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Jumping in Snow Now Limping and Can't Walk w.o Crying/Pain


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Hello, new to this forum, looking for some advice. I have a 5 year old female retired racer. She was jumping last Saturday 1/23 on leash in the snow, nothing crazy. But she landed on her feet and suddenly was screaming and limping on her back right leg. I thought maybe she had stepped on something in the snow. She came inside the house limping and still screaming. She finally calmed down and lied down in her bed and seemed to be doing okay. I took her out later than night for potty and she walked down the outside stairs ok (she did a stretch and whimpered a little when stretching her back legs) and seemed on the mend. But on Sunday, when she woke up she was a lot worse and could not stand up with out screaming in pain or walk. I took her to the vet that day, but the X-ray showed nothing abnormal (broken bones, fractures, cancer signs), so they think it is a soft tissue injury. They gave her gabapentin and carbuprofen to go home with with instructions her only activity for the next 14 days is potty and she needs to be on bed rest to help heal. 

She has been on strict bed rest, only getting up for potty breaks. I have been using a harness to keep weight off her back legs for more support. She cannot walk without it. After two days she was still in pain and not walking well, so they gave her a 72 hour fentanyl patch on Tuesday 1/26 for stronger pain relief. That seemed to help a lot, but it may have been masking the pain, as today it seemed like the fentanyl was fully out of her system because she did not want to walk on her back leg and screaming and was limping when walking outside for the brief time she made it out there. Every time she gets up she is yelping in pain and when walking. She does not even want to get up to go potty even though she knows she need to go and is uncomfortable.  The vet said to take her back in for re-evaluation if she was not better in 3-5 days. She seemed to be getting better up until yesterday, but I'm afraid it was just the fentanyl masking her pain. As a side note, she is a vocal dog in general if you push her wrong on accident on the couch, but she is definitely in pain, though a small portion might be her anxiety. I'm planning on taking her back to the vet in the morning. 

Does anyone have any suggestions on if this sounds like a soft tissue injury or something else? Might an ultrasound help pin point what is wrong? I'm afraid that it might be something more serious that might require surgery and I am hurting her by waiting too long. Many thanks.

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that's a lot of pain meds!

call your vet and have a recheck. if no luck then try an ortho specialist. take your x-rays with you. are they digital? if so they can just be emailed over. also, digital x-rays reveal more. 

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She needs a second opinion at this point.  You need a diagnosis not just pain meds at this point.  I would take her to a 24/7 clinic that has a orthopedic veterinarian on staff and preferably one that’s equipped to perform advanced imaging.

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22 minutes ago, tbhounds said:

She needs a second opinion at this point.  You need a diagnosis not just pain meds at this point.  I would take her to a 24/7 clinic that has a orthopedic veterinarian on staff and preferably one that’s equipped to perform advanced imaging.

THIS! I would be concerned about an injury to one of the disc in her spine. As your gut has told you it can be very serious and whatever the issue is it should be diagnosed! period! IMO not just trying to medicate it away as seems is happening.  Its past time for an orthopedic vet. Hope she gets diagnosed and recovers quickly.

 

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Hi everyone thank you so much for all your responses. We have been stuck under snow so weren't able to get to the vet yesterday. But last night she did a lot better when she went outside and didn't cry as badly. We took it very slow with harness supporting her back legs. No biting but a little bit almost impatient whining because she couldn't go at her own pace. When she squatting to go there was whining so there definitely is still pain, and she can't walk without us supporting her in the harness. But when she came back in and laid back in her bed, we had left some treats on the floor. She sat up and actually got up out of her bed to get them and walked around the room (carpeted) without the harness with no crying for about 30 seconds. It seems like some of her crying might be related to a lot of anxiety she has about her injury and moving? She seems to be improving for the moment,  and she is still experiencing pain after a week, but since she walked around last night without crying might it be something that just needs time to heal?

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Might be a soft tissue injury which can take forever to heal, but I still think it sounds like her spine might be involved, so if it were me, I would still want to take her to a specialist, just to be sure, but that’s just me. I am glad she is feeling a bit better!

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