Janine, welcome to the Forum, we are glad you are here.Here is why crate rest is imperative right now
. Read on for crate solutions that may well work for Norman too.
3 Keys to successful disc healing with strict rest
Conservative Treatment is:
-Potty time footsteps over perilous walking around
-Recovery suite over regretful being on furniture
-Stay the course over short cutting 8 weeks of strict rest
Norman is on meds that make him feel good.
So it is up to you to make sure he does not overdo movement.
-Make sure he is not sloping into cushion on furniture.
-Make sure he does not even attempt to jump, dart after a TV doorbell, something floating by the window. Just the act of attempting can be too much movement even if you could stop him in time.The way you ensure Norman can heal his disc i
s the gift of a recovery suite. Just as no parent would allow a complaining child with a broken arm to take off the cast before the arm can heal, don't allow Norman to go with out the cast for his neck/back that is the recovery suite!
A recovery suite is never sloping, always support for the spine. Other dogs can't bother Norman. Norman can't make attempts to dart off. It is the ONLY safe place to heal a disc
▶︎ Super tried and true tips for setting up the recovery suite, the mattress and more! dodgerslist.com/2020/05/14/strict-rest-recovery-process
▶︎ Pet Stroller features and other considerations when using during a disc episode.The stroller can be wheeled from room to room as you go about your activities. Pet strollers, however, should only be used when you are directly supervising. dodgerslist.com/2020/05/17/pet-stroller-conservatve-treatment/
TRAINING and CALMERS
Help Norman to be able to relax in his recovery suite. Ask the vet to Rx Trazodone or another as an anxiety med.
Whenever you pass by the recovery suite and Norman is quiet, give praise and a very tinyest piece of high value meat or treat. The size of the treat matters not to dogs.... just that that get one. Save on calories for Norman.
-- Put his suite on a sturdy coffee table. Pull the table up to the couch. You will be able to feel him through the wires and he will be comforted being up higher and near you.
-- Put a garment you have been wearing and have not washed in the crate.
-- Thundershirt® to calm anxieties similar concept as swaddling an infant to calm. thundershirt.com/products/thundershirt-for-dogs
-- Teaching self-calming exercises can also help your dog to relax more. You can make something as simple as eye contact a very rewarding behavior that also acts as a way for your dog to “ask permission” when he wants something. Make sure there is hardly any neck movement with this training.
When dogs have a focus and an understanding about how to behave to get what they want, they are much calmer overall. To do this, each time your dog looks at you, say, something like, “Yes!” or use a clicker to mark the second he looks at you, and then give your dog a high-value food reward. Do this exercise 10 or so times and then say, “All done,” and put the treats away. Come back later and do it again until you can see that your dog is really starting to make automatic eye contact in hopes you will say, “Yes,” again and give him his reward.
-- At night, try placing the recovery suite on a sturdy bedside table to sleep next to you.
-- Make the recovery suite cozy by draping a blanket over part of the top. dodgerslist.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/blanketTOP150.jpg
**Knowledge is key to carrying out the TRUE principals of conservative treatment!
The more you know the better job you can do.
▶︎ 4 phases of healing, what it takes to heal each phase: dodgerslist.com/healing-the-disc/
▶︎ Roadmap for your fridge. Stay the course, avoid dangerous detours for the healing disc: dodgerslist.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Roadmap-for-Fridge.pdf STRICT rest means:
◼︎no laps ◼︎no couches ◼︎no baths ◼︎no sleeping with you
◼︎no chiro therapy WHYs: dodgerslist.com/2020/04/22/chiropractic/
◼︎no meandering at potty times.
◼︎no PT for conservative dogs during 8 weeks to heal disc
Transports are always a risk to the early healing disc of too much movement. Vet visits must be weighed risk vs. benefit for dogs with little to mild neuro diminishment. Vets who know IVDD, will often take a phone update, or a request for med adjustments over the phone. The safest place for Norm's healing disc is at home in his suite.
POTTY TIME strictness
Carry your dog to and from the recovery suite to the potty place and then allow a very, very few limited footsteps.
Using a sling (long winter scarf, ace bandage, belt) will save your back and help to keep a wobbly dog's front aligned and butt from tipping over if he needs it.