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Spinal Cord Disease in Dogs




Supportive care is the only current treatment option. Exercise has shown some promise at delaying the atrophy of the spinal cord and other limbs. The animal's diet should be maintained, and weight gain should be avoided to prevent increased pressure to the spine and discomfort for the animal. There are currently no drugs that have been approved for this disease. Overall, the long-term prognosis is poor for animals who have been diagnosed with this disease, since it is degenerative in nature.


Living and Management


Paraplegia typically occurs within six to nine months of the initial diagnosis. Monitoring the condition should be ongoing, with neurological examinations and urine samples taken to treat infections that may come about. As the dog becomes increasingly unable to walk, a comfortable pad and frequent turning is recommended to prevent bed sores. It is also recommended that the dog's hair be kept short so that skin lesions are less likely to develop. Habilitation efforts for the dog can include harnessed carts to encourage independence and mobility for the dog.



There are currently no known preventive measures for this disease.



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