Dachshund’s Disc Surgery

Symptoms of a ruptured disc:

  • Crying, when eating or drinking
  • Poor appetite due to pain
  • Muscle spasms
  • One or both front legs could be lame
  • Crying and/or shaking
  • Unwilling to move, jump, or go up/down stairs
  • Tense abdomen
  • Hunched appearance
  • Paralysis to rear legs
  • Loss of bladder and bowel control

If your dachshund is having any of these signs…take to your vet or emergency hospital RIGHT AWAY!!!

The sooner you take to vet the better the outcome. TIME MATTERS!!

It’s best to get surgery 12-24 hours after your dog goes paralyzed.

Put in consideration that your dachshund will need emergency surgery.

Signs for after surgery:

Regression of Progress:

If your dachshund seems to be taking steps backwards in its progress, then this could mean another disc has herniated. Know, treatment could go back to step one…


If your dachshund has a fever, it’s a sign of infection. If you don’t have a thermometer, feel the nose; if hot, dry or brittle, then it’s possible he/she has high fever and a serious infection.


If your dachshund develops rash, it could mean he/she is having a allergic reaction to the medicine or a staph infection (very common after use of steroids) which is contagious to humans!

If your dachshund urine smells strong, is dark, or appears bloody, means he/she has an infection and should call vet right away.


If your dachshund starts licking and chewing obsessively any part of its body, this is a sign of nerve problem that could lead to chewing off its paws, limbs, tail, or worse. Stop the dog immediately, and put a cone collar on him/her. Ask your vet for a drug called “Neurontin”

Increased paralysis:

Within the first week to second week after surgery; if your dog’s paralysis seems to be spreading or moving upwards, has difficulty breathing, and seems weaker, this could be a sign of myelomalacia: a lethal disease. Your dog’s entire nervous system is shutting down slowly. Seek medical help right away.


If your dog starts to shiver, shake or tremble. These are signs of PAIN! Pain means something is wrong, either you worked him too hard (therapy) or treatment (pain pills) is not working…


Hopefully the surgeon has given you a list of exercises you need to work on with your dachshund…

Or if your dog is sent to rehab, then that’s different case…but I think its best to work with your dachshund yourself (that is if you have time.) I think rehab places push too hard and is costly…

If you do your own rehab, you and your dog will get a lot closer and he will really start to listen more. Just learn to be patient and know it takes time…one day at a time…

Also…I know every dachshund loves their belly rubbed. But I’ve learned with Lucas, he doesn’t want belly rubs anymore, he wants leg massages. Learn every inch of his leg. His hip, knee, ankle, foot, even his toes.

After recovery:

How to control your dachshunds from being hyper/active again?:

Its okay for your dachshund to be active…just not the bad active, like running around the house and especially in the yard…never let your dachshund run in the yard anymore…one low spot and it hurt their disc.

With lucas…for some reason he knows what he can and can not do now

He knows hes not allowed on couches, or even try to get on our bed anymore, and especially no stairs! Buy or make a ramp if you have step to get into your house.

Be strict with his toys now and watch how he plays with them…

Please please do not play tug of war anymore!!…it will hurt their disc!!

Also…no more shaking and trying to kill the toys…bad bad bad!!!

Never leave your dachshund by himself…if you’re going to be out of the room for just a second…put him/her in the crate!! You know the saying, “turn your back for one second and something bad happens”….Its just best to put in crate if your eyes aren’t watching him/her.

If you’re feeding your dachshund human food…STOP!!! Its so hard on their digestive tract!! You can end up killing your dog!! Please stop, and if your dog is used to being fed when you’re eating put him in his crate while you eat…

You will learn to set your own rules with your dachshund over time…just be smart, and watch them like a hawk!!!


69 Responses to Dachshund’s Disc Surgery

  1. If you want to hear a reader’s feedback 🙂 , I rate this post for 4/5. Detailed info, but I just have to go to that damn google to find the missed bits. Thank you, anyway!

  2. jessica Oubre says:

    My dog Lilly slipped a disk about a year ago, she received surgery and has yet to walk. Her legs work, the doctor said that she would walk but its been a long time and she is still dragging, kind of walking on her knees. After 4 grand for her surgery, i cannot afford rehab. i need help, rehab to do, or websites, just something…Please help

    • melissa cavazos says:

      My puppy just had disc surgery and its her first day home and she just wants to lay down….I’ve been trying to get her to walk a little but she doesn’t seem up for it. She can walk a little but she drags her back legs. Did you find any type of home rehab for Lilly that might help?

      Thank you!

  3. […] to find this site AFTER your dog has been thru surgery)…It is VERY important to know the signs of a ruptured disc and to get to a doctor as soon as you can… NEVER “WAIT & SEE”!!  The sooner […]

  4. Jeanie says:

    My dog Tinker has been home now for three days after disc surgery. She has feeling now in her back legs but cannot stand or walk with them yet. I have been taking her out every three hours but she has no control of her bladder yet. I have been massaging her back legs and slowly working her legs in a circular motion like riding a bike. My hope and prayer is that she eventually will be able to walk again. I was able to get her in, in a 24 hour period. I would sure like to hear a success story of a dachshund’s recovery after disc surgery….Please help with good ideas that I can do to help the process go well. Thanks Jeanie

  5. cindy says:

    My doxie just had surgery July 1, 2011. He is not able to move his legs and we are expressing him. He still leaks on the pad after expressing. They have him on a bladder medicine- does anyone else use a bladder relaxer?

