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Has Your Dog Been Behaving Differently? Is He Facing Vestibular Disease

Corgi with mobility problems plays fetch while in wheelchair

Do you have a dog? A pet owner must care for his dog, cat, or any animal they adopt. You must ensure his food, water, shelter, and regular grooming and vet checkups. You also must see that your pet gets plenty of exercise because they are prone to developing weight gain issues. As a common practice, you can take them to walk or run daily for their physical and mental fitness. If you reside in an apartment or a house with a small yard, it will be better to get creative about helping your dog get enough exercise. Take your pet for long walks to the dog park. If you don’t have time, you can hire a dog walker to take care of this.

Another vital part of caring for your dog is grooming. Keep its coat healthy. Grooming can also create a bonding time for you and your pet. Everyday grooming tasks include brushing, shampooing, and cutting nails. Likewise, don’t forget to take your dog to the vet for regular checkups to keep them healthy so that they don’t catch any problems early. Like humans, dogs are also susceptible to different types of illnesses. Have you heard about vestibular disease or old-dog syndrome?

The vestibular disease affects a dog’s sense of balance, causing various symptoms such as circling, head tilt, and nystagmus. Nystagmus refers to involuntary rapid eye movements – up and down, side to side, etc. The vestibular syndrome can also lead to loss of appetite in your pet. The exact cause of the vestibular disease can be elusive, but most believe it has to do with an inner ear infection, tumor, or head injury. If your dog suffers from this condition, it is better to get him checked by a veterinarian as soon as possible. Of course, you can panic after noticing the symptoms of this disease in your canine friend. But the relief is that your doggy can recover from it.

Walkin’ Wheels Dog Wheelchair
Walkin’ Wheels Wheelchair
drag bag for paralyzed dog
Walkin’ Drag Bag

More Insights into Vestibular Disease

While the condition is not typically fatal, it can be debilitating and cause great suffering. Dogs can lose a sense of coordination and balance, increasing the risk of falls and accidents. If your dog has this issue, working closely with your vet to ensure that your dog receives the best possible care can prove helpful. The experts inform that vestibular disease in dogs can be a sudden occurrence. The condition may not change or progress. Usually, dogs face this syndrome when their middle or inner ear faces any problem. Because the vestibular system ensures balance, your dog becomes dizzy or fails to walk straight when it gets affected.

In the initial 24 to 48 hours of the disease, a dog can get severe symptoms that can improve within 72 hours. It takes about 2-3 weeks to recover from this condition.

Causes and Signs of Vestibular Disease

If your dog has been on antibiotics, he may get this disease as a side effect. Or, there can be other health reasons, such as hypothyroidism, tumors, ruptured eardrum, and trauma apart from ear infections. You can learn about it from your vet. However, sometimes, this can happen without any specific cause. The doctor may refer to it as an idiopathic vestibular disease. Doberman pinschers and German shepherds can be more at risk of this disease. But any older dog can also fall prey to this condition. It doesn’t either imply that younger ones are safe.

That’s why it’s essential to watch for symptoms of this disease in your pet. You already know that loss of balance, head tilt, and low appetite are some common scenarios. But your dog may exhibit other manifestations, including vomiting, keeping legs wide apart when standing, sleeping on hard floors, etc. When you see any of these indications, you should take your pet to a qualified vet for a thorough checkup. They will examine your dog’s overall health and records to determine the right course of treatment.

In some cases, dogs don’t need any medical assistance. The symptoms disappear on their own. However, it doesn’t imply you can avoid a visit to your vet’s office. In some cases, these symptoms may also occur due to other severe illnesses. Proper examination is crucial to understanding the underlying issue.

Vestibular Disease Treatment and Cure

Jack Russell Terrier in Walkin' Wheels dog wheelchair on hike

Your dog can suffer from motion sickness or little discomfort due to this medical condition. However, the canine can naturally heal within a few weeks. And till the symptoms prevail, a dog may have to deal with discomfort. You don’t have to think about pain or the risk of death. Still, monitoring your pet is crucial. If it becomes severe, your dog will need a thorough examination to detect if there is something wrong. The vet can recommend anti-nausea medicines if a dog feels nauseous or vomits. Sometimes, dogs stop drinking water due to the disease. For that, he may need IV fluids for hydration. More precisely, the natural treatment for this disease lies in waiting and observing the symptoms.

At the same time, you must create a comfortable environment around your canine friend so that he can rest properly. Keep food and drink within easy reach. Because this condition causes balance issues, you can remove all the obstacles from the floor. Also, ensure he doesn’t climb the staircase, as it can be risky during this time.

Parenting a pet is not an easy job. It requires lots of care, love, and affection from your end for your dog. No matter how busy you get, you must make room for your pet in your life. It is critical for their health and well-being. Dogs need close monitoring and a hygienic environment – their mind and body can give up due to certain conditions or medications. When you spend time with them, you will know why they behave in a specific manner. If something looks odd, you can immediately consult a vet to ensure everything is all right. As for vestibular disorder, you don’t have to worry about him much. Just pay attention to his health.

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