Friday, July 18, 2008

Uh-oh (We learn about Intervertebral Disc Disease)

We've had our first serious medical problem with Mina, and it has to do with her long back and Dachshund heritge

She was fine yesterday when we left for work, but when I got home she wasn't as excited as she usually is; she seemed lethargic and had trouble coming up the stairs. I was a little concerned, but when we went for our walk she seemed ok; a little slower than normal but she kept up, and even pulled ahead as she likes to do.

But over the rest of evening she started showing signs of discomfort; she would whine when getting up from her bed, and finally just went and laid in her bed in the bedroom, before bedtime, which was very unusual.

In the middle of the night she started panting, and she was shaking. I tried to make her comfortable... At this point we thought she must have eaten something bad. She cried a little when she sat, and had to ease herself down to lay down. When we got up at 6 am this morning, she was still panting and clearly in distress, so we took her to the emergency vet right away.

The vet noticed a reaction she had as soon as a spot on her back was touched; she yelped and pulled away in pain. We hadn't seen her do this yesterday, so possibly the aggravation had gotten worse. He determined that she is probably suffering from an inflammation caused by a vertebrae protruding into her spinal column: a symptom of Intervertebral Disc Disease, very common in dachshunds and their relatives.

Right now, she's not as bad as she could be; she can move her back legs fine, and after taking some medication, seems to be in much less pain. Still, the vet said that she has to stay in her crate "23 and a half hours a day" for two weeks, and be let out only to potty. If we can keep her quiet and it heals well, it is less likely to re-injure some time in the future.

After this she won't be able to jump up on the bed or furniture ever again. I'll really miss cuddling on the couch with my pup, and seeing her "go get daddy!" by bouncing onto him in bed early in the morning. And she's going to hate being confined to her crate for so long, poor thing. She loves her walks. It will take a while, after all that inactivity, for her to get back to normal, so we're probably looking at another two weeks after she's allowed to start exercising again.

I know it will take a while but I believe she'll be ok.

Graphic is copyright Hills Pet Nutrition, from the Atlas of Veterinary Clinical Anatomy.


Joey and Maggie said...

Sorry to hear about Mina. Sending lots of good thoughts your way for a quick recovery.

Joey and Maggie

Sonya said...

Aw, thank you! I see you have two little dachshunds; you probably know about this thing already. I hope your pups are always healthy and happy!