I have a small (42 lbs) APBT (American Pit Bull Terrier) female named Emma. 2 years ago, as of this Christmas, she just stopped using one of her rear legs. As soon as we got back into town I took her to my Vet. She was put under and it was found that she had the drawer symptom. The vet gave us some pain killers, explained the treatment choices and sent us on our way.
I exhausted myself reading all I could and just tried to make the best decision for her. Well, two weeks later I came home from work and my baby could not walk. She just hopped not moving EITHER OF HER REAR LEGS! I freaked out and started bawling my head off! Thank god for a husband that keeps a level head! I took a deep breath and called my vet. A day later and we had a confirmation that she had blown the other CCL! At this point I knew I could not afford both legs. I had a hard time convincing my husband to agree to one! I decided to try conservative methods and if she was not better in 8 weeks, then I would get one leg done.
I totally restricted her. I mean totally. NO walks, NO jumping and pretty much no activity. I got a doggie litter box and a lot of toys and crossed my fingers.
Well, now here we are two years later and Emma RUNS EVERYWHERE! No one would ever guess she ever had any issues. Will she have arthritis? Yeah probably, but so will the dogs that had Tightrope, Ex-cap, TTI, and TPLO. Her scar-tissue does the same thing as the tightrope and ex-cap.
And people if your vet is telling you that your little 20 pounder needs surgery, get a second opinion! I am just saying what do you have to loose? If you restrict the activity level, no considerable damage will occur so do not think that. And if you are thinking “geeze I could never manage to keep my dog that constricted” just forget about treatment right now as the recovery period after a surgical fix is about the same as conservative therapy.
Just my and Emma’s 2 cents.