Odd Question...

Food, Fitness and how to keep them healthy.

Postby juniper8204 » January 3rd, 2010, 10:14 am

...and I'm being totally serious. Reason I say that is because when I asked my husband this same question, he just sat there and laughed.

Is it possible for a dog to be mentally retarded?

Reason being, one of my dogs, Raja, acts like this. I mean, she plays, she defends her food from the other dogs, she knows how to sit and wait for her food, she responds to her name but as far as "hand/eye coordination", she doesn't have much. Like last night she was walking to the bedroom with me, the door was closed and she tried to stop too late and just bonked right into it. Her balance while walking can be iffy and it's like she's never really been comfortable on her feet...tripping over stuff, namely her own legs, isn't uncommon. I guess extremely clumsy would be a good term for it. She's a year old this month, so I know it isn't the clumsy puppy growth stage when everything is growing so fast it's hard for them to get used to it. When she walks, she doesn't pick up her back feet...like she shuffles them...have no idea what that's about. She doesn't seem stiff or painful in any of her joints.

So, I dunno...any questions or suggestions are welcome.
Jen
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Pits are addicting!!! If I foster any more, my husband will have my head!
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Postby Pit♥bull » January 3rd, 2010, 10:25 am

Could it be a vision issue :|
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Postby fenella » January 3rd, 2010, 10:35 am

I don't think it's an odd question at all. Obviously, not knowing your dog, I can't say whether she has neurological issues or not...however, some dogs can have nerve issues which cause lameness, falling, etc. That doesn't necessarily make them "mentally retarded", just a dog with nerve issues. I would have a vet check her out :| As stated above, it could be vision or really anything at this point.

That said, to answer your question in more general terms, there are dogs who are born with brain issues, such as Hydrocephalus (NOT saying that is what your dog has by any means) who show neurological symptoms and MAY have difficulties in learning, etc., so I would answer your question with a Yes, it is possible, even though it doesn't sound (from what little info we have) like it is necessarily the case for your dog.

BTW, not an expert AT ALL, just had some hands on experience with shelter puppies born with issues.
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Postby blabsforbullies » January 3rd, 2010, 11:33 am

I wouldn't get too overly concerned about it, but next time you are at the vet, have them do a thorough nuerologic exam (check her reflexes, and her cranial nerves), just to be sure :wink: . I have a dog that had some brain damage when he was born (actually, I have 2 :rolleyes2: ) and isn't the sharpest tack in the world, for sure. :crazy2: There are definitely dogs that are.... mentally challanged. :hammer:

Seeing that she is so young, I wouldn't count out the awkward puppy thing either. Or, as some people are, she may just always be clumsy.

But yes, they definitely can be mentally challenged. Not chromosomal type things like we see with Down's Syndrome and such. But yes, I live with this daily. :backRoll:
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Postby juniper8204 » January 3rd, 2010, 3:19 pm

Thanks so much for all the info. She'll be going in sometime this month for her first heartworm test...she'll be 1 year old on the fifteenth. When she goes in for that, I'll also make an appt. with the doc for the reflex/neurological exam as well. My husband, Joel has always said she's one sandwich short of a picnic. LOL

Question, though, now that I think of it. When she was just a tiny thing...maybe 8 or 9 weeks old...right after I got her, I was putting up electric wire along the top and bottom of my chain link fence since I have one digger and one climber. I had Raja tied to my porch while I tested the fence so she wouldn't get popped with it, but she ended up backing out of her collar and ran straight into the bottom wire and got popped with it, and before I could get to her to pick her up, she ran into it again. OMG, I felt so horrible because she did the whole puppy scream. I called the vet, and they said to just watch her, so I watched her for the proceeding two days, and she seemed fine (no bleeding from the ears, appetite and bowel movements were normal, etc.), but now looking back, I wonder if that has anything to do with it. :? And we're not talking everyday pulsing dog electric fence...someone gave it to me and it's a steady stream and it's strong enough for cattle. I had tried the dog fence...the one that pulses, but it wasn't strong enough for my climber, so I had to go up a notch. I feel like such a horrible dog mom admitting all this. :oops:
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Pits are addicting!!! If I foster any more, my husband will have my head!
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Postby blabsforbullies » January 3rd, 2010, 4:22 pm

If she never lost consciousness and wasn't neurologic immediately thereafter (stumbling, ataxic, doing weird things or abnormal behavior that she wasn't already doing) , I don't think it had any impact. :wink:
We have a Mastiff... does that count??? :)
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