I think that's where his trouble began.

Buzz is a jumper and runner. He jumps off of anything—including three and four foot high half-walls and pool decks. When he gets running, he runs so fast he almost looks like he's lying down on his side! Well, a month or so ago we noticed Buzz was holding up his back leg. At first I thought he might've stepped on something, but I couldn't find anything in his paw. He seemed to stop, but then a few days later started again. He began holding it up higher and higher and not putting any pressure on it. Time to call the vet.

The vet examined his leg and couldn't find anything wrong either. He explained he thought it might be Buzzie's knee because Min Pins are known to have trouble with their patella (knee). He said he tried to pop it but it wouldn't pop so he ruled out the knee. He mentioned Buzz's back but said he is too young to have back problems. So, he gave me an anti-inflammatory for Buzz to take for ten days and then return for a follow up visit. Most people shudder at the thought of giving their dogs medication but not us, Buzz will eat anything! The medication was liquid so I put it on a plate for him to lick up. Every day at 11:00 a.m. I gave him his medication. He seemed to be improving but was still holding that leg up.

We returned to the vet and he wasn't happy with the results. When he examined Buzz this time he felt around Buzz's back and Buzz pulled away. Now we had a more serious problem and x-rays were necessary. I had to leave Buzz for a few hours because x-raying a dog requires anesthesia. The vet called me about two hours later with the bad news, Buzz had a herniated disk also known as intervertebral disk disease. Initial treatment is confinement for three weeks while continuing the medication he is on. At the end of three weeks we will discuss what happens next.

Have you ever tried to confine a two year old child? Buzz is worse. All he wants to do is jump. The requirements are no running, no jumping and no playing for three weeks! Short walks are allowed but use a harness not a collar. This is almost a death sentence to a very active little guy.

When I got Buzz home and settled in his crate I immediately turned on my computer and went to minpinpuppies.net:

"Invertebral disk disease affects both humans and dogs. In dogs it’s most often from jumping off of something. There might be paralysis of the hindquarters if the spinal cord is damaged. The nerves and spinal cord sometimes can take very little twisting or manipulation to create damage. For some dogs supervised swimming can be of benefit, under veterinary agreement, as it allows the limbs movement without bearing weight. Although more common in the long backed breeds such as dachshunds it can affect Min Pins as well."

Although I had done what I thought was extensive research before we got Buzz I honestly never saw this one! As with just about everything else on the Internet no answer is definitive.

I go to another site that says:

"Congenital abnormalities of the spine. Young dogs can develop hind leg neurological abnormalities due to congenital deformities of the spine. Such deformities are typically visible on radiographs (X-rays). The severity of the signs depends on the abnormality and its location."

This makes me wonder as Buzz' vet said his condition was genetic.

The more I read the more depressed I get. Different sites mention only surgery will prevent recurrence. Others say chiropractic or swimming therapy may help. I am heartbroken and needless to say upset and confused. I call my vet for reassurance. I have been going to this vet since he moved to this area at least ten years ago (we had another dog who died before we got Buzz). His answer to me was he did not want to give me any misinformation at this time and would rather wait until the three weeks are up to see what we are dealing with. Consoling isn't it? Not only that, should Buzz need surgery he wouldn't do it. I would have to take Buzz to a neurology vet surgeon!

We are one week into our three week regime and I am already at my wits end. Poor Buzz wants to play and I'm petrified. Did I mention several sites said that paralysis very often follows disc herniation especially in a young dog!

The dog's spine, just like a human's is made up of discs and cushions between the discs. These 'cushions' are actually a jell like substance that keep the two discs from rubbing together. When a 'disc' herniates it means that the cushion/gel, has ruptured and is seeping out of the space it is supposed to occupy. This can happen anywhere along the spine. Age can also affect the 'cushion' as in old dogs with arthritis. Usually if this disease is not caused by trauma it isn't seen in dogs until they are three years old or older. Apparently with the first instance of this disease in a young dog confinement and anti-inflammatory drugs are given.

So from what I can gather Intervertebral Disc Disease may be congenital or caused by trauma or caused by just jumping. It may or may not cause paralysis, it may or may not heal without surgery and it may or may not return.

At this point I am a nervous wreck, trying to crate my Buzz and keep him from jumping as much as possible and waiting for the next two weeks to pass to see exactly what's going to happen. (Pet insurance anyone? I should have done that in the beginning.)

If you'd like to know what happens to Buzz at the end of the three weeks please add in Comments below and I will come back and update when we get our results.

On His Way to Recovery

After three weeks the vet says his back has healed. The disc is healed but now what? Everything I've read leads me to believe it will come back and my vet said it could come back in seven years or it could come back tomorrow! Right now he's on one more week of "bed rest," then it's back to a normal life. I'll be living in fear of this happening again. If anyone has any suggestions or anything I can do to minimize the risks of return please, please leave a comment.

Fran on February 16, 2020:

Please keep me posted.

Our Min Pin Koko is going to be 10 in October. He had babied his back right leg about a month ago but after a few hours, he was back to running and jumping.

Today, he has been hobbling around all day, its as if he has paralysis in that same leg.

Saundra Majors on May 12, 2019:

Please keep me posted on Buzz , I have a 1 year old female black and tan Min-Pin

[email protected] on April 01, 2019:

Keep me posted mary about Buzz.

Bonnie on April 01, 2019:

Mary

please keep me post about Buzz.. my baby (butch) he mixed Terrier and Miniature Pinscher he be 1yr old this month. He is holding up his back leg. He love to run and jump just like Buzz. It start couples weeks ago.

.

Marwag on August 08, 2017:

just got the same diagnosis on my Min Pin . It's in his neck I'm devastated .cause he seems fine .keeping him quiet it's not easy cause no jumping on or off of the bed No jumping on and off the couch no stairs short walks I just don't know how I'm gonna do it for 4 weeks. Supposedly it's genetic to the breed . He was running and let out a yelp. Thought it was his shoulder. The possible paralysis scares me. The jumping puts a lot of stress on the neck.

Robert Limehouse on May 15, 2017:

I have an 6 year old min pin that has had this happen to him once and went away but guess what, it came back again so we gonna take another trip to the vet

Erin on October 07, 2016:

Did everyone use prednisone? What about using rimadyl?

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 27, 2016:

Just keep an eye on her. If she does it al the time you might want to get a second opinion just to be safe. It could just be a stiff muscle or a small sprain from jumping, but I would watch it.

Mary Craig (author) from New York on October 07, 2015:

Oh Rob, I am so happy to hear he is doing so well! They are our babies and we will always love them. I hope he continues to be well for many, many years.

