Veterinary Neurology of the Chesapeake | Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM | Annapolis & Towson, MD


Welcome to VNoC's "Happy Tails" section!  We would love to add more happy tails and encourage you to email us to submit your update, story or just tell us how your pet is doing.


Cody the Wiener Dog

Hi, my name is Cody. I'd like to tell you what I've been through and how I met Dr. Jay McDonnell and his staff at Veterinary Neurology of the Chesapeake. My story starts last summer when I took a spill down the stairs and hurt my back. 


After some visits to my veterinarian here in York, Pennsylvania, and medication, I was back to being my smart, adorable wiener dog self.

In mid-February my pain returned with a vengeance. I didn't know it was possible to hurt so much. It hurt to eat, go potty, and even roll over in bed. I saw multiple veterinarians and took countless medications, but the pain got worse and worse. On Sunday, February 24th, my pain was so excruciating that I couldn't even lie still without crying. My daddies knew it was time to drive an hour and a half to CVRC's Emergency Clinic in Annapolis to admit me to their hospital for pain control and transfer to VNoC.


On Monday February 25th, I was transferred to Dr. McDonnell's care. When he performed an MRI, he discovered I was suffering from a disk herniation at C7 - T1. He discussed the results with my daddies and they gave him permission to proceed with my ventral slot decompressive surgery. I had to spend a week in the hospital and I didn't get to see my daddies much, since we live so far away from Annapolis. Donna, Sarah, Brittany and my other spectacular caregivers at VNoC took extraordinary care of me. They kept my daddies updated and even sent them pictures of my progress.


On Monday March 4th, a week after my surgery, I was discharged from the hospital. As expected, I didn't have use of my hind legs and was still in considerable pain. We were overwhelmed by the amount of work my recovery initially required... 24/7 supervision, 45 minutes of therapy three times a day, medications 4 times a day, repositioning in the middle of the night, etc. My daddies had to do everything for me. I feel a little guilty about this, but I took advantage of the situation and convinced them I was helpless. I refused to sit up, walk or go potties. They were hand-feeding me, giving me fluid from a syringe and taking me to the veterinarian for urinary catheterization. That Friday I made the three-hour round trip to Annapolis to see Dr. McDonnell and he set me straight! He showed us that I wasn't helpless, started me on aqua therapy in our bathtub, and got my recovery back on track.


By Sunday March 10th, I was able to walk a few feet on my own and knew things were finally looking up. I still needed to be sling-walked for the most part, but I was eating, drinking and going potties again. My pain and mobility improved daily and by the time I returned for a check-up on the 14th, I was walking around my living room without assistance and relatively pain-free.


It's been about a month since my surgery and I'm almost back to normal. I'm taking frequent, short walks outside and have been pain-free. My grandma went with me to my last check-up and was impressed by the compassion exhibited by Dr. McDonnell, Donna, Sarah and the rest of the VNoC staff. They were thrilled to see me and couldn't wait to give me some love. It's obvious they really care about their patients. Oh, did I mention that grandma was never really a dog lover? Well, I fixed that a while back. Guess who's been dog sitting and helping with my recovery? Thanks, grandma! ;-)


My daddies, grandma and I are grateful for Dr. McDonnell's experience and skill in the field of veterinarian neurology and his unbelievable staff who transformed me from a scared, sad, hurting dog back to my loving, playful, adorable self. I'm also touched by the VNoC staff's “kennel-side” manner. I can tell they genuinely love and care for animals and their owners.


Board Certified Veterinary Neurologist Dr. Jay McDonnell | Annapolis & Towson, MD