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Onset Paralysis

Neurological Disorders Resources. Treatment and care for pets having pain or trouble walking or standing due to spinal injuries or neurological disorders like IVDD, FCE and DM.
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CarolC
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by CarolC »

I've never fundraised before, but you might look at Labrador Lifeline.

https://www.labradorlifeline.org/process
pbj_33
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by pbj_33 »

CarolC.,

Thank you so very much.

We have also been a little confused with Kujo's day to day & week to week improvements. There are things, like him bending his leg at the knee joint, that we see & assume that it is improvement.

There hasn't been any noticeable decline that we KNOW of. We aren't medical professionals & sometimes feel a little lost (obviously lol). Kujo is our first dog, much less our first "down dog". We are hoping that our at home therapy and PT in Tallahassee will help him with a full recovery.

We are also trying to be real with ourselves. It's very hard. IF he doesn't walk again, what will life look like for him? Are we progressing or have we plateaued? We've read and researched for these two months, endlessly. Yesterday, we read that most recovery takes place 4-6 weeks after the accident- the chances being greater the sooner medical professionals get involved.

We get great news from the vet every week, seemingly giving us a little hope that he is recovering. We know and see that Kujo is "ready" to be moving. It's almost like he will look back at his feet when we play, hoping they will move or maybe wondering why they aren't. From what we've been told, we're really waiting on a 'click' to go off in Kujo's head saying "get up, walk, left, right, left, right, etc."

I don't question our Vets knowledge whatsoever & have gone in the direction she suggests or advises for us since day one, trusting that she does know the best care for Kujo. I more-so question myself & if I'm missing anything or OVER noticing things, giving myself false hope in recovering. Like, Kujo has started to slowly move his tail. Very rarely, very new, but very much something. Am I taking a small sign like that as too much when looking at recovery? In the long run, his tail is not needed to walk but to see it move again makes me feel better! It makes me feel like some connections are being made but I can't help but wonder if I may be 'reaching'?

Are there any week to week guides for recovery or is every dog different? I feel like even though they do differ from one another, recovery is similar when looking for certain things. Once again, that is me assuming & to be honest, I don't like assuming anything when it comes to Kujo. Any help is always so appreciated. :grouph:
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CarolC
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by CarolC »

I agree that you can't judge or predict any dog's progress by what has been reported in another dog. It isn't necessarily helpful when articles online give timelines. Drop dead dates are unrealisitic. Repeating that I am not a vet, but each injury is different. Even if 2 dogs have the same diagnosis of "a spinal stroke", their condition is still different. One has the stroke in one location on the spine, another has it in another location, occurring near entirely different vertebrae, with the injury affecting the left side more, or the right side more, a larger or smaller bleed/embolism. One dog is older or younger or a different breed. One dog has more support in recovery than another. There are so many factors.

Here are a couple to things I posted about my dog, who had a spinal fracture (not a stroke, a broken back). Note that your dog is recovering much faster than mine did. With my dog's injury, we had an extra long wait. Just as you cannot go by how quickly a dog that was reported online recovered and apply that to your dog, you also cannot go by how slowly another dog (like my dog) recovered and apply that to yours. Each dog will recover according to his own timeline.
There is so much variation between dogs, such as the status before surgery, breed and age of the dog, which disk or disks were affected, etc.

What you described seeing is the way recovery occurs, though. It tends to be by baby steps. You notice a tiny bit of function, then a tiny bit more. Some days (or even weeks) it may seem like there was no improvement, but in reality he is healing in the background the whole time, even though it may not be visible to the eye. If your dog has bladder control or partial bladder control, that is a great sign so soon after surgery.

