My Older Dog is Disoriented, Unbalanced, and Confused

Is your older dog suddenly disoriented, unbalanced, and confused?

A good friend of mine gave me a call today to wish me happy birthday. While catching up he told me about his thirteen year old German Shepherd. Apparently while he was on vacation in Hawaii his German Shepherd became quite ill.

Fortunately, their dog was diagnosed and treated for a disease know as Canine Vestibular Disease also known as Old Dog Vestibular Symptom.

What is Canine Vestibular Disease?

Some commons symptoms of this disease are leaning toward one side, shaking of the head, and walking around in circles. Vestibular means a problem with the connections between inner/middle ear and brain causing ataxia. Dogs with ataxia stand with their limbs braced, they walk with difficulty and have a “drunk” type of motion because they have lost their sense of balance. When the vestibular nerve, which travels from the inner ear to the brain, malfunctions. It disrupts the animal’s sense of balance and orientation.

Can My Dog be Misdiagnosed?

It has been suggested that there is a correlation between old dog vestibular syndrome and hypothyroidism so blood work should be done to rule out this problem. The ears should be thoroughly examined because the same symptoms can result from a severe ear mite infection. Also certain types of antibiotics such as streptomycin and gentomicin can cause vestibular syndrome. Please note that a serious inner/middle ear infection—which can occur without the customary smelly ear—has the same severe and frightening symptoms.

Because of the sudden nature of this disease it can often be misdiagnosed as a stroke.

What Should I do?

As in the case of my friend’s dog after a couple weeks the animal learned to compensate for old dog vestibular syndrome and began moving around the house like a normal dog. Try and keep your dogs feet firmly on the ground and eyes facing the horizon to help the dog gain his/her orientation. This disease is not fatal and recovery just requires patience and tender loving care.

Story about our Lab Border Collie Mix

Back to my story…fortunately for my friend his dog received the proper diagnosis. After rushing back from Hawaii they noticed their dog’s head was cocked to the side, but after two weeks he was back to normal. Now that I think back to our old family dog, a lab border collie mix, I think that he may have suffered a similar affliction. We assumed he had a stroke (also the assumption of our vet) and he was disoriented, unbalanced, and confused. He walked around in circles, but we think this was due to part of his body being partially paralyzed. Hmmm….but then again he did recover in about two weeks…

I’d love to hear what you have to say. Have you ever encountered this situation with your dog? Is your dog currently experiencing being disoriented, unbalanced, and confused? If so, your dog may have Canine Vestibular Disease. Perhaps your dog is sick with other symptoms…if your dog is gagging and coughing then take a look at my article My Dog’s Got Kennel Cough…Now What?

Fortunately my two dogs are four and two years old so hopefully I won’t have to deal with Canine Vestibular Disease any time soon (if at all).  My third dog is 1 years old and is in guide dog training (actually he’s technically not my dog he belongs to the guide dog school).

Parts of this information were summarized from http://www.peoriahs.org/vestibular.html

Disclaimer: I am not a veterinarian and would advise that anytime you notice symptoms in your dogs health you should take him to your local veterinarian for treatment.

Comments

  1. jessica says

    my dog just turned two thursday and i woke up this morning to her not being able to walk straight and she cant see she has an appointment at the vet at 2 but i dont know how a perfectly healthy dog can wake up in the morning and not be able to see or walk i love her so much and i dont know what else to do please help

    • Gill Cole says

      Awwwww…Yes, that must have been a terrible shock to you. I hope the vet has found out what caused your poor dogs blindness and inability to walk and you have been given some medication for her? I hope she is alright? My thoughts are with you, it is such a worrying time when they are poorly. Best wishes and a quick recovery too.