    I noticed a tiny spot on his rear leg that he has licked a bit raw. When we are here, no licking but when we are away- he licks. Tomorrow I am going out to buy an ecollar- they have blow up ones.

  6. Cindy says:

    Guess what- I wrote the note above and yesterday 5 weeks post surgery he stood up and drunk walked. It is amazing! He never chewed again- I never had to buy an ecollar. He is doing so well and has come so far!

  7. Maureen says:

    My dog Buddy had disk surgery (mid back) 13 days ago. Here is a video of him now. When we took him in he was completely paralysed in the back legs. His disc had completely ruptured and we jsut got in in that crucial 24 hour period. I massaged his legs a couple of times each days. And gently got him to stand with me holding most, then some of his weight. And doing the leg movements for him about 3 times a day. Just a little bit at a time. I didn’t let him get used to dragging himself as i felt that would not help his recovery. So far he is still in his crate unless i am with him, which is a lot of the time anyway. But as you can see..there is hope.


  8. Amber says:

    Hi there

    I have a Dachshund Minnie and she has had surgery and is back walking and is happy as larry!! She still has a wobbly one hind leg but she can stroll out and is pleased as punch that she is back on her feet….

  9. Wendy says:

    Last week my little Taz dove off the couch (right over the stairs that are right there for him to use….) He screamed and I knew immediately what happened. Luckily we live in a small town and our vet is only a block away. I ran him to the vet, They immediately took him in and checked for pain sensation. He does have deep pain sensatiion – which is good. Our vet sent us to a an animal hospital about 20 minutes away that has all the latest technology and a neurosurgeon. We immediately got him there and they had him in surgery within 8 hours. It has been a week, and he has been home for a few days now. Initially he was urinating on his own, but he is not doing that now. I don’t know what the problem is. I took him to our vet yesterday and today to have his bladder expressed. Today, they put him on medication that will help – but so far he has not urinated. He has not had much of an appetite today, but he did eat. I have been adding 1T of low sodium beef broth with 1/4 c water and 1/2 c dry fod so he get some hydration. He has responded to this, but has not urinated yet. he finally had a big bowel movement on Sunday, and another today. There is a chance that the antibiotics could have upset his tummy.

    I have been doing his range of motion excersizes with him and he is starting to give a little resistance with his right hind leg. From what i have hear, the recover goes a little smoother after the staples are removed – which will be next week. Hopefully this is true. Anyone know??? I know it is that way for people, so makes sense for dogs.

    I am heartbroken over this. He looks so pathetic. For a dog that has so much spunk, he is just a lump. The doc gave him a 90% of full recovery, but said that it can take weeks – a couple months.

  10. Robin says:

    There’s hope! My dog just had his second disk surgery. The first surgery about a year and a half ago was very successful. I had noticed that my dog was having trouble getting up from a sitting position and was stumbling a bit. We crated him per doctors instructions and used medication but he only got worse. After a month and a half of crating he began having trouble walking and was immediately given a myelogram to identify the problem. He had a compressed disk way down almost at the tail. After the surgery he stayed in the hospital for 3 days and then I brought him home. I truly wasnt prepared for what was to come. At first I was totally freaked out as he couldnt walk and was still in pain but I had to lift and move him. I was so worried that I would hurt him or cause more pain. It is amazing how he understands me and communicates with me. During his first hours at home I was really emotionally upset and couldnt figure out how to move him and pick him up out of his crate. After many repeated attempts he knew what I was trying to do and that I was having trouble and he figured out how to scoot himself to the edge of the crate at the door so I could comfortable lift him! He didnt walk for almost 2 months and then one day he slowly began using his legs! It was a long recovery and he was left with some nerve damage that had him unknowingly dropping poop around the house. Over the year or so since his first surgery this has improved though its not 100 percent. Most recently he began having terrible pain again when he walked or rolled over. Again we crated him and began medications. After about a month of crating the pain was terrible and the medications werent helping. He went into the hospital on Christmas day and was operated on 2 days later. He had another severely compressed disc in his neck. It is now about2 weeks post surgery and he is making an amazing recovery! He is up and walking with a bit of a limp in his front left leg though it gets better every day. His personality is now back and he is getting frustrated at being penned up and not being his independent self.
    So it does take time and though not every dog responds well to the surgery most do. The healing process just takes time.

  11. Ginny says:

    My dachshund, Pete was showing signs of pain yesterday morning. By evening time his back legs were completely paralyzed. I called the vet who could not get him in for a week. This morning I brought him to another vet who sent us to a surgeon. The vet tested Pete for deep pain in his back legs. Pete did not respond to the pain. The surgeon told me surgery was an option but because Pete did not feel pain when poked with scissors in his back legs, the chances of surgery being a success was 5 to 50%. Before I went to the surgeon I called my husband and we made an agreement that if surgery was not over 50% chance of success then we would not do the surgery. Unfortunately, I was alone at the surgeon and I was weak. I told the surgeon to do the surgery. I am now waiting to hear from the surgeon to find out how it went. I have been reading too much on the internet trying to tell myself I made the right choice. Has anyone else been in this situation with their dachshund – having surgery without the dog having deep pain reaction? If so, was it a success. My husband is quite upset with the decision I made, not because of the money, but more because the chances of the surgery working are slim and putting Pete through the surgery was not fair to Pete. Of course his is telling me he is 100% behind my decision – but I am sure he does not really feel this way. Would love a response. Ginny

    • Joe skordinski says:

