These three issues can all resolve with time, patience and care. I’ve used holistic care to treat these issues successfully. Acupuncture, Water Therapy, Homeopathic Remedies, Herbal Supplements can all help. But your patience and time are the biggest help.

Get a sling. I buy mine from Newfoundland Rescue. Put rugs on all slick floors.

I’ve found strokes recover the quickest, sometimes within a week. But FCE and Vestibular usually within a month. Most dogs show no lingering issues, and don’t have a repeat episode. But again, every dog and every situation is indivdual.

FCE – Fibrocartilaginous Embolism

FCE is similar to a stroke in the brain. When a dog’s disc ruptures laterally, vs up, then it penetrates an artery or vein in the spine and this blocks the flow of blood. Neurological function of limbs is the result.

Where the stroke occurs determines which limbs show symptoms and the severity of the injury. The extent of the obstruction, which may be a small fragment of a spinal disc or clot, also increases the degree of severity of the FCE.

FCE looks scary, but your dog can fully recover. It will take some time and patience on your end. A sling to help the dog get in and out. Moving the dog from side to side, so they don’t get pressure sores. Some hand feeding initially. But within weeks, the clot usually resolves, and your dog is as good as new.

Some web sites with overviews about FCE:

Pet Place

Marvista Vet

Pet Health


Strokes are disrupted blood flow to the brain because of a blocked artery or hemorrhage.  Currently, two types or strokes are noted. Ischemic has brain blood flow disrupted. Hemorrhagic stroke is actual bleeding in the brain.

Canine stroke symptoms can include the following:

  1. Tilt of head
  2. Loss of balance/mobility
  3. Lethargy
  4. Blindness
  5. Disorientation and confusion
  6. Scared in the dark, needs lights on
  7. Turning the wrong way when called
  8. Eating out of one side of the food bowl
  9. Licking food vs chewing
  10. Loss of bladder control
  11. Turning under of feet when standing
  12. Sudden behavioral changes

Strokes can be mild or severe. The results from a stroke can resolve totally and never happen again, or some remnants of the incident will stay with the dog forever. Most dogs recover from strokes with time.

Treatments options are varied.
Traditional vets recommend:

  1. anti-inflammatory drugs
  2. MRI
  3. Time

Holistic vets recommend:

  1. Homeopathy
  2. Acupuncture
  3. Herbal
  4. Aromatherapy
  5. Time

Knowing what caused the stroke is often hard to ascertain. Some thoughts include:

  1. a traumatic injury
  2. a variety of blood abnormalities
  3. malformation of veins and arteries
  4. accumulation of fat in the veins
  5. poisons in the air, earth, ingested
  6. high red blood cell count in greyhounds


Understanding Canine Stroke


Vestibular Issues

Not knowing which is up and which is down, with symptoms of falling and stumbling, eye movement back and forth, some vomiting (from motion sickness) can all point to vestibular issues. There are two receptors in the ear, with nerves running to the brain, which helps maintain your dog’s movements in relation to the world around him.


Marvista Vet – excellent article