  2. lawrence says

    hi
    my dog is ten years old, and is blind, and has diabeties.
    he has had this for the last 2 years, and has coped very well with it, but in the last 2 weeks he has started to become disorintated and confused about where he is, he has started to tilt his head to one side, and walks side ways

  3. April says

    Hello all,
    My thoughts are with all of you and your babies.
    Our dog DJ is a 15 yr old border collie, springer spaniel mix. She is recovering from vestibular disease.She has had it now since Aug 1. Her head is still cocked to one side. She still has trouble focusing. We had to hand feed her for the first week. When a dog eats they throw their food into their mouth and she had a hard time. We held the water bowl up to her so she could see it. We have to hold her collar while she goes off the deck to do her duties. At first we took a beach towel and put it around her belly to help guide her to walk. Pulling it up alittle so she didn’t fall down as she walked. She is very dehydrated and pants like crazy until she lays down. She also has alot of fatty tumors one in the throat area. We have a bowl of water everywhere with fresh water and she drinks like a fish. Her coat used to be soft and shiney and now it’s dry and her skin flakes badly. She has to be right with us and touching us at all times.
    Any ideas as to helping the dehydration problem?
    The vet gave her a shot and it didn’t seem to help.
    It’s so sad, that we know she is telling us something and we can’t understand what she wants. We just hang in there for her.
    Good Luck to all of you. They’re so human aren’t they?

    ^ ^
    >”<

  4. Ric says

    My dog started acting the same way about 30mins ago. She’s 10 years old. I’ve been searching everywhere for answers and i can’t get a hold of a vet right now because it is 1:00am. I’m going to wake up and see if she is still the same and if so I’m going to take her to the vet. Thank you to everyone for leaving such helpful comments. I will let you know how it goes.

    • Gill Cole says

      All the best with your dog Ric…I understand it is such a really stressful and worrying time for you (and your dog). I hope the vet can help and she improves really soon. Best wishes, Gill.

      • Ric says

        I’m heading to the vets in a couple of hours. After looking online for hours and hours… it really sounds like Geriatric Vestibular Disease… now if it’s Central or Peripheral Geriatric Vestibular… i don’t know. She isn’t sick and she is eating, but her footing is still way off and her head isn’t too much off to the side. She always turns to her left though and she can’t “Shake” paws right now.. she always would do that. I will be sure to write back when i find out more and thank you for replying Gill that means a lot to me right now.

        • Ric says

          Well they said it was “Vestibular syndrome” similar to a stroke. The good thing is that a lot of dogs that have that tend to show improvement with in 3day or up to 3 weeks. So they gave her a Steroid shot to help with the process. So now it’s just a waiting game to see if she gets better, worse, or the same. She is able to got to the bathroom without falling or me having to hold her up, but my big worry is that it might be a stroke instead, because it’s that her Left Side legs/side are the big problem. When she’s walking she sometimes can’t lift her paw, like limp wrist. To make it worse my neighbor just had to put her dog down because her dog couldn’t walk because her paws were too limp wristed… and the vet did seem interested/concerned with that issue. Plus i didn’t see anyone mention having limp paws when talking about their dogs symptoms of a Vestibular disease, But time will tell and i will be sure to write back to let you know her progress. I’m glad i found this page.. thank you all !!!!

          • Ric says

            Well she starting to compensate for her gimpy right side and she isn’t stumbling into things that much anymore. So things are looking up so far.

  5. Gill Cole says

    Hey Ric!
    I’m so happy for you that your little girl seems to be improving! I really did think I was losing my Booboo! The injection the vet gave her, made her eat like a horse!! Even cat poo I’m afraid, but, things eventually were great!! When she got over her “stroke” thingy, it seems that she may have lost a bit of sight in her left eye…but nothing too bad! Her Arthritis was a problem after the “episode”, but now, touch wood, seems to be improving too! They’ve given her some pain relief too, Tramadol…2 a day, but we seem to manage with just one tablet and the Metacam! I wish your dog a speedy recovery, like my Boo had. Every minute with them is sooo precious isn’t it! Best wishes, Gill. =)

