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Injury advice


myiavedder
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Need some advice. Sorry for the length of the post.

 

Ranger (2.5 yrs old) somehow injured himself night before last. He has a softball-ish sized mass right over his left hip and a weird flap of sagging skin on his belly/groin area, also on the left side. He's been a completely different dog since the injury...no activity level, no interest in playing, just wants to lie around. He exhibits signs of pain...shudders/trembles if he's on his left side, a few groans , just lays there staring at the wall.

 

I took him to the vet yesterday. The vet manually examined him for about 15 mins and determined that nothing was broken or out of place. He did not seem too concerned about the softball-ish sized mass and said it was probably swelling due to a muscle pull or mild soft tissue injury. He prescribed a 20-day dosage of zubrin and to see what happens. If the swelling is not gone and Ranger is not better in 20 days, he said we could do an x-ray to see if there is a slight fracture.

 

I can't figure out how the injury happened. He was fine when I took him out to play on Monday night, we played with the frisbee for about 20 minutes, then he came in and went to bed. When he woke up on Tuesday is when I noticed something wasn't right. I can only assume he jumped up to catch the frisbee and landed wrong.

 

Does this sound familiar to anyone? I abhor the "wait and see" approach but don't want to have him x-rayed unnecessarily since it involves anesthesia. He just seems so unhappy and it breaks my heart to think he's suffering.

 

Advice?

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I assume the Zubrin is an NSAID? I would be worried if he isn't feeling at all better while being on meds for pain and inflammation. I also assume the "flap" you're referring to isn't torn skin but rather sagging skin?

 

Frankly, if you're still worried and he shows no improvement on the meds, I'd go ahead and have the X-ray done. If it's something that could be treated, say, surgically, it might be better to have that diagnosis sooner rather than later. Did the vet say to put him on crate rest? If it is just a soft tissue injury or similar, he still needs to be rested completely and only taken out on a leash to go potty.

 

It's really difficult to "see" what you're describing though.

 

J.

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Hmmm....the vet "determined nothing was broken" but might do an x-ray in 20 days to see if there's a "slight fracture?" I wouldn't be too happy with this plan myself. It is hard to picture the injury here though. Can they really not do an x-ray without anesthesia? Sometimes a mild sedative just to "take the edge off" works - though I've had amazing x-rays done without anything. Guess it depends on how they'd have to position him.

 

Yeah, life (and injuries) happen. Seems a bit odd though that it wasn't anything that showed immediately but would be "affecting" him by the next morning. I'm with Julie, though - in either case, crate rest and leash potty walks seem advisable.

 

Best of luck to you and Ranger.

 

diane

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I would be VERY concerned that he has a ruptured tendon or ligament; the 'mass' over his hip could be retracted muscle and the loose skin could be where the rupture occurred. Is he lame? If he still in pain as you describe, and the mass is still there, I would get a second opinion ASAP.

 

All the best to you and Ranger,

 

Amy

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Thanks all for the replies.

 

I'm getting a second opinion and more than likely an xray tomorrow. I also found it odd that the vet would have to administer anesthesia. My last dog, who was 30lbs bigger than Ranger, had a couple of xrays for a spleen rupture and they didn't administer anesthesia. I'm not sure what the thinking is with doing it for Ranger.

 

New development on injuries today. He's been in his crate all day and now has huge bruise that spreads from his groin up to his chest on the left side. It's dark purple. He has a similar looking bruise on his chest just in front of his right leg that spreads up his chest about 3". Also a menacing dark purple. The bruises weren't visible when I left him at 2:00 this afternoon.

 

We're definitely going to a new vet tomorrow.

 

I cannot for the life of me figure out what happened. I gave him a good brushing on Monday and he was fine. Spent 5 hours in his crate and then went out to chase the frisbee. We live on a farm with a mile long drive to the main road. He was alone outside for all of 10 minutes. He couldn't have made it to the road, gotten run over, and come back in the time it took me to put pasta on to boil. No open wounds. And no crying, whimpering, etc. He wasn't even limping when we went to bed on Monday night. I just can't figure it out.

 

But thanks for the advice. Much appreciated!

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Wow , that sounds like one heck of a injury ! Could it be a snake bite ? The venom , depending on the snake , works in different ways , some are fast acting and others take more time to do their dirty work.

I sonds like the first vet didnt do such a great job examining Ranger. He didnt do any blood work while you were there ?

Figuring he might have to put Ranger under , he would at least make sure he can physically handle the anesthesia .

Thats just my take on it. If it was a suspected snake bite , the bloods would show something wasnt right.

 

Im wondering if he could have internal bleeding somewhere. Are you sure he couldnt have injured himself over night somehow , after your day out with him ?

 

I hope he is ok , good vibes coming your way .The both of you will be in my prayers tonight...

