Dachshund & IVDD

This is a forum for bonding with your fellow Dogsters about the traits, quirks and idiosyncrasies of your favorite breed. Please remember that there are absolutely no animal sales or requests for studding or breeding allowed on our sites. All posts and interactions should be in the spirit of Dogster's Community Guidelines and should be fun, friendly and informational. Enjoy!


Member Since
Barked: Mon Jul 30, '12 6:32am PST 
Hi, I'm new here, was looking for a place to go with other people who may have experience with this.

I have a 6 year old Dachshund named Rocco. Now, I was warned about the breed having back issues years ago when I got him, and heard stories about surgeries, paralysis and the like.

When the dog was younger, I admittedly let him do some things that I feel extremely guilty about now, but at the time, I wasn't thinking this far in the future, despite being warned (I was a dumb, irrespondible 25 year old). The dog loves attention and to be physically near you. So, he'd like to come on the beds. One day, he just jumped off (about 2.5 - 3' in the air) and this became his method for getting off the beds (he'd shoot off if the doorbell rang, as we did try to place him down, but couldn't always get to him)over the course of a few years. He'd also jump up on the couches and off (those weren't as high). The dog is neutered, and slightly overweight.

No issues came up until this past Decemeber 2011. I let the dog out one day, and when he came back to the door, when he would normally jump up the small step into the house, he just stood there trembling. This was the start of the IVDD. He was crated for a month and medicated.

Ever since, he's never been the same dog. Obviously I do not allow him on beds and furniture with any kind of regularity. I've changed his diet and he has lost a little weight. However, some days he'll have flare ups just like a human with a bad back. Well this Saturday, I gave him a bath, and I guess from the shaking he really hurt himself. I've given him baths in the past with no issues like this. He was unable to walk, and appeared very stiff, he also was shaking and in obvious discomfort. His hind legs, although he does have control appear to be weak...it's still soon to know how bad this incident may be I think. I've had the dog on Gabapentin for a while, and the vet recently lowered his dosage. He's not on steroids at the moment, but I called the vet and want to talk about putting him back on the steroids and to see if there are long term effects with the Gaba.

I have a tremendous sense of guilt right now over the animal, and it breaks my heart to see him like this. I'm 32, and there are a lot of things I can deal with, but this is really starting to hit me hard.

I was wondering if there were any other Doxie owners who have went through this, and when and how do you decide to have the dog taken for surgery? I know that is a last option, and from reading, not always successful. Right now I feel like my dog is made of glass. I am reluctant to move him even to pick him up to take him out as to not cause him discomfort.

Member Since
Barked: Fri Sep 7, '12 11:58pm PST 
I have two female litter mates, 8 yrs old. The night of July 4th, 2012, my little one, Pearl, went tearing down the stairs. I saw a "weird" turn as she rounded the landing. 30 minutes later she was totally lame. Couldn't walk at all three hours later. I read on the web that recovery from this back thing requires surgery within 15 hours of symptoms presenting. Fortunately I live close enough to UC Davis Vet Teaching Hospital. I drove the two hours up there and arrived about 1-2:00am. (Years ago I had a Lab with hip dysplasia, then hit by a car; he went to Davis. Then my first Dachshund was hit by a car, pelvis broken in three places; she went to Davis) They kept her, and first thing in the morning she was anesthesized, radographed (x-rayed...? and they called me to tell me one of her dics had ruptured and it looked like two more were about to rupture, so she had back surgery. Pearl was there for a week. I spoke to the Vet and we agreed that for me to visit her may impede her recovery. She was to be quiet and still. The wonder, professional, kind staff at UC called me twice daily with her updates and progress. When I picked Pearl up, she had some 22 staples down her back. Was told strict crate rest, except for assisted pottying until her first check up two weeks later. We were fortunate in that Pearl retained her ability to potty on her own; that is to say, without my expressing her bladder, etc..I followed the Dr.'s instructions to the letter, even "rushing" her back to Davis when I thought she was not urinating. False alarm. We have been doing physical therapy, a few times professionally, now just at home. Eight weeks post-op Pearl can "ambulate" adequately for a short walk, and to potty and sun outside. They tell me she will walk again (she is!) and get better every day. She may never look normal like before, when she walks, but she will be happy and pain free.
I cannot tell you the wealth of information I acquired at UC Davis from the doctors and staff there. The day Pearl came in, three other dachshunds followed behind her. One of them on his second back-surgery after making a full recovery. The dog has been inbred so much for appearance, that if you could happily/successfully raise a dachshund in a crate, they could, and some would, still blow a disc! Their teeth are another serious concern. I cannot impart to you the level of experience and TOTAL professionalism I received from everyone at Davis. The level of kindness, and attention to the patient is superb! I wish I could go there for my medical needs. Wonderful people with decades of experience. They must perform thousands of these surgeries every year. I was confident in their abilities to help Pearl. And they did. If you have the money (and teaching hospitals are generally cheaper than your local vet, as well as offering a round-the-clock staff for your pet) for this kind of surgery, and the patience and time for the recovery process, it worked for us. My darling little Pearl is herself again. Thank you God and thank you everyone at UC Davis, Ca..
These little dogs require a lot of attention when they're well. When they are paralyzed/lame they are confused and unhappy and require so much more attention it can be daunting. They know when their bodies aren't working right. Get a good veterinarian. One with a lot of experience with Dachshunds and their specific problems. This is VERY important! Total crate rest is usually indicated if surgery is not an option for one reason or another. Total means TOTAL! Follow the doctor's instructions to the letter. And your little darling may be mobile again. If not, there are carts you can get online. Not cheap, but dogs do very well with them. Especially as opposed to never moving themselves again.
This can be a very heartbreaking experience. Hang in there!!! Be patient with yourself and your dog. You both can get through it.

