Have your dog’s back at all times

By Connie Orcutt • Published: November 1st, 2014
Category: Animal Airwaves

A number of diseases can be a pain in the back for your dog. Take intervertebral disc disease, or IVDD, which occurs when discs cushioning the backbones swell and press into the spinal cord. IVDD is painful and can cause partial or complete paralysis of the legs. Breeds at highest risk are dachshunds, beagles, basset hounds and shih tzus [SHEET-zoos].

You can help your furry friend avoid back pain by taking some simple steps. First, keep your pooch slim to minimize the strain on her back and neck. Likewise, use a harness instead of a collar on walks. When you lift your dog, support her back by placing one hand under her chest and the other between her back legs. And consider putting steps or ramps in places where your pooch would normally jump up or down.

If your dog is lame or in pain, contact your veterinarian right away — it’s the best way to have her back.