Coonhound paralysis

Acute canine polyradiculoneuritis is more commonly known as Coonhound paralysis. There are a number of theories on the cause of this disease. In North America, dog  may be affected by contact with something in raccoon saliva. There are obviously no raccons in Australia but Coonhound paralysis does occur here. The cause here is also unknown although there is a thought that it may be associated with feeding raw chicken. However, the only study done did not find a link between feeding raw chicken and Coonhound paralysis.

The disease is similar in symptoms to Guillain Barre syndrome in people and results in extreme weakness and paralysis all over. A few years back I was asked to treat a dog who was only able to lift his head a little after four weeks. He could not move anything else. He was my first Coonhound paralysis patient.

In the last few months I have been asked to treat four dogs with the disease. Three of them made fantastic recoveries. When I first saw two of them, they could wriggle their backs after four weeks of home care. Within two weeks of electroacupuncture, craniosacral therapy, chinese herbs and rehabilitation exercises, they were walking. The owners of the fourth dog could not manage the home care and stopped after the first treatment. 

The results have been so promising that it is definitely worth considering this treatment option, especially when there is no specific conventional veterinary treatment available at the moment.

2 thoughts on “Coonhound paralysis

  1. Lorraine McAuliffe Reply

    My fur baby is a 4.5 year old Maltese shitzu x staffs, beautiful boy, Cedrick.I have both him and his sister my boy, on Dec 22 couldn’t jump up on my bed, I started checking for a paralysis tick, no tick took him straight to the vet. The vet continued looking for a tick and did blood tests for snake and a couple of other things, the blood tests came back negative, the vet suggested I leave him there for the night, they rang back the next morning and Cedrick was paralysed in the back legs, the vet kept talking about raw chicken? I give all of my 4 dogs 2 chicken necks in the mornings, Cedrick stayed 3 nights at the vets with no improvement to his back legs. Through out this time the dog hasn’t been sick at all, his front legs are very strong and he appears happy and very bright. I have to express and empty his bladder but he is using his bowel daily. He is not in any pain, when I put my hands under him on his stomach and lift his back he makes no sound, it doesn’t hurt him, the vet was doing this because he thought it was a disc in his spine, this is such a mystery he has gone from a very active dog to what I have explained to you, the morning he couldn’t jump up on the bed I watched Cedrick, his sister and Georgey running flat out up the driveway and then running back he came straight to me and you would never thought anything was troubling him and then less than 24 hours later he had lost the use of his back legs and bladder, can you please help me with this.😢😢

    • Kim Lim Post authorReply

      Hi Lorraine,
      Coonhound paralysis often affects not just the back legs but the front legs and other parts of the body as well. I have treated quite a few Maltese type dogs with disc disease which can happen very suddenly. I am unfortunately not able to give you any specific advice without seeing your Cedric. Animal Biomechanical Medicine and or acupuncture may be useful here. You might want to ask your vet if there is someone nearby that you can be referred to. Alternatively, you could look up and Good luck.

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