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    1. #1
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      MontananDakota's Avatar
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      Dakota's back legs.

      Dakota will be turning 13 on June 26. My sweetheart is having issues with her back legs. On and off for quiet a while they'd be shaky or tired it seems. Lately more so-if someone (China) bumps into her it could knock her back end down. She is slow sometimes to get up. This morning the hard wood floor ( which she chose to lay on rather than her bed) proved pretty slippery when she tried to get up. It is time to take her in to add some type of medication. What can I expect? Something only for pain? Anything to help with the weakness?
      She still leads the way on walks. Happily, so if its pain it cant be too awful bad...

    2. #2
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      When Hershey first started feeling discomfort (spinal stenosis, misdiagnosed at first), he sped up on walks. It was as if he wanted to outrun whatever was going on with those hind legs (weakness, sometimes giving out and he'd actually fall on our walks...out of the blue). That was in retrospect...at the time, I thought Hersh must have really been enjoying those walks. Till the falling started.

      Hersh tightened his groin/leg muscles to give himself more control...his legs still slid out from underneath him on slippery floors...the misdiagnosis was "pulled groin muscle". When the PT loosened those muscles, Hersh had practically no control. I've always wished we hadn't done the PT. All we could do was give him pain meds and even those weren't enough after a while...he started hiding in his bed.

      Good thoughts for Dakota...hope her experience will be better than Hersh's was...different diagnosis....
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      MontananDakota (05-16-2017)

    4. #3
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      Sounds like our last family dog Dryf (he had hip issues that were not an issue til her got old - possibly HD). Is she already on general joint supplements?

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      MontananDakota (05-16-2017)

    6. #4
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      Both Melody and Mardi had difficulty getting up as age increased. For Melody it was lower spine arthritis, Mardi had hip arthritis. We put down a lot of rubber backed carpet runners for traction. Vet may suggest a pain med and anti-inflammatory. For Melody it was Rimadyl, which I don't like, but she did fine on it and it really helped her. Also, a support/walking harness helped.
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      MontananDakota (05-16-2017)

    8. #5
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      Coleman had bad hips and knees so any little breeze could sometimes send him to the floor. Bailey was same as he got older he would stand and his hips would sway back and forth also needing help in getting up. Pain meds worked for any arthritis and discomfort if there were falls, and supplements.
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      MontananDakota (05-16-2017)

    10. #6
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      Thanks everyone. Dakota has been on Glucosamine | MSM | Condrointin supplements from Dr. Foster & Smith for quite some time. I always loved giving this even when there were no issues. I has stopped for a bit and noticed more difficulty getting up , started again and I see a difference. I tried to give fish oil too but she does not like the smell | taste of it.

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      Tanya (05-17-2017)

    12. #7
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      My Molly turns 13 this spring & has also been having the hind end weakness for awhile now. It is so distressing to see our babies get old! We had a bad winter & she had the most trouble when it was icy. A couple of times she fell, & couldn't get up, & just laid down in the snow. Another time, in the house, her hind legs just seemed to give out all of a sudden & she sat down hard, & yelped in pain. She was having a lot of trouble getting up. It seems like sometimes when she tries to get up, her hind legs are kind of out in front of her, & she has to really lean forward & struggle to get up. We bought her a Solve It lifting harness to help her out when she is having trouble. All the other dogs I've had have been put on Rimadyl when they got old & started having arthritis problems, but Molly already has something going on with her liver, causing her to have an elevated ALT (whatever that may be). Because Labs can be prone to developing liver problems if put on Rimadyl & since Molly already has a problem there, my vet didn't want to put her on it. She prescribed some Gabapentin for Molly, & I've been giving Molly Cosequin for quite awhile. However, a new medication is out now to help with arthritis, so my vet was finally able to get it & Molly was the first dog she tried it on. It isn't supposed to have all the bad side effects that Rimadyl can have. It is expensive--$50 for 10 pills. Molly had to take a pill a day for about 3 days, & the vet said if it seemed to be helping to try giving her 1/2 pill each day, which is what we're doing. It does seem to be helping her. I know it isn't a cure, but I have not felt like I had to put the lifting harness on her since she started on the new med. I take her on 1 longer walk each morning (not that far--just down to the end of the road & back, maybe 1/2 mile). So we really aren't doing a lot of exercise. Molly wants to go, & she is always out if front, but she has a little more pep going down the road than she has coming back. If I try to take her for a longer walk, it does seem to tire her out. The other walks are just short potty walks & a chance to sniff around. The new med is called Galliprant--you might want to ask your vet about it. Sending along positive thoughts & prayers Dakota will be o.k! This getting old stuff is not for the faint-hearted......