      Hi Ginny,I’m going thur the same thing right now with my dog.He became paralyed over the course of a few hours.His back legs totally paralyed.I went for the surgery because his only 7& totally heathly before this.Myself & my kids love him so much.It’s been aweek after the surgery.He is home eating acting like himself.But back legs still paralyed.Hope we maid the right decision 6k& putting him thur this!How is your dog now? Joe

      • Ginny says:

        Hi Joe,
        I am glad to hear your dog is home and doing well. As far as the continued paralysis, I have read many blogs that say this can take some time to recover. I hope the surgery was a success and the paralysis does go away. As far as Pete goes, he developed something called myelomalasia that causes death of the entire spine leading to complete paralysis and eventually paralysis of the diaphragm, which controls the breathing. Pete never came home from surgery, never ate again after surgery, and he worsened each day. We had to put him down last week, which was the worse thing we have ever had to do. We are all grieving and the house is so quiet and empty. We had him for over 10 years and loved him so much. He was one of the family. I wish with all my heart that your dog recovers and has a full life. Thank you for your response.

    • Mama says:


      I hope Pete is doing well.
      I was in the same situation. Almost 2 weeks ago I came home to my 3 year dachshund (crated of course) and his hind legs were paralyzed. My husband was out of the country and I got his okay after many attempts of begging. My baby was only given a 50% chance to walk again as he went from feeling a little pain to no pain very quickly. Needless to say, it has been 1 1/2 weeks post op and he is doing okay. He urinated on his own by day 5 and 2 days later the bowels started moving and he can go on his own with assistance of course (sling or supporting his hind legs). He has full control of his bladder and bowels just needs help standing. He is not walking and my goal is to get him to walk again. Unfortunately, my husband doesn’t see eye to eye and says if he isn’t walking he will have him put down (stating that he is the CFO of this household). I am hoping for some glimpse of hope as he is fine and recovering well…..just not walking….yet. I can’t bear to think just because he can’t walk my husband would consider putting him down. My sweet baby even started playing with a stick outside yesterday as I let him enjoy the outdoors a bit. Our finance is the main issue and am not allowed to put any more money into my sweet dog. I hope someone can give me some hope that he may have a chance to walk again even though he is dragging now. Evidently, he does have some sensation in both legs. We will find out from the vet in a few days when they remove his staples.

      • Mama says:

        Sorry Ginny: Didn’t read your reply following your post. I am so sorry for your loss. Prayers to you and your family.

  12. Joe skordinski says:

    Ginny,I’m so sorry for your lost!My eyes are tearful as I write this you are in my prayers.I’m perparing for the worse hoping for the best.It’s been a week since the surgery. We are not giving up on him.All the best, Joe

  13. Cindy says:

    There is a great website called Dodgerslist that address all issues of IVVD (disk disease). I encourage anyone who has a dog that has any type of disk problem, contact this site. My dachshund was saved through this website and is happily enjoying life 7 months after being totally paralyzed. He is able to get around today thanks to the supportive care that I received. I wish everyone here the best.

  14. Eli says:

    I was feeling so alone before reading the comments on here. I’m also very sorry to hear of your loss Ginny. My mini daschund, Savloy was taken to the emergency vet on Monday eve after she went to toilet and her back legs gave way causing her to fall. We were referred to a surgeon on Tuesday when she had the surgery for a ruptured disc and while she was dragging one leg prior to surgery she still had pain sensation and the vet was very hopeful for her. However, Wednesday morning we were told while the surgery went well she had lost the pain sensation and is paralysed at the moment. I am so hopeful for her but also worried that she lost the pain sensation she had prior to surgery, not sure if anyone knows whether this is common? The vet says he would expect her to get this back wihtin a week for her to have a chance of being able to walk again in the future. Just feel so helpless at the moment. It was good to hear your success story Cindy, was your dog completely paralysed with no pain sensation after surgery too?

    • cindy says:

      He had slight deep pain sensation on the left side only before surgery, when he came out it was still there. The next day it was gone- it is not uncommon to lose sensation as the surgical area swells and can take 2 weeks or longer to come back. Never give up hope, my doxie is doing things that I never felt possible although the vet kept telling me he would regain 80% or higher and he has. You need to believe your girl can and will recover fully and with the miracle of time, she will. Dodgerslist web site is full of success stories.

      My Butchie Boy is a miracle:)

  15. Eli says:

    Thanks for you reply Cindy, it’s very encouraging to know. We’ve been to see her again this morning as she is still at the vets. Four days post op, no pain sensation still but she is quite happy in herself and eating well. We are hopeful for her and hearing that so many others that have been through this is inspiring!!

  16. Ross says:

    Hi everyone, Our dogs symtoms started with her limping and not wanting to walk at all. Our vet said she popped her knee out of her socket (so he fixed it) and she was fine for a day. The following day we noticed that she started to arch her back and was walking a little oddly. We initially thought that the knee popped out again but the following morning we woke up and both her legs were paralyzed. We then immediately brought her into the emergency hospital. The Neurologist knew right from the get go that she had a ruptured disc. The doc gave her a 90% chance of walking again if we went through with the surgery. Within 1 hour she had an MRI done, the results being: ruptured disc that leaked into her spinal canal. And immediately after the MRI she went into surgery. The surgery was a success and we get to pick her up on sunday. I know its going to be a rough recovery but its very encouraging hearing everyone’s experiences. I wish everyone the best of luck.

