Dixie – Double Lateral Suture Stabilization

American pit bull Dixie had TPLO surgery.Dixie is an APBT and weighs 38 lbs. Perfectly proportioned, active and exercised regularly. Yes, she runs, plays, cuts, and turns, chases rats (she is a terrier) and other moving vermin and pulls on rope toys with her “sisters”. One morning, during play, we heard the back ligament snap. No pain, but she is a pit bull.

It took about 10 days to find a surgeon in our area (North Central CA) that we could get an appt with but when we did, he was amazing. Gave us our options, and as she is NOT overweight, he was fairly certain that she was a good candidate for non-TPLO. She went through the surgery just fine, and we scheduled the therapy immediately following – laser, physical and water treadmill, all included in the surgical quotation.

DO NOT SKIP THIS! Dixie was a Star on the balance balls (her favorite) and it is amazing what the therapy did to strengthen the surgical leg. Unfortunately, the OTHER leg failed shortly afterwards, so we had a repeat of all of the above. Yes, we got to know our vet staff well. However, Dixie became the star example of what a successful patient looks like! But, do not let your furry kids get overweight was the underlying message at all times!

11 thoughts on “Dixie – Double Lateral Suture Stabilization

  1. My rottweiler had double knee surgery in Olympia, Washington, the tightrope surgery was selected and was very sucessful, BUT it was a total $5960.00 just for the surgery for both knees, other expenses for therapy and follow up care @ &147.00 a crack. I would like to know why this varies so much from your estimates? No one likes to be ripped off, which it sounds like I was, BUT the good news is my Rotty can run, jump and play with great gusto without hurting herself now. So, we are very thankful for that.
    Thanks for listening. Mary

    1. How much does your Rottweiler weigh?? My boxer/lab mix is scheduled for surgery on Monday and she weighs 58lbs- I’m very nervous because most of my research on the lateral suture repair is that it’s predominately used for dogs under 30 lbs- but the vet assured me he has done many on dogs ranging from 30-80 lbs, but I’ve been having trouble finding any personal experience stories with dogs around the same weight as mine! Thanks!!

      1. Hi! did you do the lateral suture surgery? My pit boxer mix weighs 50 lbs and she has a full tear in her rear left CCL. The vert recommends the Lateral suture surgery, but same thing over here.. I cannot find any stories or write ups regarding dogs over 30 lbs.

        1. Hi yes we actually went through with the lateral suture for both knees and she is doing great so far! We had her first knee done in February and second knee in April and she is healing excellent! It’s very diffocult in the beginning to keep them from jumping, running, etc but she basically got used to it and we’ve recently begun taking her swimming for exercise which is helping a great deal! Best of luck!!

          1. Thank you so much! And I am so glad your pup is doing well. Were both CCL’s torn, or did the opposite leg tear after the first surgery?

          2. Oh wow, thank you so much for the response and I am so happy that your pup is doing well! Did the opposite leg’s CCL tear after the first surgery? Or were they both torn already?

  2. Sorry, my Rottweiler weighed 87 pds when she had the surgery at 14 months and I elected for the Tightrope surgery on both back knees, recoop time was about 5 months and now just shy of 2 years old she can play, run & jump without hurting herself. Had ex rays last month and the surgery is holding up well. Glad I had it done, it is wonderful to see her having fun with her doggy friends and not hurting. Hope this puts your mind at ease. Dixie & Her Mom

    1. Hi:
      Our boxer needs to have surgery on his ACL this Friday and I am scared to death although our vet says he has done 1,000’s. It is not the gold standard TPLO surgery which I see is supposedly preferred. I believe it is something that is similar to the tightrope surgery although husband is the one speaking to the vet.

      Our concern is keeping our boxer quiet as he is so high energy and is always bouncing around. Not sure how to keep him quiet. He is a rescue and had a rough life before we adopted him 3 years ago. He absolutely refuses to go into a crate and I can’t force him. Any suggestions for keeping him still other than medicating him which we may have to do in order for leg to heal after surgery.

      BTW the TPLO surgery is approximately $5,000 plus and our vet’s ACL surgery is $2000.

      1. Going through the same thing with my boxer mix right now!!! She had surgery Monday and is usually very high energy- today is only day 3 and she is already becoming restless – unfortunately we have been having to stick to the sedatives for her to stay quiet and rest… I tried buying a bunch of toys to keep her occupied while laying down but she’s still so medicated that she’s not really too intrigued by them Atleast right now. Good luck to you and your pup!

  3. Olivia. Hang in there. I ate, slept and went potty with Dixie, and my
    salvation was a full harness with a handle above the front legs and a
    handle above the hips and we started walking two to 6 times,or more a
    day within a few days of surgery(short distances to start) which got rid
    of alot of the energy. I am over 81 years old and with the handles on
    the harness we could climb a few steps if I lifted the back end up to
    keep the extra strain and weight off her back legs and if she decided
    she was tired and didn’t want to walk anymore and laid down my son or
    grandson would come and lift both ends with the handles and pack her
    back to the house. (Mind you she is a large Rottweiler. She was 87# at
    surgery and is well over 100 #s now and is the terror on four legs
    without any pain. Very glad we had the surgery.) Good Luck. My
    thoughts are with you, I believe I indicated it took about 4 months
    before she was healed up enough to run off the leash on her own and get
    into mischief. Hope this helps. Mary & Dixie

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