  6. tum yum says

    Hi, this is my first time having a dog, I saw a dog one morning outside my office, it was raining badly, and there’s this little puppy came out from nowhere, wet and shaking. I decided to took her home, she was just a month old. I send her to the vet and gave her vaccines. she recieved 2 shots for a month and I was supposed to send her back for the 3rd shot but I was assigned in other provinces, for a month, I left her at my friends house. when I came back, after a week she had a seizure.

    it started around 3:00 P.M, she was shaking,and salivating. I panicked, I surf the internet for some info’s. so I followed it. then I observed her, but it was 4:00PM already and she still shaking. I called up the vet and he said observe first. then 5:00PM came, she still shaking, I rushed to the vet and he said, there’s no more solution for my dg, I’ll just have to wait till she die.

    I was surprised, he said there’s a virus in her brain, because I forgot to send her back for her 3rd shot. and my dog had a weak antibodies.

    we went home, and untill this morning she still shaking, she cannot stand, she tries but she just can’t, she can’t open her mouth, everytime she tries to stand she fall down and eventually hit her head on the floor, that’s why I keep watch on her all the time, and it’s just break my heart watching her like this and knowing that she will die soon.

    I just don’t know what to do, sometimes I would rather see her put to sleep and end her life than seeing her shaking, trying her best to stand, she just love to play, but now?, It’s just break my heart.

    I don’t know how to revive her.

  7. David says

    My baby had his annual DA2P-PV shot. Within days, his demeanor became VERY lethargic, panting and walking around the block took its toll. He started eating grass when ever he could. He wasn’t interested in eating any dog food or drinking water.

    The first VET visit was a prescription for ProGut.

    The second VET visit; four days later, his mannerism progressively became worse. This visit to VET consisted of a series of blood tests, urinalysis, pancreatic, then an over night stay, IV and pain meds. He seemed to have more energy for a day, but didn’t last.

    The third VET visit; three days later consisted of a series of blood tests, XRAYS, Metacam and Subcutaneous IV. Vet said everything was normal with blood work.

    The fourth VET visit; two days later consisted of more XRAYS and observation. By now, when my dog tries to walk, his back little legs are barely moving and he weaves. VET prescribed Tramodol HCL chews and told me to kennel the dog as much as possible. Wait for 3 days and let them know. There was nothing more they can do and could find nothing wrong. They are now saying that I may have to take him to get an MRI and scan at specialist.

    Watching your baby deteriorating breaks your heart. I sit in a room where the kennel resides, working on the computer, sleep on the floor beside him and worry all day at work. Don’t you wish they could talk and let you know what wrong…

  8. Don kountz says

    Just 3 days ago our dog started throwing up after I heard him drinking
    Alot of water. He is tilting his head and can’t seem to stand well but he is till
    Going p and down the stairs. The thing that is ward is that I got a cat from my
    Moms house and he was acting the same way. Does this happen to cats to?

  9. Lisa says

    Bubba is an 11 year old jack/Italian greyhound mix. We are his 6th home, though we have had himfor 5 years now. He has cataracts in both eyes which have stopped him from jumping and swimming and he has always been a bit shaky.
    Recently, he seems confused. He’s pacing, restless (ESP at night), standing in corners, staring at walls and barking at them. He looks drunk when he walks (worse tonight) and he twitches and jerks. His back legs are never at full extension. He also falls a lot. He has never had a seizure (to my knowledge). He sleeps most of the day and likes to continuously lick his forearms. Anyone?

  10. Rachel Matiu says

    Hi there everyone! My pup is about 4-5months old. Weather shes standing or sitting, whenever she looks up at me she starts to fall to the side like shes dizzy? Or like her front legs would give out on her when were having our daily play in the yard? To get her to stop going wonky i have to get to her level? Is this some of the symptoms for the disease?