  17. Annie says:

    my 6 1/2 year old mini, Wilma, had emergency surgery on Saturday. We noticed slight things a few days prior – she was quieter than normal, wanting picked up more. On the Thursday evening she was yelping when we moved her so I took her to the vet first thing Friday morning. She picked up after steroid and analagesic injections and was walking. I stupidly sat her on the couch beside me for a moment but she leapt straight off there when the doorbell rang. I’ll never forgive myself for that! Later that day she was quiet and clingy but no pain, and was walking. We thought she was just groggy from the injections. By early Saturday morning she couldn’t move her back legs so I took her straight to the vet who made an urget referral for surgery, which she had later that evening (following an MRI scan which confirmed a slipped disc). She is now day 3 post-op, is eating and drinking well but no movement to her back legs. She has deep pain sensation (which she had prior to surgery) and is wagging her little tail. she cannot urinate though. the surgeon said they are expecting her to make a full recovery (80% chance they said) although this can take time. I am mindful that it is early days but am wondering how long it will take for her to show any signs of movement there?? We are so worried about her. She is a few hours away so we cannot pop round and see her (although I think that this will set her back if she sees us). Does anyone have any advice??

    • phish007 says:

      I just posted below a follow up with our dogs surgery and the timing of things. Im glad to here you went through with the surgery. Wilma will make great improvements in time. You should see her walking in about 3-5 weeks (not 100% walking b/c her legs will need to time to gain strength again). In general though, all dogs recoveries are different so just be patient. Dont beat yourself up about the couch incident, if she needed surgery it was most likely inevitable. Also, we visited pretzel the day after her surgery and she was so out of it and upset and in discomfort that we were prob better off not going. Everyone has their own opinion but our nuerologist said it was prob better to just let her rest for the 3 days and not come see her.

      • Annie says:

        thank you for replying to my post. I was so worried about my little dog, but as you can see from my post below, she is doing really well and its not even 4 weeks since her surgery! I am glad to hear that your little dog is also doing well.


  18. phish007 says:

    Hi everyone, I posted my story on april 13th. I just wanted to let everyone know that pretzels surgery was a success. She is now walking with a bit of a limp but that will eventually go away. So basically heres how everything went down. We had the surgery, she stayed in the hospital for 3 days. The first couple weeks she had minimal movement, on the 3rd week she started shuffling around, and on the 4th week she was limping/walking. Every week she made a major stride to becoming healthy. Right now (2months in) she walks with a limp, but the hospital said that shes going to “plateau” with her improvements..but she will be 100% in a few months. So overall if you decide to get the surgery, the recovery is pretty quick but your dachshund will be 90% after a month or so and to get to 100% takes a bit more time.

    • Annie says:

      Hi everyone,
      Wilma was discharged from the hospital after 6 days there. She is now almost 4 weeks post-op and is walking (although wobbly!). She has done really well!! The neurologist expects her to make a full recovery, although she may have some long term deficits, albeit slight. For those of you who are thinking about surgery for your dog, don’t think about it do it!!
      Best wishes.


  19. nancy says:

    Hi all,
    Just found this website and wanted to share,
    Our little Teaka had surgery July 5, she came home 2 days later. Not much of an appetite, I’ll get her to drink a few laps of water every couple hours. No movement in the back legs yet. Were having a horrible time trying to express her bladder, we’ve had to go back in every 8 hours to have the vet do it, any hints??
    Just wondering how long it took other doxie’s to move the back legs after surgery, her compression was at L 2-3.
    Thanks, Nancy 🙂

    • Cindy says:

      My doxie had surgery 7/1/11- the spinal cord swells after surgery and it takes at least 2 weeks to go down. My little guy did not move until 7 weeks and tried to stand- we had laser therapy for 7 sessions x2. He started to walk after 8 weeks- very wobbly but he walks. I would recommend you check out Dodger’s list website- it has all the info you need to know. I could not express as well and it was hard for me to master but after watching a video clip and advice from the vet, I got it down. Once he started walking, he is able to empty his bladder on his own.

      • nancy says:

        Thank you so much Cindy,
        Were on day 4 post op, Teaka is eating and drinking like a champ, were getting her meds down no problem. She tolerates all her therapy well, and her personality is back!

        Do you have the web address to Dodger’s? I just found Lukes path to recovery on a google search, not finding Dodgers list anywhere.

        What did the laser therapy do? Would you recommend it?

        My husband, myself, and my adult son are still not able to express her bladder, I’ve watched every video, read every article, my vet says its just something you can’t teach, you’ll just get the hang of it. We’ve been going in every 8 hours to the vet, which is 25 minutes away, this stresses Teaka out and I’m sure hoping I get the hang of it soon. I’ve been a nurse for 28 years, I’ve never failed at something so many times in my life. I just don’t feel her bladder, I feel muscle, thats it. They did say she’s hard to express, she’s only 7 pounds, but I’m stubborn too, I will get it, just hoping it’s sooner than later for all of our sakes 🙂

  20. Cindy says:

    Type in Dodger’s List under Yahoo and you will see a website for dachshund disk disease. It contains much information and you can sign up to get their emails in which you can ask questions- it is very informative.

    Laser therapy stimulates the cells and promotes healing- we started 3 weeks post op- twice a week and the 2nd session was once per week. He started to stand at the end of it and I thought it was very good. Dodger’s list is very supportive of laser therapy and I would recommend it.

    The expressing is hard to learn unless you have a natural knack which I did not have. Females are harder but they empty their bladder all the way when expressed. I tapped on his tummy and just pushed up with flat hands- I never could feel the bladder ever. The good news if she regains some tail movement she may start to go on her own!

    Glad she’s eating well and drinking well- with Butchie I had to work with him.

    One yr later he is back to his old self- he even chases the cat! He does have some neuro deficit but we hardly notice it as he gets around very well. I have my fingers crossed for Teaka!! Keep me posted.

