What I really wanted was the theme to Rawhide. Still, this is pretty epic…
Redmonkey, you are very inspirational.
I saw your comment on Shakesville and came over to have a look at what you are doing. My dog Maggie, who is another herding-type crossbreed (Rottie/kelpie/border collie?) developed spondylitis or some other kind of degenerative condition in her lower back which is resulting in the same kind of back leg weakness and foot dragging that you describe. to complicate matters, she also has ligament damage to a front elbow through being a complete nut when younger and fitter.
She’s taken part in an experimental stem cell program via Monash University
As well as this we’re on a regimen of physio, heat pack on the back twice daily, fish oil, glucosamine and chondritin, and Dexmethasone (=cortisone for dogs)
So far we’ve been able to keep her on her feet. She’s twelve.
The opinion from the Monash vets was that back leg wheels may not be an option for us if her back legs totally “go” because I don’t work fron home, do the daily commute and am away from home quite a bit. Husband and adult kids come and go so the dogs don’t have a lonely life but they can’t be relied on to provide the level of care that that would require.
I greatly admire what you are doing and will keep that dog-wheels company in mind just in case my circumstances change (although it would be great if I could keep Maggie on her feet until a good age.)
Thanks for your insight! Ardala blew out her right knee right after Xmas of 2011 in part because she had been relying so heavily on it due to right leg spondylosis-related neuropathy. I know the vet we had been taking her to up until her precipitating “incident” last June does the experimental stem cell therapy as well, but as they were unwilling to work with us when she had her “Gosh, we’ve never seen this before, but it must be a slipped disc, because we can do surgery on those! Let’s do surgery!!!” deal, we’ve ceased working with them (I think that will be my next post, actually!).
Ardala also takes a supplement that contains all the omegas and glucosamine, as well as Metacam (an NSAID) and gets a cold pack after every walk.The wheels work OK for us, but they’re not for everyone. She doesn’t stay in them in the house, and when I pop in to walk her on my lunch break I usually take her out on her butt harness, just because it’s a little challenging to get her in the cart quickly by myself. I expect that will change as she gets stronger through her core and can give me a little help. Another thing to note in case your situation changes is that Eddie’s Wheels makes many different carts, including a neutral balanced one that can also compensate for front-end weakness.
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