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Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

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Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  LisaW on 11/29/2013, 1:15 pm

Looks like Olive is going to need an MRI to see what wrong with her back legs. All of a sudden last Wed night, she didn't want to walk or jump. Very sudden. I didn't see her hurt herself or yelp. I was with her the whole time. 
Anyways, I took her to vet twice. Anti inflamatories, confined to kitchen for 3 days. No improvement.  Did xrays, shows arthritis in right hip. No tumors or fractures. Same treatment for a week. If not better, MRI. Well, she's not better, except, she's not in pain & wants to move around like nothings wrong, even tho' her hind legs cause her to walk a bit "wonky", a slight drag with the right one & she does not flip back her right paw when tucked under without hesitating: a sigh of a disc problem. I am so stressed & bummed for her & my pocket book. She seems fine. Like she doesn't think anythings wrong with her. We're looking at like $10,000, after the testing & surgery. (if needed). I'll keep you updated, but I'd appreciated any advise.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  Imon on 11/29/2013, 3:09 pm

Not really "experience", Lisa, but our Otto had a genetic issue (without surgery it wasn't possible to be sure, but the vet thought it could have been something like hemivertebrae to some degree) - Otto was a scuffer from a puppy, but we didn't see any issues with his mobility until he was about 7 or 8, when he wasn't able to jump any longer, and then started having trouble with stairs. We took him to a specialist, who said the issue was with his spine, mid-back specifically. He didn't even seem to notice when his feet were turned over - righting them took him quite a while.

We did discuss surgery, but at that time we were told there was a 25% chance it would help him to some degree, a 25% chance it would kill or permanently cripple him and a 50% chance that we'd see no change. It would also require an extended period of crate rest and confinement post-surgery. The price mentioned was similar to that which you've been quoted. We didn't think the odds were good enough to risk it, and Otto had 3 more pretty good years. We carried him up and down stairs, but he was able to move around on level ground quite well. 

A few days before we let him go, he just couldn't get up at all. He also lost the ability to void or have a bowel movement. He had no interest in food or drink from the point where he could no longer walk or rise. We were heartbroken, but let him cross the Bridge at that point since there was nothing (per the vets we consulted) that could be done.

Would surgery when he was 8 have helped? Possibly, but we might have lost the last 3 years we were able to spend with him. Second-guessing is so difficult; we made the choices we did because we felt they gave him the best quality of life and we loved every day he was with us.

I hope the prognosis for Olive's surgery, if it comes to that, is more optimistic than Otto's was. Good luck to you and to her.


Last edited by Imon on 11/29/2013, 3:11 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling!!!)
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  CSollers on 11/29/2013, 6:21 pm

Ray's mobility is pretty bad. We have him on glucosamine and chondroitin and just started him on green lipped mussel extract. You may find some helpful information on this site: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pug-Dog-Health-Rear-AtaxiaParalysis/218123938233440
At 12 years old I don't feel surgery is an option for him.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  puglover22 on 12/2/2013, 3:03 pm

I would try a chiropractor.  I have had great results with mine
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  Imon on 12/2/2013, 7:51 pm

Well, with a chiropractor, some back issues can be made much worse with manipulation - I'd want to have an MRI or a definite diagnosis before trying that. When the condition is one that can be treated this way, they can do wonders....but I'd worry unless I was sure it was OK to proceed.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  TNPUGMOMOF3 on 12/2/2013, 8:26 pm

Also consider acupuncture once an MRI is done.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  pugmom on 12/2/2013, 10:38 pm

The  only experience that I have is with one of my foster pugs.  I cannot remember specifically what his problems were although it did have to do with his back legs and back.  We did acupuncture  for him about every two weeks for a month and I could really tell the difference in his walking.  Eventually he was adopted by a vet who did acupuncture and he lived many years with her giving him periodic treatments.  He lead a great life and charmed all the people at the vets office.  He slept under her desk with two other pugs!
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  CSollers on 12/3/2013, 9:20 pm

TNPUGMOMOF3 wrote:Also consider acupuncture once an MRI is done.
We tried acupuncture for Ray to no effect. We're considering cold laser therapy after we see what the supplements do.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  Renee on 12/4/2013, 12:43 pm

CSollers wrote:
TNPUGMOMOF3 wrote:Also consider acupuncture once an MRI is done.
We tried acupuncture for Ray to no effect. We're considering cold laser therapy after we see what the supplements do.
We had mediocre acupuncture results as well, and I took Ichiro weekly for about 5 months. I did have a foster that we did acupuncture on as well, and he had better results. However, after about 6 months for him, the results tapered off and he started to really hate it.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  PugLady3 on 12/9/2013, 11:07 am

So sorry to hear that you & Olive are going thru this! We've had several pugs with disc/back end issues but we've never done surgery on any of them. It was just too risky & they got along fine with the help of a wheelchair. We tried acupuncture on a couple of them but didn't see a huge improvement. NIPRA has a foster pug who is currently undergoing weekly acupuncture treatments and it's helping him immensely so every case is different. I know that Rona has had a couple of pugs who have undergone back surgery so she could probably provide you with lots of information. The Facebook page that was recommended is very helpful too. Dr. Smiler has posted on here but I don't think that she checks in very often.

Sending goods thoughts for you both!  hug dog
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  pugmom on 12/9/2013, 5:29 pm

Sorry that the acupuncture  did not help.  Keep us posted on how Olive is doing.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  LisaW on 12/12/2013, 12:07 am

Bad news. Vet called. They are keeping her overnight. She is having surgery tomorrow.  3 severe compressed discs pressing on her spinal cord. T11,12 & 13. Dr Berry was glad that my vet & I were so vigilant with her. He said most would wait & then she'd probably at "the point of no return". Please pray. He'll talk to the radiologist to confirm tomorrow & then do surgery in the afternoon. I'll getter details tomorrow. I need to win the lottery now.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  CSollers on 12/18/2013, 3:58 pm

Been following on FB. Prayers and positive thoughts for Olive. The last I saw, she is home and recovering,.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  LisaIzzyAggy on 12/19/2013, 8:12 am

CSollers wrote:Been following on FB. Prayers and positive thoughts for Olive. The last I saw, she is home and recovering,.

That's great news, I've been thinking of her and Lisa and wondering how she was doing.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  rachi on 12/19/2013, 4:18 pm

Great news, hope all continues to go well!  I was wondering how she was doing and hoping for an update.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  LisaW on 12/20/2013, 11:47 pm

Sorry I haven't updated you. It's my busiest time of the year for my salon, so between work & Olive I'm been so busy. She is 1 week & 1 day post op & is getting stronger each day. She has staples along 3/4 of her whole back. I have her in a 4 x 4 x pen in the kitchen & Mochi has the whole kitchen. I put their beds next to each other with the pen between them & they are happy to be together. We tried in separate rooms & that so did not work! Screaming & barking galore & Olive so anxiety ridden, we put them together. She gets her staples out the 2nd & starts physical therapy then. I have borrowed another crate, so at night I put the 2 crates side by side & cover them up together as they sleep. We getting into a routine that is working. She is on steroids, pain meds & an anti acid & wants to eat constantly! Thanks for all you good thoughts & prayers. I will keep you updated.
oxoxox
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  Pugsaunt on 12/21/2013, 9:02 pm

That's very good news, Lisa.  Many prayers for you and Olive, and gentle hugs to Olive and Mochi.
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Re: Anyone have experience with Pug disc/back issues & surgery?

Post  LisaIzzyAggy on 12/23/2013, 8:54 am

Thanks for the update Lisa. I'm glad she is on the mend and hope she continues to do well. I hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday.
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