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Arthritis in the spine

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by Emma B, Jul 22, 2009.


  1. Emma B

    Emma B PetForums Newbie

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    I dont know if any one out there can give me any advice.
    Yesterday we were told max has arthritis in his spine and that his spine is gradualy fusing together. he's 14yrs old but still thinks hes a pup! at least untill yesterday morning when he got up in agony (turns out one of the Virtibrae that has already fused has fractured at the fusing point,oooooccccchhhhhhhhh!:frown:).
    Vets got him on very strong pain killers and lots of rest, and tells us he will be on pain management for the rest of his life, as well as a restricted exersise ragime. This is a total shock, as he has never shown any signs of arthritis, and is very active and full of life (no one belives how old he is when they see him).
    Is there anyone out there with a dog that has a similar problem that can give us some advice on what to expect as this develops and surgestions on helping him live as pain free as possible for as long as possible? I know it is going to be progressive and I'm scared that we won't be able to find a suitable pain management program for him (this would obviously mean he would have to be put to sleep), thanks
     
  2. rona

    rona Guest

    I'm really sorry to hear this, we had a Collie who at 15 had a similar problem.
    I cannot give you any good news on this one I am afraid, we had to take the decision to PTS when the pain became unbearable for her. Hopefully with careful management, you may be able to keep your boy comfortable for a while yet.
    Please follow your vets advice to the letter, I think this is the only way to put off the dreaded day.
    Sorry I could not be more positive.
    I hope someone on here has had a better experience than me and can give you some hope for the future
     
  3. Emma B

    Emma B PetForums Newbie

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    Thankyou for your reply.We will be following everything that the vet tell's us, I'm really sorry to hear about your collie. Been told to take it a day at a time so we are. Made him a new bed in the middle of the living room floor so he can strech right out and get as comfy as poss, he's an alsation x collie x alsorts so he's fairly long!! but he's been my constant companyon since I found him starving 10yrs ago so nothing is to much trouble. I've adjusted everything so I or my boyfriend can be at home with him if he needs anything or gets worse.
     
  4. rona

    rona Guest

    I wish you all the best with him
     
  5. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    I havent had any experience with this at all, your vets/surgeons sound like they know their stuff though so, maybe it is a matter of just helping him manage the pain. We have an older dog who we're just having some problems with, we've bought a child gate to stop him running up stairs, got an orthopaedic dog bed, and are only taking him on small walks. It will be an idea to watch his weight - so try not to give him treats/scraps as this will not be able to be burned off ... though maintain a good nutritional level. Im sure you know how to cope with him, there are probably a good few years left yet hes just keeping you on your toes, but best advice is to be prepared as he is a good age ;)
     
  6. Kinjilabs

    Kinjilabs PetForums VIP

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    My last lab had Spondylosis, she was on Previcox for some time that seemed to help, its so hard to decide what to do with spine problems! hope you can find something that helps.
     
  7. brackensmom

    brackensmom PetForums VIP

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    Hi Emma, sorry i have no experience in this, but just wanted to say how sorry i am for you, and hope that the vet can find something to manage Max,s pain.
     
  8. Emma B

    Emma B PetForums Newbie

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    Just want to say thanks to everyone whos posted so far. Your kind words and support mean a lot. Max is doing ok, starting to feel a bit more like his old self :), He sneeked round next door to our elderly neighbour this morning for some simpathy and his weekly chew :eek:, first time since he went down, trying to keep this old dog down is taking some doing!, well at least till the rimadyl starts to wear off any way, which isn't that long considering the dose hes on (lasts longer when I can keep him quiet, but he's never been one for keeping quiet! he's very nosie and has lots of doggie and human friends he likes to say hello to). Back to the vets on Tues so will let you know what happens, think a different pain killer may be needed but so far so good, even if it is early days yet.:)
     
  9. reddogs

    reddogs PetForums Senior

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    So sorry to hear about this

    Can only offer sympathy I am afraid

    Have you looked at the bio-flow collars to see if they would help?
     
