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Herniated Disc

Pet supplements for herniated discs in dogs and cats. Herniated Disc and Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD)

 

Herbal treatments for Intervertebral Disc Disease and to help prevent degenerative disc disease in cats and dogs.

The canine and feline musculoskeletal system has many components including bones, blood vessels, joints, ligaments, muscles, nerves, tendons, and support organs that include the liver, kidneys, and adrenal glands. Age, injuries and wear and tear can undermine your pet’s joints and connective tissue, causing stiff and aching joints, degenerative disease and trigger inflammatory responses throughout the body.

Intervertebral disc disease is a condition where the discs between the vertebrae of the spinal column either bulge or burst into the spinal cord space. Discs provide cushioning in the animal body and a herniated disc can press on the nerves running through the spinal cord, causing pain, nerve damage and even paralysis. Breeds of dog that are predisposed to IVDD include Dachshunds, Beagles, Basset Hounds, and Shih Tzus. 

Intervertebral discs are basically the shock absorbers of the spine, comprised of a gelatinous substance surrounded by a thick outer layer. There are two types of disc herniation: Type I and Type II. Type I is considered more severe and Type II generally has less severe signs and symptoms.

Symptoms of Intervertebral disc disease include:

Unwillingness to jump

Pain in rear legs

Weakness or lameness in rear legs

Crying or yelping in pain

Anxious behavior

Muscle spasms over back or neck

Hunched back or neck with tense muscles

Reduced appetite

Reduced activity

Loss of bladder and/or bowel control

Causes of Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD):

In Type I, discs of the neck region develop a hardening (or calcification) of the outer layer, typically affecting smaller breeds. The calcification damages the disc, allowing it to break down faster. An impact caused by jumping and landing can cause one or more disc(s) to burst and the inner material to press on the spinal cord.

With Type II, the discs become hardened and fibrous over a long period of time and eventually break down, bulge out, and compress the spinal cord.

When the nerves of the spinal cord are compressed, the nerve impulses are not able to transmit their signals to the final destination in the limbs, bladder, etc. If the damage is severe enough, paralysis and loss of bladder and bowel control can occur. Depending on the location of the disc that is bulging, signs occur anywhere in the body from the neck to the rear legs.

Herbal Remedies:

Herbal treatments are used for their safe yet effective support of the musculoskeletal system, to build the bone density, to limit the progression of degenerative conditions such as IVDD and DJD, to limit bone re-absorption, to alleviate pain and inflammation as well as to promote overall health and wellness in dogs and cats.

I Feel Good –  (learn more) promotes healthy immune response, reduces inflammation, provides dermal support and growth of healthy cells and tissues in the body’s defense mechanism, reduces the histamine trigger for contact allergies, seasonal and chronic allergens, pathogens, skin rashes, infections, hot spots, inflammation, swelling, hair loss, itching and geriatria (dull coat, lethargy), for all types of arthritis, including Degenerative Joint Disease, Osteoarthritis, Osteoporosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and symptoms associated with rheumatism, including pain, strains, injuries, muscle pain, swelling and lack of mobility.

Joint Ease Super Dog & Cat – (learn more) contains plant and marine extracts that promote preventative and reparative support to rebuild tissue, joints, bones and muscles, supports healthy immune and inflammatory response, for rheumatism, for arthritis, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, rheumatism, Degenerative Joint Disease, Intervertebral Disk Disease and arthrosis, for muscle pains, strains, injuries and other degenerative joint related diseases, for pain, as a pain reliever for swelling and lack of mobility, for overall optimal health and function and as a natural alternative for tumors and cysts.

The Daily Paws – (learn more) is used as a multi-system nutritive for daily maintenance of all body systems, with emphasis on a healthy endocrine system, promotes healthy skin and shiny, glossy coats due to its high mineral and vitamin content, and is used to maintain body temperature, (important in immuno-compromised animals), and for a multiplicity of conditions and diseases including for allergies, arthritis, cognitive disorder and cancer, for urinary disorders to alkalinize (higher Ph) acidic urine and for blood purification.

Related Products:

All Shins & Grins – (learn more) supports the skin’s ability to withstand environmental toxin, antigen and microorganism exposure due to its Vitamin C and antioxidant content, promotes optimal immune response, reduces allergic (acute and chronic) skin reactions and irritations, hot spots and soothes itchy skin and coat in dogs and cats, works to cut recovery time and prevent recurring infections and provides general mood support.

Gland Candy - (learn more) contains healthy fatty Omega 3 acids used in the treatment of skin conditions and to promote healthy skin and coat, to support and tone the lymphatic system, to balance glandular activities including the thyroid, adrenal and pituitary glands, to support and maintain healthy thyroid function and to soothe the thyroid and endocrine system, for allergies, alopecia, allergic dermatitis, moist dermatitis (hot spots), to stimulate tissue repair and for all types of arthritis.

Alternative treatments such as physical therapy, hydrotherapy and massage may also be beneficial in increasing range of motion.

Conventional Remedies:

Examination by your veterinarian will include a complete neurologic exam, which will help identify where in the spinal cord the injury is located. X-rays may show abnormalities of the spine. Because the spinal cord does not appear on X-rays, special imaging may be necessary to locate the source of the injury.

A myelogram may be conducted, which involves injecting a special dye into the spine, which surrounds the spinal cord and allows it to appear on X-rays. A myelogram test requires the animal to be put under anesthesia, which may be dangerous for senior or immuno compromised animals.

An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) or CT (computed tomography) scan can also be used to locate where the nerves are being pinched, which is necessary for surgical repair

Depending on the severity of the damage to the spinal cord, treatment can range from conservative to surgical. Conservative care usually includes treatment with drugs such as steroids and anti-inflammatories to reduce the swelling of the cord and reduce pain. Please keep in mind that steroids have serious side effects and reduce immunity.

The dog or cat may also be kept confined in a crate or cage to prevent further damage from occurring for up to six weeks. After a period of resting, your pet may return to normal activity.

If the damage is severe and the animal is paralyzed or incontinent, emergency surgery may be needed. Surgery involves removing a portion of the bony vertebrae over the spinal cord (laminectomy). Even after surgery, your animal may not recover.

Most of the animals with IVDD have spasms of the back muscles. Treatment for this symptom usually includes heat and massage techniques along with medications. Commonly used medications include diazepam and methocarbamol. Diazepam is a muscle relaxant which is also used to calm an animal and treat convulsions.

Methocarbamol is another muscle relaxant effective in treating muscle spasms caused by IVDD. It acts directly on the nervous system instead of on the muscles themselves.

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