Rob on October 02, 2015:

Thank you very much! We have had great success. He is like a brand new puppy. He has recovered beautifully and is back to his old yet new self again! Thanks for the prayers!

Mary Craig (author) from New York on September 13, 2015:

Rob I will keep both of you in my prayers. We love our little guys and seeing them suffer is like suffering ourselves. I hope his pain is gone too! He's been through enough and should get to live pain free now.

Rob on September 12, 2015:

My min pin is 8 years old. He had a disc extrusion at C3/C4. The issue started 2 1/2 years ago and nothing showed on XRays. He was restless, panting and not lifting his head up. He occasionally yelped in pain when doing nothing. The vet started him on prednisone, tramadol and diazapam. After a month and plenty of rest he was back to normal. Then 3 months ago it started up again. He was back on all the meds which only worked temporarily and then completely stopped working. I took him to a neurologist who did an MRI for $2000. She located the extrusion and performed surgery for $2500. Right now my min pin is 3 days post-op. He has to be on strict kennel rest for 2 weeks and then will follow up with the neurologist. He is pretty normal from the surgery with slight weakness in his arms but that was also there pre-op. He is allowed 3 short walks a day no more than 5 mins each. Absolutely no running jumping or playing for the next few weeks. Really hoping all his pain is gone.

Mary Craig (author) from New York on August 13, 2015:

My vet suspected the infection and sent me to a specialist who did a spinal tap. The meds worked for him and now you'd never know. He never had any pain though, as I said, just keeping that leg up in the air.

The exact term is Inervertebral Disk Disease.

Glad to hear Archie is improving. I hope he continues to improve until he's back to his old self, with no pain!

danchiken on August 12, 2015:

It's day 10 he seems to get better.. He can run and walk easily with no pain with tail up and happy... BUT as soon as it's time to give him meds he starts to feel the pain.. I put a warm/hot toy on his back and that seemed to help. I have to give him the pain killer every 8-12 hours as soon as it gets closer to 12ish hours he starts to have the pain..

Any recommendations?

Please explain how ur Vet found out that ur buzz has the spinal fluid infection? And what is the exact term for that? How come at first ur vet told u one thing than the other???!!!??

Mary Craig (author) from New York on August 12, 2015:

Buzz had none of those symptoms. He just held his leg up, wouldn't put any pressure on it at all.

I find it strange the vet couldn't get xrays because the dog was in pain. Have you thought of changing vets? Obviously there is pain somewhere, a dog doesn't cry for no reason. I have never heard of a spinal injection for an ear infection. I seriously think you need a second opinion.

I really hope Archie does better soon.

danchiken on August 10, 2015:

I have a min pin his name is Archie hes about 6 and a half. Hes a crazy little punk. He was all fine (like everyones story) then he started yelping, crying. We rushed to ER and Vet told us different things like IVD and other (cant remember) so vet told us 6-8 week rest, gave us Tramadol, Gabapetin, Trazadone and I think some steroid (I'm school right now don't have the papers on me) Top of my head I think it was prednisone.

They did an Xray and said "we can't see because he's in pain" so they didn't see anything in Xray..

Now i'm assuming that my Archie has spinal fluid infection..

How is Ur BUzz doing? How was he acting? was he crying? Because mine little guy is really wierd. Because he can run and even jump and 30mins later his tail goes down and sits up. then might even cry.

let me know thanks:)

you can text me I have imessage

two 67 four two three five 5 three 9.. My Archie is in bed rest (day 8)

Please let me know ASAP... because I don't want to give my dog such strong drugs..

my pin did have an ear infecton like 3 months ago.. thats why I he has the spinal fluid infection ::))))

Mary Craig (author) from New York on July 02, 2015:

Aubree, I'm afraid Ibuprofen won't do the trick. Somehow you need to get her to a vet. It sounds like IVD or some kind of spinal injury. Let me know how you make out.

aubree on July 02, 2015:

Please I don't know what to say but me and my sister woke up this morning and Storm which in my sisters min pin was fine this morning, but now wont use her back legs we are so scared and don't have money for vet I don't know what to do and we feel so bad I think I'm gonna try giving her some liquid ibuprofen? And see what the does

Mary Craig (author) from New York on November 22, 2014:

You are most welcome Deborah.

deborah lewis on November 22, 2014:

...Thank you for insight.....

Mary Craig (author) from New York on February 15, 2014:

Oh dear Amy, best wishes to you. It may be difficult trying to keep her in a crate. Make sure to put a soft cushion inside and one of her favorite toys to make it seem more like home. Hope all goes well.

Amy on February 14, 2014:

I just took my min pin to an out of state vet- we are visiting my family. She's on 4 pills and will get an X-ray and second opinion when we get home. Going to buy a crate tomorrow- hoping she's not traumatized- she's never been in a crate! Best wishes ...

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 27, 2014:

I don't know what to think either Kibbie, but certainly a second opinion wouldn't hurt. From what I have read an xray alone generally can show show IVDD but a CT Scan or Myelogram is often done to be more conclusive.

As for the jumping, keep in mind some dogs will start jumping as soon as there is any let up of pain. That does not mean they are healed but that they are without pain so on that I agree totally with your Vet. Crating Buzz was the hardest part of his treatment but remember it is also one of the most necessary. Hope all goes well and like I said, don't be afraid to get a second opinion.

Kbbie on January 25, 2014:

Hi, I went to pick up my dog a week ago, and she yelped and tried to bite me (never done anything like that). She is min pin Chuahua mix. 6 years old. Took to vet. Took xrays not under anesthesia, which doesn't makes sense from all I researched. I was not convinced the vet even knew what they were talking about. Vet said saw signs of degeneration on discs, and that perhaps slip disc or bulge but can't see that on xray, but the "differential" was "probably" this is what was causing her pain. They said cadillac treatment was two night stay in hosptial with IV meds. I said do you "know" this is what is causing her pain? They said no. (she never drags a leg etc., but wouldn't jump or run up the stairs). I said if they don't know, why put her in hospital. They said next treatment level would be to crate for two weeks and put on meds. I am doing that now. After the very next day, I took her out of crate, and she is jumpin all over the place. I can hardly get her on leash and stop her from jumping to take her out to go bathroom. Vet said even if pain free before two weeks, keep crating for two weeks. I am confused. Does she have it? I am still crating for the two weeks etc. and following vets orders, but I don't know what to think. Thanks

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 22, 2014:

Unfortunately Maria, that sounds about right, if not on the low side. It cost me three thousand just for the testing. Hope things go well for your Min Pin.

