Our retriever messed up her ACL... advice? - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 01:03 AM Thread Starter
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Our retriever messed up her ACL... advice?

She's 5 yrs old. She probably needs surgery to get back to 100%... she's limping around right now. But the surgery is like $3k. And is she likely to have the same problem on the other side? Any advice on this matter? Are we just supposed to bite the bullet on this or is there some other option?

We're meeting with the surgeon tomorrow, but I'm sure he'll recommend surgery...
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 02:44 AM
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I'm sorry about your girl. I have no knowledge in this area, but I would get a second opinion before agreeing to surgery.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 03:28 AM
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Our newf/ shiba inu mix had a TPLO 8 weeks ago. She go the all clear to begin walks again today, so the experience is fresh in my mind.

All said, the surgery cost us 3k, with another $500 in prediagniostic exams, xrays, and meds in the mean time (her tear was severe enough that she was carrying her leg rather than putting weight on it, so she was on anti-inflammatories and a pain medication for a few days before surgery).

I don't know what to tell you in regards to deciding to have the surgery other than that this was the best option offered to us given our dogs age (she's not yet 2), size, and genetics (newfs are prone to the problem). We are hoping and praying with every ounce of our being that we don't have another one coming up.

I hope all goes well for you and that your pup isn't in much pain.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 03:46 AM
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My dog damaged his ACL about 3 months ago and the vet said he would need to take it easy for about 6 weeks and then he gave him a pain med that he took for a week. it ended up being about 10 weeks but he was walking about 85-90% of normal after that. i would definitely get a second opinion.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 02:15 PM
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Surgery is generally the best bet for return to nearly normal function. In a 5 year old dog I wouldn't hesitate.

Originally Posted by Emmit View Post
Our newf/ shiba inu mix
Totally off topic...but how does *that* happen?!?


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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 06:38 PM

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Just my 2 cents, but as a human I have torn my MCL (side of the knee ligament) while skiing. The surgeon I saw thought it would be very difficult to sew together and healing would be slow. I was 30 at the time and in very good shape. The surgeon had my in a leg brace with a small amount of movement. Within 8 weeks or so I was pretty good. It's never been the same, I can feel more stretch in that knee. But the surgery would have probably left me no better off. I have no idea if a leg brace is even an option for dogs.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 06:49 PM
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My 4 year old just had TPLO 3 weeks ago for a complete CCL rupture. She is healing very well. The total cost will be between 3k-4k. My surgeon reassured me that this was the right thing to do for her. It's a very long rehab back but will be well worth it. Best of luck.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 06:53 PM
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My Golden had TPLO a year ago, he was 8 years old at the time. He is doing great on that leg now.
Rest will not do it, get the surgery. He will be just fine and money well spent.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 06:56 PM
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ACL and MCLs are apples and oranges.
My son damaged his MCL to the point of surgery was seriously recommended. Yet they threw him on a very nice (read expensive) knee brace and he played in the national finals for college hockey. Wouldn't have been possible for an ACL.

Because the ACL is so crucial to stablizing the knee for normal activities, getting it back to normal is important for both function and comfort, Unfortunately, that means surgery. For people, they prefer the swelling to go down before doing the surgery - but that's because they can get people to back off activity until surgery. Dogs, not so much.

Good luck - and I feel your pain (both $$$ and concern for your retriever).
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-19-2012, 06:56 PM
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My border Collie (7 1/2 year old) had TPLO surgery back in July and yes, it was around $3000 but very well worth it. I could not see spending the rest of her life limping like she was. I think she partially tore it 6 months prior, but I crated and gave Metacam (anti-inflmmatory) and she seemed to be better. Then in the summer she was limping badly. Saw a specialist and they confirmed it was a tear. When they got in surgery, she actually had torn her meniscus too.

She is much better. My brother's 6 year old lab had it done years ago with the same results.

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