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Thread: Osteoporosis

  1. #1

    Default Osteoporosis

    Hi, my first visit. I'm desperately trying to find any info on Osteoporosis in dogs and treatments. My 13 year old cattle cross has been diagnosed with an Osteoporotic spine with hairline fractures in her vertebrae and disks pushing up towards the spinal cord. She's started on Calcium a week ago and is in awful pain when she lies down. She still goes out and runs a little and jumps and barks a little but as soon as she lies down the moans, groans, growls and cries start. She's had many pain killers but the only one that has worked for her is Tolfedine which is very expensive and I'm told is not to be given for any length of time. The vet said it would be 6 to 8 weeks before she shows any improvement, in the meantime she's suffering and so am I.
    I would really appreciate hearing from anyone who may have had this problem and what treatments they used.

    Nevada67

  2. #2

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nevada67 View Post
    Hi, my first visit. I'm desperately trying to find any info on Osteoporosis in dogs and treatments. My 13 year old cattle cross has been diagnosed with an Osteoporotic spine with hairline fractures in her vertebrae and disks pushing up towards the spinal cord. She's started on Calcium a week ago and is in awful pain when she lies down. She still goes out and runs a little and jumps and barks a little but as soon as she lies down the moans, groans, growls and cries start. She's had many pain killers but the only one that has worked for her is Tolfedine which is very expensive and I'm told is not to be given for any length of time. The vet said it would be 6 to 8 weeks before she shows any improvement, in the meantime she's suffering and so am I.
    I would really appreciate hearing from anyone who may have had this problem and what treatments they used.

    Nevada67
    So sorry to hear this. It is always hard when our dogs are diagnosed with an illness or disease, life threatening or not.

    So you are allowing her to run around?

    Did you vet not specify that she should be on very strict rest only?

    I highly doubt there will be any major improvement at all unless she is resting.

    I know it is hard to force an active dog to rest (I just had to do it for 4 weeks to my 15 month old) but allowing her to run around like nothing is wrong will cause her more damage and as you said pain.

    In relation to pain relief, sometimes I think it came be more harmful than good. Because unlike humans dogs can't fathom that just because the pain has gone away doesn't mean it is all better, they think they are all better and will push themselves too far, if they are in pain then they limit themselves a bit. In saying that Traumeel (What is Traumeel for Dogs? | eHow.com) is a good ALL NATURAL pain killer that does a fantastic job and is very reasonably priced, you don't need a script for it. I have used it for my dogs with no side effects.

  3. #3
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    Default

    I put some calcium in my dog's food and she gets a couple of spoonfuls of yoghurt each day. There's some joint stuff called pernase powder and another called sasha's blend which are good for joint problems - a bit like glucosamine - but not sure if that will help with bones.

    Before a human gets old and decrepid, weight bearing exercise is supposed to be good. But after a fracture - best avoided until that's healed up, which takes longer if you are older (than 22yo).

    I would agree about limiting opportunity to "run and jump" until the fractures have healed and the pain is gone or much reduced. So if this was my dog she'd be in a crate when i wasn't available to supervise, and all her toilet breaks would be on lead to prevent "running around and barking" at the neighbour's cat or whatever fun thing is around. And if I could get some hydrotherapy ie walking on a treadmill in water - I'd be considering that. One of our vets has a system you can use for about $25 for a 15 minute session - which would be more than enough for an injured dog.

    Each time she runs around like a pain free lunatic, she makes the problems worse and will take even longer to heal.

  4. #4
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    So sad to hear that you dog has this, I am going to be a little negative, sadly..........At the age of thirteen already having osteoporosis, there will be no absorption of Calcium to right this.... . Even in the human world we cannot right osteoporosis at an old age, we can only prevent it in the younger people.

    In humans we do vertebroplasty's to fix these unstable fractures. It means putting cement in the vertebra that are crushes/hairline fractured. I know because it is part of my job..........