Maria on January 18, 2014:

Our min pin is having these issues. She just turned 9. It is very hard to keep her from jumping on the furniture. Any idea how much the surgery costs? Our vet does not do this procedure, but she thinks its around 4k. Does this sound right?

Mary Craig (author) from New York on March 03, 2013:

The main thing is rest Edd...it can take. Quite awhile for this disease to be controlled. No jumping or running around. If it does not improve surgery is an option and it has a very high success rate.

Edd on March 02, 2013:

have twelve year old female min pin was in great shap at seven pounds just a little girl, jumped off a chair and lost use of her rear legs and being able to go potty she would just fall over,now in diapers and bed rest with anti inflams she shows some improvement its been over three weeks as old as she is i hope she gets well enough to go potty on her own if you can give me any info that would help that would be great. thanks

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 06, 2013:

So sorry Louise. I know their weight is such a problem...Buzz will eat anything and everything, dead or alive! Good luck with your girl. I really hope the second surgery does the trick!

Louise Jutras on January 06, 2013:

My min pin is 5years and has had two surgeries in six month hopefully this is the last. She is in kennel rest for 4-6 weeks. She is doing better than the first one She has intervertebal disc disease

We were told to reduce her weight Hopefully this will work

Mary Craig (author) from New York on December 18, 2012:

That's wonderful Casie....its only been three months! So glad he's doing okay. Buzz turned out not to have IVDD but a spinal fluid infection...he will be on prednisone, 1/4 pill twice a week for a year! He seems fine but his appetite it outrageous.

casie on December 18, 2012:

hi hows your dog buss is he doing good still my pomerain is doing really good i had no surgeries just crate rest and meds for three weeks and its months later hes back to himself i try to keep him from jumping sometimes he does i hope and pray that it will never return good luck

Mary Craig (author) from New York on August 31, 2012:

Jaye, so sorry for your surgeries, especially the ones that didn't work! It is always so difficult with a dog, especially trying to keep a puppy down!

Jaye Denman from Deep South, USA on August 30, 2012:

Hi, Til...I'm so glad Buzz recovered and is doing well. I just read a hub by Mary615 about her mini schnauzer getting the same disorder from jumping. Her dog recovered after being prevented from jumping or climbing stairs. I think non-invasive treatments are always to be preferred and tried before surgery unless it's a life-or-death emergency (dogs or people, and I state that with the experience of 18 surgeries behind me--several of which did not work).

Jaye

Mary Craig (author) from New York on August 30, 2012:

Thank you Casie for telling me the good news! I am so happy for you and your pup. It's a terrible thing when your dog is in pain and you have to watch. I wish you continued good luck!

casie mitchell on August 29, 2012:

my pom is doing really good in 1 week his back healed two more weeks of rest then back to normal the vet said he is pain free he should be good to run and play again but i have to watch his jumping for it wont come back he jumps off anything good luck with all the rest of you guys hope your dogs will heal and be back to nomal

Mary Craig (author) from New York on August 25, 2012:

Obviously I am not a vet Casie but I did a lot of research. IF it heals completely he should go back to normal. Good luck.

casie mitchell on August 25, 2012:

i have a pom in cage rest now he only has mild pain it hurts me that he canot run and play he has the disk thing to do you know if he heals without surgery if he can ever run or play again does your dog run jump and play again

Mary Craig (author) from New York on May 02, 2012:

I am so sorry Samantha. All min pins love to jump, run & play, I think it's in their genes. The only consolation is, if found early enough it can be treated and I have to say all the dogs I've seen that have had the surgery went on to lead normal, healthy lives, even going on to agility competitions! Please let me know how you make out, I would really like to know.

Samantha on May 01, 2012:

My poor baby Guinness (he's a min pin) is at the animal hospital now. I spoke with the doctor about an hour ago and said its an disc issue, & to call in the morning so he can go into more details of it. My husband and I are so worried for Guinness because he loves to jump, run & play.

Mary Craig (author) from New York on April 13, 2012:

Thanks Jessie, Buzz is doing fine. He'll be on steroids for a year to make sure but so far so good. I am so sorry to hear about your Pomeranian. It is a painful thing to watch and probably harder on you right now than your dog. I hope the meds work and surgery isn't necessary. We'll be thinking about you. Let me know how she makes out.

Jessie on April 12, 2012:

Our 6 year old Pomeranian is going though the exact same thing right now. It started Tuesday April 10th, she suddenly started dragging her back right leg out of nowhere. We have since seen our regular vet and a critical care surgeon. Per the surgeons suggestion, we are going to try the prednisone (steroid) and pain killers (although she doesn't really seem to be in any pain) for now and follow up with them this weekend.

I, like you, am a nervous wreck. Keeping my baby confined and seeing her not being able to run and play like normal is tearing me up inside. We're praying these meds help turn her around. The thought of not knowing if that leg is headed towards paralysis is the most frightening thing. I know there is a small window of time to get a dog into surgery if that's the case.

Unfortunately with her xrays it's hard to call whether or not a vertebrae is touching and of course her discs and spinal cord don't show up. I think a MRI is the next step if things don't improve.

Sending lots of positive thoughts your way, I hope Buzz is doing better!

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 20, 2012:

Ace? Is it a medication?

Brett Winn from US on January 20, 2012:

Don't be afraid to ask the vet for some Ace if you need it ... it is very helpful in keeping a dog less active!

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 20, 2012:

Thanks Brett, I think we have a long road ahead of us because crating him is working but the second I let him out of the crate he starts jumping. Thanks for stopping by.

Brett Winn from US on January 19, 2012:

I had a wonderful dog eventually become paralyzed with this. I pray your little dog will recover!

Mary Craig (author) from New York on January 19, 2012:

Thanks Krissy. Right now it's the not knowing if he's going to need surgery or not that's killing me and the fact that he won't sit still.

krissy72 from Ohio on January 19, 2012:

i'm sorry to hear about your dog having this disease. I hope that things work out for your dog. I know how hard it is to watch a pet suffer in pain.


Clark's Fast Facts: Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD)

Note: I am not a vet. This is information I've collected via research and thru personal experience.

Please consult with your own vet to see what's right for your Dachshund.

