IVDD in Dachshunds

Dawn Shaw-Moir – Roo – 5 Years old.

Please please please, be aware that it could be that as many as 1 in 4 dachshunds have an episode of IVDD some time in their lives. Intervertebral disc disease symptoms happen when the jelly like content of the disc between vertebra squeezes out and presses on nerves causing severe pain and damage.

Early symptoms are easy to miss or mistake for something else and If action is not taken quickly the dog may be permanently paralysed.

What to do:

1. Get to know the symptoms
2. Restrict movement by confining in crate, box or small baby pen until you see vet
3. Be prepared to challenge your vet if they say it is simply muscular, especially if the dog is aged between 4 and 6, the biggest risk period
4. If in doubt, insist on a referral to a practice who can MRI. This is the ONLY away to accurately diagnose the extent of the issue. An X-ray is NOT enough.
5. Many dogs can be treated ‘conservatively’ with extended crate rest for up to 8 weeks, but the longer it is left or the more severe the symptoms, the less chance of fill recovery.
6. If surgery is needed, it will cost upwards of £4-9000.

Above all, if you have a Dachshund, take out insurance, or put money on one side. If you are saving up for a Dachshund then save up for insurance too. The risk is simply too high not to.

More information here. Please particularly read the section on symptoms.

Written by Gill Key, Pet Adviser, Health and Welfare Subcommittee, Dachshund Breed Council

Jo Evers-King – Darcey Doodles – 2nd IVDD Op
Cathanie King – Minnie – 2 days post op
Julie Austin – Bella – 10 days post op
Wanda Eldridge – Demi – IVDD Post Op
Janet Irwin – Darcy – Post Op
Yvonne Brannigan – Paddy – 1 Days post op
Tena Caple – Roxy – Post Op
Abbey Norman – Mr Sizzle – Post Op

2 thoughts on “IVDD in Dachshunds”

  1. We had three dachshunds of around 6 years old. The youngest and seemingly fittest of these, out of nowhere, burst a disc in his spine and was in immediate agony which swiftly transformed into paralysis and misery. The vet took x-rays and told us that the prognosis was grim -that there were at least 7 more areas of calcification which would probably rupture more discs. We sought a second opinion and I asked this second vet what she would do if this were her dog. She said ‘This was my dog. We had the same experience with ours. It wasn’t fair to keep her so we put her to sleep.’ She examined our boy, squeezing and pressing his paws to no reaction or response from him. We’d agreed earlier that if this were to happen we would let him go. I remember the suddenness. There was NO sign, NO warning. One day he was with us and the next he was gone. We always thought he’d be with us the longest. Look after them and cherish them while you can, because even if you do everything right for them, this happens.

  2. Our little girl is 12 weeks post surgery. The disc went so quickly and at such speed we thought she would never walk again but with our wonderful vet support, surgery at the Willows, Solihull, physio, acupuncture, hydro treadmill and lots of commitment at home she is walking again, all be it in a wobbly fashion. We could never have given her this chance had we not had insurance. Her jumping days are over but she is getting her confidence and spirit back. We may never know exactly what happened to cause this, one day she seemed quiet and under the weather the next she couldn’t walk and was crying constantly. We are now transforming our house to make life better for her with rugs, stair gates, ramps etc. She has been an amazing patient, so tolerant and loving even when she must have been going through hell. They are stoic little characters and that is part of what makes them so loveable. I would never chose a different breed but I always advise prospective owners to do their homework first and make sure they could cope emotionally and financially if they had to go through what we are going through.

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