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I believe my boxer Zeke, 5.5 years old, may be having some neurological issues - or at least that's where my vets thoughts are headed. I would love to hear any experience, costs, outcomes, etc.

He has been lazing' more than usual and when he gets up he's very stiff and seems to have a hard time walking. At times, he doesn't want to do stairs and/or appears leary of how to get down them. Sometimes even seems unsure about sitting (almost stoops halfway). The vet didn't have any appts at the time so I dropped him off and they examined him during breaks in the day and said they didn't see any odd behavior. I let them take x-rays and bloodwork. X-rays were done of legs/hind end and all were normal. Bloodwork was OK except his thyroid level was off - they want to recheck it in a couple weeks. He's now on joint supplements and 2 weeks of anti-inflammatory meds.

In any case, I also noticed that he has these spasm-like movements of his front legs. He'll be standing there and you can see his front legs spasm - almost looks like a weak "legs want to buckle" type movement at his elbows and occurs repeatedly every 10-15 seconds though it's intermittent in that it doesn't happen all day long. Also noticed him trembling here and there when laying down. Took video of it and vet says if it doesn't improve he'd recommend either an xray of neck/head to rule out any injury and/or refer us to a pet neurologist.

Zeke has had a rough year. We moved 1400 miles away from family he'd see every weekend to a much smaller backyard. His walks got shorter when I started my new job and he gained a lot of weight - he's 77lb up from about 65 pre-move. (his thyroid may be a large part of that). He's now on prescription diet dog food. He also wound up with his first ear infection in March. Vet wound up packing his ears with antibiotics which left him temporarily deaf and it cleared up within 2 weeks. The walking difficulties seemed to appear overnight and it's heartbreaking to see; it looks painful. He will still go on walks. He will still chase his ball outside. But he is nothing like the ball of energy he used to be. :(
 

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I'm sorry you are going through this. Along with his other health issues Satchel has hypothyroidism. When he was diagnosed he had also gained a significant amount of weight and he had the same problem with going down stairs. He's been on synthyroid since 2015. I hope you get an answer soon and that it is nothing too serious.
 

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Lyme Disease, might manifest itself like that ... but I don't know??? And check his right rear foot, if the top of the nails are worn and you hear a click when he walks on hard surfaces ... that is bad news. That's enough of my "speculating for now."

But ... if his front leg's are "wobbly??" And he is having "issue's" with going down stairs?? If you truly want to feel like crap??? Let his front leg's buckle on him and he tumbles down the stairs!!

There are two viable options and the first one is to just avoid the stairs but I don't know how "viable that is??"

Plan B ... a full body harness. :

It has clips for a leash but and I don't see it?? There should be a longer starp with buckles at both end's that clip to the front and rear harness and can go over your shoulder.

Kinda like this.:

Hmm, Ok that is the one I used with Rocky (RIP) my Working Line GSD with "Wobbler's."

At any rate, sorry your guy is having issues and I do hope he get's back to normal soon.
 

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Hello! Grimm is my 6 year old who has neuro issues. His is partially linked to thyroid disease. I'm sure he has more underlying issues because the thyroid medicine did not cure him but he's definitely better than he was. Since they tested Zeke's thyroid and it came back off, I'm gonna bet that's what's going on. But I'll go ahead and tell my story about Lily:

Lily was 5 almost 6 when she started having neck pain and it escalated to the point where she was in so much pain it was not humane to keep her. Her quality of life was so bad in the end she couldn't even lay down without screaming in pain. She was on multiple medications and even stayed at the vet for a week in hospice. We never really found out what it was but the xrays showed a large round area on the spine in the neck. We were pretty poor at the time and we couldn't afford an MRI and even if we did find out what it was we couldn't have afforded surgery.

I hope for your sake that it's nothing serious. I'll say a little prayer for him.
 

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Hello! Grimm is my 6 year old who has neuro issues. His is partially linked to thyroid disease. I'm sure he has more underlying issues because the thyroid medicine did not cure him but he's definitely better than he was. Since they tested Zeke's thyroid and it came back off, I'm gonna bet that's what's going on. But I'll go ahead and tell my story about Lily:

Lily was 5 almost 6 when she started having neck pain and it escalated to the point where she was in so much pain it was not humane to keep her. Her quality of life was so bad in the end she couldn't even lay down without screaming in pain. She was on multiple medications and even stayed at the vet for a week in hospice. We never really found out what it was but the xrays showed a large round area on the spine in the neck. We were pretty poor at the time and we couldn't afford an MRI and even if we did find out what it was we couldn't have afforded surgery.

I hope for your sake that it's nothing serious. I'll say a little prayer for him.
Aw man sorry for you loss of Lily. That had to be heartbreaking .. I "finally lost," my Struddell (White Boxer) to DM at age 10. It struck her down at age 8, but with pretty much 24/7 care ... we dragged her to the 10 year mark so yeah ...

And my WL GSD was a "Wobble Dog" (Ataxi) and I don't know how long "Wobble," dogs can live?? But in retro spec ... I suspect that it was the switch to "Grain Free," Kibble that took him away from me at ... sigh 10 years again!!

I which dog's lived as long as Turtles or Parrot's but sadly, they don't?? It seems like ... there is always, something that end's life early, so yeah ....
 