Cost of Surgery Varies widely through out the USA. Be sure to check out the University Teaching Vet Hospital in your region There are many variables in total surgery/post op costs, length & difficulty of surgery, preventative fenestration, PT such as water therapy, in addition to how many days stay in hospital after surgery, etc. DO NOT go by price alone. One good way to reduce the risks of surgery is to choose a specialist, a board certified vet: neurological (ACVIM) or orthopedic (ACVS) surgeon , who has been well trained to do the surgery and has plenty of experience and practice with IVDD surgery. Working on the delicate spinal cord is a very tricky and complicated surgery. Look into Care Credit for no or low interest credit. Here are c urrent reported costs. http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/surgerycosts.htm Index

X-Ray, Myelogram, MRI, CT

X-ray/radiography is used generally to rule out other conditions as x-rays only show bones and no soft tissue such as herniated disc material pushing on the spinal cord.

". calcified discs do not necessarily mean that this particular disc is going to rupture. It only means that the dog very likely has IVDD and this chalky appearance to the discs is only a "normal" part of the abnormal aging process of such a dog's discs.

Your Veterinarian may point these calcifications out to you on your dog's radiographs. Do not be mislead into thinking that these calcifications are the only problem area if your dog is experiencing back pain or has suffered a disc rupture. In fact, most often, the actual site of the disc rupture is NOT at one of these calcified spaces. " from Dodger'sList Calicified Discs: What They Are and What They Mean in the Dachshund Back., Laurie Miller, Surgical Vet Tech.

x-ray of a dog's spine showing bone

MRI of a dog's spine showing detail of bone and soft tissue discs and spinal cord

The following three type of pictures require anesthesia. (As with any general anesthesia, complications may arise. Even though rare, anesthetic death can occur. With the use of modern anesthetic protocols and monitoring devices, the risk of problems with anesthesia is minimal) so recommended if surgery will be an option and is done prior to going into surgery.

Myelography is often the first choice as a veterinarian can perform the procedure himself. General anaesthesia is used. This procedure involves inserting a needle in the bag (dural sac) that surrounds the spinal cord. Dye (which can be seen on radiographs) is then injected. Radiographs (x-rays) are made to see where the spinal cord is being compressed. Myleograms are invasive. They do not give the same detail as MRI, and also have a degree of risk, siezures. .

CT and MRI require anaesthesia to keep the doxie still and are non-invasive and gives multiplanar images of structures being evaluated resulting in cross sectional images with no superimposition of structures such as ribs. Bony changes are seen very well with CT but soft tissue differentiation is not as good as in MRI.

MRI results in excellent soft tissue detail and reasonable detail of bone and cartilage. MRI is considered the gold standard.

If surgery will not be an option and other diseases mimicking IVDD have been ruled out, then err on the side of symptoms being IVDD and put the doxie on strict crate rest for the next 8 weeks and go with conservative medical treatment from your vet until a diagnosis otherwise has been found.

Symptoms & behaviors of IVDD

В· Head held high or nose to the ground with neck discs В· Reduced activity В· Slower movement В· Stiffness or difficulty climbing stairs В· Difficulty with walking and jumping В· Very tense abdomen В· Hunched back due to muscle tension В· Crying or shaking В· Inability to move rear legs В· Loss of bladder and bowel control

If your doxie exhibits any of the above signs however mild, immediately restrict movement by placing him in a crate and take him to a vet. IF your dachsie is dragging his legs/ has stopped using his hind legs completely, lost bladder control THIS IS AN EMERGENCY ! Get your dog to a board certified neuro (ACVIM) or ortho (AVCS) surgeon specialist as soon as possible if surgery is an option for your family. Only a specialist's advise on surgery should be considered. General vets are not qualified to provide surgical opinion as to whether surgery is indicated or not. Without good training in this disease, mistakes can be made in correctly identifying a critical neuro responses called deep pain sensation or not emphasizing necessary crate rest. Neuro or Ortho specialists deal with IVDD cases, many each day. They accurately access DPS. After a dog is paralyzed there is a window of 12-24hrs from loss of DPS that surgery can STILL be successful. The longer after 24 hours, chances are reduced for success. Precious hours can be lost with a vet that is not specialized with IVDD. Often it is money well spent to get the right treatment immediately from specialists who know this disease, than to go from general vet to general vet trying to find one who knows IVDD.

If surgery is not an option all hope is not lost! I mmediate 100% STRICT crate rest 24/7 is a must to prevent worsening of the bad disc and to prevent permanent spinal cord d amage. The meds do not heal discs nor heal nerves . Meds re duce spinal cord swelling (anti-inflammatory , provide comfort (p ain meds) and protect the GI tra ct (Pepcid AC) . A disc episode is a s cary ti me . Your self education will make all the differen ce fo r you and for your dog. Be in the know:
http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingpain.htm [pain relief meds]
http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingsweling.htm [The two classes of anti-inflammatories + caveats]
http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingnerves.htm [The potential for nerves to self heal]

C rate rest is the single most important part of conservative treatment short of surgery (or until surgery is indicated).The dog owner will play an instrumental role by understanding the critical need for STRICT crate rest. Keep your dachsie extremely quiet during the recovery period of 8 weeks for conservative treatment and 6 weeks if post op. The dog will be carried to and from potty area and allowed only a few steps on a leash. 100% STRICT crate rest 24/7 only out at potty times 8 weeks is required for those undergoing medical (conservative) treatment. The benefit of surgery is PT can be started when the surgeon directs it. If the dog is doing medical (conservative) treatment, the steroids often help a dog feel better, so that they'll want to run or jump or move in ways that could disrupt the disc trying to form scar tissue which often leads to even more damage to the spinal cord. Some dogs do not like the plastic crates and do better with a wire crate or wire panel fence that provides more visibility. How to do proper crate rest. A good list of supplies and ideas to make crate rest go smoother. A road map to understanding what makes conservative treatment work and when to expect the various parts of the healing process to happen.

Medical management (non-surgical) vs. Surger y

Medical treatment (conservative treatment) of d rugs combined with 8 weeks of crate rest and acupuncture is a good approach as long as the dog is only displaying walking problems and/or discomfort. But once paralysis of the legs occur or loss of bladder control, more aggressive therapy surgery can be a consi deration . hours count in spinal cord damage. If surgery is an option, do not delay. Do know that many dogs with partial paralysis or are completely paralyzed, given enough time have been able to regain "normal" function without surgery. Essential reading to weigh the the difference of the two treatments (conservat ive and surgical): http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingsurgery.htm Dr. Isaacs, AC VIM (ne urol ogy) answers questions for those decid ing whether surgery or to stick with conservative as well as what to expect with surgery, post -op, etc. : http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/surgery.htm

Sometimes surgery is not an option financially or medically. It can still a good idea to have a consultation with a neuro or ortho specialist if you feel your vet is not comfortable with conservative treatment . The specialist has much more experience with these cases than the general practitioner vet does, that they can make a proper evaluation and prescribe proper conservative treatment medications.