  11. Danielle says

    my dog Bama is 8 months old and it sounds a lot like he has cvd. we took him to vet and they said he had ear mites I am currently given him antibiotics and the vet cleaned out his ears. However its been a week and there was an improvement until this past friday it has worsened. This is my baby and I am so scared I will have to put him down. He is having problems standing and walking and everytime he does he falls down. What should I do I dont want to put him down this is my child ( i have no kids and i am 25).

  12. Debbie Smith says

    Always check the internet before putting your dog down. Luckily, I wanted my kids to say good-bye to our dog and chose not do anything. I got home and began looking up the disease. After reading about all the good news, I waited and…..he got better! There was a lot of nursing and crying and not eating, but he has really pulled himself out of it. Read!!!!!!

  13. Steve says

    We have a PVGB about 7 years old. He was fine on Friday and on Saturday we woke up to find him just staring at the wall, head tilted and eyes glossed over with no focus. He would not look up at us when we called his name Henry. We had to put him on a leash to take him outside and guide him along.He was walking in circles to one side. We took to our vet and she immediately diagnosed canine vestibular disease. Our story is a little different than most on this thread, our dog was mistreated at the groomer about 1 week before he started acting funny. The groomer either dropped him or struck him as his eye was swollen and red when we picked him up from the groomer. We took him right to the vet and she prescribed antibiotics and eye drops. He was ok for about 5 days and then started with the tilted head and circle walking. We were lucky to find this site and I read every comment which is why I am writing. Henry got worse the next day and we had to walk him outside with a towel around his waist to hold him up. We fed him soft dog food with our hands and used an eyedropper to put water in his mouth. The vet prescribed a steroid and anti nausea medication. The next day he seemed a little more alert and we saw a slight improvement. The following days he got better and in about 5 days he was almost back to normal. We share this story for anyone going through this to be patient and caring and get your pet to the vet asap. We have never heard of canine vestibular disease and if diagnosed correctly could save you a lot of time and money with misdiagnosis or worse, putting your poor pet down thinking they had a serious heart attack or stroke. Thanks to everyone who took the time to tell their story as it saved our sanity during a very trying time.

  14. tamara McKwown says

    Hi, my 9 yr old shih tzu never ill before came down with CVD on new years day 2012, he seemed to recover well he was at the vets within 1 hour of first systmoms. but yesterday he got bad again a couple of days after medication, back at vet tonight stronger antibiotics and steroid injections going back tomorrow night with him. I am so stressed over it, it is not a brain tumour for sure but i really hope he recovers, vet said it is a good sign that he is still eating and wanting to play he does not have the eye movment this time which is also a good sign. What i need to know is how long can it take for this to clear can it take months, i do not mind if it does just want to know.
    I have another shih tzu also but he does not have it. they are both my babies

  15. says

    Thanks, I have recently been looking for info about this subject matter for ages and yours is the best I have located so far.

  16. Questionaire says

    My Miniature Schnauzer has had a similar symptom where he was disoriented and falling off of the steps leading up to our living room. It started when he began bobbing his head up and down uncontrollably and couldn’t stop. He did respond to his name even with the bobbing and such. But, when we let him near the other dogs he snapped at them and growled, an unusual characteristic for him. Even after the weird bobbing he still looks at me like i am a stranger. Any help on the subject would be greatly appreciated, please e-mail me at rwelch0213@hotmail.com . Thank you again.

    • tamara McKwown says

      You need to bring your dog to a vet, with Max he has an very bad middle ear infection and this is the reason for his symptoms as I said above it all started on new years day.
      he has had 3 lots of antibiotics and ear cream to cure the eat infection he is slowly getting better but you have to clear the ear infection for it to go.

  17. pradeep says

    hi,

    my dog having a same problem he is 12 yrs old. please help me in this regard what should i do.

