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evieflackman
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Hi everyone :)

My name is Lisa :) I'm totally new here but very happy to have found you.

We have 3 dogs; Lucky an 8+ yo GR, Thor, a very young German Shepherd we adopted from a hoarder (who I then reported) and Ripley, a heeler mix puppy that joined us just a few weeks ago.

We (I'd love to say adopted) purchased a Lucky at 12wks of age from a store I am not legally allowed to name. At the time, I knew nothing about puppy mills. I have since become expert on them and helped get the store shut down.

Lucky is a mutant, standing 29" at the shoulder, he can counter-surf without lifting his feet off the floor. He was 12 wks when we got him in '07 so now he's 8 yrs 4 mos old and he has this kind of curved back, like a small bridge over a stream kind of shape. He seems to be having more difficulty getting up and it seems to affect his attitude. He also keeps his head down and when I went to give him his pills last night, I had to lift up on his head to get to his mouth, he gave a little yelp in pain. That's the first time he's ever done that!

He lost his best friend of 8 yrs on Christmas night. Goldie was a Ridgeback mix who was a sweetheart we adopted from the pound.

After she passed, Lucky became very depressed. After a day of grieving and talking, we decided to adopt another dog, a German Shepherd. We'd had them before. My daughter couldn't find a local rescue fast enough and told us she'd already found the perfect dog. Strangely, we also ended up adopting a horse that was about 3 weeks or less from death by starvation or sooner from abuse from the other horses. I'm a sucker for a needy animal. Anyway... Lucky found a whole lot to dislike about Thor, the GSD. I thought that odd, Thor was still a puppy and he loved to play. I thought they would play a lot together.

I've been trying to keep Lucky's weight down, he's like 110 now. But Lucky, despite his size, is very stealthy and manages to eat the other dogs' food unless it is put up. It's really difficult to maintain his current weight much less lower it.

A few weeks ago, my daughter 'found' a puppy on her way home from work. She said it was standing in the street. She called me to ask if she could keep it. Every instinct in me was screaming NO! But I knew that she would have to keep it overnight and by the next morning, the pressure on me to let her keep it would be unbearable. To save myself from a day of tension and stress, I said yes.

The puppy seemed to rejuvenate Lucky. He hadn't played with a dog since Goldie, and even then it was just play chasing each other when one or all of us were in the back yard. The new puppy is some kind of heeler mix, as soon as the dogs come in, she goes to work nipping at heels and bouncing. Lucky plays tug-o-war with her, and sometimes she wins. She's a very determined puppy!

Gee.. I said I wasn't going to bore you with a story and did it anyway. I'm sorry.

I guess what I want to know is given the poor breeding, the issues he's already had (i.e., no socialization til 12 wks of age, the conditions at the mill and warehouse then trucking, Entropion, countless ear infections, toe problems and now he's on Thyroid), this back issue is probably a birth defect.

I would hate to think that he is in pain, but I know there's not much that can be done for scoliosis in dogs. The information on PetMD covers too many types of Scoliosis but indicates that stress at birth can make this defect pronounced early on, or it can be latent until around 9-10 months. I 'm wondering if anybody else has dealt with this?

I know if he lost weight, he would not have so much discomfort. I'm open to any suggestions. He regularly goes to the vet, the vet has never said a word about it and has done numerous exams (it comes with the antibiotic for his ears - Mometamax.

It's a good sign that he enjoys playing tug-of-war, and other games with Ripley, the puppy, but I still worry about him overall. Has anyone here had a GR with scoliosis that still played and lived a good, long life without much pain???

Thank you!

Lisa
 

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Did your vet diagnose the scoliosis?

Feeding pets separately is a good way to make sure that no one is eating too much (and to make sure all pets are eating a normal amount).
 

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A veterinary chiropractor or acupuncturist might be able help more than a general vet, worth a shot. I don't care for NSAID's but admit those drugs have helped the majority through pain.

You have quite the rescue crew with a horse too and seem to know your way. Sorry I have no more advice than seeking out the Eastern side of things, Western medicine only goes so far.
 
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