What do you think of doggie wheelchairs?

True Grit

Songster
9 Years
May 2, 2010
2,072
11
171
Orono, Minnesota
My Coop
I will probably get one for my 9 yr old collie to help him walk farther, go faster to keep up with the young collie and me, and get more exercise. He is gradually getting weaker on the hind end but now it isn't so gradual, his decline is accelerating. DH said when he has seen dogs in wheelchairs before, he thought it looked cruel. Just wondering others' opinions on them and about what kind of experiences people have had with them.
 

AinaWGSD

Songster
9 Years
Apr 2, 2010
1,428
58
211
Sullivan, IL
It really depends on the individual dog. I think most dogs can adjust quite nicely to them. As soon as they realize that the doggie wheelchair means more fun for them they are all for them. I'd say most dogs are very happy in their carts and that they add quality time to the dog's remaining weeks/months/years. But there are some dogs that just don't adjust well to them, are totally freaked out by them, and/or are distressed enough by loosing their own motor functions that it would not add anything to their quality of life. Obviously you know your dog better than we do, so you would know better than us if it would add quality to your collie's life or if it would be "cruel." I do not think they are cruel necessarily. What is cruel is ignoring your dog's declining quality for your own selfish reasons and not doing anything to relieve their suffering.
 

chickensbythesea

Chirping
9 Years
Jan 1, 2011
187
1
99
Quote:Pretty much this. If the dog's quality of life is still excellent otherwise, then I'm all for it. I've seen enough that are totally unphased by disability that I know it's no big deal. If their health is failing, and this is a piece of a bigger puzzle, I'd have to evaluate the circumstances, but would hope I'd do what was best for the specific dog.
 

WoodlandWoman

Crowing
12 Years
May 8, 2007
5,717
67
283
Wisconsin
Is this a problem that supplements might improve? We've had great success with glucosamine/chondroitin supplements in the past when we had dogs with hip problems. It really got them back to their old selves. I was surprised how well it worked.

We had to give a large enough dose for it to work. Some dogs need more than others. It usually took several weeks to notice an improvement. That might be something you could look into or ask your vet about.

We used products sold for people that were a more generic brand and adjusted the amount. There's a lot of info on the web about it, if you wanted to do a google search.
 

AinaWGSD

Songster
9 Years
Apr 2, 2010
1,428
58
211
Sullivan, IL
Glucosamine works wonderfully for synovial joints like hips, knees, and elbows. Unfortunately, hind end weakness is usually due to spinal degeneration (either of the nerve or due to arthritis), and that doesn't generally respond to glucosamine. It doesn't hurt to try though, glucosamine is perfectly safe to use unless the animal is diabetic.
 

xchairity_casex

Songster
8 Years
Feb 5, 2011
599
2
123
if he still has use of his back legs you might want to look into treatment for the cause also look into hydro therapy hydrotherapy is easy and excellent for any dog no matter what the situation! it gently helps build muscle and strength. my sisters toy poodle has slipping kneecaps at barely a year old so to help her i take her swimming i hold onto her in the water and let her paddle useing all four legs and since seh has not had any issues with ehr knees at all. find a pool,a lake, a slow moving river,a pond heck even a horse trough large enough will work! all you need is 30 minutes per day every day to help strengthen his back legs
 

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