  18. brenda says

    My peke is 17 but has done great 3 wks ago he and i would walk all around our apt building he would run up the long hallway to go up front to visit w other people and w be way ahead of me He has arthiritis takes vetprofin 2 da Lt high thyroid 2 thy pills a day just had teeth cleaned and 7 pulled and did well He is my last one of 3 so very spoiled he would do this lt hop while sitting when he wanted me to pick him up he is now limping bobbing head up and down while walking making it hard for him to walk He does the same lt hop on his front legs when he tries to stand kind of wobbley and falls over or has to sit suddenly Im on oxygen and we keep each other going Been to vet 2 tms last tm long acting steroid shot Friday Ive been trying to keep him off his legs carrying him around some he seems to not want to put weight on left front paw He seems alittle better today alittle i boiled boneless chick breast and thats all he will eat but does eat it well anyone with any ideas or help please email me or im so worried u can even text me at 816 872 8269 Thank you Brenda

  19. says

    My dog started acting the same way about 30mins ago. She’s 10 years old. I’ve been searching everywhere for answers and i can’t get a hold of a vet right now because it is 1:00am. I’m going to wake up and see if she is still the same and if so I’m going to take her to the vet. Thank you to everyone for leaving such helpful comments. I will let you know how it goes

  20. says

    So sorry to hear about your loss Wendy. Your dog is at peace now. It must have been very frustrating for her to be blind, have hearing loss and to be so fragile. It doesn’t sound like it was safe to leave your dog home alone since anything could happen, but it can’t be helped, even though you might have had her in a crate or a safe area, The sad part about having animals live such a long life is that they can’t tell us what hurts or whether they fell while we were out. Katie was loved very much and she’ll always be in your hearts.

    • Irene Ng says

      can anyone help. My 13 years old Maltese “Tessie” early Jan 2012 she had her infected uterus removed (Blood & pus) on top of this the vet also found that she had cancer cells spread all over her body. It was a great pain for our family, she has been our best sweetie pie since 3 months old. Now she has acute glucoma & hearing loss. Since after the op she has been licking (mopping the floor). Can any-1 share with us how to help this ?

  21. Suzanne says

    my cairn terrier “peanut” was walking real slow having a hard time getting up she looked drunk
    and hard time coming up the stairs, not drinking. can anyone tell me what might be wrong?

  22. John says

    For about an hour every day my black lab will start stumbling and walking into dressers and into my closet and just stands there then it looks like his back legs give out and he struggles to stand and he breathes real heavy and twitches. It looks like its starting to get worse when it happens but an hour later he is completely fine running around I don’t understand what’s going on any thoughts anyone?

    • Lucy says

      John,
      My collie cross Max is showing similar symptoms – not every day, but 2/3 Times per week he goes outside and stumbles around the garden for up to 2 hours looking very confused and his legs look like they’re really struggling. He then lies down outside and won’t come in. We’ve found if we give him metacam straight away he recovers more quickly, but it still takes him awhile to return to normal. Did you find out what the cause was?
      Thanks,
      Lucy

  23. Doug says

    My 1.5 year old, male, miniature schnauzer has some problems. He looks malnourished though he eats plenty. He continually circles to the right and barks for no apparent reason. He still does not respond to his name.

  24. Clare Neil says

    Hi
    My name is Clare, from Devon England.
    Thank you all so much, my 13 year old rescue rottie bitch I have had for 11 years, displayed the signs and symptoms you have all described, I thought she had had a stroke or other serious problem, thankfully I googled something like “old dog keeps falling over” I found this information and it gave me hope, I carried my beloved Ebony into the vets, geriatric vestibular disease was the first thing the vet said.
    She is on anti biotics and steroids, plus an anti sickness injection.
    Great to find such great information, for such a dramatic display…she looked terrible.

    Thanks again

    Clare

    • says

      Hi Clare,

      I’m glad the information and stories on our site helped you out with Ebony. I hope the antibiotics and steroids plus anti sickness injection are helping Ebony.