Whether your dachsie is paralyzed or mobile, showing signs of pain after several attempts to go off meds while on conservative treatment, then surgery may be a consideration to prevent a life of pain and discomfort caused by herniated disc material pressing against the spinal cord.

Laser light therapy and/or acupuncture is used for relieving pain and inflammation and to help stimulate nerves to regenerate. General relaxation is also a benefit. Acupuncture can be done with needles or with cold laser therapy directed at the acupuncture points. These therapies can be started at any time with a post-op or conservatively treated dog. More information and directory: http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingacupuncture.htm

What is IVDD?

Since there is no way to tell if your dachsie puppy has the disease and whether symptoms will show up later in life, it is very important: 1) to make sure your dog is used to a crate in case of a future need to confine 2) not to use stairs, 3) not to jump up or down on furniture (get ramps for your home). Sitting up, standing on back legs, tug-o-war are no, no's. Switch to using a harness for walks, the collar is too stressful on the spine. Index

Success rate of treatment

100% STRICT confinement 24/7 to a recovery suite (wire crate, ex-pen, pak n play) for 8 weeks to immobilize the spine except for being carried to and from potty place is all important. How to do crate rest: http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/CrateRRP.htm

Typical meds: steroid to reduce swelling. Until swelling goes down there will be pain, muscle relaxants and pain relievers help to mask the pain. Release of pressure on the spinal cord is measured by a decrease in pain. Healing of the disc is is accomplished only with time and limited movement. there are no meds to heal a disc. If a dog is allowed too much freedom too soon the disc will leak again and dog can be back where he started--or worse. How the pain relievers work: http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingpain.htm How the anti-inflamm a tory drug work: http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingsweling.htm

You will need to provide care for your doxie, no matter which treatment is used- 6 weeks of post op crate rest or 8 weeks of crate rest with conservative treatment. Return of neuro functions can take weeks to months, even as much as over a year dogs have been known to walk again. If the cord is too severely damaged the dog will never walk. However it is in the cards for all dogs to return to a pain free, loving and happy life again whether walking or using a wheelchair.

There are many factors that affect the outcome of your dog's injury. The two most important factors are the severity and duration of the injury. When paralyzled, there is one last indicator of neuro function left, deep pain sensation (DPS) When there is no DPS the innermost part of the spinal cord has been damaged. There is still a good chance for a successful surgical outcome if surgery is performed 12-24 hours from loss of DPS. The more hours after 24 hours, chances are reduced. Many general vets do not have the training to correctly interpret the DPS test of pinching the toe bone, crucial hours can be wasted while the delicate spinal cord deteriorates. If your dog is paralyzed that is an emergency, go to a neuro or ortho specialist ASAP. A specialist has the practiced eye and years of training to correctly perform a neruo exam. You will need to provide crate rest for your doxie, no matter which treatment is used. Recovery of leg functions can range from weeks to months, even as much as over a year dogs have been known to walk again. If the cord is too severely damaged the dog will never walk.

Doctors have no way to measure the amount of cord damage, nerves that are not totally damaged grow about 1-3mm a day. So think positive and never give up hope. Doxies don't read the statistics and their bodies often surprise us.

Handicapped and happy.

---- Steroids are used for their anti-inflammatory effects. The initial swelling of the cord due to impact of a disc bursting into the spinal cord is a type of inflammation that responds especially well to the corticosteroids and their neuroprotective effects . Steroids affect many body systems not just the target area of the spine and a blood panel is recommend to test health of the organs before using. For example suppression of immune and inflammatory systems may result in increased susceptibility to secondary infection (UTI). Gastric ulceration (stomach problems). Steroids are often accompanied by GI protectant drugs (such as over the counter Pepcid AC) to avoid potential stomach damage. Allow at least one week if switching over between prednisone and NSAID's. Steroids must never to stopped abruptly, they need to be tapered off. Note: A genetic predisposition for diabetes is suspected in Keeshonds, Puliks, Cairn Terriers, Miniature Pinschers, Poodles, Dachshunds, Miniature Schnauzers, and Beagles. Most dogs are diagnosed between 4 and 14 years old. Any dog suspected of having an insulin related disease, should have tests run before using steroids.

NOTE: Steroids are NOT pain killers. Dog will be in pain until the swelling starts to go down. A general analgesic pain medication such as Tramadol and possibly methocarbamol for the pain from muscle spasms are typically prescribed. Nothing worse than to get your dog home to find later that night or on the weekend pain kicks in and you have nothing on hand.

---- NSAIDs (non steroidal anti inflammatory drug): ETOGESIC (etodolac), RIMADYL (carprofen), METACAM (meloxicam), DERAMAXX (deracoxib), PREVICOX (firocoxib), ZUBRIN (tepoxalin), NOVOX (carprofen), ASPIRIN A blood panel is recommended before using NSAIDs to test the health of organs.

Although they [NSAIDs] have never been reported to be neuroprotective in spinal cord injury models, there has been a long-standing interest in these drugs because of their potential to block prostaglandin production. None of these drugs have been tested extensively for neuroprotective effects. Experimental Therapies of Spinal Cord Injury. Wise Young, Ph.D., M.D. Last updated 7 January 2002.

NSAID have minimal benefit in acute spinal cord injury and increase the risk of complications, especially if used in conjunction with corticosteroids. ("Trauma" The Merck Veterinary Manual. В© 2006 Merck & Co., Inc.Whitehouse Station, NJ USA.) http://www.merckvetmanual.com/mvm/index.jsp?cfile=htm/bc/100713.htm last accessed 11/28/2007

    • Do not mix aspirin, a NSAID, or steroids along with another NSAID .
    • 10 to 14 days is recommended when switching to another veterinary NSAID from aspirin
    • Pfizer recommends a 5 to 7 days a washout from the body before changing from one NSAID to another or to a steroid. Vets who practice safe medicine follow the 5-7 day washout out period to avoid bleeding ulcers and other gastro-intenstinal problems.
    • NSAIDs should be approached cautiously in dogs with kidney, liver, heart and intestinal problems.
    • Never give your dog an NSAID unless directed by your veterinarian.
    • Don't assume an NSAID for one dog is safe to give to another dog. Always consult your veterinarian before using any medication in your pet.
    • Only give the NSAID as prescribed by your veterinarian. Do not increase the dose, the frequency, or the length of time you use the drug unless first discussing this with your veterinarian.
    • Ask your vet to prescribe something like Pepcid AC (famotidine), Carafate to protect the stomach lining and decrease stomach acid secretion.
    • Red fla g signs t hat the GI t ract needs more prote ction : not eatin g , not drinking, vomit, loose stools, black or red blood diareah. When http://www.dodgerslist.com/literature/healingacupuncture.htm (famotidine) is not suffic ient as it is for most dogs, sucralfate is added for double protectio n
    • FDA information is a must read if you are giving a NSAID to know what to monitor for and action to take: http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/ResourcesforYou/AnimalHealthLiteracy/ucm196295.htm