  21. Brian says:

    Hi everyone, what a wonderful website! Our furchild Molly is 6 and a 1/2 and just had surgery one week ago. She was 3 weeks into 6 weeks of crate training for the initial injury that was not significant enough for our nuerologist to recommend surgery when everything gave out and she couldn’t stand up. She regressed to deep pain only overnight and went into surgery the next day.

    1 week post surgery and Molly has been doing really well, most of her pain appears to be gone and she’s giving laps of kisses like the good days.

    We could not express her bladder during the first 24 hours after surgery and went into the vet where two technician’s could not express her as well and told us she wasn’t full yet and to come back in 8+ hours if we still couldn’t express on our own.

    We were fortunate enough that Molly was able to walk with some help the next morning after our vet visit and went on her own. Since then she has pottied on her own a couple times each day. She developed a urinary track infection from the cathiter but that is now hopefully under control with another anti-biotic.

    She can stand in place on her own and walk with assistance. When I say assistance I mean we hold her tail and take as much pressure as needed off the back legs while she stumbles a few steps to find the spot. This method has been great and if we didn’t use it I’m not sure if she would be going at all.

    I wish everyone the best for there little ones!

  22. AnnMarie says:

    Hi all,

    My mini Mimi had surgery 9 days ago. Today she got up and walked! I am over the moon happy!! This site has helped me thru this difficult time. Thank you to all that have posted!


  23. Brett says:

    Hey guys, my little Milley had surgery almost 2 weeks ago and when we took her in she already had no feeling in her rear legs, the vet said it was pretty sereiou. so we got the surgery and now she cant walk on her rear legs but she has been wagging her tail. she still has the urine cathader and she got her back stiches removed a day ago. Do you guys think she will make a recovery?

    • Mama says:

      I pray that Milley will recover. My Bruno also underwent back surgery 2 weeks ago (lost feelings in both legs so they had to do surgery right away as well) and is getting staples removed today. Progress is very slow. Bruno also wags his tail and he did get his bladder control back about 5 days post op. This will take time and patience on you and Milley’s part. Don’t give up as I have heard that some dogs don’t take their first steps anywhere from 4 – 6 weeks post-op. Some are quick to bounce back and some just takes time. Chin up as I am having to do the same and do everything I can to help Bruno get to walking. If not, there is always the “doggie wheelchair”. Good luck Millie!!!!!

      • Robin says:

        I’m so sorry that Milley and Bruno had to go through this but unfortunately that is a risk we all take adopting these amazing furkids into our families. I’ve written before and just wanted to again reiterate that each dog is different in the recovery process. My dog Opi has had 2 back surgeries and each time was very different for him as well. The first time Opi came home from surgery he was unable to use his back legs and unable to control his bladder. It was like having an infant for 2 1/2 months. Finally after 10 weeks I noticed him trying to get up to urinate and then over the course of about 2 days he was up and walking again. I remember the relief I felt when this happened. After his second surgery he came home walking and was great in about 2 weeks. So don’t give up! It still can happen and sometimes just takes time! Follow the doctors orders and keep these guys quiet and comfortable and just let them heal. Of course there is unfortunately the small chance that they won’t walk again and I have seen many doxies and other breeds living happy, healthy and wonderful lives with wheels! It would just be an adjustment… probably more for us then for the pups! Good luck!

      • Brett says:

        Thanks guys this really helps a lot, i guess it just varies with the dog for recovery times. The doctor said hes seen dachsunds start walking a couple days to a couple months after surgery, but of course ill never stop doing “rehab” and physical terapy until she starts walking and being free like these amazing animals are supposed to be.

      • Cindy says:

        Dodgers’s List is a great resource for dogs that have experience back problems. My doxie took 7 weeks for he even tried to stand. He does walk now but it took time, which is the best healer.

      • Dario says:

        My spike is going thru right now he had his surgery almost two weeks now, he’s still not walking but I do 15 mins of therapy every day. He’s at the point where he stands but he doesn’t take steps. And when he’s laying down he stretches his legs. Is like he’s afraid or hurt to put weight on it. What else should I do?

  24. Robin says:

    Just give Spike time… I know its frustrating and upsetting to see him not walking but he will walk when he and his body are ready. You’ve got great signs with the stretching and standing. His body will let him walk when its ready. Probably won’t be too long now.
    Good luck! -Robin

    • dario says:

      Thanks Robin, when I am home I take him out and start to work his legs before I try to make him stand. He wiggled his tail when he first got home but right after we stopped his pain medicine treatment he stopped. I figure is probably because the scar hurts or his back is healing. Because during the exercises I can see his tail going between the legs as he’s scared. And while I move the legs I can feel him wanted to try to use them. And when my wife sits right across from me and calls him I stand him up and try to make him walk. I don’t want to get him used to drag his legs.
      We took him to get his surgery on Christmas eve within 12h of when the pain and paralysis started.

      • Mama says:

        Give Spike some time. He is scared and probably a bit depressed because he can’t do the things he use to. Once the staples came out Bruno started feeling better and was more eager to try to stand but again, it was a struggle for us to see him in such a sad state. We never gave up and religiously did his exercises and basically had to learn patience. He is 8 weeks post-op and is actually back to himself mentally. Physically he is walking and yes…..RUNNING! I will admit he is a bit hunched back now and does loose his balance every now and then but he is walking and playing and about 80% back to himself. We are okay with our “Quazimodo” (new nick-name) because the odds were against him from the very beginning.
        So on that note, keep up the great work and prayers for you and Spike. It will happen on Spike’s terms.