      Take care,
      Coby

      • Clare Neil says

        Hi Coby

        Thank you again, it was really helpful to find so much information on the condition from other people kind enough to offer there experiences and support, without which I would have had a much more stressful week.
        In the last 7days Ebony has improved so much, she is almost back to her old self!
        She is eating and drinking properly,and this morning ran over with great enthusiasm even if it was a little crooked. Also my daughter gave her a treat which she ate happily.

        All the best

        Clare and Ebony

  25. sherin says

    I found out that my boxer Abby dog has this problem and i have been struggling with
    how to help her. I have a wood specialty friend that made me a chair for
    her. It is adjustable to any size dog, a hole for the tail to stick out, a
    whole for a dog food tray which tilts upwards or down. He has custom made
    this just for my Abby dog. mrbrawnwhite@gmail.com His name is brown white and he will make
    them just will have to pay for shipping. He is excellent at what he does,
    he built me this chair in 2 days.

  26. Paula says

    I let my 10 yr old fila mastiff in this morning and before she came in she did about three circles on the deck, with her head lowered. As she came in she seemed dizzy and disoriented. She dizzily went to her food and ate just fine. After she ate, she seemed okay, but still not right. Some of the above posts mention vomiting and not drinking symptoms, of which she doesn’t have. Other than her being a little slow and ‘off’ … she is no longer wobbly. With her having an appetite, I’m confused about what might be going on. Thanks

    • Paula says

      I just thought I would add this so hopefully it can help some of you. My dog had more symptoms in Sept., and again in Oct., and long story short, after nearly having to put her to sleep, it turns out that she was slowly being poisoned by heartworm plus medicine. She was so ill this last time that the dr. gave me the choice of putting her down or trying a strong liver medicine . Her blood numbers were off the chart and her urine was brown so dr. diagnosed her with liver cancer. After bringing her home basically to die, little by little after a rough period, she started to improve. After several weeks now, she is seemingly back to normal. She is off the heartworm medicine for good. Please be cautious of what you put in your dog, that is intended to kill fleas, ticks, heartworms… it’s all toxic and almost killed my sweet girl.

      • tracy says

        i have heard this before Paula, my friends dog was very sick and yes it was a flee/tick treatment called Advantix (or something like that)

        thanks for your advice!

  27. Garrett says

    On occasion my two year German shorthaired pointer will be lying down happily chewing his toy and then will begin nursing his paw and acting like he doesn’t know who I am. I had put it down to a cramp of some sort and him not being able to understand what the problem is. Distraction has been the best way to get him out of it, like calling him playfully or getting another chew toy etc etc.
    Ge wakes frequently during the night and looks around the backyard then returns to his bed after investigation.
    Tonight while watching a movie with my partner he was asleep on his bed next to the couch, he was having a general small what we assume is a dream / nightmare and normally we just call his name and he looks up disgruntled and goes back to sleep. It’s usually very cute, like a grumpy little kid :-) however tonight he awoke and looked at me like I was a stranger and it took a good fifteen minutes to convince him that I’m ok and his dad.we’ve been outside and played with his ball and now his back asleep. Just the strangest thing. He felt like a stranger for the duration of it but now seems ok.
    Anyone else experienced this or have an answer for why or what causes this?

    Thanks

  28. Lauren says

    To anyone reading this site whose dog is showing these horrific symptoms, I just want to assure you that it GETS BETTER! It was about a year ago that my (then) 13.5 year old cockapoo went through this – twitching eye, head tilt, vomiting, refusing to eat, inability to stand up, etc. – and I honestly thought it was the end for him. After reading the comments on this site I felt a bit better. Brought him to the vet where he received an anti-nausea shot which helped with the vomiting. If you’re going through this, don’t despair, you just have to wait it out. My dog experienced a short bout of it, seemed to get better, then it came back for about a week and a half. He’s been clear since then and I’m proud to say he’s now 14.5 and doing amazingly well! I hope my writing this brings a little bit of comfort to anyone going through it now.

    • tracy says

      fantastic Lauren!

