This condition is the result of degenerating nerves in the lower spine, thus resulting in a loss of function of the back legs. This condition ( DM ) is highly misunderstood by the American Veterinarian system, and knowing the truth about this condition, can also serve as a preventative to your German Shepherd developing it. The American Veterinarian will also say that the disease is a result of genetics, and in fact there is an inherited gene that can cause the condition to occur. However there are other causes ( which are the primary causes ) that are overlooked by the Am. Veterinary system. In Europe, the main cause for DM is simply age. Just as an 80+ year old human is developing vision, hearing, and mobility problems due to degenerating nerves, the 8+ year old GSD is doing the same. So the main reason for this condition in Authentic German Shepherds is age related degenerating nerves. Keep in mind that we have been speaking of Europe, so in the U.S, the primary reason for this disease is Vaccinosis, ( too many Vaccines ) and possibly Pesticides ( flea and tick preventative at too early an age ). As discussed elsewhere on this website, Vaccinosis in dogs is similar to Lupus in Humans, and is the result of too many ( and unnecessary ) vaccines. Studies in Europe of dogs that have spent time in the U.S. or the UK ( where Veterinary medicine is practiced much like in the U.S. ) with dogs receiving unnecessary vaccines, and are exhibiting symptoms of DM, have shown that Anti-igM Sera has reacted with tissue in the lower spine, and most likely the cause of the nerve degeneration. These findings support theories that Vaccinosis is the reason that DM is so active among Euro GSD’s living in the U.S.
So, if you are the Parent of an Authentic GSD, hope your dog does not have this inherited Gene. But more importantly do not expose your dog to an American Veterinarian unless a life or death situation, and NEVER allow an AM. Vet to OVER-vaccinate your dog. Spaying and Neutering will vastly worsen the symptoms of DM due to the loss of hormones and resulting weaker muscles. If your dog has or should develop this disease, be sure that they maintain a healthy but possibly lower body weight. Walk them all that they are willing to keep those rear muscles strong, and provide much blood flow to the lower spine to slow the progression of this condition.