So...maybe someone will reply about how long it took their dog to walk, but even if they do, it may not apply to your dog...? I very much remember the early days after my dog had her spinal surgery. I searched the Internet and could not find a case exactly like my dog's, but I found one I could relate to, a beagle named Murphy. After reading Murphy's story, I began to expect in the back of my mind that my dog would stand at a certain timepoint like Murphy, and then walk at a certain timepoint. Like Murphy. When she didn't, I was very distressed, I would almost say crushed. I didn't realize until then how much I had built it up in my mind that her recovery was going to proceed exactly like Murphy's. And boy, was I wrong. But she learned to walk again on her own schedule, and it was worth waiting for.
The thing is you ARE doing it. You ARE getting there. I think the secret is, it can just take a lot more time and effort than anyone bargained for. Oh, for a crystal ball, huh? Have you heard me go on and on about this? My dog first managed to walk about 4 feet (going on a downhill slope, mind you) at around 9 months. Nobody was more surprised than me. At that point, she still couldn't stand up for 10 seconds. I used to watch her try to stand and topple over, and we were lucky if I counted to 7. We did our therapy all along, like you and your partner are doing, but I wasn't working toward a goal because I pretty much abandoned hope at about the 4-month point. Once she got to point of taking steps downhill though, it seemed that progress accelerated. Before that, as I always say, I could Maybe, Possibly, if I really Stretched my imagination, think PERHAPS I saw a little progress about every 6 weeks. I can't even say we proceeded on faith. Honestly, we proceeded on auto-pilot. We just kept doing therapy with no goal in sight. There wasn't anybody telling me we were getting anywhere. There wasn't anybody saying to keep doing it, you're accomplishing something. I didn't know a soul whose dog walked after 9 months. We just kept doing it mindlessly more out of habit than anything. I figured the exercise was good for her, I didn't think she was going to walk.
So anyway, I hope you know I understand that state of mind. I love to tell my dog's story, but I also hesitate sometimes, because I don't want anyone to inappropriately apply the case of my dog with a broken back to their dog, and think if their dog is going to take 9 months like mine did, forget it, I can't keep this up that long. Your dog is way ahead of where mine was. At two months I was just glad she could turn herself in her bed. We had been rejected for PT and were not able to start PT till 5 months post-injury, though I was doing what I could at home. My dog did learn to walk again, and it was worth it.

The statistics for spinal stroke are so good that it would be very surprising if your dog didn't learn to walk. :shock:

I might want to give a slight word of maybe caution(?) about the way people can be. You probably already kind of know this, but anyway. It sounds like you are going to be going on a really nice vacation with extended family. People bring different life experience and different things that they were taught by their elders to any conversation. There are some who, with the best of intentions, according to their lights, may tell you that they don't agree with what you are doing. They may even feel they are speaking with your best interest, or the dog's best interest in mind. "A dog shouldn't live that way. You shouldn't spend the money. Just get another dog. It's too hard on you."

If you're really lucky, maybe someone will say, "I admire what you're doing. I'd do the same if it was my dog. I have a friend whose dog had a spinal stroke and coudn't walk and you should see him now!" So I hope you will be prepared for what might be either support or the opposite from well-meaning relatives. What you have been doing is hard, but it's not for nothing, and it seems like you've been doing all the best things for him. The swimming, and the sit-stands, and the PT appointments, all of it. Hopefully, if you have any relatives who are kind of negative about the whole thing, they will have the good grace to keep their opinions to themselves and eventually learn better when your dog proves them wrong. Some people will say this or that, because that is what they heard from their father or grandfather back on the farm in the old days, but times have changed, thank goodness.

Most of us, when we first get into this situation, have no concept of a slow recovery. I certainly didn't. We are used to an infection that is cured with 10 days of antibiotics, or a broken bone where they remove the cast after 6 weeks. It is a microwave world, but recovery from nerve injury is more like slow cooking. It occurs a tiny little bit at a time, in the background, often where you can't see it. Your dog is recovering a tiny bit more every day. Several people here have found that when it finally gets to a certain point, things seem to start falling into place somehow and then you see improvements occurring more quickly.

I hope this helps. I know you are gleaning information from multiple sources, which is good. Nobody can tell you what to do. Only you know what is best for your dog and your situation. I hope you'll have a good vacation. And if you want to reply to relatives' concerns at all, I would not hesitate to tell them there are different causes of paralysis, and a spinal stroke is one of the most likely to recover. The great majority of dogs with spinal stroke go on to lead normal lives.
pbj_33 wrote: Tue Jul 20, 2021 11:56 am Like, Kujo has started to slowly move his tail. Very rarely, very new, but very much something. Am I taking a small sign like that as too much when looking at recovery? In the long run, his tail is not needed to walk but to see it move again makes me feel better! It makes me feel like some connections are being made but I can't help but wonder if I may be 'reaching'?
If he couldn't move it before for 2 months and he can now, then that sounds like improvement and recovery to me. It is little things like this that are examples of the baby steps we talk about. They seem small when they happen one at a time, but they all add up and one day you look back and see how far you have come. :)
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by pbj_33 »

CarolC.,

That is so true. Every last word. From no two dogs being alike, to our world being on "microwave time", you perfectly put things into a great perspective.