  10. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    just to mention with long term use of rimidyl there are side effects with their kidneys, liver and stomach - we changed to previcox - which is at least a little better for them - if you dont see any improvement try asking you vet for something different :)
     
  11. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    At 14 i think the pros will heavily outweigh the cons for using Rimadyl.
     
  12. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    not when there are better and less damaging drugs ;)
     
  13. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    Previcox is also an NSAID, it carries the same risk of side affects. Liver and kidney damage, and intestinal ulcers and bleeding.
     
  14. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    Yes however previcox hasnt had nealy half as many bad reports as Rimidyl and is said to have less of an impact on their organs too!. If Rimidyl was fine and safe there wouldnt be as many options as there are. If I were the OP I would minitor the dog very carefully - if conditions worsen then the drug is obviously not working and if there is no improvement then again the drung is obviously not working.
    Read the side effects of the prescription carefully and look out for not drinking/eating/diarrhea/vomiting/lethargy/blood in stools - theres quite a few
    Rimidyl is renound for being hard on dogs stomachs, livers, kidneys and digestive tract :eek:
     
    #14 james1, Jul 25, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2009
  15. Emma B

    Emma B PetForums Newbie

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    I understand the side effects he may suffer from with the rimadyl, and have been keeping a close eye on him in case he shows any of these (he already has damage to his stomach from being starved in his early years and struggles to keep weight on, so any tummy upsets can be a major concern). As its the first week I'm sure you understand that the vet has prescribed the high dose as his initial pain relif, and is only on this dose for the week to control the exstream pain he was in. As mentioned he is back at the vets soon and I will be asking for a alernitive because though he has made good progress, I wears off quickly so by the evening he is starting to get pain again(seems to come in spasms, so not nice at all, but not as bad as at the beginning of the week),I have found giving him a light massage (learnt this on horses years ago!) in the evening helps him to relax and it aleviates and reduces the pain episodes he has. We're also looking into verious no drug items that are on the market that may help him get some relief. He's made massive progress since I first set up this post and don't want to give up on him.
     
  16. gesic

    gesic PetForums VIP

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    thier has been a lot less research done on previcox so long term effects are not so well tested.
    The other thing to mention agaist that drug is the theraputic index is very low so very easy to overdose.
    One natural remedie thats very good is devils claw, use the equine version as just the same and better value.
    Naf do one called devils relief which pos has other ingredients in.
    The main thing with all nsaid meds is never give the oral meds on an empty tummy, as long as they are with or after food u should be ok.
     
  17. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    whats the deal with devils claw have you ever used it and would you reccommend it? Is it pain relief of an anti toxin/inflam type?:)
     
  18. gesic

    gesic PetForums VIP

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    Not personally!
    Have used it in my dog (recomended by another user) and it appeared to be quite effective, thankfully my dog is not reliant on painkillers for his day to day function, I used it due to an injury he had sustained.
    Devils claw is a natural product from an african plant, some times ref to as natures asperin so it is used amongst other things as a painkiller.
    Devils relief by Naf also incoperates MSM (methlysulphoninmethane if I remember right!) which again is a naturally sourced product and is an antiinflamatry agent.
    So all in all its the natural version of rimadyl,metacam and previcox.
    Still could be irratant on an empty tummy but wont have degenerative effects on liver and/or kidney function.
     
  19. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    Could i use it for my 3-legged dog? Would it provide joint support (im sure thats what MSM helps with)? Do you know if it interacts with any medication as i know some homeopathic/herbal remedies can do?
     
  20. gesic

    gesic PetForums VIP

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    msm plus glucosamine and chondroitin can be used quite safely...idea being that after so long of using this with anti inflams u wean off the af's and just use the joint support.
    If on af's already I would use either devils claw or af's not both;)
    Naf did do a product called canine comfort, think they changed the name recently, i used that with great success as a supplement. However it tasted awful...I know as i tried some:blushing:
     
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