      Im sitting her in australia searching on google and thanks to all of these mosts am armed with more information and question to ask my vet.

      I have a blind Springer spaniel who lost her hearing quality over the past couple of years.

      Over a year ago I noticed her leaning to the side and scratching at her ear, got ear drops and over time it went away.

      Just the past month or so she has been more disorientated (13 year old) and running into everything inside the house, she normally is so aware (even being blind).

      The past week I have noticed when she goes outside she starts moving in circles to the right and can’t find her way back to the back door to be let in. She has been an inside dog for over 6 years now due to increased anxiety.

      I have been so sad this morning, but after reading these posts, spanning over 4 years you have all given me some hope. I will exhaust all options and would love any input or advice.
      x
      trace

  29. Yolanda says

    We are having a very hard time with our 2 year old pit bull his head is tilted to the right and he is falling around like he has no balance also does not want to eat or drink without me feeding it to him the vet said after a very short visual exam that she thought he had marijuana poisoning ???? I’m a little pissed because even after explaining that was not possible she still said that was her diagnosis what do we do it’s been 2 weeks and I hate to see him so sick

    • Paula says

      See another vet. That is absurd… especially since it’s going on for so long. Please don’t wait…it could be a stroke and perhaps there is medication that will help. Good luck!

  30. tracy says

    Im sitting her in australia searching on google and thanks to all of these mosts am armed with more information and question to ask my vet.

    I have a blind Springer spaniel who lost her hearing quality over the past couple of years.

    Over a year ago I noticed her leaning to the side and scratching at her ear, got ear drops and over time it went away.

    Just the past month or so she has been more disorientated (13 year old) and running into everything inside the house, she normally is so aware (even being blind).

    The past week I have noticed when she goes outside she starts moving in circles to the right and can’t find her way back to the back door to be let in. She has been an inside dog for over 6 years now due to increased anxiety.

    I have been so sad this morning, but after reading these posts, spanning over 4 years you have all given me some hope. I will exhaust all options and would love any input or advice.
    x
    trace

    • tracy says

      update…..been to vet twice…tried vivitonin 50 (1 1/2 tablet twice daily) for 2 months….no major improvements…she is happy, eating…drinking etc…still turns in circles at times when outside….i have a specialist appt in april which will cost plant, chiro/osteo/arternative vet but still a vet who is known to get great results…will keep you posted!

  31. Laura says

    hi my diogie and i were going to bed last night and walking into the room he was fine. when we got into the bedroom he became very disoriented, couldn’t quite walk on his own and was running into my nightstand and wall and bed. he then walked to the open space in my room and just started spinning around. that only lasted for about 5 minutes then he jumped up into bed and slept fine all night. ive been keeping an eye on him today and hes not showing any symptoms or any behavior like last night. he scratches his ear all the time and the vet has checked and said he didn’t have mites. could he be suffering from this disease? he turned 7 this spring.please e-mail me with an answer. thank you very much

  32. Mary Currie says

    We have a apple head chihuahua who is 12 years old and we believe he is blind. This dog out of all dogs has always been the easiest most laid back dog you would ever want and not a mean bone in his body. But in the past 6 months he has become a biter and a screamer. You would think that we were abusing him. He will walk for hours in a circle till he is exhausted. Now that I have read some things on here I understand more of what is going on with him. He eats and drinks very well. But when he is not walking he is sleeping. Thanks for the information.

  33. Tracy says

    Hi DSLR Tricks,

    Sure…I will keep you updated as I go…Dakota has been to the normal vets twice in the last 2 weeks…I wanted to have her left eye checked as it was quite inflamed, my normal vet (who is a surgeon) recommended having it removed asap as it will always cause me issues…I actually was surprised with this drastic outcome….so I asked for a referral to the eye specialist….he checked her eye pressure, as I also wanted to rule out Glaucoma (as a possible cause for her turning)…pressure was fine…her eye is not that bad…appears springers and other spaniels have problems where their eye lashes can irritate their eyes (skin become baggy on their forehead and moves forward with eye lashes moving into eye..happens to puppies but they grow into their skin etc)…so i have a lubricating eye drop to use daily and if it continues to cause a problem…I can have him give her an eye tuck as such, to remove the irritation if i need to in the future too…my gosh I am so glad I didnt listen to my vet!

