January 2016

Pet of the Month: 
Tiger Lloyd

Tiger Lloyd, a Male Irish Wolfhound, is one of the biggest patients we see here at the Smart Clinic and everybody, staff and clients, loves seeing him here! He was first referred to us in June 2014 to address a left hind lameness alongside neck and back pain.

Prior to being referred Tigers owner had noticed that he started to scuff he back feet when walking and had a tendency to ‘swing’ his back left leg. He as such underwent Investigation at Langford Veterinary Services in relation to his hind limb gait anomaly which included MRI, which showed no signs of compressive myelopathy, and a CSF tap the findings of which were unremarkable. At the time of referral the genetics test for degenerative myelopathy results were pending. These later came back as negative.

At his first appointment it was clear that Tiger was not stable on his hindlimbs and audible scuffing of both hind limbs was noted. He was also very hunched in his lumbar spine and very little movement was seen throughout his spine during examination; muscles around this area were also tense. The main thing he struggled with was balance and control. We therefore started a rehabilitation programme aimed at addressing areas of discomfort and muscular tension and to improve proprioceptive awareness of his hind limbs and hind limb and core function.

Tiger started showing steady progress during the initial few weeks of treatment, with his muscle tension easing and development of more control within his overall movement. His owner also reported that he was more energetic at home and coping well with therapeutic exercises that had been advised to help support the work we were doing at the clinic. His back was also less hunched and spinal flexibility had improved. We were then able to start reducing the frequency of Tigers visits.

Since then, over the last couple of years, Tiger has had a few ups and downs with his treatment-usually relating to various mishaps but he has usually responded well to a few sessions closer together again.

He did have another little wobble before Christmas but seems to be back on track in the New Year! Tiger historically seems to be better able to maintain his mobility when we see him for maintenance treatment every 3-4 weeks or so.  This is good news for us as all of the staff here have a bit of a soft spot for him-he is our very own gentle giant! We are really pleased that he is doing well at the moment and thought it was about time he was our pet of the month. Fingers crossed for no more mishaps in the near future! Well done Tiger smiley