Today, I went on my lunch break & since my partner was off, I had assistance & could walk Kujo to the front yard in his sling! I will lead and Kujo follows, pulling my boyfriend like a bobsled. :haha:

We got out front and had let Kuj roam and sniff. He loves to stand in the wind and tilt his head upwards, like he's smelling the best food ever. We decided to head back in but Kujo decided not yet. He began to do his usual roll on his back. He loves to scratch himself in the grass, especially now (I imagine). Even with his back legs not moving themselves, he does the same full on, body roll- sliding though the grass on his back & nuzzling his head into it. While he did his own thing & we were admiring him enjoying himself, he began scratching his ear with his hind leg!!! :hurray:

My partner & I literally both jumped up (we were crouched down) & screamed. From excitement and shock, honestly. Something so small and simple but also something that we haven't seen in over 2 months.

Our sudden movements and screams startled Kujo and he brought his leg back down, looking at us like he missed something. Seriously unaware of how BIG that scratch was.

We have slowly started seeing more movement in Kuj's tail amd got a very distinct "wag" last night when I got home and joined him on his papasan pallet! 3 loud thuds to the pillow got me to sit straight up and brought tears to my eyes.

Like you said, there will be many people who want to give you their opinion. Even when it isn't warranted. When we were in the very early stages of the onset paralysis, we were really unsure WHAT was going on, to be honest. We got that our baby wasn't walking, but a stroke? To a 4-year-old lab? I didn't even know that dogs had strokes! AT ALL!

My father, who I haven't been close with in years, reminded me exactly why that is. When raising my siblings and I, he always used "tough love" approach. Looking back, that was a family thing. His mom is the same way to him, etc. I wanted to cut that chord, break the chain, what ever.

He called me when we were in the 3rd week or so. We rarely text. Never speak on the phone. I normally wouldn't have answered but I did, for whatever reason. We talked about what I knew, what I thought, what I planned on doing, and so forth. It felt good to talk it out. After I finished, he simply said "I hope you remember how you were raised, never beat a dead horse."

I thought.. who are you to tell me how to raise a dog when you can't even raise a family! I immediately called my mom. She isn't one to discuss my dad but she is the best listener. She let me rampage and say all the horrible things I was thinking to say but didn't. She replied with something that I will always remember.

"It's a lot easier to leave something broken." It's easier to not go the extra mile, not cross our t's and dot our i's. Sometimes the worst thing you can do is not a thing and waste special time that was given to you. This struck a nerve in me. WHAT IF this time, that day, was all I had left with Kuj? Would I let my dads words echo in my head or roll off of my shoulders?

I wouldn't care. I don't. If you agree with what I'm doing- amazing!! RARE! Lets be friends (lol). Any and every ounce of advice or knowledge, please share. But kindly, if you disagree, buzz off. I simply do NOT care what someone else would do and didn't ask. Sadly, I had to announce that to someone I work with. Kindly. I don't ask how someone deals with their emotions of having a sick mother, because I can not relate. I can only give my condolences & wish them the best.

As harsh as that sounds, I can't grasps what they feel. I can try, I can be a listening ear or shoulder to cry on but what I cannot do is give my advice, tell her it will be ok, and say that I understand. That's how I view this situation. Not everyone's opinions are fact and not every fact applies to me. Kujo has never been JUST my dog. He will stay my child until I'm not around. Ask almost any parent what they want for their "child", something along the lines of 'nothing short of the best' should follow. That applies here. Even when the day comes for him to leave, I will always tell the tale of Kujo.