  25. Robin says:

    Hi Dario,
    Just be sure that you are only doing the stretches and exercises given by your Vet. You don’t want to overdo it and create any new problems or give him any setbacks. Like “Mama” my furkid that has had 2 back surgeries is back to himself but is a bit weaker then before and is occasionally off-balance but he has a great quality of life and lives it to the fullest!! I’m sure Spike will be back on his feet before you know it.

    • dario says:

      Thanks guys the thing is that the vet didn’t tell me much just try to let him stand. I am doing just bicycle his legs and hold him up to make him stand and that’s about it. Is anything else that I should do ?

      • dario says:

        I havent took him out like on the grass much is quite cold outside but when I am home I take him our, sit him w me. Should I take him out or wait till the staples r out?

      • Robin says:

        After the surgery when my guy was still crated and not walking I was told to only take him out of the crate a couple of times a day to just go to the bathroom and then back in the crate. Occasionally when I had to change the bedding or pee pads in the crate I would take him out and sit him in my lap for a bit and then back in. Luckily he loved being in his crate and wanted to be in it. It was total rest and relaxation until he began walking on his own. Each dog is different and the surgery they have is different depending on the disks involved. My guys 2nd disk surgery was different as it was a disk way up in the neck… his first was down close to his tail. With the 2nd surgery he was walking, though with a bad limp and with some difficulty, though it was right after surgery. He also didnt need to be crated only kept in a very small enclosed area with lots of rest for 2 weeks. I would encourage you to call the Surgeon or talk to his nurse and ask about exercises now and what you should or should not be doing. I’m sorry that they didnt spell this out for you after the surgery when you took Spike home.

      • dario says:

        I will in the morning. Definitely. Today I took him out and just laid down on the floor all day we did a bit of exercises then nap time then back to exercises nothing too pushy of course.

      • Robin says:

        Be careful outside as there are so many things that will catch his attention. He may try to get up or turn quickly to see something all of which could possibly hurt him. After my dogs first surgery I would take him in his crate and sit out on the patio with him in the crate on a warm day. After one of two times of him getting overly excited I realized that he was better off inside not getting overly excited and twisting and turning. I look forward to hearing about Spike’s progress.

      • Mama says:

        Yup! Excitement is a no-no. Keep us updated as we all look forward to Spike’s progress. What worked for me doesn’t necessarily work for others as I am seeing comments. It is nice to read stories and get encouragement and that is what this site is about. It has helped me through the tough times with kind encouragement and I didn’t feel like I was all alone.

        We did what our doc instructed us. Even though Bruno is walking now (against all odds), we still continue with some of his physical therapy. Again, every dog is different and Vets are different as well. Talk to your vet and do your research.

        I look forward to reading Spike’s progress on this site. Your story will be helping the next person’s challenges. Your story as well as others support what we all have been through. We all need to have some type of support and this site has been my support.

      • Robin says:

        Beautifully written Mama… I couldnt agree with you more.

      • dario says:

        Ok thank you , today as soon as I got home I took him out and now I’m sitting down w him just loving him and massaging gently his legs. He likes that. Again thanks for all your help guys

      • cindy says:

        If you haven’t already gone to Dodger’s List please do. It’s a wonderful site about dogs with disc disease- not just dachshunds. My guy had surgery and was able to spinal walk 8 weeks post-op- he is doing really well 18months post-op.

      • Dario says:

        Hey guys, Spike keeps stretching his legs, still not walking on them, and i am only massaging his legs, he really likes that. i went by the vet today and asked and he told me that i am doing good just don’t stress him over too much… Crazy parent here! lol

  26. Mama says:

    I know you are so worried and that comes with the territory. I was a wreck just thinking, “why isn’t he already walking”. We had the best neurosurgeon and she detailed what to do and expect in the following days after discharge. We were encouraged to take Bruno out to urinate and by the grace of God he was able to finally urinate on his own the day after we brought him home. The BM came several days later because with all the trauma, anesthesia, and meds….well, he was stopped up. I fed him boiled rice, chicken, and a little bit of squash for the first few days to help his digestion. Now, the walking didn’t happen for a few weeks. We used a sling to help him stand (you can make one with a towel). This helped tremendously. Once they removed his staples it was like little miracles happened everyday with tail wagging, laying in bed and playing with his toys, then the walking started (again, the sling really helped). Keep in mind they will drag their legs a bit but that is one of the last things they figure out (so walking in the grass would help alleviate any cuts or scratches to their hind legs). PLEASE make sure you keep Spike on a leash at ALL TIMES. Once he starts feeling better, he will try to dart off (dragging or not) when he sees another animal. Trust me on this!!!! It is all part of behavior modification on their part but our part as well. We are having to retrain ourselves not to let him climb onto the furniture, jump from excitement, nor beg for table scraps. It really is all about retraining the owners. It has been hard but for the love of Bruno and to save our wallets…..we have to make sure that we prevent any chances for re-injury!

    This website has helped me tremendously during recovery time as I had so many sleepless nights working with Bruno and just worried that he would never walk again. We were preparing mentally to go ahead with a doggie wheelchair if needed but luckily we didn’t have to take that route. Again, time and patience is what it is all about. When he feels ready, he will. I have heard some take months to get there. It is all different for everyone but what is the same is the love and patience we give them and never ever give up!

    Go Spike!

    • dario says:

      Thank you so much do you have email or facebook? If you dont mind I’d like to stay in contact w you.

