It'd be easier on you if you'd use a walking aid-- http://www.handicappedpets.com/Mobility ... arness.htm
Stick around--lots of people are or have been in your situation.
http://www.handicappedpets.com/cgi-bin/ ... read=27833
I'd DEFINITELY shave her butt; if she still gets messy, we can give you the info on Cavilon, a skin barrier that will keep poop and pee off her skin (she'll need to be shaved to use Cavilon, anyway).
Diapers may be worth a try if poop on demand and expressing don't sufficiently improve the "accident" situation or if you don't want to express and she leaks a lot.
Poop on demand http://www.handicappedpets.com/cgi-bin/ ... read=20431
http://solutions.3m.com/wps/portal/!ut/ ... I93T11y_Ic
Here is a link to an illustrated version of how to do poop on command (or poop on demand). In fact, there is a lot of info on the whole subject.
<a href="http://handicappedpets.com/wiki/index.p ... ets">Bowel Management info</a>
Also, did anyone give you the guidelines on how to do crate rest? A percentage of dogs will recover from a disk problem through lengthy, very STRICT crate rest. Crate rest is sometimes the only treatment given for the first incidence of a disk problem, and of course it's also for when you rule out surgery because of cost, age of the pet, etc. Here is the link:
<a href="http://www.dodgerslist.com/lit/After_Surgery.htm">Crate rest guidelines</a>
Your vet is not only wrong but WAY wrong about putting her down if she doesn't recover normal walking. The world is full of happy dogs leading happy lives in doggy wheelchairs, and wheelchairs don't have to cost that much. You can even make your own. But not yet--crate rest right now!
As far as pottying outside or inside, with my paralyzed dog I started by pottying her outside. The idea seemed to be that they were used to going outside so you took them outside. However, I along with many others in the same situation, found that it is really easier to do it inside, and the dogs are just as happy.
If you want to take her outside that's fine, and you can support her with a sling. However, if she won't go you can still do the poop on demand routine, that is what I do every day with my dog, it's GREAT! You have real control of the situation. You can do it with her just lying on her side with a puppytraining pad under her if you want. If you do it inside, have a box of kleenex next to you and drop a tissue over each plop as it falls. You'll be surprised how well that works to keep the smell down.
I agree about shaving her behind, I did that with my old dog who was kind of shaggy. It made it easier when I had to bathe him because the drying was faster. Don't worry, frequent bathing won't hurt the skin, it will help it. But hopefully with poop on demand you won't need to do much bathing.
If you need help with bladder issues, just ask.
Here is a message from Susan, because she also has a cocker and she potties her indoors. Hope this helps!
<a href="http://www.handicappedpets.com/cgi-bin/ ... 0">Susan's message about Molly</a>
be very careful with chiropractors.Handicapped pets has a new product. It is called a pupapedic therapeutic coat. Your dog will fit a medium.Place the gel packs in the frezzer abou 15 to 25 min.don't freeze them use the cold to reduce the swelling 20 min therapy time do this for a day then alternate to hot therapy every other 20 min therapy. after you warm her massage the injured area not hard but not to soft either
I've got a paralyzed doxie that has been paralyzed more than a year. I first arrived at this board when Schnitzel was paralyzed 3 weeks after a disk injury. The folks here have been wonderful helping me get through the first year. Yep, it's been over a year since my dog had his injury. They will help you too!
Schnitzel did not have surgery, and his injury was so severe that he didn't regain use of his back legs. It is possible that your dog WILL regain use of his legs with crate rest, but if he doesn't regain use of them, life can still go on.
Schnitzel can run faster on 2 legs than I can. He REALLY doesn't care that he can't walk. He still is happy, sings (barks and whines) along to his favorite music, and plays with his toys. He still enjoys life...he just can't walk.
We recently built a wheelchair using 3/4" PVC pipe(schedule 40), and wheels from a child's riding toy, for under $10. If your dog remains paralyzed it is possible to cheaply make a wheelchair that works. There is no need to pay big bucks for one!
I use "poop on demand" with my dog.
First: Feed your dog a good quality dog food. 'Ole Roy won't do. You've got to give a high quality formula. Currently we use Iams small kibble and add about a tablespoon of Pedigree ground chicken from the can. The poop is NOT runny, and isn't messy. With a high quality food, you will have less poop than with something like 'Ole Roy. My dog weighs about 25 lbs. If your dog is overweight, start cutting his portions NOW as he will be less active during recovery, and getting the weight off could help prevent further injury.
Next: My dog needs to do #2 (poop) about 3 or 4 times per day. He needs to go immediately upon awakening in the morning, several hours after his first meal in the morning, after the second meal at 3PM and then before bedtime. Try to remember his regular pattern when he could walk. Did he like to go potty immediately upon awakening?
Thirdly: I can now estimate when my dog needs to empty his bowels, and I take him to the toilet. Sometimes a dog will start to raise and lower his tail, wiggle it, or give you some cue that he needs to go. Lift both lids so that you have a wide open area. As you face the toilet, I stand on the right side of the toilet. The dog's butt is facing the back of the toilet- toward the wall. Holding the dog with my left arm, in the crook of my left elbow, I use my right hand to grasp and pull on the soft tissue around the anal area. Using my right hand, thumb and next 3 fingers, I grasp the area and gently pull. You will soon learn to FEEL whether the anal area has firm feces (poop) in it, or if it is soft and flaccid (no poop). My right hand pushes the tail up and out of the way.
If you can learn to do this, and you CAN, you will have a cleaner house, cleaner dog bedding, less laundry, and fewer accidents when holding him. I do think that people are so repulsed by the poop mess of a paralyzed pet that they give up. If you've had babies or little kids, this will not disgust you at all. Some other pet owners on this board use different methods that work for them, but this is the method that I use.
Let us know if you are successful with this.
PS. When I drew the pictures for P-O-D I only showed pinching with 2 fingers like picking up a penny, but I think I'll leave it. I was surprised at how many times a day Schnitzel needs to go #2 but I just read an article in a magazine called Diaper Diagnosis that discussed how often infants and toddlers need to go and there is a huge variation, from several times a day to once a week or longer. I guess dogs differ, too.
I know you were talking to Dianne so I hope you guys will please excuse me for jumping in while you wait for Dianne to return to the message board. (Dianne has a heavy schedule of daily responsibilities in addition to pet care.) Earlier I gave you a link to Susan's message about how she potties her cocker. Susan does it sitting next to the toilet with her dog lying across her lap, sort of like you are thinking. However, you can also do Poop on Demand right in her bed without having to lift her if you put a puppytraining pad under her and drop kleenex over the stools as she goes. Kleenex keeps the smell down amazingly well. (Just don't put Kleenex into the toilet later, I learned the hard way--it isn't like TP, it will clog your pipes.) Anita pottied her dog Sydney lying down like that, as did Tom. I have back problems and I would rather take a handful of paper waste and carry it out to the trash than carry a heavy dog into the bathroom several times a day.
Here is the link to Susan's message:
<a href="http://www.handicappedpets.com/cgi-bin/ ... 0">Susan's message</a>
Also, yes there certainly is a way to make her pee on demand. Dianne does it with Schnitzel and I do it with my dog and many other people here do it with their dogs. It's called expressing the bladder. (Poop on demand could be called expressing the bowel). Here is a link to info on expressing the bladder. Glad the diapers served you well!
<a href="http://handicappedpets.com/wiki/index.p ... r_cat">How to express the bladder</a>