Small breed dogs, especially Dachshunds, Shih Tzus, and other short stumpy-leg dogs have a cartilage defect that puts them at great risk for intervertebral disc disease. In some cases, the discs in the back rupture, causing compression on the spinal cord. This can lead to pain, trouble walking, and even complete paralysis and loss of sensation in the limbs.
Surgery gives the best chance of a complete recovery, but it is a delicate procedure and requires advanced imaging.
We recently had a patient who was completely paralyzed and had lost sensation to his back legs. In order to know what was going on in his spine, and to decide on the best treatment plan, he had to be sent to another facility for a CT scan. This scan allowed Dr. Dorian Lara at SPCA Florida to see exactly where the ruptured disc material was located.
The dog underwent surgery, and showed that he could feel his feet again within hours after waking up. He is now walking again and is heading for a full recovery!
The paralyzed Dachshund showed that he could feel his feet again within hours of surgery and is expected to make a full recovery.