But thankfully, that day wasn't then and it has yet to come. When he was first diagnosed, I wanted any help I could get. Not "reading my audience" got my feelings hurt. Not everyone cares... honestly, its rare if they do. So, we don't talk much about WHAT is going on. We keep his improvements to ourselves. Obviously, we keep our small circle updated but other than the select few, no one knows.

We are not in any way ashamed of Kujo's condition. We love having people who'd usually see us doing our normal thing ask us what has happened. We enjoy sharing his story & gaining any information we can. At the very least, we get Kujo out of the house & share some light on the life after a doggy stroke.

We still give all the credit where its due, noting that you guys have been so helpful.
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CarolC
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by CarolC »

I really like "Buzz off!" I agree, sometimes it is better to just not talk about it, because even well-meaning people, if they haven't been in the same situation, are not likely to "get" how tired you are, the worry, the amount of mindspace it takes to manage the level of detail involved and problem-solving, etc. I have always said, if you were caring for an elderly parent or disabled spouse, you'd get lots of support or at least respect from those around you, because they've either been through it themselves or at least understand that you are doing something loving and commendable. But you can have just as much heavy lifting, loss of sleep, expense, worry, scheduling, etc, with a disabled dog, and nobody is going to have a clue what you're dealing with.

I am sorry about the (fill-in-the-blank) comment from your dad. I heard the most interesting inteview once. It was on a different subject, so I hope this makes sense. It was not talking about dogs or opinions on how to care for pets. It was talking about generations, and how one generation passes on the habits or ways of thinking to the next. It sounds like we're doomed to carry on the tradition that is handed down and instilled in us. But the person in the interview said that sometimes there is a "gap generation". In other words, for example, there might be a long family history of being harsh to children, but then a child comes along who recognizes it and decides to make a complete break and not carry that on. And they raise their own children very differently, with love and nurturing. They are the gap generation, breaking from the past. It sounds like a hopeful thing. Wish I could remember who it was that was talking about it.

Things are a lot better for handicapped pets now than they were even 20 years ago. I think to be fair, there was a time probably when the "take him behind the barn" solution was really the only option they had. Not always because they didn't care, but because there was a limit in vet care, a limit in knowledge of how to treat disability, etc., even if they wanted to. I don't remember any dog wheelchairs in the Sears Catalog. People did the best they could with what they knew at the time. But we have better options than people did 50 years ago.

Even now, sometimes options are out there but people can't afford them or they are not nearby. Which is why DIY is so helpful, like when you take Kujo swimming between PT appointments, like Caroline did with Buster and Joe did with Murphy in a horse therapy pool, and Pavla did with Sara in a lake, and Doc_Moore_J did with Koro in a lake (video with music!)

Hooray! Hooray! Hooray! for wagging tails and ears getting scratched. Sometimes dogs just don't know how magnificent they really are! :angel: :trophy:
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by critters »

There'd be 15 more posts if I quoted everything I agree with here, so I'll just say BRAVO on all the new doings!!! :hurray:
pbj_33
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by pbj_33 »

Critters & CarolC.,

We are back from the beach!! We missed our boy like heck but it was totally worth it in the long end.

Kujo had a great week with his therapy team, doing 4 total sets of treatment. He did water therapy on the treadmill & followed that with cold laser. They told us that he did amazing on the water treadmill, he enjoys the cold laser, and they are steadily seeing improvements. Sweet music to our ears. We probably only called 10 times to check in on him. :lol:

The day we went to load everything up, we wanted to let him go outside one last time. We had already been prior but figured why not? We got him in the grass and made sure all feet were correctly on the ground, no folding toes, and we slowly take our hold off. We let him slowly put his weight back onto his legs & he will stand for any where to 30 seconds to 2 minutes (rough estimates) before wanting to sit or trying to step.

At this point in time, he was fully supporting himself and my boyfriend was bending over to wipe his legs off. He was standing in between Cole's legs but there were no hands on Kujo. Not rare since we do this every time we go out. As I was standing and taking a good look at his stance, how well he was holding his wait, etc.. he took his very first SOLID step with no assistance. It was not wobbly, he didn't sway like he was unbalanced. He stopped right after that single step but the other small factors are HUGE. Before, he would try to step and you could tell he was unbalanced. He would sort of sway at his hips. His vet told us to imagine a 100 lb. toddler learning to walk. It's the same type of learning. His right leg is healing a little slower than his left, which leads us to believe that's why he didn't take another step. Maybe he knows how strong he is, what he can handle, what he can't handle, etc. We were so ecstatic and shocked. That week was full of recovery signs and we honestly are so taken aback as we look back.