---- Pain Relievers

---- Muscle Relaxers

    • Robaxin (Methocarbamol) exerts its effect by acting on the central nervous system (i.e., the nerves that control the muscles) rather than on the muscles themselves. Methocarbamol can be used in any condition where painful muscle spasms should be reduced for patient comfort. An oral dose of methocarbamol is active in the body approximately 30 minutes after administration with activity peaking in 2 hours (in humans). Has some sedative properties. Sensitive animals will salivate or vomit.
    • Valium (Diazepam) The injectable form of diazepam is often used in anesthetic protocols. Diazepam is rarely used as a tranquilizer for animals as it simply not very strong and not very reliable. Diazepam may have a stronger than expected effect if used in conjunction with Tagamet (Cimetidine). Anti-acids may slow the onset of effect of diazepam .

---- Neuropathic pain (abnormal signals from the spinal cord) treatment

This type of pain is uncommon and usually felt at or below the level of the injury. Abnormal signals from the nerves damaged by the SCI feel like mild tinglings to very painful on-fire sensations causing a dog to lick, chew and in some cases chew off a foot, penis, or more tragic lethal damage. These abnormal signals explain why a paralyzed dog can feel neuropathic pain in an area that otherwise has no sensation. Many different medications are used for neuropathic pain, including antidepressants at low doses, anticonvulsants such as Neurontin (gabapentin), narcotics (morphine, codeine) or NSAIDs. Sometimes combinations of drugs work better than a single drug. Dog must never be left alone without an e-collar or no-bite collar. These symptoms can periodically surface during the dog's lifetime.

Vets are finding good suc cess with ha rder to control p ain during a disc episode by using Gabapentin along with Tramadol and Methocarbamol.

Index

Veterinarians, all equal? As a lay person, it's hard to know if your vet has prescribed the proper medical treatment. We tend to trust that we are placing our pets where they will get safe, effective and the most-up-to date procedures. As with any profession from your hair stylist, car mechanic to your own doctor, you realize some are better than others. Same with vets, some are more personable, smarter, skilled and do more research.

A general vet can't possibly be as up-to-date on specialized areas as a neurosurgeon can. You would not go to your own general doctor for brain surgery, you'd be referred to a specialist, a neurosurgeon. If at anytime you question something, or just don't feel right, seek a second opinion, consult with a specialist, do your own research on the Internet, communicate with support groups who've been there/ done that. Be an educated consumer so you understand what your vet is saying and ask good questions, your pet so depends on you! Join DodgersList for education and support. Intervertebral Disc Disease DVD
Everything you need to know about IVDD and taking care of a downed dog. Education will be a game changer for you and your dog. This DVD is priced at $3 including postage so everyone can afford one. DVD is also available in the UK (via the UK Dachshund Breed Council.) See the promo video clip and then order. Chock full of information on the two treatments for disc disease PLUS tips your vet may not have had time to tell you about during home care recovery. A must for all Dachshund owners. Comments from a vet's perpective: " Many people know the symptoms of one disease very well. Veterinarians are almost all general practitioners. Most work on several species of animals and treat disorders of all body organs and systems medically and surgically. Inevitably, they are not going to know the medical problems of every single dog breed or cat breed well. They are not going to have "cutting edge" knowledge about every organ system in their head. It is very easy for a non veterinarian to learn the medical problems of one or two breeds in more depth than their veterinarian. It is a little more difficult, but not close to impossible, for a lay person to learn more about a particular organ system than the average veterinarian. Especially if it affects a beloved pet of theirs. My knowledge of veterinary medicine surpasses almost every lay person's knowledge, in general. That gives me the ability to research many topics more quickly than a lay person can. It doesn't take me as long to get "up to speed" as it took a particular client to acquire an in-depth understanding of a particular disease affecting their pet.

Please let your vet know what treatment level you are looking for. If you want the best care for your pet, say so. If you want your vet to provide the best possible compromise between the hypothetical "best treatment" and the "best cost" treatment, let her know. Don't allow your vet to take multiple X-rays and fix a fractured leg and THEN tell him that you really only wanted to spend $25. Your veterinarian really is trying to understand what sort of care you want for your pet"


S PINAL DISEASE AND PARALYSIS IN DOGS

INTERVERTEBRAL DISC DISEASE – slipped disc

Slipped discs are very common in certain breeds of dogs, especially those with long backs. The breeds most often affected are the Dachshund, the Pekingese, certain terrier breeds and the Pug. Dachshunds and Pekingeses are chondrodystrophic breeds with a long spinal column and short, crooked legs and joints. Discs between their vertebrae will degenerate early.

The Pekingese has very bandy legs and joints and is known as a chondrodystrophic breed

Healthy discs act like flexible cushions between vertebrae. (5) As they age, discs lose pliability and harden. (4)This happens unusually early in certain breeds like the Dachshund and the Pekingese, often between three and six years of age. When discs are damaged, this is called Inter vertebral Disc Disease (IVDD). In IVDD, the disc herniates through its outer shell, like the inside of a grape popping out its skin. This causes a sudden pressure against the spinal cord. (3)(4) The risk is worsened by obesity, jumping, rough handling, or intense exercise. (1)

PREVENTION OF DISC DISEASE

You must keep your dog’s weight normal.

Keep him from jumping on or off furniture, and climbing stairs. (3)

Exercise his muscles and legs daily, but (5) don’t allow things that stress the back, such as sitting up and begging.

Use a ramp to allow access to furniture.

When holding him, keep the back horizontal by holding them like a football, with the hind quarters under your arm, and your hands under the chest.(2)

Teddy has 3 slipped discs as he is overweight!


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Does Your Min Pin Have Intervertebral Disc Disease? - pets

Dog breed info
Miniature Pinscher
“Min Pin”
'Zwergpinscher'
Weight: 8 — 10 lbs
Height: 10” — 12”
AKC Rank 2008 #32
Lifespan: 12—14 yrs
Group Toy
Origin Germany

Dog Breed Info - The Miniature Pinscher

Original function, hunting small vermin. Today… Companion dog. Colors—Clear red, stag red, black and tan.

