Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Back at the vets with Harleys leg

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Leicester
    Posts
    2,614
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Back at the vets with Harleys leg

    Well we went to see the vets last night and I don’t know where to start. The vet said he is surprised that the pain killers are not doing their job, but every dog is different and responds different to certain medicine.
    He was moving his leg, shoulder and neck about and Harley didn’t like it when he turned his neck to the right. The vet said that it could be any of the three but Harley seems more sore in his elbow but as the Xrays didn’t show anything it could be soft tissue damage, ligament or muscle or even siatica, trapped nerve or maybe SM. As he thinks it’s an Agility injury he doesn’t think its SM. He said it could take anything up to 6 month to get better, but I don’t like that we don’t know exactly what we are dealing with. He said we can do an MRI Scan and he would have to inject some colourer fluid into his bone. But there would be no guarantee that even an MRI will show anything. I really don’t know what to do. Put him through another anaesthetic for an MRI that maybe not going to tell us anything? But I can’t see myself wait for another 2 month to see if he gets better. The MRI Scanner is there once a month, it will be there week after next, is that too soon should I give him a bit longer to see if he gets better then have him scanned in 6 weeks? Then I have to deal with the insurance about a pre authorisation for the scan. When I was dealing with Ebony’s problems it was terrible but at least I knew what I was dealing with, not knowing what is wrong with Harley is what bothers me.
    Sabby
    Rosie-06/06 - Ebony-01/07 Harley-08/08
    " My sunshine doesn't come from the skies, it comes from the love in my dogs eyes "

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Dublin, Ireland
    Posts
    24,019
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    15

    Default

    A vet cannot tell anything about whether a dog is likely to have SM by looking at an x-ray–this gives no information at all, as he has noted.

    Given that Harley's neck is showing pain when moved to one side, I would definitely have an MRI, and I would do it sooner rather than later. Pain created from doing something like a surgery could well have severe knock on pain affects for a dog that actually has SM and so that could very well be the reason you are not seeing much success with pain killers (oops sorry -- just realised he didn't have surgery for his leg!).

    Perhaps the vet might consider trying gabapentin to see if that helps with the pain in the meantime?

    To be honest, I would wonder whether you might not want to talk to a neurologist– you can get leg weakness from SM and other neuromuscular problems that would not be related to an agility injury. If you're getting these other problems, including pain that is definitely related to the neck, I would want an MRI for SM, not simply an MRI for the leg injury.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Leo Lily Tansy Libby (foster) Mindy (foster)
    In memory: Lucy
    Cavalier SM Infosite:www.smcavaliers.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Leicester
    Posts
    2,614
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Karlin View Post
    A vet cannot tell anything about whether a dog is likely to have SM by looking at an x-ray–this gives no information at all, as he has noted.

    Given that Harley's neck is showing pain when moved to one side, I would definitely have an MRI, and I would do it sooner rather than later. Pain created from doing something like a surgery could well have severe knock on pain affects for a dog that actually has SM and so that could very well be the reason you are not seeing much success with pain killers (oops sorry -- just realised he didn't have surgery for his leg!).

    Perhaps the vet might consider trying gabapentin to see if that helps with the pain in the meantime?

    To be honest, I would wonder whether you might not want to talk to a neurologist– you can get leg weakness from SM and other neuromuscular problems that would not be related to an agility injury. If you're getting these other problems, including pain that is definitely related to the neck, I would want an MRI for SM, not simply an MRI for the leg injury.

    There are so many Questions.
    I am 100% convinced that this was brought on by Agility as it first happened after the competition then only again after another training session. When he was not doing agility he was fine, and then only when the vet pulled his leg about he started limping constantly. So if he would have SM has the agility made it worse and gave him these symptoms? Do I have an MRI scan for SM and his shoulder, leg and neck? I wouldn’t want just an MRI done for SM and not really knowing if there is a problem with his shoulder or leg.
    Sabby
    Rosie-06/06 - Ebony-01/07 Harley-08/08
    " My sunshine doesn't come from the skies, it comes from the love in my dogs eyes "

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Hatfield, Herts, UK
    Posts
    2,737
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    20

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sabby View Post
    There are so many Questions.
    I am 100% convinced that this was brought on by Agility as it first happened after the competition then only again after another training session. When he was not doing agility he was fine, and then only when the vet pulled his leg about he started limping constantly. So if he would have SM has the agility made it worse and gave him these symptoms? Do I have an MRI scan for SM and his shoulder, leg and neck? I wouldn’t want just an MRI done for SM and not really knowing if there is a problem with his shoulder or leg.
    Sorry to write this Sabby, but I agree with Karlin.