    • dario says:

      I wanted to give a small update on spike, he’s standing up not walking yet and trying to get his balance. I have to potty train him again every time I pick him up he pee like he’s scared. Which is fine.
      Again just a quick note

  27. Mama says:

    I meant sweet potato….not squash. Sorry!

  28. Robin says:

    After the first surgery my guy didnt walk for about 8 weeks! It was a long frustrating and very scary time! Not only did he not walk but he also didnt regain control of his bladder for about 8 weeks either! It was like having an infant. But finally one day I noticed him try to get up and within a day and a half he was then walking.

    We had a great surgeon too and were told not to do any exercises until he was up and then we began slowly. Every surgeon is different but I would ask the Vet about exercises now… again you don’t want to injure your dog while he is recovering. Just give him lots of love, keep him clean and dry especially if he is urinating in his crate and let him recover on his own time.

    • dario says:

      Thank you so much For all the help. Today I took him out of his playpen and laid down w him he started to stretch his legs and his tail. I’m going to take him out and sit him on the grass. And play w him there

  29. Dario says:

    I wanted to give a new update on spike.
    He got his staples off on monday and the vet said that he’s doing great! He was not expecting spike to be able to walk at all…. Spike is moving around a lot takes a few steps, the vet gave us two contacts for physical therapy if we want to, i am going to check them out and see, maybe i can take him a couple of times, get an evaluation and so forth!

    • Robin says:

      Thanks so much for the update on Spike! So glad he’s doing so well!! If you can go to physical therapy which will be very helpful. If you aren’t able to go regularly try going once or twice and have them teach you some exercises for home. And be sure that now as he heals even more that he is not jumpng up or down on furniture… and hopefully doesnt have to walk stairs. Good luck with his continued success!

      • Dario says:

        Robin, he started laser and water therapy on the 26th and i am planning to take him a couple of times a week, found this very nice clinic right behind our apt, so is great, and he enjoys swimming! He is standing and walks very wobbly, they told me to use an heating pad on him to help too. I do about 10 15 mins of bicycle movements with him when i come home from work and make him walk around the living room. In the morning i do the same before going to work…. and trying to re teach him how to use the pee pads and eventually when he can walk better going outside. Unfortunately our apt is on the 2nd floor so we will have to pick him up every time, which doesn’t bother me!
        thanks again!

      • Robin says:

        That’s great that Spike is on the road to recovery and has such great care! -Robin

      • Mama says:


        That is wonderful! It is great that you found a convenient place for physical therapy. Proper physical therapy is very important. Unfortunately we did not have one close enough to take Bruno to so we had to be diligent and do our own with instructions and I also did hydrotherapy in the tub. It’s not recommended but what do you do when you don’t have access to a facility close by.

        I am so happy for Spike and thank you for keeping all of us updated. Spike is very lucky to have you as I know the feeling is mutual.

        Bruno is doing wonderfully and he is now running and playing (being his silly self) 12 weeks post-op. We do have to keep him calm if he gets too crazy but his spunk has returned; never imagined we would get to this point 12 weeks ago.

        Keep up the great progress and keep us updated!!!!

      • Dario says:

        Took Spike to the vet, and he was very happy with his progress in 8 weeks, his therapy as i said is doing magic to him, plus i have put him back on regular walk schedule, just not too long of a walk and he likes that! I have to pick him up and on a leash before i open the door and when we are done he gets by the stairs and looks at me so i can pick him up, SPOILED lol. He re-learned how to potty outside which is great! and he loves the beach! I am glad i found this site where i can share my experience with other dachshund lovers!

      • Robin says:

        Hi Dario,
        Wow! Sounds like Spike is doing really well! I’m so happy for you and Spike! One of the major side effects of these surgeries that the doctors dont tell us about is how our furkids become majorly spoiled but always lovable monsters!!! My little guy, Opi, thinks he’s a baby and wants constant love and attention. He likes to picked up and carried especially when we go to bed at night. He also likes to tell me when its time for me to feed him or give him treats! Oh well, it just makes him cuter!

        Continued success with Spike. And yes this is an amazing site that offers great hope, encouragement and support while going through the worst of these problems.

