Animal Answers: Jimmy’s Road to Recovery

Three-Year-Old Dachshund Jimmy Recently Suffered from IVDD, Intervertebral Disc Disease

DULUTH, Minn. – It can happen in the blink of an eye, one small accident or medical condition leading to a potentially life changing diagnosis.

Right now, there’s a dachshund in Duluth learning this all too quickly, and now his mom is looking to spread awareness by telling Jimmy’s story.

“Hi pretty boy, Jimmy Page! He’s my little buddy,” said Ashley Balaich, Jimmy’s mom.

As the weather warms, most people leash up their pets and head outside.

“Jimmy is kind of a TV junkie, he really watches a lot of Law and Order when I’m gone I leave the TV on for him,” said Balaich.

But Jimmy isn’t just your average wiener dog.

“Everyone will say Jimmy is the love of my life,” said Balaich.

The Craigslist rescue is now three years young. In the past two weeks, life has gotten tough for Jimmy and his mom.

“I thought this was the end and I didn’t know what was going on,” said Balaich. “He literally was sitting in his kennel, I went to take him out and he was in pain.”

In a matter of hours, Jimmy had slipped a disk in his back. As of late, he suffers from severe intervertebral disc disease or IVDD.

“There are disks that slip or bulge and then they affect the spinal cord,” said Balaich.

Immediately she took Jimmy to the vet where they did a series of x-rays, all to find there was little or nothing they could do in the Northland to ease the pain.

“When they said it was his spine it was like, what did I do wrong as a pet owner,” said Balaich.

Doctors suggest Balaich try laser therapy; she even took Jimmy to a chiropractor. As of Monday night, Jimmy still suffered deep nerve pain, unable to move his back legs.

“It has definitely been an adjustment in our lives. I’ve pretty much lived on this couch here,” said Balaich. “I have to carry him in and out to go to the bathroom.”

On Monday, Balaich found out her fur baby did qualify to receive medical care at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Hospital in St. Paul.

Jimmy had an MRI Monday night, confirming one large ruptured disc and two smaller ones impacting his spinal cord.

Veterinarians performed surgery to take down part of the disc that was suppressing his spinal cord.

Balaich tells FOX 21 News Jimmy did very well under anesthesia and the surgery was successful, meaning Jimmy should have an 80-90 percent chance of walking and running again.

“It really was meant to be when we found each other and he really hasn’t left my side and that’s why I’m committed to doing this for him,” said Balaich.

There is a GoFundMe page set up if you’d like to donate to Jimmy’s recovery.

Balaich says once all of the bills are gathered, the process will cost roughly $1,500.

Click here to visit the GoFundMe page.

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