chronic pain

It’s been a stressful month, you guys.

Since Oslo came out of crate rest a few weeks ago, we’ve had another run in with pain. He spent another 2 weeks of this past month crated, while I ushered him back and forth to the vet and generally completely lost my friggin mind. After a lot of stress, a lot of hours talking to his vet, and many tests, his Doctor & I have come to the conclusion, that Oslo is likely dealing with chronic, neuropathic spinal pain.

We suspect that he has something going on, somewhere in his spine (could be at his old surgery site, could be somewhere new) that has ‘flared up’ and is hurting him.  So far whatever it is, isn’t catastrophic because he has yet to show any neurological deficits (loss of coordination, loss of bowel control, etc). Whatever the issue is, it’s not affecting his mobility– which is great.

His vet *would* like us to get an MRI done at some point so that we can have detailed imaging of his spine & see just what exactly is going on… But there are no veterinarians that do MRIs near us. Not to mention, the closest ones (several hours drive away) charge $1000-$2000. Unfortunately that’s just the going rate for canine MRIs. It’s money that we just can’t spare at the moment. Plus, to be perfectly frank, I have a hard time swallowing the idea of spending that sort of money “just to know what is going on”. That is a LOT of money for a purely diagnostic procedure.

So instead, for the time being we are going to continue treating this as an issue of chronic pain. We have been able to get Oslo onto a routine of pain killers that has really helped him. He started out on 3 different medications, however I am already in the process (since it’s been almost a month now) of weaning him down. In the next week, we will get him down to just one medication– Gabapentin— which he will likely remain on, at a med/low dosage, for the rest of his life (assuming his diagnosis of ‘chronic pain’ doesn’t change).

He’s not needing to be crated at the moment, however we are still keeping him quiet & generally limiting activity. We’ll continue to watch him closely over the coming weeks and cross our fingers that the worst of it is behind us. Living with Chronic Pain is certainly not something I would ever wish on my darling boy… but if the pain can be easily managed with medication, I’d certainly take that over him needing to be rushed off for another emergency spinal surgery.

These dogs! Oy!


6 thoughts on “chronic pain

  1. Thanks so much for continuing to share your struggles with your dogs and their back issues. My little guy, Jack, went through IVDD surgery a few years ago, and we find ourselves at a loss as how to prevent another rupture or a flare-up like you are experiencing. Just curious, do you have Oslo on any sort of supplements? We had Jack on a glucosamine/chondroitin powder supplement and another pill that we got from the vet that is like a fish oil supplement. I’m just wondering if, in your experience, those types of supplements are helpful/necessary. We have just run out of both and I am debating whether to purchase again.

    Sending you, Oslo and Jersey warm thoughts!


    1. Hi Rachel– I have had Oslo & Jersey on a product called “Purica Recovery SA” for a few years now. It’s a Glucosamine & MSM (among a few other helpful things) powder. I do find that it has kept them a bit more limber & agile, but it certainly hasn’t kept back issues entirely at bay. I also often give them salmon oil– however I give that more for heart & coat health than anything else. I do find them both to be helpful to a certain degree, but not *totally necessary* by any stretch of the imagination 🙂

  2. I am so sorry to hear that Oslo is still feeling under the weather. A pharmacist friend of mine recommended Gabapentin for my daughter after a car wreck. She said it was the best med on the market for long term neuropathic pain. Give Oslo and Jersey big smooches from Gizmo (who is doing well after his surgery) and all of us.

  3. Sorry sorry to hear about your latest with Oslo… long term pain management …. poor little guy. Have you tried acupuncture? I don’t know if you have a good holistic animal vet in your area or not, but if you can find one it may be worth 4-6 visits to see if that helps- our little dachshund went in for IVDD surgery last year and I have found the acupuncture does help her and I think it would be good for Oslo -….just a thought anyway…. good luck!

  4. So sorry to hear Oslo is having a rough time. If it comes down to MRI and there’s anything I can do, please contact me. Sending my best wishes! xx


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