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Metrowest, MA
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Did Mia have an XRay? That would have shown if there was disc material in the spinal canal. My Hallie had only one big bout of IVDD in her life, age 7 never had it happen again so it still could have been IVDD. It's nice they have this test now, they didn't when I had my girls.
The other thing is people... AND dogs,, can just plain INJURE a disk without it being disk "disease". I ruptured 3 disks in an (over-use) accident many years ago. It was miserable. It took 3 years to heal. (there is no possible "crate rest" for a mother of an infant and a toddler!) But the doctors Assured me that it WOULD heal, and it did! I don't have any "disease". The disks healed, refilled with fluid, and on X-ray, look normal again. I do have some residual arthritis in that area now, from the period when the disks were collapsed, and I had no choice but to keep moving, and the joints were bone-on bone. But then, I am also 68 years old, so that's not unexpected either...
 
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Metrowest, MA
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One other thing... I do think, while I know we all want to be careful of our dogs, and we all love them to pieces and worry about them, I also think it's important not to pathologize every possible thing that MIGHT come up in every breed. Yes, anyone can have bad luck with any particular dog of any breed. (and Dee Dee, you have certainly had MUCH more than your share!!! 馃挄 ) But I also think it's important to remember that we have a pretty darned healthy breed. Part of that is because even though Dorothy Goodale did her best to bring together a group of dogs that LOOKED like Havanese, there were no DNA tests then, and all she could DO was go on looks. It turns out that these dogs were a very mixed bag genetically, and that has done us a BIG favor! We have a much broader gene pool than the majority of breeds do. AS breeders, it is up to us to protect that diversity, because that, plus proper conformation, is what protect us from genetic diseases as well as conformation based problems.

In the mean time, those of us who enjoy Havanese as pets need to take a deep breath, enjoy our robust, sturdy little dogs for what they are, NOT keep them wrapped in cotton wool unless there is a real need to do so, (and in Sophie's case we know there is!) and let them enjoy life, while taking the proper precautions that ALL puppy owners should take while they are growing up, in terms of the skeletal health! (namely proper nutrition and avoiding damage to immature joints!)
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Did Mia have an XRay? That would have shown if there was disc material in the spinal canal. My Hallie had only one big bout of IVDD in her life, age 7 never had it happen again so it still could have been IVDD. It's nice they have this test now, they didn't when I had my girls.

Often when you go to a neurologist, the waiting room will be full of doxies! Same with SARDS when I flew my Hallie to Iowa State U to the SARDS reseracher when she went blind, there were 5 doxies there all middle aged females, spayed with allergies. Which is the most common to get that awful thing. And we discovered while sitting there, all five of the dogs names rhymed. My Hallie, then Allie, Sally, Tally and Callie. So pay attention kids! Do NOT name your doxies girls anything that ends with Allie!
Mia had her problem at age 7 also. She turns 14 in a couple weeks and no other incidents. The vet felt down her spine and when she hit a certain point she screamed. They did not do X-rays. I wanted to follow the conservative protocol anyway so we did the 8 weeks crate rest. I was involved with Dodgerlist at the time. They helped me through it. Great people. There is some horrendous suffering with IVDD. I can understand why you did not want another Dachshund.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
The other thing is people... AND dogs,, can just plain INJURE a disk without it being disk "disease". I ruptured 3 disks in an (over-use) accident many years ago. It was miserable. It took 3 years to heal. (there is no possible "crate rest" for a mother of an infant and a toddler!) But the doctors Assured me that it WOULD heal, and it did! I don't have any "disease". The disks healed, refilled with fluid, and on X-ray, look normal again. I do have some residual arthritis in that area now, from the period when the disks were collapsed, and I had no choice but to keep moving, and the joints were bone-on bone. But then, I am also 68 years old, so that's not unexpected either...
I think there is a tendency for vets and doctors to try to assign a name or syndrome for every condition. I think these can instill more fear in us. We are of course going to look it up on the internet and read about the worst possible consequences. I guess they think we need to have a syndrome assigned to our condition vs. say just telling us we hurt our back.
 

