The spinal column (backbone) extends from the base of the skull through the tail, gives support to
the body and protects the spinal cord. Nerve branches stem out from the spinal cord at various
segments along the spinal column to vital structures and muscles of the body. Spongy ‘discs’ act as
shock absorbers between vertebrae (individual backbones).
Injuries such as fractures and arthritis and other degenerative diseases of the spinal column may
cause numerous disorders ranging from pain to paralysis. Even in situations of initial paralysis with
time and medication a slow return of function is often possible.
Often it is not possible to advise as to the permanence of the paralysis or weakness until your
Veterinarian has been able to re-examine your pet some days later. Xray pictures may be necessary
to evaluate your pet’s condition.
Medication must be fitted to your pet’s particular needs, follow instructions carefully
© Forrest Hill Vets (2000) Ltd