He has started wagging his tail, he scratched his head with his leg, and now is beginning to take small steps on his own! We are really beside ourselves. We have been mostly hopeful since the start. We have been getting "good results" from every vet trip and we have had very small signs of improvement. We have been beyond thankful for everything we hear from his doctors and seeing at home but the past weeks results really shot us out of the water. We want him running, obviously, but are taking things as slowly as needed. Seeing him continue to push with us is seriously such a reward, not that I'm asking for one. I can't lie and say I haven't begged for everything I've been seeing but in the back of my mind, I know the reality. He either will walk by himself or he will need assistance. I have made peace with whichever is our end result AS long as Kujo is happy!!

My boyfriend is gone this weekend for a bachelors trip that's been planned/pushed back due to covid. He kept saying he wasn't going to go but as well as Kujo has been doing, I didn't want him to miss that trip. I got kujo into bed last night and we had such great one on one snuggles. He wagged his tail for almost two minutes and slept with me the whole night. His wrap ended up sliding off partially and I had luckily slid a pee pad under the blanket we lay him on. When it was time to get up and I noticed, I checked the pad to see if any urine had made its way though. He had not wet himself with the diaper being off. There was no wet blankets and only clean pads!

He did go #2 but he ate a substantial amount. He is known for being picky about his food and has even went days not eating when we leave town without him. I assume this might have happened by his own choice at the vet. Whatever the reason, he was a hungry boy & we all know what that turns into. :lol:

We really do appreciate the kind words more than I can explain. There is nothing like having your own little support system and I'm so thankful for this website & the people it has brought into our lives. I know for a fact I would be so lost, confused, worried and so much more if I had not found this page. Seriously a life changer for us and Kujo!! I hope everyone has a great weekend. :grouph:
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Re: Onset Paralysis

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pbj_33 wrote: Fri Jul 30, 2021 11:25 am We are back from the beach!! We missed our boy like heck but it was totally worth it in the long end.

Kujo had a great week with his therapy team, doing 4 total sets of treatment. He did water therapy on the treadmill & followed that with cold laser. They told us that he did amazing on the water treadmill, he enjoys the cold laser, and they are steadily seeing improvements. Sweet music to our ears. We probably only called 10 times to check in on him. :lol:
:welcomeback: It sounds like he had a really great time. Doggie training camp! :lift: Of COURSE you had to check on him. Otherwise you wouldn't be able to relax. Glad it worked out. :D
pbj_33 wrote: Fri Jul 30, 2021 11:25 am He did go #2 but he ate a substantial amount. He is known for being picky about his food and has even went days not eating when we leave town without him. I assume this might have happened by his own choice at the vet. Whatever the reason, he was a hungry boy & we all know what that turns into. :lol:
That is super good news about being dry all night. That really is. :hurray: When you read the literature about FCE, there is one article that says 7.5% of FCE dogs may not recover bowel control. It's a very small percentage. But it's interesting how bladder and bowel control do not necessarily return at the same time.

I'm working with a dog right now (which I presume is an FCE or possibly ANNPE) and he has good bladder control but he seems to have only a short warning before number two happens. He knows, but it's maybe 30 seconds of warning max, yet his bladder control is nearly normal. He can stay dry through the night and voluntarily empty his bladder all by himself in the morning.

Just in case Kujo's bowel incontinence seems like an issue, you might consider raw diet. I only mention it because this dog I'm working with has been on raw diet (Stella and Chewey's frozen raw) and his stools are next to nothing. Dry and about the size of peach pits, and few in number. I guess the dog assimilates nearly all the food instead of it passing through. What does go through is I assume the bone that is part of the raw food, and it makes sense that this would not be messy. I don't really like having to prepare raw food, and it takes a lot of space in the freezer and is frankly expensive. But I kept him on it since he's used to raw diet and seems to like it, and it sure isn't messy. For some people it would be the perfect solution.