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I sometimes wonder if Mia was diagnosed correctly. You would think in the seven years since her supposed IVDD episode there would be at least an inkling of a flare up. They make it sound like it is super likely that episodes recur. Perhaps she just tweaked something. She never had an MRI. I am wondering if other dogs with a back problem could be misdiagnosed making the numbers seem worse.

I know there have been a few other reports of IVDD on the forum. Here is one thread in a dog named Wheaty had IVDD and another person replied in this thread that her dog also had IVDD. There was one other person and her dog had it seriously in three discs. I replied to her post a couple times asking about her dog but never got a reply. I guess since Mia supposedly has it I am very attuned to anybody talking about it. However, this is still only a handful of dogs.


i wonder too if as dogs get older perhaps they can get a disc issue just due to getting older.
You know, I鈥檝e wondered the same, though for us it鈥檚 only been a year. A friend鈥檚 mixed breed dog was diagnosed (by a different vet) around the same time as C, and had another flare up in the fall. They did an MRI that proved IVDD for sure, which also makes sense bc she鈥檚 only 4. She didn鈥檛 have paralysis so they鈥檙e just trying to be really careful in hopes of avoiding the surgery. We did 8 weeks of strict crate rest after Charlie鈥檚 diagnosis, and about a month after that took him to a local holistic vet to see about any rehab. They did a consult and gave us some core strengthening exercises to do at home but said he honestly looked great. So I wonder if it might have been a slipped disk that wasn鈥檛 necessarily related to IVDD. I suppose I could get the genetic test, but I don鈥檛 think it would change anything鈥 we are now really careful with him with stairs, jumping, etc, but that鈥檚 honestly just better for him as he ages anyway! and for jo we have been as careful as possible with her developing joints!
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
You know, I鈥檝e wondered the same, though for us it鈥檚 only been a year. A friend鈥檚 mixed breed dog was diagnosed (by a different vet) around the same time as C, and had another flare up in the fall. They did an MRI that proved IVDD for sure, which also makes sense bc she鈥檚 only 4. She didn鈥檛 have paralysis so they鈥檙e just trying to be really careful in hopes of avoiding the surgery. We did 8 weeks of strict crate rest after Charlie鈥檚 diagnosis, and about a month after that took him to a local holistic vet to see about any rehab. They did a consult and gave us some core strengthening exercises to do at home but said he honestly looked great. So I wonder if it might have been a slipped disk that wasn鈥檛 necessarily related to IVDD. I suppose I could get the genetic test, but I don鈥檛 think it would change anything鈥 we are now really careful with him with stairs, jumping, etc, but that鈥檚 honestly just better for him as he ages anyway! and for jo we have been as careful as possible with her developing joints!
When they told me Mia had IVDD I felt it was like a death sentence! I figured her discs must certainly be messed up and it would happen again. It did scare me into restricting her from stairs and jumping which really has not been a hardship at all, and I agree better for her anyway. She still gets plenty of exercise. Let鈥檚 pray both our dogs never have another incident! It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job on restriction with both dogs.
 

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When they told me Mia had IVDD I felt it was like a death sentence! I figured her discs must certainly be messed up and it would happen again. It did scare me into restricting her from stairs and jumping which really has not been a hardship at all, and I agree better for her anyway. She still gets plenty of exercise. Let鈥檚 pray both our dogs never have another incident! It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job on restriction with both dogs.
100%!! Thank goodness they鈥檝e been ok, and hopefully continue to!
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Here is a picture of what Dachshunds looked like 100 years ago and what they look like now. It is no wonder they have back issues. I would be scared to pick up a dog with a back this long. I wonder if they are intentionally breeding them to have longer backs and shorter legs and why.
Dog Water Carnivore Dog breed Organism
 

Metrowest, MA
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Here is a picture of what Dachshunds looked like 100 years ago and what they look like now. It is no wonder they have back issues. I would be scared to pick up a dog with a back this long. I wonder if they are intentionally breeding them to have longer backs and shorter legs and why. View attachment 178485
Of course they are! Because that's what started winning! You should see the Doxies that WOBBLE around the show ring on hocks that can hardly hold them up and still get put up.

(although, in fairness, the dog in the old photo would also look longer if stood in a "show stack" with his hocks out behind him and loin extended)
 
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