  30. I was so impressed by all of the stories shared and feel it would benefit someone to hear our story as well. We have two Doxie’s – Coco and Dante. They are three and a half years old and have been the perfect pets. They are our family and loved beyond words. Our Coco was in the kitchen under my feet one day while cooking and I stepped back and she winced. Wasn’t sure if I stepped on her toe or not. I hardly every have heard her yell out. I picked her up immediately and she yelled even more. I knew right away something was wrong. I took her upstairs to the bedroom and kept her still on the bed for 4 hours. On rechecking her symptoms, nothing changed and in the car we went to the vet. She examined her back and tummy, she was walking at the time. She said she could not tell what the issue was and gave pain meds to relieve the pain. Next day we woke up, Coco was in terrible pain and could hardly stand. I panicked and hit the road to the vet. They took some xrays and said she had two discs that look like they had been affected. The diagnosis was vague. Coco could barely walk or stand at this point. The vet suggested anti-inflammatory medication and pain medication. She also stated that we could take Coco to the University of Pennsylvania Vet for an MRI to see what was going on. Her additional statement was that the University of Penn would not operate on her due the to fact that she could walk. (We later found out that this statement was not true.) Our decision was to take immediately to the University of Penn. THIS WAS THE BEST DECISION I HAVE EVER MADE AS A PET OWNER. And it may have saved my Coco. We arrived and immediately they did an MRI in the emergency. She still had feeling in both legs but could not stand. She had a serious bulging disc that affected FOUR areas of her spine. The neurosurgeon told us that she would require surgery and the cost was $6,000.00. We did not blink and eye and moved forward. The surgeon said because we caught this paralysis within the 24 hour window – Coco had an 85% to 90% chance of returning to a fully functional dog – walking, running, jumping etc. Just to add, I was an emotional wreck through most of this. I think my elevated blood pressure alone could have given me a stroke. Nonetheless, there was Coco to worry about. Coco remained in the hospital three days after surgery. She still had feeling in both legs and the neurosurgeon said she had tension in both legs – meaning like a leg press – she could push. No forward motion though or standing at this point. I left her in good hands. And here I will through in a perk for the University of Pennsylvania, if you live anywhere remotely close to this hospital and have this problem – this is the place to go. I was pensive to see Coco after surgery and unsure of what she would be like. She of course had her back shaved, there was blaringly large stiches down her back. Her back was also swollen and bulging. The neurologist stated that Coco had not urinated for them, however she did defecate. The hospital said she could stay as long as we wanted her to, however the path would be essentially the same – whether she was home or in the hospital. She needed rest, completely crated except for food and potty and therapy. She also had round the clock meds. We were shown in the hospital how to express her bladder. So we took her home. The first evening, Coco ate her dinner fine. We later would try to walk her outside with a large band under her waist. She also at this point was beginning to stand. (We are on the fourth day after surgery.) After coming back from running errands, Coco’s bed was soaked with urine. I actually sighed in relief. It showed me that she could pee-pee but was choosing not too. Coco has never peed in the house or her bed as long has we have had her as a pup. It is something to consider when trying to figure out if your dog can urinate. I cleaned her linens and we started the routine of taking her out to the yard with the band. I would gently set her down with a harness and leash, placing the rubber band toward her hind end. AMAZINGLY on the second day after taking her out and having her stand with the band – she gracefully split both legs and peed as she always has done. We had the #2 issue to deal with and went on the internet for solutions. There are numerous sites that can help you to get a dog to poop. We chose the old rubbing an ice cube around the opening of the anus trick — And it worked!! Perfectly! Every time! So at this point, day 5 Coco was on the harness/rubber band and going potty. Relief. I gave Coco her therapy two to three times daily spending 30 minute per session. Meds were given from morning to late evening. On day 6 – Coco began to defecate outside on her own. And a short time after that, right after she defecated she took three steps forward with both feet. Again elation, it pushed me even more fervently to pray that Coco would walk again fully. Our faith was starting to increase. After a week and a half or so, Coco could stand and take a few staggering steps. We are now exactly at week three and she is completely walking on her own. Her back legs at time function completely normal, other times there is tremendous wavering. It varies and I have learned it is based on her endurance and how much she can take. I do not force her. I see now at week 3 that she has the potential to completely walk normally. I keep her crated or in her bed most of the day. I allow 2 or 3 walking sessions per day. I will close with the things that still worry me. Her back still remains arched even though she appears to have no pain. I understand she has at least 5 more weeks of serious recovery, but I worry. Also the lump and scar on her back are very protruding. Again worries me, but I am praying that some of this will go down over time. And do my journey continues and quest for my beloved fur baby to be herself again. I have read so many great testimonies and my heart goes out to each person who has to go through this experience. It is acutely painful and takes much faith, patience and endurance. Do NOT give up. Pray, inform yourself and care for beloved pet as you have never cared for before.

    • robin says:

      So sorry you too had to go through this but glad that Coco is on the road to recovery and getting better every day. Recovery takes a long time but slowly you will notice all of her issues improving. One of my furbabies has been through this surgery twice and though there are a few post surgery issues that were unavoidable after the 2nd surgery he is an amazing furkid and has a great quality of life. Thank God for the wonderful and skilled Vets that have saved our family members. Goodluck on your road to recovery.

  31. Ammie says:

    I am so happy for Coco’s recovery. Sounds exactly what Bruno went through. We spent 6 grand as well and it was worth every penny! Bruno is recovered 3 1/2 years now. His back did take about a year to straighten out but it will never be back to normal. He runs and chases squirrels….jumps, yes, jumps on the couch….we tried to train him and know this is bad but he does it when we are not looking. In the winter, he is a bit arthritic….just keep in mind that may be the case for Coco and she may seem slower and a bit in pain but it can’t be helped. Just like humans, tend to get arthritic on places of injuries or surgeries. Why and how this happened will still be a mystery but 2 days prior, he was acting like he was in pain. I crated him and only let him out to go to the bathroom. Day 3, I went to work and came home and he couldn’t get out of his crate…..yes, his back legs were paralyzed. The vet did a nerve test and he didn’t react….so we rushed him to a specialist. We missed the 12 hour window….but I said 40% is still a chance. Our entire family worked so hard and many sleepless nights to get Bruno to this point. Lots of physical therapy (which I did myself….thank you YouTube). I got up every 2 hours checking on him and we kept him isolated and rested. Once we accomplished him urinating and having a bowel movement on his own, we knew it was going to be ok! But in the beginning we had our doubts and started researching on wheelchairs and how to express his bladder. All in all Bruno is one of the lucky ones who was able to re-cooperate from this horrific experience.

    I know Coco is going to do very well and she is lucky to have you! Keep us posted! We all need support and guidance through this. This page helped me tremendously as I felt your pain as others felt mine. We all know exactly what each other went through or are going through.

    We have been looked at like we were a bunch of crazy people for forking out the money….comments like, “it’s just a dog”…..Ummm excuse me, no it’s not JUST A DOG, he’s our family.

    Best wishes!!!!!

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