What causes unsteady gait in dogs?

This type of ataxia is usually a result of a spinal cord issue such as a tumor, a bulging disk, or a nerve issue. Vestibular syndrome: Having to do with a dog’s ability to balance, the vestibular syndrome is a result of an inner ear issue or brain problem causing a dog to be dizzy and have a difficult time walking.

Why is my dog wobbly all of a sudden?

Potential causes include inner/middle ear infections, intoxication, strokes, tumors, infectious or inflammatory diseases (meningitis), idiopathic vestibular disease (also called “old dog” vestibular syndrome), or other less likely causes.

Why is my dog walking off balance?

Inner ear infections are a common cause of balance loss in dogs. If your dog has an ear infection, you may also notice additional symptoms like head shaking and scratching, walking in circles, and eye flicking, as well as redness, swelling, discharge, and odor in or around the affected ear.

What is a wobbly gait in dogs?

The most common sign of ataxia, regardless of the cause, is an abnormal gait in which the dog is very unsteady on his feet. With a spinal cord lesion, the toes may drag on the ground as the dog walks, wearing off the ends of the toenails.

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Why is my dog staggering when he walks?

Ataxia. Ataxia is a condition relating to sensory dysfunction that results in a loss of coordination in the rear end, head, or limbs. … As well as staggering, stumbling and falling over, signs of ataxia include flicking of the eyes from side to side, head tilt, walking in circles, vomiting, and nausea.

What causes sudden hind leg weakness in dogs?

Degenerative myelopathy initially affects the back legs and causes muscle weakness and loss, and lack of coordination. These cause a staggering affect that may appear to be arthritis. The dog may drag one or both rear paws when it walks. This dragging can cause the nails of one foot to be worn down.

Why does my dog have weak back legs?

Causes of Back Leg Weakness in Dogs

Degenerative myelopathy. Injury. Fibrocartilaginous embolic myelopathy. Intervertebral disc disease.

What are the signs of a dog having a stroke?

5 Signs of Stroke in Dogs

  • Loss of Balance. In the days, hours, and minutes before a stroke, a dog might feel ill – or might feel perfectly normal. …
  • Wandering in Circles. Maybe your dog is balancing okay, but is wandering around in circles. …
  • Strange Eye Movements. …
  • Lethargy or Fainting. …
  • Loss of Body Control.

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What do you do when your dog is acting weird?

If your pet is acting abnormally, think back to when the change in behavior started. Try and see if anything coincides with the change to find the potential cause. If you are unable to figure out what might be causing your pet to not act normal, a visit to your veterinarian may be warranted.

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What to do when your dog’s back legs stop working?

Spinal treatments may help some kinds of neurological dysfunction. Your dog might benefit from herniated disc removal and spinal fusion surgery, or from strong anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce swollen tissues that pinch nerves.

What does unsteady gait mean?

An unsteady gait is an abnormality in walking that can be caused by diseases of or damage to the legs and feet (including the bones, joints, blood vessels, muscles, and other soft tissues) or to the nervous system that controls the movements necessary for walking.

What is the gait of a dog?

In dogs, there are 4 main gaits: walk, trot, canter, and gallop (Table 1). Horses use these same 4 gaits; however, dogs have 2 different ways of cantering and 2 different ways of galloping. … There also is a relatively common, but abnormal, gait in dogs called the pace, which is a normal gait for some breeds of horses.

How long does it take for a dog to recover from vestibular syndrome?

Most patients are completely recovered within two to three weeks, although some will have residual symptoms such as a head tilt or mild “wobbling” for life.

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