Miniature Pinschers are not related to Doberman Pinschers. Min Pin’s are an older breed than the Doberman’s.

During the nineteenth century, these dogs probably resulted from crossing a small short-haired terrier like the German Pinscher with the Dachshund and Italian Greyhound.

The Min Pin could be one of the most energetic dog breeds. These little German spitfires were developed into a very distinct breed, the “reh pinscher” in the early 1800’s so named because of their resemblance to the small red German “roe deer.” “Pinscher” means terrier.

The popularity of the Min Pin continued to grow in America and received AKC recognition in 1929. The Min Pin was one of the more popular toy breeds in the USA.

Not easy, but the Miniature Pinscher MUST be obedience trained or you are in for trouble, the same as with the Doberman Pinscher. This breed leans toward dominance and without training will try to rule the house. The best method is clicker training and positive reinforcement which can be learned right here.

The Miniature Pinscher has a stubborn streak and wants to dominate but if you keep at it, he will come around for you and become a wonderful little companion.

Want to crate train your Miniature Pinscher? It's easy and if you're interested, take a look and you'll see what to do. Crate training your Min Pin puppy will save many headaches and problems.

Miniature Pinscher puppies can be slow to house train, potty train, toilet train, housebreak or whatever you want to call it. If you have a puppy, decide if you want to crate or paper potty train it. For the best results, we have a page at Crate vs Paper Potty Training which will help you decide and from there you can get all the information you need to get the job done. Always praise the pup profusely when she goes potty in the RIGHT PLACE so she knows she has done a good thing. Either method will work for this breed.

If you have an older dog, take the dog outside every two hours until she gets the idea which door leads to her potty area. Older dogs catch on to the potty or housebreaking pretty fast once they are shown what to do.

Miniature Pinscher's are among the most energetic of all breeds. It is busy, inquisitive and quite playful. He can be stubborn and independent. He can be testy with other dogs and may chase small animals. He tends to be wary of strangers.

If you happen to get a Min Pin with a separation anxiety problem, that can be dealt with by investing a few hours of work on your part and some "tough love."

Miniature Pinschers -- Mother and puppy

Friendly Toward Other Dogs

Generally, NO. Your Min Pin might find 1 dog out of 8 that he likes.

Friendly Toward Other Pets

NO. He should be the only dog in the house. He’s not crazy about cats, either.

Friendly Toward Strangers

NO. Your family coming to visit is okay—just assure the dog they mean no threat. The keyword here is “stranger.”

Yes. Very playful I’d give this one 10 bars out of 10.

Somewhat affectionate. A Min Pin needs companionship and should not be left alone for long periods. In return, he will act as watchdog and guardian and give all the affection he can.

No. Maybe older kids, 10 and up. Their legs are very fragile and break easily. Kids can't play rough with this dog.

Good with Seniors over 65?

Yes. The Miniature Pinscher is well suited. A senior has the time to keep the dog busy and stimulated, thus out of trouble. The Min Pin requires little outdoor exercise other than some short walks which most seniors can handle.

Miniature Pinscher's need lots of company. Seniors are home a lot. It’s a natural. Min Pins do well in a house and do not need to go outside for exercise if the weather is inclement.

Apartment, farm, ranch, city life all OK.

A small backyard would be nice for the dog to roam and sniff around. Maybe even play some fetch with a small ball.

This breed must be kept in a warm environment. It can not tolerate the cold of winter. This breed also likes to sleep under the covers, so take it to bed with you.

The Min Pin needs lots of activities to keep it focused and provide an outlet for it’s energy.

Low. A walk or two a day or some play in the yard or house will get it done.Because of it’s small size, the Min Pin’s exercise needs can be met indoors or out.

No, mostly bark. He will bite but he’s so small that.

Brush out the dead hair every week or so.

The 3rd book over is 101 tricks you can teach your dog. There are things for the dog to do I had never dreamed of!

The book on the right is by the American National First aid and deals with dog emergencies, illnesses and injuries. It is a valuable book for all dog owners and I always keep my copy handy!

In the event you decide to go looking for Min Pin puppies, be SURE to find reputable breeders that really know what they are doing. Be sure the puppy has been well socialized and started in obedience training.
Min Pin Breeders with puppies for sale.

In the event you are seriously considering the adoption of a Miniature Pinscher and are looking for a Min Pin Rescue group or groups in your state, here are several links that might help:
Petfinder - Min Pin Rescue - (Nationwide) When adopting, check the dog health records for any serious past illnesses if possible.
Adopt A Pet The Min Pin is not that common. Surf the web for local Min Pin Rescue groups and of course look into local shelters.

This is basically a healthy breed. Don’t let the list below scare you! Your own dog will probably never have ANY of these problems. These are dog illness and medical issues this breed is prone to that have been listed by various veterinarians at different times over the past decade or so and some pertain to puppies and very young dogs that a breeder would deal with.

The information contained herein has been gathered from numerous books by veterinarians and is intended as general information only. Every dog and situation is different. You must see your vet. Our information is for general interest only and not intended to replace the advice provided by your own veterinarian.

    Legg-Perthes—A disease of the hip joint in young Miniature Pinscher's. It is a deforming of the head of the femur head where it fits into the pelvic socket and is generally noticed at around 6 to 8 months age. The disease affects small and toy breeds and can range from mildly debilitating to totally debilitating. It’s very painful and the dog will have a lame leg at the affected hip. Pain can become severe in some dogs and the dog will go from occasional limping to continuous carrying of the leg. Severe muscle atrophy can set in with the appearance of shortening of the affected leg. Restricted joint movement is also a common sign Legg-Perthes. Surgery will usually restore a dog to a fairly normal life but prevention at the breeding stage is the right solution.

Corneal Dystrophy—An inherited disease of the eye. A fluid buildup causing the outer part of the cornea to appear white and move inward toward the center. A very painful and difficult to treat ulcer will develop.

Entropion—Eye irritation caused by the eyelids and lashes rolling inward. The problem is usually inherited and found in young, adult dogs. It can come from an eyelid spasm. Affected eyes will be held partially shut and tear excessively. Both eyes will usually be affected the same. Treatment for the condition requires eye surgery.

Patellar luxation—Limping, Hind Leg Held Up, Can’t straighten back leg. Caused by an unusually shallow spot on the femur, weak ligaments and misalignment of tendons and muscles that align the knee joint and allow the knee cap (patella) to float sideways in and out of position. This can be caused by injury or be present at birth and can affect both rear legs. It’s most common in small and toy dogs. If your Miniature Pinscher has trouble straightening the leg, is limping, or is walking on three legs and holding one hind leg up, look for patellar luxation. Several of my dogs have had the problem and all I’ve done is reach down, massage the knee a little until they drop their leg, and we’re good to go for another 3 or 4 months. Severe cases require surgery for a fully lame leg.