Glad you guys had a good time, and Kujo did, too. And he took a solid step. And he knows he's improving. Better keep your phone charged and put batteries in the camcorder, because if you're like me you'll want to record some of those precious steps to remember. You may be able to persuade the PT to record him, too, and send it to you, or post it on their website.
:angel:
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by pbj_33 »

CarolC.,

Doggy Bootcamp has me dying laughing. :lol: You are not lying about the raw food. We looked into that a couple months back before the accident took place & we agreed it was a lot that we nor his vet thought was NEEDED. Kind of crazy, looking back! He will do along the lines of what you're mentioning. He will move from one pee pad to another if he uses the bathroom while I'm at work. That's the answer I gave his vet when she asked if he had control. Sometimes it is hard to tell if I've been at work.

He has a short warning for #2 just like you mentioned. He will move himself from his bed to the floor (where we keep a pee pad) and you can tell what's going on. So I say short, but in reality, I can definitely tell that he has his own potty setup now that I'm looking back. I was looking at the small signs

He really enjoys chicken that's from a can, blueberries, carrots, yogurt and oatmeal. We do one-two plates of a small mixture every other day as a treat. He still very much enjoys his dog food, so we don't want to over feed him.

As I mentioned, I'm home alone with Kujo this weekend. I've left most of the sling work to Cole while I "lead" from the front- giving Kujo a sense of where we're going. Oh my LORD... you should see us without the extra help. He's safe, comfortable, and does the same movements as when Cole is walking him. BUT he has a hayday with me. He can pretty much take me where he wants to go & that's what he does.

I struggle so hard when we go outside. Maybe more than I'd like to admit. It's a struggle that he can't really understand where we're going. He's so used to me being in front with his face that he will keep trying to look back at me or turn around and we will end up going in circles. LOL. We really are something to see. It gets easier each trip and I've had some assistance from my little sister where she takes on my roll of leading him. It makes things so much easier for both me and Kujo.

He has been so well behaved. He loves to run in his sling... yes you read it right. :lol:
When we finish out front and it's time to go in- He DARTS to the door and through the house like he is a professional bobsledder. I don't think he cares IF I keep up or not but we both know it's best that I do. :lol:

He has so much energy it's crazy but then again he isn't able to rid himself of it like he normally would. I feel like things have gotten easier over the past 24 hours. I'm kind of exhausted but also relieved that I've been able to help him get around fairly easily. We really are so blessed.

Thank you for your questions- I really didn't notice how well he had figured out a bathroom system until I looked back on things to answer your question. I HAD noticed the small things like him not being in his bed, doing leg kicks, and the small movements before he went #2 but what I wasn't seeing was how IN SYNC they were. I assumed he was moving due to being in the same spot too long. Same with the way he will kick his legs- I truly thought he was stretching. Now, I don't think that's what it was at all.

I'm so thankful to be home with my boy. I'm also so thankful for you guys and all of the assistance, kind words, questions and so on. It gives me a new way to look at things that I didn't think of before. Thank you, thank you, thank you. :wub:
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CarolC
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Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by CarolC »

This part sounds so familiar:
pbj_33 wrote: Sat Jul 31, 2021 10:37 am I struggle so hard when we go outside. Maybe more than I'd like to admit. It's a struggle that he can't really understand where we're going. He's so used to me being in front with his face that he will keep trying to look back at me or turn around and we will end up going in circles. LOL. We really are something to see. It gets easier each trip and I've had some assistance from my little sister where she takes on my roll of leading him. It makes things so much easier for both me and Kujo.
Tinker's Mom had the same problem with Tinker.
https://handicappedpet.net/helppets/viewtopic.php?p=26569#p26569 wrote: During that phase of his recovery when we walked him on a rear harness, Tinker would sometimes literally have us running in circles as we struggled to convince him to change direction. Even handicapped, he still has that stubborn Beagle streak....lol.
Their solution was to walk him with both the rear harness and a leash. You can see a couple of photos of Tinker in his harness + leash below. I would only say that he was a smaller dog, and I would think really carefully about whether trying to hold a leash with your left hand is something you can do, when you already have plenty to do holding the harness. It might be an improvement if it means you get him to head in the right direction. Or it might be one too many things to juggle.

