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Hello, about two months ago me and my family adopted a puppy that was hit by a car in front of my house. I can't tell his age for sure, but the vet estimated 2 months, so he must be around 4 months old by now. Despite the car accident, he only got damaged in his left hind leg, which is completely cured by now.

However, about a week and a half ago he started to show muscle spasms in his front-right leg that never cease or diminish, even when he is sleeping, and exactly a week ago (wednesday) he started to cry and whine when he is not playing around or barking at the street, it always happens when he's resting or trying to sleep, but no signs when he's active.

We took him to a vet that wednesday and he suspected canine distemper (there's been an epidemy around here these days), so we've been medicating him with ribavirin+vitA&C+DMSO, together with some antibiotics (he was diagnosed with low immunity), dipyrone and a muscle relaxant, as prescribed by the vet. He has a few pustules in his belly, I heard this could also indicate distemper, but it's worth to mention that he's always had them ever since we adopted him. The vet also did a distemper test with the dog's saliva and it resulted negative, but he told us that false-negatives are very common for this disease.

The vet warned us that even with the medications his survival chances are far from great and that his condition could (and probably would) worsen, so we've been already expecting that, but his condition right now is really, really odd. His spasms haven't changed at all and it still affects only his front-right leg, same intensity. My father said that with certain positions the spasms cease, but I've not presenced it yet. He can still walk/run and play around with ease, biting a lot whe playing as he ever did. He has no diarrhea, no vomiting, no rough noise or paws or any other symptoms of distemper, eats a lot (until he can barely walk if we allow it) but he's been crying and whining A LOT when resting, and he keeps moving around when doing so, it's like he can't get quiet, this has been increasing everyday (the vet had already told us that this is not a pain caused but a neural condition instead).

I've never seen or heard about any case of a dog with distemper that shows these symptoms. We called the vet today and he prescribed phenobarbital, the first dose didn't make any difference yet so we'll keep doing it. We've been suspecting that he might have some mental illness but I can't find enough information about it. Has anyone ever seen a case like these? Is this all really a sign of distemper? I've been researching but I really can't find anything related to it, any kind of information would come in hand! Thank you!
 

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I wonder if it's a condition left from his accident? Pinched nerve, maybe? Has physical therapy been suggested?
 

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From your description i would not jump the gun and say it's distemper. The most plausible cause seems something untreated from your dogs accident. The first symptoms of distemper are runny eyes and nose. I don't think ive read your dog having those symptoms. You could do x-ray to see if there are any injuries that have been left untreated. I would check my dog for any tender or sore places. Also provide with soft bedding, if your dog is larger in size, s/he could have hip dysplasia that is starting to show itself. Have you had any contact with a dog that had distemper? I've read somewhere that distemper virus in and of itself is fragile. It can be killed with simple disinfectants and even drying it out kills the virus. Also if you have not had any contact with a sick dog, and neither has your dog, the chances of your dog having a distemper are slim. I am assuming that your dog has been vaccinated. The vaccine if stored properly gives a dog all the protection s/he needs, probably for the rest of their lives. Good luck, and hope your dog gets better soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi, thanks for the replies, I appreaciate it a lot! I think the way I wrote the first paragraph is leading to a wrong conclusion, I apologize for that. The dog wasn't struck by a car in movement, he was standing beneath a parked car when it started moving, so there was no big impact. We don't know how exactly that happened cause none of us presenced it, but the same day we took him to the vet, who did an ultrasound and a physical examination to conclude that the only problem he had was intestinal gas and a damaged knee in his back leg, my mother corrected me that it was the back-right leg, not left as I wrote before.

I don't know exactly what you mean with runny eyes, but he's been having some discharge, I think it's called "sleep" in english. I don't think I've had any contact with a dog with canine distemper, but as we adopted him from the streets it's possible he got it from there.

Today he started to show muscle spasms in his back-left leg aswell, not with the same intensity and frequency as the front-right, but it's still a sign that whatever he has is progressing. Temperature's still normal, appetite is as big as ever and no coughing so far. We didn't vaccinate him yet but the vet said he still wouldn't have got the final dose and would still contract distemper. We can't vaccinate now due to the possibility of him being infected.
 

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I know this is an old post, but I am reaching out to see how your pup is doing. My puppy is 3 months old and suffering from similar, if not the exact same symptoms. He was also diagnosed with possible distemper. The only major sign was his muscle spasms. I suppose I am reaching out in hopes that there was a positive outcome in your pup’s recovery. Wishing you well.
 
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