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Neurological issues...We lost our best boy Kai about 5 weeks ago now. Kai has always had difficulty when eating his kibble where he would seem to choke. It was really minor and we attributed it to he eating to fat. So we did a slow feed, then later we raised his bowl up. It really wasn't all that strange . His last week he seemed to drop more of his food on the floor and seem to choke a lot more, noticeable and not like before. I said to my daughter something isn't right and perhaps he needs his teeth looked at or perhaps he has mega esphosogus. He was due for his annual in 3 weeks. On a Tuesday we noticed he was not walking right. He was slightly off and at times walked like he was walking on eggshells. My daughter noticed him flinch when she petted his ears. So after some convincing with the vet that we couldn't wait till morning he saw him that late afternoon. Our vet thought it was neurological but said it also could be an inner ear infection. So he gave him pain meds and antibiotics . Wednesday he was about the same and Thursday he seemed slightly better. WE begin to sigh some relief that it was his ear but Friday morning he seemed not to be able to swallow his food properly though he did eat and his walk and tilt were back. We spoke to the vet and it was a lot of going back and forth as he spoke to two other vets one being a neurologist. The all felt something was going on and wanted us to take him for a MRI. This was to be done on the following Wednesday about 2 hours away from where we live. After long discussions our vet said we could also try a ultra sound that we scheduled for Monday. He said it may not show anything but it was sooner than the MRI and it was local at the ER clinic. On Saturday morning my daughter said, she felt it in her bones that something bad was wrong and she just stayed at his side. She came home from work earl that Friday to be with him. I said I think your right and just enjoy him. So Saturday was a beautiful day and he spent time in the backyard on and off with us. She walked him to the end of our driveway and then back into the yard when she started to yell for me that something was wrong. He just stood very still and started to choke of saliva. I said bring him in and when he was able, few seconds later he came into the house when suddenly he began to salivate big time choking on his own saliva. My daughter was hysterical calling for a turkey baster, hoping she could get saliva away. Well of course we didn't have one and that wouldn't have worked, he then fell and began a full blown seizure. The seizure part stopped some but he couldn't move and he continued to choke on his saliva , it was really awful. My daughter picked him up (all 84 lbs_ and put him in my car with her and we rushed to the ER vet, still seizing choking. Upon our arrival (20 min away). they took him in and finally got his body to settle a bit however he could hardly breathe at this point and the vets said his temperature was well over 107 and had placed cooling wet towels on him. Even on their meds his body was still trying to seize and at this point the vet said he would not make it thru so we did what had to be done. These vets all were familiar with his case so far as they had been in contact with our vet. In the end they felt it was a brain stem tumor. My family miss him terribly and though we have begun to search for another dog (he really emotionally supported my daughter more than we knew) we just can't decide what to do. We have looked at other breeds (one that would get along with my standard poodle) and we come back to boxer all the time. We just picture that face. But frankly right now its too hard and I know I could not imagine going thru this again (our vet said boxers are prone as are many brachycephalic breeds. ) We are considering a planned litter of euro pups, all from health tested parents but they are typically euro's as they will have tails and dew claws. I am not crazy ant tail or dew claws. But I don't know I am still very apprehensive. It was a awful ordeal and it all happened so fast. My advise to you if they feel it could be neurological is to not waste money on on these tests and just spend it on the MRI that will be more conclusive.
 

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I am so sorry Lindar51 that was a terrible thing to have happen I know how powerless you must have felt. I as you know had a terrible experience with a boxer of mine with a brain tumor as well. Boxers and other brachealsyphalic dogs seem to be more prone to these but I have seen many other dogs with the same thing greyhounds and German Shepherds and labs too so its not an exclusive disease. When you are ready I hope you open your heart to another boxer just because this happened doesn't mean its going to happen again. We are all humans and animals susceptible to the evils of sickness and disease but that doesn't mean you don't make friends or form relationships because that person may become sick and I feel like its the same for dogs we are all just living beings. I found my house was just too empty of fun and happiness without a boxer in it yes I have suffered a large amount of grief and pain but the happy times have far outweighed the bad times and the good memories outweigh the bad I know its hard to move on but that's what life is about. As far as the Euros go I had not heard they don't remove dewclaws I know about the tails. My dogs are mostly Euro and they had both of those things done.
 

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[email protected] ...Yes I know...we miss that face more n more each day so I do see another boxer in the future. The breeder I found of euros does a lot of health testing and I looked at her dogs (internet) before I got my standard poodle as I wanted a 2nd boxer at that time but frankly didn't go with her because of tail and dew claws. Tail I can live with dew claws nope. I willl keep looking we are not ready anyway. My poodle is going through another episode of misbehaving on leash. Having been getting out enough and he is way to reactive toward kids, people other dogs than I would like. Makes me not want to take him out but I realize the only way he will get over this (if he does) is to take him out. If I don't get a handle on it I wills end him off to a pro though I hate to do that. In some way it may be good as he has become glued to me and is protective of me too. I trained all my other dogs even when there were issues but this guy is smarter than me. I like the look of the euros but . This breeder is also european and she tells me while euros are more balanced they do not go to dog parks nor do they readily accept other dogs (not in their own household). With family she says they are the best. So when I find another I want it to be when he can be well socialized from day 1 and just be a happy, friendly.love everybody sort of dog. Well I have time and will continue to look for the right fit.
 

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That's funny she said that about the Euros these two dogs I have now have been the friendliest I have ever had especially my female she loves everybody other dogs even coyotes she wags her tail at! I have to protect her from other dogs because she will try to play with any dog! Since you are not ready yet for a puppy you have time to look that's what I did I just took my time and looked around. Your poodle may be overly protective of you right now because he has lost a friend too, and I am sure he senses your sadness and loss so he may be acting out because of that. I have known poodles that are pretty barky and possessive of their owners. I hope you will be able to deal with all this and feel better soon, I know its hard and it takes a lot of time but you will get there! I know when I got my Kodie when she was a puppy I was overjoyed and I cried when I got her she was the salve my broken heart needed to heal after losing my other dogs so close together. Things will get better!
 

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