Undecided Treatment – Roxy

undecided treatmentMy Roxy girl is 2.5 yrs old and weighs 55 pounds. I took her to the vet 2 weeks ago because she was throwing up. She was diagnosed with Giardia and pancreatitis. She stopped throwing up immediately after being treated. A few days later I took her for a hike, our favorite activity. She came back limping on her back paw and had blood on her front paw. I took her in for emergency care as this happened at 8pm on a Friday. She needed stitches and they said she had a ruptured cranial cruciate ligament (CCL).

So in less than one week’s time, she had four different things wrong with her. She has a consultation appointment 3 weeks from now. I’m totally undecided as to how to treat her. I’m trying not to let costs get in the way of my decision. I just want whats best for her. I know I wouldn’t want to be operated on.

6 thoughts on “Undecided Treatment – Roxy

  1. Our 2 year old pit bull tore her CCL. We tried conservative management with cold laser treament and a $500 leg brace for about 6 months. She wasn’t getting any better so we scheduled her TPLO surgery. Come to find out her ligament was completely torn so no amount of down time would have helped her. Recovery is long and hard but without the surgery she would have suffered. Almost 1 year later her other CCL tore (the vet warned us this would happen). The second recovery went a lot better, she was trying to run 24 hours later. I think think it’s because this time the ligament was only partially torn. We have spent around 9k total for both surgeries. I would suggest that you have the procedure done sooner rather than later. We didn’t know it at the time but the longer the dog goes without surgery the worse the arthritis is down the road. I would go ahead and start her on some glucosamine for joint health aswell. Good Luck!

    1. My pup had the surgery right away and they saw arthritis in the joint only 6 months after. I wouldn’t make that a deciding factor! B

  2. Such decisions are always hard. Is it a full tear they said? With a full tear, in a young dog, surgery is likely your best option.

    We’ve just been through the decision process with Cookie. Her rupture is partial and we decided to give regenerative therapy chance first. We do realize that she might need surgery eventually but want to give a try to this first. With full rupture, I think the options are substantially more limited, particularly in a young dog.

  3. Tightrope surgery did not work on my pup similar size and age. Don’t let them talk you into it. Tplo is the way to go. But I wish I had done more conservative management to let scar tissue built before this surgery.

  4. Make sure to get a second and third opinion, and the opinion of an orthopedic surgeon. Not sure where you’re located, but we recommend Dr. Scott Anderson at ASEC Animal Specialty Emergency Center Pet Hospital in Los Angeles. Because Roxy is so young, she can recover from TPLO surgery and have a great life and get back to hiking! Our dog, she’s six, had TPLO four weeks ago and she’s recovering great! The first couple weeks were hard only because we had to keep her from licking the stitches and jumping on beds, etc. Using a crate is a good idea during recovery, and the cone to keep from licking. These first six weeks she’s been able to have 10- to 15-min walks, which was hard but at least got her out of the house!

    She has a followup appointment next week to take x-rays of the bone, and if the bone is healed, she can resume 30-min walks and be less limited. I can tell you the surgery was the right thing for our dog’s torn CCL and the recovery goes quickly. She also had a torn meniscus in addition to the CCL, which they told us after the surgery.

    Again, just get other opinions about what’s going on and make a decision from there. If it’s a partial tear, you can probably manage it with the laser therapy, modified exercise, etc., but if it’s fully torn, it’s best to have it repaired.

    On a side note, be sure to keep your dog at normal weight. It’s really important not to allow them to be overweight. It puts more stress on the knee, obviously. We give our dog about 20% less than the kibble bag says, and we add in pieces of broccoli and pumpkin to make her feel full. She loves it! Dogs can have all kinds of veggies and fruits. Perhaps talk to a vet about that.

    Good luck!

  5. TPLO surgery is the way to go. Our 75 pound 1 1/2 year old lab had both legs done 10 weeks apart. It took a lot of time and rehab, but 4 years later she is still running and playing, hiking and now keeping up with her baby brother. She had no strength in her legs as both CCL ‘s were completely torn. With any large active dog this is the only way to go. Be sure to go slow with the recovery and rehab.

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