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My Dog is Recovering from Surgery and Drags His Back Paw and Leg. What Should I Do?

My Dog is Recovering from Surgery and Drags His Back Paw and Leg. What Should I Do?

Your dog might have had successful or unsuccessful surgery which has left one or both legs dragging when they walk. If they're dragging a back leg, it's likely your dog’s surgery affected the spinal nerves which can result in limping or paw dragging.

There are a number of dog surgeries which can cause this for example, spinal or IVDD surgery etc.

Recovery Time - How Long After Surgery

Even though vets and professionals can say nerves only have a limited time post-surgery to improve, we have had cases where dogs have continued to improve throughout the first year, especially post six months. We had an event where we met four disabled dogs who all had spinal surgery for various reasons, and all continued to improve between 6 and 12 months post-surgery. They could walk better, for longer distances and wobble less. 

Rehabilitation Post-Surgery

The owners of these four dogs put a lot of time and effort into their dogs physical rehabilitation. This included visiting a professional dog physiotherapist at least bi-weekly while continuing the physio exercises at home each day. Many dog owners also take their dogs to regular hydrotherapy appointments. This is because hydrotherapy is important for building muscle and encouraging your dog to exercise like before but while being weightless. 

Dog Protection Boots

You might be interested to see what protective dog boots you can use for your dog, see here

Dog Wheelchairs

In cases where paw dragging is extreme enough to stop your dog from walking, a dog wheelchair is strongly recommended. The benefit of a dog wheelchair is that your dog can still use their back legs, even though limited, but the wheelchair allows your dog to be more active and independent. See dog wheelchairs here

Previous article Reasons Your Dog May Lose Hind Leg Mobility

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