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Hi! I am new to this forum, and to Goldens, but have a lot of experience with senior dogs. We recently adopted a 14 year old male Golden, and he has been a wonderful addition to our family. However, he seems to carry his tail oddly, and very low, and his back end is weak. We have a two-piece harness for him, with handles on the front and back parts. He usually gets up and down without difficulty, but every few days he has great difficulty and tonight is one of those times. He gets a leash walk every day and he is happy to go out. Our house has no stairs, and there are plenty of area rugs. He uses the dog door to go out into a fenced yard whenever he wants, and we see him go out a few times each day, all on his own. When we adopted him two months ago, we asked the vet to really examine his back end, but she dismissed our request saying that he was just old. As is common with older dogs, he has a lot of large fatty lumps. So tomorrow, we will press the vet and schedule an examination. Meanwhile, can you please share your wisdom on back end issues. I am worried that the tail is an indication of some other problem. Thanks!
 

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Welcome to the forum.
Congratulations on the adoption of your Sr. boy, hope you'll share pictures with us.

Sounds like you weren't happy with the Vet that originally saw him, have you considered a second opinion?

Is your boy on any joint supplements and pain meds?

There are also alternative treatments such as laser therapy. Swimming is great for dogs of any age because it does not put any stress or strain on the hips or joints.

If you have any facilities in your area that offer hydrotherapy, you may want to consider trying it to see if it helps him.

One of our members who is a Vet put this information together several years ago, it still has a lot of good info in it.

 

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I think you need to find another vet, one that is more concerned about helping senior dogs be as comfortable and able as they can be. The one you saw doesn't care enough.

There is a whole suite of medications, supplements, and treatments you can try to help a senior dog feel better, be more mobile, and just more comfortable. Pain meds like Meloxicam, Gabapentin, Rimadyl, Galliprant, Deramax, and joint supplements like Cosequin, Dasequin, Adequan injections, and cold laser therapy treatments, etc.

Find a vet that is willing to address his rear end weakness who will voluntarily offer options, rather than one you have to PRESS to get to act, and who has already brushed off his discomfort.
 

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Also, if you live in a state the allows it, CBD products can give a lot of pain relief.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you for the responses! I think the vet just thought we were doing a meet and greet with the new dog, and was not looking for any problems. We use a vet practice that has four excellent vets, so I think a recheck appointment would be helpful. We have used that vet practice since 1983 and they do listen and take us seriously if we have questions or concerns.

The dog is getting Rimadyl and Cosequin. I will also ask for some suggestions on other therapies, chiropractic adjustments and services outside my vet’s usual scope of treatment. The dog seems much better this morning which is a great relief to us. Much better mobility and his tail position is almost normal.
 

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Hi! I am new to this forum, and to Goldens, but have a lot of experience with senior dogs. We recently adopted a 14 year old male Golden, and he has been a wonderful addition to our family. However, he seems to carry his tail oddly, and very low, and his back end is weak. We have a two-piece harness for him, with handles on the front and back parts. He usually gets up and down without difficulty, but every few days he has great difficulty and tonight is one of those times. He gets a leash walk every day and he is happy to go out. Our house has no stairs, and there are plenty of area rugs. He uses the dog door to go out into a fenced yard whenever he wants, and we see him go out a few times each day, all on his own. When we adopted him two months ago, we asked the vet to really examine his back end, but she dismissed our request saying that he was just old. As is common with older dogs, he has a lot of large fatty lumps. So tomorrow, we will press the vet and schedule an examination. Meanwhile, can you please share your wisdom on back end issues. I am worried that the tail is an indication of some other problem. Thanks!
you are a wonderful person!
 

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What a wonderful adoption. And it sounds like you really know the drill; carpets, easy access, the right harness, minimal steps, and a fenced in yard. You are a senior golden's dream family! It also sounds like you are on top of the hind area weakness. Great that you are revisiting this with the vet. There are a number of recommendations that people have made that I can only reinforce. Our Oskie has a disk issue and Glucosamine, Ligaplex II, acupuncture and chiropractic have all provided significant and consistent relief and much better range of motion. While anti inflammatories and NSAIDS, as mentioned, can also provide relief, many of them can have unwanted side effects. I would suggest trying homeopathic remedies first, as well as chiropractic manipulation, swimming, etc, and see if they provide significant relief. If not, then I would agree that other medications might be the next step.

Lucky dog and lucky you!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you for all your input and advice! That info helped me have an informed, sensible conversation with our vet. Then I was able to do some research and find a vet in our area that does chiro, cold laser and other alternative therapies. Buddy had his first visit with the new vet today. She said he was in remarkably good shape for a dog his age, and agreed with the meds our regular vet has him on. She did complete xrays and a chiropractic adjustment, which seemed to help a lot with his tail carriage and his ability to use his back end. He was more mobile than I have ever seen him after his adjustment, and a very happy dog too! We have a couple more chiro visits scheduled and then we will see what needs to be done for maintenance. She suspects myelopathy, which is a degenerative disease, and we discussed exercise and some things we can do to slow the progression. Every senior dog is different, but they are all wonderful. Thanks for your help!
 

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All good news. Keep us posted!
 

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Where’s the “love” icon?! This update makes me SO happy! Thanks for the update!
 

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Wonderful update, really glad to hear you found a Vet that is helping him.
Hope he continues to do well.

Now we need some pictures of this boy of yours.
 

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Dear Buddy, you are a very very lucky man🍀 Cannot wait to see the outcome of your alternative Spa days. Time to get pampered 😘
 
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