    What you can do is help wit some pain relief. Non-cortisone based anti-inflammatories are good too. Cortisone can make osteoporosis worse. Acupuncture and some Bowen therapy may help too. massage might make things worse. Hydrotherapy is wonderful for a dog that enjoys water. Find someone with a pool

    Rest would be important ( from running and jumping), that is the only reason why using pain relief is quite risky in dogs, because as soon as they feel better they want to run.
    Pets are forever

  5. #5

    Default

    To Phoenix & Keira, Hyacinth, and Newfsie

    Thank you all for your advice, I've written four replies but they won't post. I'll just make this brief till I see how to get it to work.
    Best regards Cath, Nevada67

  6. #6

    Default Tosh with Osteoporosis

    That seemed to work. There is a vet 2 hours away who does acupuncture, and it is a big town so I will try to find out if there is a hydro-therapy pool in that town too. Tosh loves water.
    Newfsie, bad news on the calcium, I emailed Dr Char in US, and she advised a different type of Calcium and Vitamin D and Arthro- Onix. I also saw on eHow (thanks for that site it's great) that Turmeric is an anti-inflamatory so I started her on a quarter of a teaspoon in her food last night. She's so determined to get on with her life, but I've taken your advice and try to only let her out on the lead. Even then it's hard to stop her bouncing. I guess I'd better stop her getting up on the couch too. She's lost so many of her pleasures, her daily walk, going in the car, now she's restricted outside. I let her roam around the garden when I'm outside, but she still wants to play with my 4 year old dog, and wants to run and bark at my old horse, it's hard to stop her, I will have to keep her on the lead all the time I guess.
    Dr Char also recommended Probiotics, enzymes and MSM. She said I could get them at any health store but to halve the dose from human to a smaller animal. Poor Tosh is up an down, when she's a little better your heart lifts, and the when she's worse you go down too. I've spent a small fortune on vets the last 6 months trying to find out what was wrong with her, and only the last vet that I had to go 4 hours to see, found her spine state. I'm very disillusioned about vets, but she's been such a sweetie I have to try for her, and she doesn't want to go anywhere!
    Thanks again, I do appreciate your input. Best wishes to you all. Nevada

  7. #7
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    Yes the tumeric is good stuff....if you are happy to go the herbal way. There is also Devil's Claw and green lipped mussel powder ( capsules).....You can get them from health food stores and guessing the size of your dog, half measures to humans sound good. Health food store people have an amazing amount of herbal knowledge. I had a newfie, with severe Osteo arthritis, so i have kinda been your path. i also do a lot of dog health study. Both officially and from anywhere I can get it. there used to be a herbal company that made canine senior, which was full of different herbs, my dog used to bark for it. She knew it was good for her. Sasha's blend might also help. None of these are treatments, they are helping make the symptoms less and easier to manage....Take care
    Pets are forever

  8. #8
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    about the on lead all the time, you might want to get a book called "ruff love" by Susan Garrett which has a bunch of stuff about training a puppy or retraining an older dog - essentially you can give your dog lots of rewards for being nice and calm at your side on lead instead of jumping and lunging at every distraction.

    You can get this by building up a game called "its yer choice" for distraction training, teaching the dog to exercise self control in the face of distractions, building up from mild to extreme distractions. A dog is never too old to learn this and your dog's life could be much more comfortable.

    Theres a few different kinds of hydrotherapy, both the types I know would be good -
    1. going for a swim in a pool
    2. going for a walk on an underwater (flooded) treadmill - ie the dog is working against the water but not carrying all their weight or putting stress on their joints. You could achieve similar by walking the dog in chest deep water on lead. But you need to limit the opportunity to jump over the water - like my dog does in chest deep water.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    My old boy Oz loved swimming and spent a good hour each day in the river near our home.
    It is such good exercise for an older dog.
    Can you pick her up to put her in the car or is she too heavy?
    I know it is hard to limit her activities but at the end of the day she is happy just to be with you
    and have your love.

  10. #10

    Default Tosh with Osteoporosis

    How lovely to have people willing to offer helpful suggestions. We don't have a health food store in our town, but as soon as the main silly season is over I will arrange a trip to a bigger town and visit one. I also have some Rose Hip Vital, which is supposed to be an anti-inflamatory and good for Arthritis, I stopped giving it to her when I found out what was wrong with her, but I may give it to her until I get to a health store, perhaps alternately with the turmeric. I looked up the Traumeel too and emailed some questions but haven't heard back yet. Yes I've wondered about green lipped muscle. I used to take them into the creek in town once a week for a paddle but it hardly wets their tummies, I can lift Tosh she's 26 kilos, but wonder if I'm harming her now, it would be her waist area that's worst affected.
    I have to try Herbal as none of the vet medicines have helped her except Tolfedine which they say is like Aspin and can cause internal bleeding if used regularly. Yes, all they want is to be with you.
    Best regards for Xmas and New Year to all.
    Nevada.
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