Features May 2008 Issue

Canine Vestibular Disease

“Vestibular disease” can affect any dog; old dogs are more vulnerable.

Aside from some stiffness and a little arthritis, Emma, a 13-year-old chocolate Labrador Retriever, had always been a happy, incredibly healthy dog, welcoming each new day with delight and bounding enthusiasm. One evening, though, things changed suddenly and scarily. “I was at a friend’s house when, after laying quietly in the corner, Emma stood up and came into the room stumbling. She was staggering, panting, and totally confused,” says her owner, Ici Schemm. Something was very wrong, and then almost as suddenly, it was over. After a visit to her veterinarian, Schemm learned that Emma suffered a bout of vestibular syndrome, a common condition in geriatric dogs stemming from inflammation in the nerves connecting the inner ear to the cerebellum, the control center for balance and spatial orientation. The duration of these incidents varies; so does the wide array of symptoms, with some dogs having relapses while others do not. Schemm describes the sudden onset as “very scary for Emma and me, too.” Emma, fortunately, has not had another episode or shown any residual signs; she could be a poster dog for the most transient and benign form of vestibular disease. Other cases, however, can be much more serious.

To continue reading this article you must be a paid subscriber.

Subscribe today and save 72%. It's like getting 8 months FREE!

Here's what you'll get:

  • Immediate access to this article.
  • Access to more than 1,000 Whole Dog Journal articles like this.
  • Each, new monthly issue delivered to you.
  • Recommendations of the best dog food for your dog.
  • The most effective positive dog training methods.
  • Help understanding when your dog is bored, anxious, tired, or hungry. You won't believe some of the signs!
  • The healthiest and most effective homeopathic and mainstream remedies, diets, and medicines.

Your satisfaction to The Whole Dog Journal is guaranteed. Subscribe today to see why hundreds of thousands of dog owners trust us as the #1 source of canine information.

 

Subscriber Log In

Forgot your password? Click Here.
Already subscribed but haven't registered for all the benefits of the website? Click here.