New dachshund coming in with IVDD

I am a little nervous tonight. A family is bringing in their dachshund, who has had a spinal injury — so he most likely has IVDD, very common in dachshunds. He cannot walk — his back legs are paralyzed. He may also have some fractures, but they could not tell me of what.

I have a “down” dachshund of my own (Tabby, and I’m sure I’ll write more about her later), so I’m not worried about the mechanics of having him around. I know how to express a bladder and “towel walk” and all of that.

But I am worried about being able to help a dog in pain. It’s very difficult for me to see a dog hurting and not be able to help.

And of course, it will be expensive. At a minimum, he will need a myelogram (a special sort of X-ray that shows disc damage), steroids and pain medications, and maybe water therapy and physical therapy. He may need surgery, which can be in the thousands of dollars. I have an appointment for him tomorrow afternoon at the vet.

Most dogs with an injury like this can be helped at least in part with 2 months strict crate rest. It is VERY tough love — they want so much to be out with their people, getting and giving love. And once they start to feel better it is very difficult to convince them that they need to stay in that crate.

Feeling nervous but hopeful. The most difficult cases are often the most rewarding ones. My Tabby never walked after her injury…maybe with this one, I will be able to see him walk again. I have never seen Tabby wag her tail.

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