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We live on a farm with a mile long drive to the main road. He was alone outside for all of 10 minutes. He couldn't have made it to the road, gotten run over, and come back in the time it took me to put pasta on to boil.

Actually 10 minutes would be more than enough time to run out to the road, get hit, and come back. When I watch dogs running at trials, it doesn't take them much more than a minute to cover half a mile, and that's usually over rougher terrain than a driveway. I wouldn't rule out being hit, especially with the bruising.

 

J.

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If your second opinion does go with the "he might have been hit" or if there is ANY chance that he tried to jump something and slightly missed...get a COMPLETE exam. This past summer, my oldster had surgery for liver masses - visible on ultrasound. While they were in there, they saw something on her spleen that looked suspicious, so they removed the whole organ (like us, dogs can live fine without spleens). Turned out to be a very old hematoma - surgeon said she probably jumped something and came down on her belly, never showing any symptoms and probably not even hurting. BTW, she just turned 14 and is doing GREAT.

 

But it does sound suspiciously like more than a frisbee/jumping/landing wrong problem. Don't know where you live, but snakes here are sound asleep at the moment.

 

Hope the second exam finds something simple and treatable - mojo from Utah for ya!

 

diane

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I don't know what it might be but with the brusing and the size of the mass, I'd be a bit more worried than lets wait 20 days.

I'm not one to run to the vet with minor injuries, but this doesn't sound minor at all.

I'm glad you're going to get a second opinion.

Good luck

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Thanks everyone for the great advice.

 

Ranger's at the vet today for observation. The new vet thinks he was either kicked by one of the horses or bitten by a spider. He'll do a proper examination, xrays, and blood work to see what he can figure out.

 

Thanks again for your input. I needed to hear that I'm not neurotic.

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Oh wow , you must let us know the diagnosis !

Im very curious to know if it was a spider bite. One of my female GSD was bitten by one.

The damage was extensive , and we thought she might lose her tail ! In fact the vets said she would.

But with the right care , antibiotics , she pulled through just fine , tail and all. We wouldnt have even noticed it but she was started walking a little funny and when I went to playfully tap her on the butt, she yelped. So we examined her and when I got to her tail , the hair just fell off in clumps !

The damage to the whole tail was horrible. Her tail looked like it was dead. It was purple , red and black , swollen, leaking fluid and extremely painful . Unbeleivable how fast this happened.

We can only guess the spider. We have it narrowed down to a recluse or a black widow , both seen here . But the scary part of it was she had 4 pups at the time . If one of the pups had gotten bit , it would have killed it.

 

Get well soon Riley , we are all thinking of you.

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Ranger spent the night at the vet's for observation, tests, etc. He has a fractured pelvis. The vet is pretty sure he was hit by a car. The bump over his hip is a hematoma (spelling?). The vet did not recommend surgery, based on the location of the fracture. He said surgery could be done but that in most cases the fracture will heal on its own perfectly well. He said the risks associated with the surgery and recovery were not worth it since the type of fracture can heal without the surgery. The hematoma should be reabsorbed over the next 4-6 weeks.

 

Vet gave us Vit K and pain meds along with orders for rest and very limited activity over the next month.

 

Ranger is MUCH better today. He really wants to run and play outside. Luckily, he knows "chill out" when we're inside and rest won't be that difficult to enforce.

 

Thanks again, everyone, for your great advice and your well wishes. Much appreciated!

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Glad to hear you have a diagnosis and a good prognosis!

 

Something you mentioned has me a bit concerned - the idea of being kicked by a horse. I certainly hope that Ranger isn't out without supervision; that he can't access any horses (or other stock) on his own; and that he is not in the habit of "working" horses. If so, he needs supervision; no access to horses or stock on his own; and training to get him cured of the idea of working horses (and, with an ingrained habit, that can be near impossible but you need to be able to control it by management and/or training).

 

Best wishes!

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I'm glad you finally got a diagnosis that makes sense, and I hope Ranger makes a quick recovery. Is there a way you can block his ability to go up the driveway?

 

When I first moved in where I am now, the dogs were good about staying in the yard first thing in the morning before I went out to feed sheep. But one morning, for no apparent reason and not having done it before, one of my dogs got out in the road and was hit. I put up a gate after that.

 

J.

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He actually was hit by a car?! Amazing. Thankfully you found out what it was. He must have been in a lot of pain. Be sure to pamper him with lots of hugs and kisses. Probably not belly rubs for now though, huh? Praying for a complete recovery.

 

Pam

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woah, I'm so glad you went for a second opinion. Are you going to go back and tell the first vet about the diagnosis?

I think that would be a very good idea. (Can't find a Smiley that truly expresses my feelings about this!) LOL!

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