View Full Version : Alternative therapy for early symptoms

Leanna Palermo
8th February 2012, 03:04 AM
Hello all
My 13 month old black and tan, Raven has shown scratching, chewing, licking and face rubbing/lolling symptoms plus an overall restlessness, worse in am and pm, textbook from what I've learned. An MRI is not an option and U.S. brand drugs are hard to get here in Ecuador.
With my research, I've learned that there are three goals: reduce CSF production, pain control and reduce inflammation. Please correct me if I am wrong.
For a "natural" substitute for corticosteriods I have learned that Dong Quai is an option.
For a natural anti inflammatory I found MSM.
For pain control there is Nature's Sunshine Nerve 8.
I have learned of Syrotab, a separate thing called "Syringo Traditional Chinese Medicine remedy" and something called "amyotrophy convalesence pill series" -- Does ANY one have any experience with any of these options???
We are desperate to get started, since the past two weeks have shown an increase in her symptoms. She does not appear to be in pain yet but it does wake her up sometimes and is also becoming more frequent during the daytime.
Thanks in advance,

8th February 2012, 03:14 AM
Is it inpossible to have a vet subscribe an equivelant of gabapentin in equador? Leaving a dog with sm pain depending on unproven natural alternative pain control is tough! I admire your proactive thinking though.

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8th February 2012, 03:22 AM
All of the symptoms listed indicate pain.

I know you say medications are hard to find, but Prilosec might be available. It's drug name is omeprazole. It would be sold for decreasing stomach acid. I don't know the dosing that would be used for a cavalier, but others here can fill that in if you're able to find it.

I don't have any experience with alternative therapies, but several board members are far more knowledgable on that topic than I am.

8th February 2012, 01:15 PM
There is the possibility that her discomfort is caused by PSOM or by CM (no syrninxes -- the latter meaning perhaps it would remain stable like this without worsening, but the pain/discomfort still needs proper management). It is very difficult to be in a position where you cannot get any proper diagnosis or proper care.

I am afraid many people with SM dogs have tried all those herbal things, and they do not work (I've yet to hear a single testimonial from anyone whose opinion I would trust but would welcome same...). They especially would not work as lone substitutes for pain relief. The discomfort of this condition goes way beyond mild herbal remedies; I know lots of people who have wasted money on MSM and Nerve 8 etc.

I would absolutely not try *any* herb substitute for steroids unless approved for dogs by a qualified holistic vet -- some human remedies can kill dogs. Even so these tend to be very mild possible replacements -- not for this kind of condition (and as someone who has a condition that requires long term corticosteroids -- believe me, if there were a real alternative the world would have flocked to it. The reality is they don't really work, at least not remotely close to being a replacement and I am on very low dose corticosteroids and on discussion lists where people have tried the herbal alternatives -- crap :( -- though should clarify: there are supplements that some find do help as a complementary approach in addition to the steroids, to help get people to a lower dose).

Gabapentin is a better option for most dogs than steroids, which are generally a 'last resort' drug, or taken if other things don;t agree.

Cimetidine, omaprazole etc are generally available off prescription at any pharmacy.

If you are working with a vet then perhaps they can read Clare Rusbridge's treatment algorithm etc and work with you off that.

This is an extremely painful condition and I think you really must try to find someone who can help you get appropriate treatment.

Please beware some of the discussions about 'alternative' remedies and claims on the internet. There are many human SM discussion groups where they have discussed all those treatments and they are all a total waste of money --and many are expensive ripoffs of desperate people.

It would be kinder to try and relieve her more modest pain as long as possible using standard painkillers noted by Clare on her algorithm and if she begins to get really uncomfortable/painful to take the very hard but humane decision to let her go, rather than to let her suffer with the more advanced pain of SM for any period of time (and all the signs you mention are indications of a degree of pain, according to neurologists -- the concern would be that you are seeing so many of them,so young).

Some dogs do more or less stabilise at a given level of discomfort that can be managed with painkillers/gabapentin -- but lots of symptoms at her young age (under two) generally indicates a more severe case and faster progression.

I am sorry the options are so difficult for you, and to be so blunt, but your choices seem very limited and if she cannot get proper vet care for this, you need to think in terms of the most humane care.

Leanna Palermo
8th February 2012, 02:06 PM
Thanks so much. Yes, after I wrote that I had to admit that it pain and not just "irritation" that is the problem. I will try and see if we can get Prilosec or Tagamet or the spanish equivalent down here. Muchas gracias!

Leanna Palermo
8th February 2012, 02:07 PM
Thanks so much. I appreciate you sharing all of this and in the midst of our stress and worry, really will consider all of your opinions and experiences. Muchas gracias!

Leanna Palermo
8th February 2012, 02:18 PM
Can anyone vouch for some results with this?

Leanna Palermo
8th February 2012, 02:25 PM
Sorry, my replies did not get placed properly...I'm a newbie....

8th February 2012, 03:20 PM
I forgot to say some dogs do get some relief with acupuncture -- you need to find someone familiar with acupuncture for dogs though!

8th February 2012, 03:22 PM
Can anyone vouch for some results with this?

What results ?

Leanna Palermo
8th February 2012, 04:39 PM
results such as apparent reduction of pain, number of episodes, etc. after using acupuncture