Dog IVDD Surgery Cost, Risks, Rehabilitation, And Alternatives

Last Updated on September 28, 2021 by Marco

Intervertebral disc disorder or IVDD is quite a nasty condition. So, here we’ll go over the main dog IVDD surgery cost, risks, rehabilitation, and alternatives. Of course, this is no substitute for what your vet will tell you about the disease and your dog’s condition or risks. Every dog is different and every case of IVDD also expresses itself differently. So, never take our word above a vet’s recommendations.

That being said, there is a lot written on IVDD and we’ve compiled a quick guide on the standard intervertebral disc disease dog surgery cost, risks, types, and other specifics below. Hopefully, this will give you a good idea as to what the disease is and how you can prepare for it or avoid it altogether.

What Is The Standard Dog IVDD Surgery Cost You Can Expect To See?

This can obviously vary a lot depending on where you live. Even just in the US, the cost can vary greatly depending on which state you’re in. With that in mind, the standard dog IVDD surgery cost in the US will usually be somewhere between $1,500 and $4,000.

This is just for the surgery itself, however. Additional and necessary procedures such as x-rays, other imaging methods, and so on will bump up the total price to somewhere between $3,000 and $8,000. Those are very high numbers by most people’s standards but IVDD surgery is highly intricate and very complicated so the price is easy to justify.

Rehabilitation After Dog Disc Surgery Cost

As a spinal neurological disease that can fully paralyze your dog, IVDD needs more than just a surgery to be fully treated. You should also get your dog a rather sizable cocktail of medications. Canine rehabilitation for at least a few weeks if your dog is to make a full recovery is a must too.

Paraplegic senior dog

This will naturally cost money too although the exact costs are too varying for us to give you an exact number. Depending on the period of time we’re talking about, the location (country, state, etc.), the type of procedures your dog will need, ad so on, the overall and final place can range between the low hundreds and a few thousand dollars.

Plus, you should also add all the dozens or hundreds of man-hours of work you’ll need to put in too. You may also have to purchase some new equipment for your dog such as a crate, lots of diapers, and more.

Learn more about: Dog Spinal Surgery Recovery Time – What To Expect And What To Do?

Is Pet Insurance A Good Idea?

If you know your dog is at a higher risk of developing IVDD, getting a good pet insurance can be a very smart idea. Of course, this will depend on the exact insurance policies you can choose from. Pet insurance agents are not dumb and they too know which dogs are at higher risks and adjust their prices accordingly.

So, while you may be able to find good insurance options in some states or countries, elsewhere you may be unable to find the right policy.

A good alternative is to set up your own personal “emergency vet bill fund”. IVDD takes years to develop and manifest itself. So, you’ll have time to spare quite a bit of money if you start saving as soon as you get your pup.

Which Breeds Are At The Highest Risk Of IVDD?

There are two types of IVDD your dog can get – Hansen Type I and Hansen Type II. The first one is typical for dogs with elongated bodies like the dachshund. It’s characterized by a sudden rupture of a worn-out spinal disc and lots of pain, mobility difficulties, or even paralysis as a result of it. Dogs at the highest risk of Hansen Type I IVDD include:

  • Dachshund (45-70% of all recorded IVDD cases)
  • Chihuahua
  • Beagle
  • Corgi
  • Shih Tzu
  • French bulldog
  • Poodle
  • Pekingese
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Basset hound

Hansen Type II is different in that the rupture isn’t sudden and caused by a jump or landing. Instead, this type happens gradually over time. It isn’t characterized by a sudden worsening of your dog’s condition but a slow and non-stopping deterioration. This type is more typical for larger breeds such as:

  • Labrador retriever
  • Doberman pinscher
  • Cocker spaniel
  • German shepherd

If your dog belongs in any of these breeds, it’s a good idea to plan ahead of time and prepare funds for emergencies.

Is IVDD Surgery The Best Option If Your Dog Has A Herniated Disc?

The steep dog herniated disc surgery cost can turn a lot of people off the idea of such medical intervention. Unfortunately, this is the best course of action most of the time. In the lightest situations, your vet may recommend just pain medications and exercise confinement. However, this is usually just a stop-gap measure.

In most cases, surgery will become necessary sooner or later. And, generally speaking, the sooner you get the surgery done, the better. Again, always follow your vet’s advice over what you read on the internet. There are 5 typical Pain Response Scores assigned to IVDD dogs. These scores measure how far along the disease your dog has progressed.

Dogs within the 1-4 marks have over 90% chance of successfully recovering after the surgery according to most studies. However, dogs who’ve been left to progress to the 5th stage will have only about a 50% to 60% success rate. And, even that applies only to dogs who’ve just entered the 5th stage – dogs who’ve been allowed to stay in that stage for days will have even lower chances of success.

So, suffice it to say that immediate action, as well as routine vet check-ups, are strongly recommended. Also, note that these percents involve extensive physical therapy and rehabilitation after the surgery too, usually months long.

In Conclusion – What Is The Standard Dog IVDD Surgery Cost and What Can You Do About It?

IVDD is an expensive problem to deal with as well as quite time-consuming and painful for the dog too. However, it is treatable, especially if you’ve caught it early and you’ve done everything according to your vet’s recommendations.

Still, even then, it’s better to not have to deal with this problem at all. Proper and measured exercise, as well as a good diet, are key to making sure that your dog never has to deal with IVDD in the first place.

Read more about: Is Apple Juice Good For Dogs Or Is It A Bad Or Risky Idea?

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