How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Susan Your Own Question
Dr. Susan
Dr. Susan, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 6785
Experience:  8 years of clinical experience with specialty in veterinary pain management, urology, and geriatrics
Type Your Vet Question Here...
Dr. Susan is online now

My staffie , aged sixteen has had arthritis while.

This answer was rated:

My staffie bitch, aged sixteen has had arthritis for a while. She was put on tramadol and steroids but she is not herself and is panting a lot.
Hi, I can help you with your question today. How long has she been on the steroid?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
A few days.
This could be the cause of her panting - it can be a side effect. How much does she weigh?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She was previously, until recently, 15kg , however she has put on weight and is now just over 17kg
OK, and what dose of prednisone is she taking?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She is taking 5mg one a day with food.
OK, is she still eating and acting normally other than the panting?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes, but a bit disoriented , not her usual chirpy self as if she knows there is something wrong.
OK. I would start by discontinuing the prednisone. Since she has only received a few doses of the steroid, you can stop it without tapering the dose. If her panting does not resolve in the next couple of days, I would have her seen by your regular vet to assess for respiratory or cardiac issues.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Sorry , but I have just spoken to my wife who has confirmed that she has been on the steroids since Feb 2nd, so 11 days now. The tramadol has been only 3 days ago.
That's fine. I would still stop the prednisone, but we should reduce to 5mg every other day for 3 doses before discontinuing.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks, ***** ***** tramadol should not cause panting .
No, we usually don't see any side effects. If anything, you would see sedation.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She had kennel cough , that is why she had a course of antibiotics and steroids
Tramadol is a pain medication. Are you saying she was also on a third medication, an antibiotic?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes, one course of antibiotics for seven days which completed 3 days ago.
I see. Is the cough resolved now?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It appears to be. She still gets a very small bit of cough but not as bad.
Great. Then let's proceed with that plan. Reduce the prednisone to every other day, give a total of 3 more doses before stopping completely. I would expect the panting to stop shortly thereafter.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you and we will do as you advise.
You're welcome! Please let me know if you have further questions. I am happy to continue until I provide the service that you seek. Here is my website if you need to reach me again:
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
With regard to the back leg she lifts all the time and the fact she cannot get up the stair, is it poss for a dog of her age to have joint replacements for her arthritis?
The only joint that we can replace at this time is the hip. At her age, that would probably not be advisable. There are many options for pain control to keep her comfortable and moving more freely though. The tramadol may help. We can also think about NSAIDs, gabapentin, fish oils supplements, acupuncture, or Adequan injections.
Dr. Susan and other Vet Specialists are ready to help you