Urolithiasis—Excessive crystals (urinary stones or bladder or kidney stones) can form in the urinary tract or kidney, bladder or urethra, blocking the flow of urine. The crystals or stones irritate the lining of the urinary tract. They cause blood in the urine and pain and in severe cases make urination impossible. Symptoms are frequent urination, urinating in odd places, blood in urine, dribbling, depression, weakness, straining, pain, vomiting and loss of appetite. Miniature Pinscher's can be treated by diet, medications and surgery, depending on the dog, severity and other circumstances of the individual case.

Pannus—A disorder of the cornea of the eye affecting certain breeds in the 4 to 7 year range with an increase in dogs living at higher elevations. Not painful and treatable. If not treated for the remaining life of the dog, the cornea will slowly darken and scar causing visual impairment.

Cataracts - Hazy or cloudy vision and if not treated will lead to total blindness.

Glaucoma - Pressures in the eyes eventually leading to blindness.

Diabetes mellitus—Inadequate amounts of the hormone insulin are produced by the pancreas, or, in some cases the Miniature Pinscher is insensitive to it. The pancreas controls the production of glucose, the primary fuel for the body produced by the liver. With diabetes, there is not enough insulin to stop production of glucose by the liver and the build-up finally affects the kidneys which allow glucose to get into the urine, causing excess urination and thirst. Dogs with the problem may lose weight, develop cataracts, object to exercise, want more food, and have an increase in infections. Treatment is mainly through special diets and insulin injections.

Mitral stenosis (Mitral valve insufficiency)—Hereditary heart problem. A weak mitral valve allows blood to flow backwards and to simplify this, the net result is an enlarged heart and when the heart can no longer compensate, look for a loss of desire for exercise, trouble breathing, coughing at night and liquid in the lungs. As this progresses, the dog may collapse. There is no cure. but if you act quickly, the vet may be able to make the dog more comfortable with medication and diet.

Hypothyroidism—An underactive thyroid gland produces too little thyroid hormone which reduces the dog's metabolism level. Hypothyroidism stems from the dog’s immune system attacking the tissues of the thyroid gland. Bottom line is the dog becomes symptomatic. The cause can be a predisposition for thyroid problems, air pollution and allergies. A FEW symptoms of the disorder include lethargy, weight gain, skin infections, dry skin, hair loss, slow heart rate, ear infections, depression. See your set right away.

Intervertebral disc disease—Biochemical changes in a young dog of certain breeds can cause at least one diseased or mineralized disc in the spine of the Miniature Pinscher. A disc that is not functioning properly will cause pain, problems walking, stumbling, severe neck pain and even paralysis. The Dachshund has an 80% chance of having this problem. Treatments can go from non-invasive doses of anti-inflammatory steroids, muscle relaxants and bed-rest to surgery. Pain meds are also given as needed. Mess with the spine and you have a serious situation and it’s tough on the dog!

Cerebellar abiotrophy—Brain disorder with no known treatment. It’s a degenerative condition that indicates loss of necessary nutritional substances. Cerebellar nerve cells form normally and then degenerate and die off causing inability to control distance and speed. Loss of muscular control is not seen at birth of the Miniature Pinscher, but gradually appears over time until finally disabling completely. Cause, unknown. The diagnosis is made when there is increasing neurological dysfunction seen day to day in the dog.

Deafness—Hereditary or caused by: Excessive loud noise, Intolerance to anesthesia, drug toxicity, and Otitis (middle ear infection), In some cases, one ear can have no hearing from birth and the other ear can be losing the ability to hear over time, undetected, then suddenly one morning the hearing is totally gone. There is no reversing once that happens.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy—An inherited, untreatable disease of the retina affecting both eyes causing blindness. It’s in the genes of the dog and is not painful. Starts with night blindness and progresses as the retina gradually deteriorates.

Epilepsy - A serious seizure disorder that usually shows up at around 2 to 4 or 5 years of age in the dog..

Other problems could occur with your Miniature Pinscher. If you notice any problems with your dog, take it to the vet immediately. This website is for general information only and is not intended to, in any way, be a medical guide.


Initial Treatment for IVDD

Gretel’s IVDD was in stage 2 so she didn’t require surgery. Instead we went with conservative treatment.

She spent some time on strict crate rest – laying still in her crate unless I was carrying her out to go potty or we were laying with her on the couch (and holding her tight so she couldn’t jump off).

During that first two weeks, Gretel got a few cold laser treatments at the vet.

She also got daily treatment at home with the Assisi Loop (Assisi Animal Health was kind enough to send us one when they heard that the “famous athlete” Gretel was injured).

The Assisi Loop® is a FDA-cleared Non-Pharmaceutical Anti-Inflammatory Device (NPAID®). It works of a principle similar to acupuncture.

The Assisi Loop uses a targeted electromagnetic field. Pulsing that electromagnetic field near a conductor (such as muscle, tendons, or skin) will induce current flow in the conductor. This current flow in the tissue creates a reaction that reduces inflammation and pain and promotes healing.

The Assisi Loop can markedly increase blood flow and tissue oxygenation, which improves the overall tissue health and reduces pain.

There is clinical evidence that the Assisi Loop works. I know it’s definitely doing something to Gretel’s electromagnetic field because she gets sleepy like she does when she’s getting acupuncture treatment.

The Assisi Animal Health website says, “We often hear reports from pet owners that their animal relaxes as soon as they start their treatments with the Loop” and I definitely see that with Gretel. If what they say happens on the outside is what I see then I trust that what they say happens on the inside, where I can’t see, is too.

Lil’ Bub, the famous internet cat crippled by a bone disease, was able to walk again and stop taking pain medication when her owner started using the Assisi Loop on her.

BUB’s dude, Mike Bridavsky, said, “I’m still in shock a little at how much [the Loop] has helped. [She was unable to walk and] Yesterday she ran and jumped, picking up her toy twice. When she was a wee wee kitten, before we even knew that things would be really messed up, she was running around like a rabbit, like a bunny hop. The back two legs working at the same time, and the front two at the same time. She did that this morning. It’s been a year and a half since that’s happened. She was 4 months old the last time she did that. I saw that happen this morning which really blew my mind.”

NOTE: Eventually I bought a pet-specific cold laser for home use and have been using that instead.


Watch the video: Patient Animation - Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease