Other leg with a torn ACL

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joachimt
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Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by joachimt » Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:33 pm

My 2 year old GSP tore her right rear ligament in her knee last year and had TPLO surgery in December. She was doing great and I was hoping for a good hunting season when in the last month she started limping and favoring her left leg. The vet feels she has partially torn her left ACL. Iam devastated because she was doing great all summer training. She will still run and play but when she lays down and then gets up she will limp or not put any weight on the leg. Eventually she will put weight on it and be able to run and be active. I dont know what to do because I cant afford to repair her other leg at this time and dont know if I will ever be able to. The surgery and all the visits eventually was well over 3 grand. I just dont know what will happen if I do nothing. Is her hunting career over? Can I take her hunting for short periods of time without doing major damage? Are there any other options? My vet said the only option is the surgery, yet I cannot do it at this time. thanks

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by jlp8cornell » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:00 pm

From experience, if she has already partially torn her other CCL and you continue to let her run, she will fully tear the other. It is just a matter of time. I have no idea how well they work but there are braces made for dogs with CCL tears. Many people use them in place of surgery. I don't know of the success rate but it may be worth checking into. They are expensive as they are custom made.

Honestly, rest her and save up for the surgery and don't skimp on a less successful technique. She is young and with a proper repair, has lots of active years ahead. Doing nothing and letting her exercise is sure to be very problematic. Good luck.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by GrayDawg » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:55 pm

Get an MRI so you know for sure exactly what and where the problem is.
ACL, MCL, Achilles, Retinaculum....... Any of these are in play and each require a different course of action and recovery period.

Best of luck,

Rob
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by BigShooter » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:07 pm

Although it's unlikely, you might check with a University Vet school to see if any are willing to let a vet student do the surgery at a reduced price.
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hi-tailyn
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by hi-tailyn » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:22 pm

I had a 5 yr old NASDC 3xNSDC-RU that got hit by a truck when training, and ripped the ACL on her hind leg. I researched in the N. TX area and found a Vet that specialized in the TPLO surgery. He told me that there was over a 75% chance if the dog tore their ACL while running, that they would tear the other side before long.

I had the expensive TPLO surgery where they cut the head off both bones and realign them to create a flat sturdy surface. She went on after a year of rehab to win RU at the GSPCA Amateur Nats the next year. Never had any problems with the other leg.

Found that walking in water rehab was the greatest treatment for torn ACL's.

Hope yours the best.
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by wems2371 » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:39 pm

I took my 6 year old Roxi to Iowa State Vet school on Tuesday, where they say she "likely" has a partial tear of a CCL. I first noticed Roxi's limping back in February, but honestly didn't have the funds at the time. We tried house rest at that time, with no impressive results. Since then she's kind of been a yard dog, meaning no training or scouting birds. She runs and trots fine. I can see some stiffness when she slows down to a walk. She tends not to stand flat footed on that leg, and she's usually stiff after sleeping, and tentative when getting on the furniture.

Doing nothing didn't sound like an option for us, in wanting to continue to hunt her. I was told that if I did nothing, and kept her on restrictive exercise, that over time she would build fibers around the injury as the bodies way of self stabilizing. But eventually something would happen and those fibers would tear, and then the process would start over again. So they said she would have periods of where she appeared to be getting better, but then would go downhill, with each episode becoming worse...all the while accumulating more arthritis. I'm to keep her on yard rest, restricting her activity as much as possible (yeah, right, with a shorthair), and give some pain medication in the form of NSAIDs or Tramadol...until we can get a surgery date figured out.

My local vet forwarned me that I might be making assumptions that Iowa State would be cheaper than a private practice. They quoted me $2700-$3300 for the TPLO procedure. I was on another forum, where someone recommend IVRC in Des Moines. I called them and they said $2200-$2400. Quite a potential difference, considering most of our area Orthos came out of the same school.

It's a hard decision, especially when your dog has so many years ahead of her. Best of luck on whatever you decide.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by RoostersMom » Thu Aug 15, 2013 3:46 pm

Our Pointer tore her ACL and also at the same time, ripped her opposite Achilles tendon. We did separate surgeries on both - at the University of Missouri vet school. They used a "new" TPLO type surgery on her ACL and it was extremely reasonable (like under $1,000). She has plates in both legs and is recovering fine. They are using her in a study to determine whether once a dog has torn an ACL on one side, are they more likely to tear the other side - something about taking fluid from her joints and trying to determine whether the other leg is at risk. The minute they said "more likely to tear the other one if one goes out," I started another savings account for the surgery that could well be in her future.


I'd encourage you to contact the University of Missouri Vet School and ask about being a participant in this study - our pup's surgery was very reasonable and she is doing great. She was the 4th dog they did this type of surgery on.

mask
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by mask » Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:44 pm

How about just getting another dog?

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by kumate » Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:51 pm

My Gsp Had 1 tplo and then another 6months later on the opposite leg. Rehab is important don't get in a hurry. He recovered well, I agree with Jen don't fool around your dog is young and hopefully has many years left. Save your money, get the other surgery and do your do diligence with rehab. Jen has a great rehab Protocol. My Vet had done over 1500 tplo surgery's and cost was 2200

Hope this helps and best of luck to you

Jerry

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by Petra » Sun Aug 25, 2013 4:04 am

My GSP had the TTA for her first knee with great success and the second did the tightrope at 1/3 the cost with great success, the vet only does the tightrope and does a lot of them. Worth asking about, different surgeries are better for different injuries, partial or full meniscus tears and partial or full acl tears, longer the knee goes without surgery the arthritis gets worse, I tried doing rehab on a partial tear and when the acl did eventually completely tear the x-ray showed large bone spurs already. I am not a vet , a person learns a lot when confronted with the many choices of what to do, GOOD LUCK

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by krakadawn » Mon Sep 02, 2013 6:21 am

For those of us who have dealt with ACL issues it certainly is not a fun time .My oldest guy( FTCH/AFTCH Lab) completely tore his left leg on the first day of winter training in the south. He had been roaded quite a bit prior to going south to keep conditioning up. I had a tight rope procedure done in February, rehabbed extensibly and competed in the Amateur National later that year. The following fall after doing a breeding with him I saw the other leg go....right on the lawn in front of me.
So back to the Vet with a 10 yr old. No way I wish to put him through surgery again but my Vet recommends something else. He sends me to a clinic in Toronto called 'Pawsability" The woman in charge worked for Sick Kids in the Toronto hospital making braces and prosthetics for children. She has a love of dogs and has started this service.
On the first visit all joint measurements were made and a fiberglass brace with metal knee joint was constructed. Second visit it was fine tuned and he was on his feet. Wore the brace daily until following spring. His right leg is every bit as strong as his surgically repaired leg. My Vet has checked both legs to compare.
Was this an option if he was a 2 yr old......no.... but as a senior dog it avoided another surgery and he is just like any older dog but runs well.
By the way the choice was not made for economical reasons as I owe this old guy but for the best procedure suiting his age.

joachimt
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by joachimt » Fri Sep 13, 2013 8:11 am

Thanks for all the responses.

Iam sure in a predicament though. My dog has been doing OK. I stopped making her run by not throwing bumpers or anything for her and just taking her to the park and letting her exercise on her own. i feel she can run if she wants to and she does quite a bit. She still limps a bit on her leg after she has been laying down for awhile but when running outside she shows no symptoms. Unfortunately i just dont have the money at this time for any procedure. if I had to guess it is partially torn and not completely. She wouldnt put any weight on her other leg so obviously its not as bad. maybe its just a matter of time?? With hunting season right around the corner Iam unsure what to do. Thinking of taking her for short periods and never hunting her back to back days. I of course would stop if she wont put any weight on her leg or she seems to be getting worse.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by smoothbean » Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:38 am

Would it be wise to breed to a dog that has had a torn ACL? Is this a week spot that could be passed along? Should those dogs be fixed and taken out of the breeding program?

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by krakadawn » Sun Sep 15, 2013 3:57 pm

And if we took out some of our more famous sires???

How about Creek Robber( 2 ACL's) who returned to run and accumulate 400 plus AA points and too numerous titled offspring??

Having a dog with 2 ACL's I understand but wouldn't of had it any other way.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by Sharon » Sun Sep 15, 2013 9:59 pm

mask wrote:How about just getting another dog?
As hard as that is , I would agree. My setter had TPLO surgery = $4000. I wouldn't put another $4000.00 into her - remember there are no guarantees with the surgery. That would make her a $9000.00 dog Can't justify that .
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by smoothbean » Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:44 pm

Krakadawn,
I am not questioning the ability of the dogs that have had torn ACL's or their ability to produce some bird finding machines
I am just referring to so many people that will not breed to something for a problem as little as a crooked tooth
So often we hear I would not breed something with a known flaw. How is this different?
Does it make it ok to breed the to dogs with flaws if they are Champs?

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by krakadawn » Sat Sep 21, 2013 5:17 am

Absolutely
Who is to say the ACL is hereditary?
Would I rule out some of the best in the gene pool....no.
Is breeding for show purposes different from field....yes

ACL is one of the issues that people believe is certainly hereditary. What is hereditary is the angulation of certain anatomy in rear legs of dogs. What happens afterwards varies greatly due to a dog's life, conditioning etc.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by ezzy333 » Sat Sep 21, 2013 9:24 am

krakadawn wrote:Absolutely
Who is to say the ACL is hereditary?
Would I rule out some of the best in the gene pool....no.
Is breeding for show purposes different from field....yes

ACL is one of the issues that people believe is certainly hereditary. What is hereditary is the angulation of certain anatomy in rear legs of dogs. What happens afterwards varies greatly due to a dog's life, conditioning etc.
How is the breeding different between show and field? I think you are just saying they look at different qualities but in reality if they are breeding for the betterment of the breed then they should be looking at the over all dog and the qualities.

We do know that early neutering many times effect the ACL problem too.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by krakadawn » Sat Sep 21, 2013 9:35 pm

Where field dogs are breed primarily for traits that correlate with performance (like memory, sagacity, intelligence, prey drive and acute vision), show dogs are bred to address confirmation qualities required without addressing any of the above in particular.
The difference between show and field in Labrador breeding is too far apart to even describe.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by ezzy333 » Sun Sep 22, 2013 7:34 am

krakadawn wrote:Where field dogs are breed primarily for traits that correlate with performance (like memory, sagacity, intelligence, prey drive and acute vision), show dogs are bred to address confirmation qualities required without addressing any of the above in particular.
The difference between show and field in Labrador breeding is too far apart to even describe.
I can't argue what people breed for as I have never found a list over the years but I do agree that some of the breeds have 2 or more general types. Field trialer's blame the show people and the show people blame the trailers. Then in some breeds you will find a third type that the average hunters breed and use. Most of this variance in type comes about due to many people are convinced that what they like is what all dogs should be rather than keeping the standard for the breed the standard everyone should breed for.

But this is a long way from the subject of this thread and we need to get back on topic.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by joachimt » Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:29 am

I have scrounged up the money and will be doing TPLO surgery tomorrow on her other leg. Pretty much will miss this hunting season but hope she is healthy and ready to go next year!! The surgeon thought she would be ready to hunt at the hunt club starting in january. I was happy to hear that since I paid for the membership already!!! thanks again for everyones suggestions and opinions.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by joachimt » Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:51 pm

Its been about 10 weeks since my dogs second TPLO. I thought she started doing weight bearing much sooner than her first leg. I have been taking her to hydrotherapy and she seems to be doing well for the most part. I did start walks with her after about 4 weeks. It has been really cold the last few weeks in wisconsin and I have noticed when i take her outside lately she holds up the leg and limps on it. when i bring her back in the house she is fine. i thought it might be from the cold ground but it is her left leg which she had surgery on?? Any thoughts on this? Is she just used to holding that leg up? Does really cold temps affect the implant? The x-rays showed everything healing fine and that was at 8 weeks. thanks

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by Sharon » Wed Dec 11, 2013 2:31 pm

MIne had TPLO surgery 18 months ago , and still occasionally , after a run in the winter walks around with that leg favored. Nothing is a 100% I guess.
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by ezzy333 » Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:42 pm

A lot of it is habit. I had a little female that we had to put her good leg in splints to make her walk on the bad one. It turned out fine.

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by frontline » Thu Dec 12, 2013 1:16 am

joachimt wrote:Its been about 10 weeks since my dogs second TPLO. I thought she started doing weight bearing much sooner than her first leg. I have been taking her to hydrotherapy and she seems to be doing well for the most part. I did start walks with her after about 4 weeks. It has been really cold the last few weeks in wisconsin and I have noticed when i take her outside lately she holds up the leg and limps on it. when i bring her back in the house she is fine. i thought it might be from the cold ground but it is her left leg which she had surgery on?? Any thoughts on this? Is she just used to holding that leg up? Does really cold temps affect the implant? The x-rays showed everything healing fine and that was at 8 weeks. thanks
Yes, the new plate attached to her bone is making her cold. I think this is a common complaint. Once the bones are healed completely the plate can be removed with another minor surgery if necessary. Do you know if they used the same type of metal plate for both surgeries?

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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by birddog1968 » Thu Dec 12, 2013 3:24 am

Im in the same boat but with a gastroc tendon, partially tore the first one in a 4 wheeler accident, then finished it getting side swiped by another dog. Surgery, recovered...mostly....now the other side is swollen and partially torn I think. She's hopping now holding the "good leg" up. 5 years old, but I'll get the other one done, taking into account I ran her over :roll:
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Re: Other leg with a torn ACL

Post by RoostersMom » Thu Dec 12, 2013 9:52 am

joachimt wrote:Its been about 10 weeks since my dogs second TPLO. I thought she started doing weight bearing much sooner than her first leg. I have been taking her to hydrotherapy and she seems to be doing well for the most part. I did start walks with her after about 4 weeks. It has been really cold the last few weeks in wisconsin and I have noticed when i take her outside lately she holds up the leg and limps on it. when i bring her back in the house she is fine. i thought it might be from the cold ground but it is her left leg which she had surgery on?? Any thoughts on this? Is she just used to holding that leg up? Does really cold temps affect the implant? The x-rays showed everything healing fine and that was at 8 weeks. thanks
Mine just broke her implant - tore the plate in two and was limping again on that leg - we didn't know what was wrong, but the x-ray clearly showed she had busted the plate in half. They took it out and all the screws as well and she's on crate rest for another month - 6 weeks until the screw holes heal up. Good news is that she looked to have full healing in that leg, so the removal of the implant won't affect her healing.

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