If you are only holding the harness with your right hand, you are facing fairly straight forward, like carrying a suitcase. If you are also holding a leash with your left hand, you are going to be tempted to bring your left shoulder forward and twist your upper body slightly toward the dog. You need to think whether that is comfortable and doable. They generally tell you not to twist when lifting. It is also going to tempt you to round your upper back, which you can keep straighter if you are only concentrating on lifting with the harness and nothing else. I would say if you want to try it, maybe just try it for a very short distance and see what you think. I'm afraid if he's like my golden retriever was, he may pull and you will be twisted trying to hold the leash in one hand and harness in the other. A partner is definitely safer.

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22932732_c7b95609bd_o.jpg (26.5 KiB) Viewed 34 times
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Another idea that might work in a pinch is a stiff leash. They sometimes use them with blind dogs to help guide them. One way to make a DIY stiff leash is to get a piece of PVC pipe and run a regular leash through it, then clip it to the collar. Put your hand through the leash loop handle and grip the PVC and you have leverage to guide left or right, without having to extend your left arm very far. That would allow you to face straight forward better. You can see a picture of the idea here.

http://www.collargirl.com/blind.html

I really think it's better to have a helper. If your sister is willing to help, that sounds like the smartest and safest way to do it. :smart: These ideas would probably be more likely to come in handy if you were going to be walking him solo more often. Hopefully your partner will be home, and the dog will be bearing more weight soon, too.
pbj_33
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2021 10:00 am

Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by pbj_33 »

That is actually what we first did when we brought him home. He seemed to pick up on the gist of things pretty quickly, so we left the leash alone. Like you said, with two people, it is so much easier.

We really have had a smooth week since we picked him up. They changed medications to help with his sleep & I've noticed a lot of changes. His first round of sedatives were for his body. So his mind was not as sedated as his actual body was, causing him to still be stir crazy but not being able to appropriately move. They gave him something more along the lines of anxiety medication. It's a mind sedative, at first, I didn't like the sound of that. I thought sedating him mentally would slow down the recovery process.

Since the change in medications, I have seen constant tail wagging. He has even started doing the little kicks they do when you get a good scratching spot. :lol: I'm wondering if, possibly, the body sedatives were keeping these small signs hidden. Since his body was being sedated, maybe he was too relaxed. He would have bursts of energy but nothing STEADY. With his new medication, I can tell he isn't uneasy, but he has a decent amount of energy and excitement. I really enjoy seeing him comfortable so this has been a complete game changer.

Since he is starting to do more and more with his legs, what should our next steps at home be? I feel like getting him in the correct sitting position (both knees bent, feet under body) then helping him stand is our biggest issue. The actual getting up part seems to be the most strenuous part. It makes sense due to his size.

We do have a vet trip Thursday for more PT and I will ask what they suggest. Ms. Kathy, his rehab vet, has 2 paraplegic dogs of her own, so she gives great advice. It just never hurts to have a second opinion, other ideas, & so on.

Happy Monday & have a wonderful week everyone!! :cheerleader:
pbj_33
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2021 10:00 am

Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by pbj_33 »

Also, I really wish I could upload videos here. I have a couple that show him walking with his left leg, tail wagging, and even the scratchies. All will be shown to his vet Thursday so they can know of the improvements being made at home.

Payton J. :wub:
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FYI
Posts: 857
Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:16 pm

Re: Onset Paralysis

Post by FYI »

pbj_33 wrote: Mon Aug 02, 2021 11:07 am Since he is starting to do more and more with his legs, what should our next steps at home be? I feel like getting him in the correct sitting position (both knees bent, feet under body) then helping him stand is our biggest issue. The actual getting up part seems to be the most strenuous part. It makes sense due to his size.
In https://youtu.be/uaDrMGfzwr8?t=2917 Dr. Darryl Millis wrote: Some dogs are maybe not as strong. They can't push up from a full sitting position. So we can have the dog sit on a raised platform like we see here, and then they only have to push up part of the way. Or we can have them sit with this little peanut between them here.

elevated_sit_to_stand.JPG
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