Monday, December 17, 2012

Jasmine's Disc Injury(?) Day Three

Day three, Jasmine looks depressed. 

I want my happy, vibrant Jasmine back. Archive photo
She looked more cheerful on day one, even with all the pain she was in. On day two she looked like her normal self. But now she looks down.

This could be happening either
  • a side effect of the steroids she's on
  • a result of being in more pain today, though it really doesn't seem to look that she is (she's moving well)
  • a result of the house arrest which she hates

Yes, this time I didn't argue about the steroids. 

I always fought against putting her on them, however, there is a time and place for everything. Not that I'm happy about it, but this was the time when the steroids seemed necessary.

So while it made sense to put Jasmine on it, now I have the added benefit of worrying about side effects. And depression could be one of them. Increased thirst should be one of them but so far I'm happy to see Jasmine drink at least her normal amount. So I have to see how much of a problem that can be.

Jasmine will be on high dose for five days total, than tapered off. She was given a moderately high dose, 1.25 mg/kg/day.

We can increase her pain meds to see whether pain is behind her depression.

Her appetite, at least, is normal. And finally she pooped, even though it was fairly dry and compacted, at least something made its way out so hopefully this might return to somewhat normal.

It's also been a while now since she last urinated. Earlier she was asking to go out quite frequently but I suspect it might have been her plot to at least get out of the house that way. Normally she doesn't need to go very often. But I still need to monitor everything as at some point I might need to get concerned about her kidneys.

Either way, plenty of things to talk to her vet about on Monday morning.

To make drinking easier for her, we devised a raised bowl out of  a filing box and toolbox rubber matting, as she isn't too keen on my holding it up to her nose. So hopefully she might drink a bit more now.

I realized one thing - that I like the old problems so much better!

With those, I know what to do, or at least what to expect. This is an unknown territory, which makes it that much more stressful.

I also purchased some of the Through a Dog's Ear music for her to see whether that might do any good.

***

Related articles
A Time Bomb Ought To Go Off At Some Point, I Guess: Jasmine's Neck 
Jasmine's Disc Injury(?) Day Two

Further reading:
Slipped Disc, Bad Back, and Muscle Spasms in Dogs

11 comments

  1. I'm slapping my hand against my forehead. I have no idea why I didn't suggest a raised food and water station! We found this helped so much for my mom's dog (who had similar problems). Am I remembering correctly: one steroid side affect is constipation? We added water to Andy's dry kibble (kind of creating a gravy), plus encouraged water and gave some moist foods (especially green beans - he loved them). If we'd had access to a canine chiropractor, we'd probably have tried that.

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    1. Hi Sue, no worries, we figured it out :-) I was holding it up for her when she looked like she wanted to drink but she wasn't very impressed with that. So we made up this solution, which seems to be working.

      Jasmine is already on home-cooked, blended, so it has probably 80% water content in it. She did go to poop in the morning again, this time it looked better. So we think it was from not drinking at all the first day, plus it got to stay there for too long; so far it seems that things got moving normally again.

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  2. Hey Jana. Sorry to hear about Jasmine's disc injury. Glad to hear she has improved. It is definitely the drug of choice for disc disease. Currently there has been some debate about it though and some veterinarians prefer to use NSAIDs (non-steroidal therapy) like meloxicam/metacam. If you think she appears worse when you start lowering her cortisone dosage, it may well be worth stopping it completely, giving her a 2 day break then starting her on a NSAID full dose daily (much less side effects involved) but she will also need to be on gastric protectants. Another drug that is really great to use for back pain is tramadol (not classified but similar to a opiate like morphine) & you can use it in combination with the coritsone or NSAID. However, it can cause sedation/constipation and so she must be fed moist food. Hope this information helps. Wishing her a speedy recovery.

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    1. Hi Dr. Rayya, thank you so much for reading about Jasmine. Unfortunately, she cannot have NSAIDs, so either way that is not an option for us. She is on Tramadol already.

      Sedation actually would be desirable, not seeing much of that. Were worried about constipation at first as it took a long time for her to go to poop finally, and that was quite dry and compacted. Today morning, though, it looked quite normal, so hopefully just because of her not drinking the first day. She is on home cooked, so that is quite high in water content.

      Thank you so much for commenting and caring,
      Jana

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  3. Poor Jasmine. I hope he feels better soon.

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    1. Thank you, Roxy. She certainly didn't need this. She's been through enough without it :-( But gotta get through this one also.

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  4. We're so sorry Jasmine is feeling uncomfortable and hope the vet can help find some answers *healingsnoogles*

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    1. Hi Gizmo, talked to him this morning. We do have answers, we just don't like them. Though he said we "dodged the bullet" since she's been improving well. Thank you for the snoogles! :-)

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  5. Laser therapy works wonders for pain and I use it frequently for back issues. You should find a rehabilitation veterinarian who could help you with exercises and strengthening -- it may help prevent further issues. The first thing I tell people is to get the weight off of their pet -- it is a big issue and needs to be addressed.

    Good luck and you are welcome to call with any questions.

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  6. The first thing I recommend to any owner of a pet with back issues is laser therapy -- it is fabulous for pain and edema -- most have a "acute back" setting. The other thing is to make sure your pet is an appropriate weight -- this can be a big help for both you and your pet.

    You should contact a rehabilitation veterinarian -- they can help you devise an exercise program to strengthen your pet's core and may help ward off any further back problems.

    Good luck and I am available for help if needed.

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    1. Hi Dicki, actually it's not the back, it's the neck. Jasmine is at good body condition and getting chiropractic care, laser therapy and underwater treadmill regularly.

      I'm hoping her acupuncture vet, who does house calls, might have a laser also, as we feel that seeing her chiro at this time is risky (the trip)

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