View Full Version : Strange Behaviour... ** VETS UPDATE **

5th March 2007, 09:30 AM
I wonder if anyone can help.

Over the last few days I have noticed Chester has started fighting with his back paw. I know this sounds strange but it is always on his left side and he seems to get quite aggressive.

He is usually a really gentle little fella but this seems to really wind him up, his face changes and his teeth come out. We have been trying to take his mind off it when we see him doing it but am just concerned as to why this has started.

I had thought it only happened when he was tired but he did it again this morning. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

5th March 2007, 09:38 AM
Sometimes a dog can get a tick right between the toes, have a good look. Maybe take him to the vet, he might have a splinter or a little cut which is annoying him. :flwr:

Cathy Moon
5th March 2007, 12:04 PM
I would take him to the vet. It sounds like he's experiencing pain/discomfort. :flwr:

5th March 2007, 02:59 PM
Hi Kelly

Whereabouts in Herts are you? I was wondering where you got Chester from, was it local. We got Harvey and Alfie in Waltham Cross.

5th March 2007, 03:06 PM
worth checking for seeds or even knotts on the paw

he may have something between his toes

5th March 2007, 03:31 PM
Yvonne: We actually got Chester from a lady in Reading as the breeder in Waltham Cross didnt have any tri-colour boys at the time.

I know a couple of people who got their furbabies from a breeder in Waltham Cross. When Chester is a little older we are going to get him a playmate and will probably go there as we have heard good reports.

I have booked Chester in to see the Vets tonight so hopefully they can have a good route around his foot. He doesnt yelp or seem to be in any discomfort when I touch it though.

Fingers crossed it's nothing too serious. You can't help but worry about them can you.

5th March 2007, 04:41 PM
hi Kelly,

If you are happy with Chester you should stick to the same breeder.

We love Harvey but he is extremely large for a cav, he is not overweight but weighs 15.5 kilos and is the size of a cocker.

Alfie came from the same place and is really small weighing only 5.5 kilos and the vet says probably wont get much bigger. They look like litle and large together. Whereabouts in herts are you?

5th March 2007, 04:53 PM
Help!!!!! Something went very wrong with my post - how do I delete all these.

5th March 2007, 05:05 PM
For some reason the site seems to be having trouble with posts. If you look in the upper right hand corner of your post, there is a little x buttom that will allow you to delete it. I've had to do this twice today ;)

After every post I make, I am getting a notice of "debug". Don't hit send again, because it has already posted your comment :thmbsup:

5th March 2007, 05:20 PM
I am getting that too Monica.

6th March 2007, 09:29 AM
We live just outside Ware.

We went to the Vets last night & it doesnt sound too encouraging really. They have emptied his anal sacs & put him on some anti-inflammatory tablets to see if this stops him. Apparently he could be associating the pain of his bottom with his foot.

But then they have also asked me to keep a note of all scooting, digging, chewing as they think it may be SM. I have got to give them a call back in 2 weeks to go over it & then they will decide whether to refer him then. The Vet was wonderful, I had gone armed with all the info off the website but she actually brought the SM subject up first.

Am very upset about it all, it just seems so unfair. He is only 7 months old and such a wonderfully happy little fella. Fingers crossed it is his anal sacs but with some of the other things he does, I am not that hopeful. :(

6th March 2007, 09:43 AM
I didn't think I would ever wish an anal sac problem on one of our little babies but heres hoping :xfngr:

I feel very sad for you and your dog but will pray that is not SM.
This will be a tuff few weeks for you, not knowing is very hard. I am sending lots of positive and hopeful healing thoughts your way. :hug:

6th March 2007, 09:51 AM
:xfngr: Fingers crossed here too. I hope it turns out to be a false alarm.

6th March 2007, 11:48 AM
I will be thinking of you. Hope it is something simple.

6th March 2007, 12:13 PM
Hi Kelly,

I too hope it's not SM but this is something Maxx does with his SM. I find it helps him if I massage his back feet. It stops him biting them and making them sore too.

Let us know when you get your appointment and I really hope that is is 'just' anal sacs that is causing the problem. I do know of other dogs who have bitten their back paws when they have had sore anal glands.

Give Chester a big :hug: from us :hug:

6th March 2007, 12:25 PM
Thank you for your kind thoughts. I will keep you updated.

How severe is Maxx's SM? How old was he when he was diagnosed? If Chester has SM, is it likely to be quite severe as he is so young to be showing symptoms? Sorry for asking so many questions, my head is buzzing at the moment.

This site is fantastic. I love reading everyone's post & I have learnt so much.

6th March 2007, 12:49 PM
Hi Kelly....I am so sorry that you fear it may be SM. I will be thinking of you and Chester and hoping for a positive outcome. Please keep us posted. :xfngr:

Cathy T
6th March 2007, 03:40 PM
Not good news Kelly. I'm so sorry to hear this. Yes, it's not normal for us to wish for anal sac problems....but in this case we're hoping that is what it is. Please keep us posted, we'll be thinking of you.

