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Do dogs get sciatica?

Species: Dog
Breed: rotweiller
Age: 8-11 years
Hi, about three weeks ago zues' back legs seemed week and clumsy and he was dripping urine, a vet came round and diagnosed him with sciatica and he has been on CARPROFEN ever since. About two days later he started dripping blood instead of urine but his legs seemed a bit better. The vet came back round and chemically carstrated him and gave him an antibiotic and an antinflammatory shots. It seemed good for a couple of days but the blood came back and now his back legs are bearly holding his weight and he has little control over them. He seems to be in no pain but he is not himself. It has not affected his appetite. Could you please give me a second opinion as I think my vet is not on the right track.
Thankyou Jason


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Hi Jason. I'm sorry to hear that Zeus is having these problems. This is a hard one to comment on without actually seeing Zeus, but maybe I can give you a few ideas.

It sounds like your vet is concerned about prostate problems. If the prostate is enlarged it can cause urinary issues. Castrating a dog will cause the prostate to shrink down.

However, a prostate that is simply enlarged should not cause blood in the urine. It is possible that there is an infection in the prostate or possibly even a tumor.

Has your vet done tests on Zeus's urine? This should tell us if there is an infection present. A tumor is a little harder to diagnose. Sometimes we can see evidence on an xray or ultrasound. Hopefully it is not a tumor because we don't have great success in treating prostate tumors.

While a prostate problem doesn't directly cause difficulties with walking, I have seen dogs have extreme hind end weakness if their bladder is really full or if they have pain in the prostate area.

Do you know if your vet did neurological tests on the back legs? An example of this would be trying to get the legs to knuckle over on the toes. If there is a neurological problem then we may have a spinal problem. However, most spinal injuries in dogs should not cause blood in the urine.

Again, it's hard to comment without seeing Zeus and his test results but if this were my case I would probably be advising an ultrasound of his bladder and prostate, mostly to look for cancer in either of these areas. Also, if he has not had a complete set of bloodwork and urine tests these would be advisable as well.

I wish I could give you a more pointed answer but this is a tough one. It does sound like your vet is doing the right things, but if you are not certain it never hurts to take Zeus for a second opinion.

I hope he does ok!
Dr. Marie.


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.