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      MontananDakota (05-17-2017)

    14. #8
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      Thanks Mollysmomma, this sounds exactly like Dakota. It is not easy seeing them age. We usually do about 1-2 miles a day with Dakota out front leading as she has her whole life. She does pant more now than last year at the end of our walks. Much more. It takes her longer to recover. I even try to slow her down but you know how that goes with a lab. I'm going to look at the harness. Thanks for that!

    15. #9
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      I have had Emma on Hylasport, vitamin c and crill or salmon oil for years now, we started tumeric about a year or so ago. We also do cold laser therapy as needed and have Tramadol and Gabapentin for pain, as needed. (She has hip and spinal arthritis.) She still creaks and cracks at times and can be a little slow in the morning but it scares me to think what the alternative would be without the above.
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      MontananDakota (05-19-2017)

    17. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by Mollysmomma View Post
      My Molly turns 13 this spring & has also been having the hind end weakness for awhile now. It is so distressing to see our babies get old! We had a bad winter & she had the most trouble when it was icy. A couple of times she fell, & couldn't get up, & just laid down in the snow. Another time, in the house, her hind legs just seemed to give out all of a sudden & she sat down hard, & yelped in pain. She was having a lot of trouble getting up. It seems like sometimes when she tries to get up, her hind legs are kind of out in front of her, & she has to really lean forward & struggle to get up. We bought her a Solve It lifting harness to help her out when she is having trouble. All the other dogs I've had have been put on Rimadyl when they got old & started having arthritis problems, but Molly already has something going on with her liver, causing her to have an elevated ALT (whatever that may be). Because Labs can be prone to developing liver problems if put on Rimadyl & since Molly already has a problem there, my vet didn't want to put her on it. She prescribed some Gabapentin for Molly, & I've been giving Molly Cosequin for quite awhile. However, a new medication is out now to help with arthritis, so my vet was finally able to get it & Molly was the first dog she tried it on. It isn't supposed to have all the bad side effects that Rimadyl can have. It is expensive--$50 for 10 pills. Molly had to take a pill a day for about 3 days, & the vet said if it seemed to be helping to try giving her 1/2 pill each day, which is what we're doing. It does seem to be helping her. I know it isn't a cure, but I have not felt like I had to put the lifting harness on her since she started on the new med. I take her on 1 longer walk each morning (not that far--just down to the end of the road & back, maybe 1/2 mile). So we really aren't doing a lot of exercise. Molly wants to go, & she is always out if front, but she has a little more pep going down the road than she has coming back. If I try to take her for a longer walk, it does seem to tire her out. The other walks are just short potty walks & a chance to sniff around. The new med is called Galliprant--you might want to ask your vet about it. Sending along positive thoughts & prayers Dakota will be o.k! This getting old stuff is not for the faint-hearted......
      we (sadly) have much in common! Rock and Molly are about the same age and appear to have the same issues Rock came of NSAIDs when his liver values went a bit wonky (stable now at least).
      There were a few times he fell this winter (ok he actually slips quite a bit) where he didn't even try to get up, and my heart just completely breaks. I was able to avoid those luckily once I figured out what the (possible) issue was. Thankfully this past winter wasn't too bad here as far as ice.

      OMG aging dogs are not for the faint hearted. I feel like my entire life is worrying about Rocky (which I KNOW is bad, so i am working on things to improve that for both of us). Hard to sit back and enjoy these special time as how every breath, pant, wobble increases my heart rate!

      Our walking distance has gone down a bit. partly due to the heat (I hope mostly due to heat but I don't know...I am fairly sure he's declined a wee bit again). He could do up to 2km (took about an hour) at our peak this winter. Now we are back down to maybe 1 km (and slow). Maybe 1.5km. With the heat we're having to shuffle the walking, mornings are the "longer" walk. Even at 20deg celcius he was flagging (it's be 36 today)

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      MontananDakota (05-19-2017)

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