6th March 2007, 04:03 PM
Kelly does Chester scoot a lot. Alfie has done this since he was small and still did it after his anal sac was emptied. Also he turns to bite his back very suddenly when he is walking. He does have food allergies so I think maybe he itches. Is your vets in Ware as this is also my vets and it would be good to know if it is the same place as they seem to be up on SM. Alfie is to be castrated on Friday so maybe I will mention it to them then. Does Chester scratch a lot as well. Hope everything is fine with Chester he is such a handsome boy.

6th March 2007, 04:16 PM
Yes ours Vet is in Ware, we go to Chestnuts. The Vet (Fiona) was very up on SM and mentioned it to me before I got the chance to mention it to her. I have got to keep a diary for a couple of weeks and then give her a call back.

Yes he does scoot a lot. He always has. Emptying his anal sacs & worming him doesnt have any effect. The Vet I saw previously said he may have got into a habit of doing it but I think it is more than that.

I am not aware of him scratching a lot, he has his moments but I just thought that was "normal". He has taken to rubbing his ears with his paws over the last couple of weeks though.

It's all so confusing. I know some of it can just be classed as normal dog behaviour but the more I read the more convinced I am.

6th March 2007, 06:57 PM
That is the same vet as me, that is where Alfie is being castrated on Friday. I think I have seen Fiona before. I travel from Waltham cross to Ware as my neice is the vetinary nurse there so when my dogs have to stay in I know they will be fine as they know her so they are not with strangers. We also tried the worming and anal emptying but Alfie still scoots, but there was a thread on here a while back and apparently lots of cavs do this just because!! Hopefully all will be well with Chester.

11th March 2007, 04:27 PM
I am sorry you are having worries about SM. You'll probably have had a lot of info on this by now from your vet and I also keep updated information on my SM Infosite (link is on my signature). Many of us here have SM cavaliers of different degrees of affectedness. Unfortunately this is a quite mysterious condition that is very poorly understood in animals and humans both. Younger onset tends to mean more severe forms of the condition but not always. Sometimes it progresses but sometimes seems to stabilise and sometimes symptoms are fairly mild. But generally, when symptoms show in a dog under three the condition does tend to progress and will need either medical or surgical management. The surgery is the only option to actually get rid of the physical problem causing the pain through even the causes and reasons for pain are not well understood. While the skull malformation is *usually* the main cause of the development of syrinxes and resulting pain, it is also known that the dynamics of the flow of the fluid that circulates the brain and down the spine -- called CSF -- is probably at least and perhaps even more important. That's why some dogs with severe syrinxes and malformation may show NO pain or symptoms, while those with mild or even no syrinxes and mild malformation may have moderate to severe symptoms.

The surgery has about an 80% success rate in halting progression but about a fourth of dogs have recurrence of the problem probably due to scar tissue formation. Because the surgery will not reverse most damage that has already occured many dogs will not be able to revert to having no symptoms and many need to remain on neurological painkillers for life. There are risks with the surgery as well but to date I have not heard of a single dog that was lost due to complications from the surgery.

Neurologists also differ greatly in recommended surgery or when to have it or even what type. I tend to follow Clare Rusbridge's advice which is to consider surgery if the dog is showing significant pain and/or limb weakness which is a sign of more serious potential damage. I treat my SM dog with medications at this time and am not considering the surgery at this time. In the US some neuros recommend surgery as the first choice option and feel the condition almost always will progress.

All that aside, as Clare R. says in her introduction sheet on SM, no one can make decisions about what is best for your own dog but the owner and many will feel surgery is not the option they wish to pursue or that medication is not the option they wish to pursue, or any range of reasons. I am just setting out the current consensus view returning from the neurologists who work directly with affected dogs and the results they are seeing back and which are reported by owners of affected dogs. :thmbsup:

Scooting is not necessarily a symptom of anything --I find it is very, very common in the breed. I have a dog that has MRId completely clear of SM AND the malformation, in other words,a totally clear dog, as verified by two neurologists including Clare Rusbridge, and he scoots all the time even when his anal glands have been recently emptied. At the same time, affected dogs do seem to scoot frequently because they feel some pain or irritating sensation in their hindquarters. I note all this just to say that it can be quite difficult to make a diagnosis on clinical symptoms. Your vet is right to want to have you keep a diary, and check for other causes, and if all else is eliminated, then will likely send you to a neurologist for a consultation. Symptoms in a younger dog are usually something else other than SM but SM is always a possibility.

I am sure your vet will also be considering PSOM or glue ear -- this can cause some similar symptoms. Both my Leo and Jaspar MRId with this and it probably is the cause of some similar symptoms to SM in Jaspar.

If you haven't viewed the videos on my SM site, have a look at those. The one of the older dog will probably be most informative.

11th March 2007, 09:55 PM
Zack only scooted occasionally. The vet asked "does he scoot," i hesitated because i wasn't seeing it as a problem (other dogs i've had scooted occasionally) and i said "...yes," and she said she was going to express his anal glands. She did, and after that he scooted A LOT more. It lasted a few weeks. Then he went back to normal, only scooting occasionally.

On this forum, i have heard other people say their dogs scooted more after anal gland expression too. Something to consider.

Good luck with helping Chester--I am hoping for the best for you guys.