    I still have my appt in April to see the specialist regarding her anxiety and turning…she appears happy…but now has a skin allergy or hot spots all over her body…which is being treated with steroid tablets…argh! Which I’m sure contribute to her spinning etc….and GIT issues….we will get her diet corrected with this specialist as she is also a kineisioligist (spell)

    She is on Hills Z/D allergy vet diet…but I know its NOT working…fun fun fun being a loving caring dog owner and $$$$$$$$$ lol

    cheers
    trace

  34. Paula says

    Trace.. Many years ago I had a St. Bernard who got hot spots. Back then the vet gave you purple liquid medicine to put on it and recommended a low protein diet. They both put an end to the hot spots. I’m sorry to hear about your dog having so many issues. I had a small dog for 23 years who became blind only in the last 3 years of her life. She did circles when I took her outside, which wasn’t often for her last year. (Lots and lots of puppy pads!) She did okay in a small area with my poodle who she tagged onto in the house. I think in her case the circling was a result of her inability to see and hear. As for my Mastiff…she had another liver episode last week and we returned to the vet. I believe her liver was badly compromised from the heartgard plus medicine. After a few days on meds, she is back to normal. Looks like she’s on liver meds for the duration. I feel your pain with the $$$$. Good luck and God bless!

  35. Chivonne, says

    I had a simular problem with my dog with supposed hot spots. The vet said she could have steroids but not to often because it wasn’t good to give over a long period of time. I now give her fish oil caps daily (no more than one thousand mg) and the vet told me to only give her a bath once a month instead of the weekly bath I was giving her, he said I was washing away the natural oils on her skin. I also had her tested for flee allergies. Hope this helps.

  36. tracy says

    Hi Laura, DALR Tricks, Paula and those who have taken an interest in Dakota

    Great news…..after seeing the holistic vet in april then july we have seen a remarkable improvement…

    what stopped the circles completely was DIET!!! As we suspected (but couldn’t be 100% sure)

    We had the vet do muscle testing and almost everything came up positive to allergy, esp hills ZD vet diet.

    She now eats only white fresh fish, Moong Dahl, organic carrots, celery, spinach and pumpkin and only canadian sardines (was giving her cheaper ones was china) lol

    so she still crys and wakes us up anywhere was 300am-500am…we take her out for a wee then she may settle…fed freshly cooked and then frozen and thawed fish mix…fed same again at 430pm…then sardines at 930…being an anxious dog being fed small meals more often is ideal….

    i just went to our normal vet last week as i wanted further tests on her kidney function and GRF as well as thyroid as she shows some signs of hyperthyroid…just to rule it out…the reason for the urine collection was she cries before needing to wee….but hardly drinks water as her food a great amount of liquid in it…she also has arthritis and we are treating that now…lol

    On a sadder note my other springer spaniel bitch and the love of my life Billie, (who was fit and well) actually became lame…we were seeing a vet weekly for 2 months too change her bandages on a wound which wouldn’t heal….she went down hill very quickly and as soon as she stopped eating we rushed her to my favourite vet…she had bone cancer….we would have operated however it was in her lungs too and her lungs wouldn’t stop filling with fluid…the saddest day ever but in retrospect an easy decision….i still am grieving and talk like she is here….

    ahhh the love of an animal…to all of you dog lovers out there, thank you for looking after them so well! Boy, don’t we get the love back in return :)

    x

    trace

  37. Chivonne, says

    I had a problem with my dogs liver but the vet said she had to be put on a no protein diet and no treats except carrots.

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