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Mongrel with brain problem

The rescuer of a mongrel came online in another forum asking for help regarding the dog's problem. The rescued dog, now 11 months, was diagnosed with a brain problem - a condition that causes him to crawl rather than walk properly and the vet was not confident that the dog would recover. He is the only dog in the batch that has this brain problem. His mother and siblings have been successfully rehomed but no one would want to take in this 'handicapped' dog. A few months earlier, the dog could get up once in a while and walked a few steps but now the rescuer said that his condition has deteriorated to the extent that he can't even stand up.

I visited the rescuer and dog last evening and observed the following.

~ He was very alert, barked at me (stranger). Seemed quite a happy dog when the rescuer was at his side. He wagged his tail vigorously. I can't get much of his mental picture because I was there for a short while.
~ Size and weight – OK for his size; quite lean and muscular.
~ Not sterilized yet
~ He got along well with his 2 little female companions.
~ A bit wary of me when I approached him yet he did not bite me when I stretched out my hand to let him sniff.
~ He struggled a lot on the floor causing him to have sores on his hind legs and paws. – the paws would bleed whenever the rescuer tried to clean them. This was due to his inability to stand up to urinate and pass motion. The paws were very sensitive to touch and the dog would want to bite the person who attempts to clean the sore areas.
~ Both front legs seemed overstretched. Can't seem to bend at the joints – occasionally the paws would turn inwards.
~ Lately a soft watery lump developed on the front left leg. Kind of a swelling but no redness or pain. Probably the dog must have knocked himself against the furniture many times during his attempts to move about.
~ The rescuer has laid the whole room with pieces of foam joined together, hoping this would cut down the friction when the dog moves about.
~ Digestion, stools and urine – normal
~ Tongue colour, nose, ears all normal, no discharges
~ Eyes now OK although a few months back, the rescuer said the vet suspected the dog might have vision problem meaning he couldn't see properly. I tested his sight by moving my hand and fingers a distance from him – he seemed to follow well the direction of my hand.
~ The dog has short brown coat. Skin in general OK except for the extremities. No pain in the joints only the areas covered with sores.
~ The dog only gets to drink and eat in the morning and evening. Nothing in between as the rescuer has to work full time. She can't leave any bowl in the room where the dog is kept whole day as he would knock over anything in his attempt to move about. In this matter, I told her my concern that the dog might be dehydrated during the hot days. But nothing much could be done as there is no one at home to take care of him. He was looked after by a few fosterers before but they were worn out mentally and physically caring for him. Now he is back under the care of the rescuer.
~ The rescuer would take him every weekend for a swim which he seemed to enjoy. He could move in the water easily but not on land.

The vet has suggested that the dog take a daily dose of B-complex. Nothing further he could do.

I have given the rescuer Bio 24 (Calc Phos, Ferrum Phos, Kali Phos, Mag Phos, Nat Phos) to give to the dog and Homeopathic dusting powder (antifungal and antibacterial) for the sores for the time being. Since his paws are sensitive to touch, I have asked her to massage the dog's backbone area gently (head to tail) instead. Hopefully these could help him in some ways to stabilize his condition and not deteriorate further.

Grateful if anyone could help this poor dog with further suggestions on homeopathic remedies or other methods like acupressure. He is only 11 months and has many years ahead of him. The road is going to be tough for the rescuer and the dog but we can only hope his condition would not deteriorate further.

  mersing on 2005-11-30
This is just a forum. Assume posts are not from medical professionals.
since he sniffed your hand I guess his sense of smell is ok too. Sensory nerves are ok? (he feels touch, doesn't he? pets love circular massage-just make small circles when massaging-I hope Namaste will jon us here -she knows a lot about it).

So he has a progressive motor nerves disorder, right?
it can be brain, cerebellum,spine or periphery-whatever,but what matters are symptoms-as many as we can get (meanwhile she might continue Bio24, maybe calendula ointment onto his wounds).

Can he keep his head straight? Were his hind legs "gone" first or all 4 at the same time? are his legs paralyzed, muscles atrophied (very soft to touch-no muscle tone)or it is lack of coordination?
Astra2012 last decade
Thanks for your reply, Astra. Yes this dog's sensory nerves are OK. He does feel touch from head to paws except that his paws are more sensitive to touch due to the sores.

The vet has given some antiseptic lotion and cream to apply onto the sore areas but the dog would want to bite anyone trying to apply cream on the area.

When I held the powder to sprinkle over his sores, he was very wary that he might feel pain. I spoke to him gently and reassured him that there would be no pain.

He felt some tingling sensation cos he withdrew his legs a little and then stretched them out for me to sprinkle the powder again. His confidence was gained in that sense.

The dog could keep his head straight. It's more like lack of coordination rather than paralyzed (that's what I hope to prevent) as he could swim. His muscles were quite firm.

Yes, I do hope Namaste could come online and reply to this thread. She has helped me before on another case which I am very grateful.

I also welcome suggestions on using other alternative treatments in this case. It seems to me that it might require more than just homeopathy and the salts to improve or stabilize the dog's condition. Please come forward with your replies. I would need as many options as possible to help this dog.

mersing last decade
Hi Mersings,
Thanks for your replies.I'm confused though: is he able to swim? (that would require some coordination) Balance?
Astra2012 last decade
About other treatments than hom. and salts (btw if you suspect his sores hurt him give him hypericum 30c one dose)- raw diet, circular massage, acupressure, swimming ((if he can.a lot of it!)-I can think of nothing more.
Astra2012 last decade
Yes, Astra, he is able to swim. The rescuer and her friends would bring him to the seaside. I don't think it would require the dog much effort to swim in sea water. That is why his muscles are pretty firm and that he is not really paralyzed.

Thanks for your help.
mersing last decade
I hope he may swim a lot (additional burden for the rescuer!) as this is a great therapy for him. (and right, vit B esp 6 and 12 -but they are better absorbed if taken with other Bs--might be good for him--but if he eats fine,and eats raw foods+maybe Brewer's yeast I don't think he needs to get supplements).

he is not taking any med., is he?

his nose is cold? breath?
urine scanty or copious-or normal? Is he ever trembling?

I believe he has locomotor ataxia (cereberal)-BUT I'M NOT A VET! (although my mother is).

now, according to Kent any of these remedies may help:
: Agar., Alum., arg-n., ars., calc., caust., cocc., crot-c., fl-ac., gels., graph., hell., helod., kali-br., lach., lil-t., naja., nux-m., nux-v., onos., phos., plb., sil., stram., sulph., zinc.

iif his nose/breath is cold heloderma is worth a try.

but if he is bleeding easily -then phosphorus.

I also like plumbum here - less than phos. though.

pick one and give him single dose of 30c-see/post after a week.
Astra2012 last decade
The only time this dog could swim is over the weekends when the rescuer is not working. That is the disadvantage.

The vet can only suggest B complex to be given to the dog, no other oral medication. Some lotion and cream for the paws.

Locomotor ataxia - will read up on that.

Everything else is normal for the dog. He is pretty active, not lethargic, wants to move about but has difficulty doing so.

I won't be visiting him next week due to other commitments. Hopefully Bio24 can help him for the time being.

Has your mum come across a case something like this dog's?

Thanks, Astra, for taking time to reply to my post.
mersing last decade
No, she never had a case of pets with ataxia. Horrible for all involved.

She is doing her best. One can't do better than that.
Astra2012 last decade
In the first paragraph she=my moother, in the second she=the rescuer.
sorry for any confusion
Astra2012 last decade

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