    Three of my SM dogs have limped intermittently.

    One of the problems with SM is that symptoms so often mirror other conditions. I know of dogs that went through orthopaedic assessment, no reason found for their lameness but an MRI showed a syrinx.

    Excitement and activity could raise the CSF pressure within the brain and spinal cord and result in extra pain and limping after agility activities?

    Neck pain is a common symptom of SM.

    A short trial with gabapentin may give some indication as to whether this is nerve pain and whether a MRI of the spine is needed.
    Margaret C

    Cavaliers......Faith, The Ginger Tank and Woody.
    Japanese Chins.... Dandy, Benny, Bridgette and Hana.
    Remembered with love......... Tommy Tuppence and Fonzi

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Leicester
    Posts
    2,614
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Margaret C View Post
    Sorry to write this Sabby, but I agree with Karlin.

    Three of my SM dogs have limped intermittently.

    One of the problems with SM is that symptoms so often mirror other conditions. I know of dogs that went through orthopaedic assessment, no reason found for their lameness but an MRI showed a syrinx.

    Excitement and activity could raise the CSF pressure within the brain and spinal cord and result in extra pain and limping after agility activities?

    Neck pain is a common symptom of SM.

    A short trial with gabapentin may give some indication as to whether this is nerve pain and whether a MRI of the spine is needed.
    Margaret

    If gabapentin helps (stops his limping) would that mean he has SM? The vet also mentioned siatica or a trapped nerve. I just don't want to leave any stone unturned I also would like to have his shoulder/neck MRi'd so we can look at the whole picture.

    Since the vet pulled on his leg 2 weeks ago Harley has limped constantly. First it was only after agility now it's there all the time.
    Sabby
    Rosie-06/06 - Ebony-01/07 Harley-08/08
    " My sunshine doesn't come from the skies, it comes from the love in my dogs eyes "

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Sunbury on Thames, Middlesex
    Posts
    843
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Sabby, Sorry to hear about poor Harley and his bad leg. They are such a worry, and it must be difficult for you to decide what to do for the best

    I don't have anything to add to what has already been said by Karlin and Margaret, but prior to Minnie being diagnosed she suffered from intermittent bouts of lameness which my vet was convinced was a lower back problem. In between times she continued doing her fun agility, she then started to refuse certain objects that she had never had a problem with before, so that was the point I got her MRI'd.

    Does Harley have problems with going up stairs or jumping up onto furniture?

    Good luck with whatever you decide and I hope that Harley is feeling better soon.
    Sandra
    Minnie-May (6yrs) & Rosie the Rescue (approx 6 yrs)
    My Darling Cinders and Lady Jane waiting at the Bridge

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Dublin, Ireland
    Posts
    24,019
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    15

    Default

    Gabapentin wouldn't necessarily stop it. It generally takes time to find the correct dosage and it doesn't help all dogs with SM. But it is a useful thing to trial.

    Given incidence of CM/SM in the breed, one of these conditions is sadly probably far more likely to cause problems than sciatica. The sensitive neck in addition to other issues would make me want an MRI of that area.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Leo Lily Tansy Libby (foster) Mindy (foster)
    In memory: Lucy
    Cavalier SM Infosite:www.smcavaliers.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,449
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Sabby, sorry Harley isn't getting better. It does sound like you got good advice from others and that an MRI is in order. I'll keep my fingers crossed that whatever is causing the lameness isn't too serious. Good luck.
    Joyce - Proudly owned & loved by

    BellaMia (Aug. 30, 2012) My Beautiful Ruby Milo (Jan. 20, 2014) My Handsome Tri
    Sydney (
    April 16, 2000~April 4, 2012) Always and Forever In My Heart

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    North Carolina USA
    Posts
    921
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Hope you get to bottom of this soon

    It may take an MRI to know for sure what is really going on. So sorry!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    North Scotland - east coast
    Posts
    9,954
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default

    Oh Sabby I'm so sorry to read this - you are having just such a horrible year with the dogs.

    Personally I would have Harley MRI'd, they should be able to do his shoulder, leg etc at the same time - then you will know what is going on. I had a boy who limped intermittently when he had been doing lots of running, would get better with rest but then it would return - he had severe SM and this was his ONLY symptom. So Harley might only be showing the problem when he's been competing as this would be the time of most strain on the body.

    The fact that the vet said about his neck as well would mean I would definitely get him MRI'd - the insurance company should be able to do a pre authorisation for you.

    You are in our thoughts xx
    Nicki and the Cavalier Clan Our photos www.scotlandimagery.com
    Supporting www.rupertsfund.com and www.cavaliermatters.org

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •