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Boxer Mix - Hind Legs Suddenly Lame

knappdelux
August 1st, 2006, 10:43 PM
Hello All,

This is our first post here! Wish it wasn't in such a worrysome time. Our 5 year old boxer mix Kaya (we think the mix is pit or possibly rhodesian ridgeback, don't really know) is having an serious problem with her hind end. I noticed yesterday morning when I was taking her for a walk before work. Before my eyes I could see her hind end getting weaker and weaker on the walk and by the time we got back to the house she could barely walk. Her rear end is uncoridnated and it looks like her back legs are drunk - two steps to the right, one to the left then she falls and tries to get back up. Her tail is numb, and she is having a hard time controling her bladder. She shows no signs of pain. My initail feeling about the cause of this problem was slipped disc or pinched nerve. When we were going out for the walk yesterday morning she bumped the gate when I was opening it, but the bump was nothing compared to some of the spills and crashes energetic Kaya has taken in her time. X-rays at the vet last night proved negative on the a spinal cord injury and Kaya was given a steroid to reduce swelling (sorry I can't remember what it was, Cortisone?). $300 dollars later we got very few answers and were told that if Kaya doesn't get better in five days we need to see a specialist. We also recieved some meds for her rash that inhabits her belly and goin area. Long shot, but could the rash have something to do with it? The vet said no, but he wasn't really helpful overall. Today Kaya is a little bit better, but not by very much. She can make it like ten feet before losing it. The quick onset of this (at the MOST 12 hours) and the fact that hasn't showed any signs of pain perplexes us. Thank you in advance for taking your time to read this, and if you have any words of advice or have experienced something similar please let us know!

Aaron, Kristy, and Kaya

Prin
August 1st, 2006, 11:23 PM
Could she have been exposed to pesticides or other chemicals?

jawert1
August 1st, 2006, 11:28 PM
Did the vet do bloodwork of any kind? Like Prin, I'm questioning whether or not she's been exposed to something extremely toxic but not fast enough to kill her. I wouldn't wait 5 days, I'd be getting a second opinion as well as bloodwork to see if anything shows there. Good luck, I hope she feels better very soon and please keep us posted :) :pawprint:

momof6
August 1st, 2006, 11:48 PM
Has your vet done a tick borne screen? My Jersey showed similar drunk walking and week legs when suffering from Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. We also thought of nerve damage, but figured out a week later, that it was the RMSF. I hadn't ever even seen a tick on her, and I brush her weekly, but we are still struggling with it. Just a thought...if you haven't checked.

knappdelux
August 2nd, 2006, 12:45 AM
Thanks all for the replies. We can't think of any new toxins/chemicals that she would have been exposed to. We are going to look into Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever right now as she was back in Colorado (her home) three weeks ago. We are still playing it minute by minute and if things don't get better by tomorrow we will go to a newly recomended vet to get blood work done. Thanks for your quick replies! We will keep this thread updated with what plays out here.

Aaron, Kristy, and Kaya

OntarioGreys
August 2nd, 2006, 04:49 AM
This sound like FCE(fibrocartilaginous embolism) especially with no pain being apparent

I first learned about a couple years ago when an an owner had their greyhound collapsed unexpectly and was suddenly paraylsized in the back end, they just happened to be at the vets at the time, but they had no idea what had happened, the dog did fully recover

http://www.adopt-a-greyhound.org/cgmagazine/FCE.htm

http://cvm.msu.edu/vth/spe/arc/fce.htm

http://www.wolfhouse.dk/articles/fce.html

pitgrrl
August 2nd, 2006, 10:41 AM
Probably a real long shot, but have you used anything new on her? Flea/HW meds, tea tree oil, anything?

knappdelux
August 2nd, 2006, 12:52 PM
OntarioGreys, thanks for the tip on FCE. Her symptoms are congruent with those listed on the links you posted. Time will tell. As for anythign new on her, like flea meds or tea tree oil? The only thing I can think of is my girlfriend gave Kaya a flea bath about a week ago, but she used the same flea shampoo that we always use. Don't know, just have to keep a close eye on her.

Aaron

rainbow
August 2nd, 2006, 01:17 PM
I don't have any advice. I just wanted to say good luck with Kaya. :fingerscr :fingerscr :dog:

knappdelux
August 2nd, 2006, 10:25 PM
Hi All,

Back from Vet #2. Thanks for the again for the support and compassion for our pooch Kaya. I figure I will keep posting in detail here what plays out in this story for everyone on this forum, and also for others who might come along with a similar problem in the future.

I decided to make an emergency trip to the new vet today (day 3) after I came home for lunch to find Kaya rather miserable and sitting in a pool of her own urine. Although her walking ability had improved noticabily; I was freaked about the possibility of a urinary tract infection and impacted bowels, so I decided to take her to a new vet. Somewhat more compitent Vet #2 looked at the x-rays from the previous doctor and couldn't find anything wrong with Kaya's spine, but did say that the problem could be there and he could not tell with x-rays. He strongly suggested a neurologic specialist who could pin point the source of her problem, as it is in his opinion, "somehting to do with the spine." He mentioned a MRI or a test where dye gets injected into the spinal column that can be seen in more detail on an x-ray or MRI. The vet declined the option of doing bloodwork to help determine the problem, saying that he wouldn't know what to test for. I don't know about that, and in all honesty I didn't know what to ask him to test for. I mentioned the possiblity of FCE (fibrocartilaginous embolism) and Vet#2 said it could be a possibility, but he would not know how to diagnos this. As we got to the leaky bladder and possible impacted bowels he said the biggest thing to be concerned about was a bladder infection and he gave me some antibotics to help keep that under control, and said that the bowels shouldn't be a problem. He said the cause of the leaky bladder could be from a reaction to the steriods given by the first vet, caused by the partial paralyisis to her hind end, or a little bit of both. We are instructed to keep the area clean and dry of urine, washing multiple times a day. He suggested using corn starch on the skin near her groin after we wash to keep it dry, rather than a talk or chemical powder that would be bad for her to lick.

Overall not too many answers, but a little bit of piece of mind. Kaya is walking better and we just have to hope this curve of improvment keeps going. We scheduled an appointment with the specialist tomorrow, but are not sure if we can make it. Either way I will keep this post updated with how every thing keeps playing out.

Aaron
***

Rottielover
August 2nd, 2006, 10:33 PM
has she had an xray to rule out a spinal tumor, sounds like the symptoms a friend had with her dog

OntarioGreys
August 3rd, 2006, 08:34 AM
has she had an xray to rule out a spinal tumor, sounds like the symptoms a friend had with her dog

The first post mentioned an x-ray was done, the reason I suggested the possibility of FCE as sometimes a myelogram is needed instead to see