God bless.

momma's little- monster, the- terrorist,
Barked: Wed Sep 19, '12 11:34am PST 
My 2 year old miniature wirehaired dachshund ended up having a mild case of IVDD in the Summer of 2011 (he was 1 at the time). Jazz wasn't over weight at all. And it still happened to him. So in all reality it doesn't matter if they are in the best of shape and weight or if they are overweight, it can still happen. I wasn't home when the initial start happened. When I came home, he didn't run to the door to greet me. I usually pick him up and cradle him like a little baby. So when i picked him up he became stiff as a board and was quivering. You could literally see his whole body just shake like he was a nervous chihuahua. He wouldn't even wag his tail for me. And when i touched his back he flinched. I knew that something was wrong, so i immediately took him to the vet. Since I was going to school at the time to be a veterinary technician, I had told the receptionist and the vet tech that came out that I had a suspicion that it was IVDD. The vet told me that indeed it was IVDD but it was just a mild case. They told me that the IVDD was between the 7th vertebra of the thoracic region and the 3rd vertebra of the lumbar region. They also told me that the fact that he still is able to walk and feel pain, that it was a good sign. He was put on pain meds and steroids and had to be crated for a month. They told me that he had a good chance of having IVDD once a year or i may not see it happen again until he's a senior. Thee vet thinks that the IVDD came up when jazz decided to jump on the couch. I had looked into getting Jazz having acupuncture done and its the best decision I have made for him. It's been a year since IVDD has happened to him and he hasn't had one case of it since..... yet. Jazz had received acupuncture for 2 months and it has worked so well with him. I also had bought stairs to the high surfaces (like couches and beds) to prevent him from jumping. I recommend you try acupuncture before you consider surgery. Surgery is hard on older dogs' bodies and back surgeries aren't 100% successful. The acupuncture just may work for your doxies.

My boyfriend has a standard dachshund whom I can see will be a future victim of IVDD due to the fact that dog jumps as high as my boyfriends' waist (he's 6' 2"). We've been trying to get him to stop but nothing works for that dog.

Member Since
Barked: Sun Dec 30, '12 9:58pm PST 
Hi, my spike had his surgery a week ago, yup Christmas Eve, he was doing fine and all the sudden I took him ou and he sat down and couldn't get up anymore. We rushed him to the emergency care where within 12h he had his surgery. The surgeon told us that he still had feelings but every case is different. So we went ahead and proceed. $5400 later, my wife nor I hadn't slept or eat, he stayed at the emergency care for 4 days. Now he's home. He wiggles his tail and can pee and poop by himself. Also with assistance he can stand. My wife and I have him inside a playpen where he stays all the time except for taking him out and changing his blankets twice a day, which I'm thinking to keep him in there and work around him without moving him too much. I started to do a bit of physical theraphy but I really don't want to work him out too much so I do mostly massages to his back legs to stimulate blood flowing. We Live one day at the time and look forward. I had a lot of people telling me that I shouldn't wasted my money. But he's my baby and I know he will be fine. He will have to see the surgeon in 3 weeks. If there is any other suggestion from someone who went thru this I really appreciate it. Thank you.
Sir Daddi O

Sir Daddi O
Barked: Mon Aug 26, '13 4:50pm PST 
plz look at my info from sir daddi o and now he runs and is super happy