torn ACL healing?
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Thread: torn ACL healing?

  1. #1
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    Defaulttorn ACL healing?

    My approx 3 year old female was playing football in the snow a couple weeks ago and ran back to me limping, the vet said it is a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). He said that surgery could bring her back to 95% recovery. He also said that before surgery I could try walking her 5 to 6 miles.....A DAY!!! (I love my dog but do not have that much time....or energy). Has anyone had success with any treatments to strengthen the other ligaments (ie. walking) as opposed to the $1,800 surgery?

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    millstonekennel's Avatar
    millstonekennel is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    NO NO NO you need to keep her quite or she will tear the other knee by putting all her weight and force on it. As for the surgery a TPLO is the best. Swimming is the best exercise to do. Try to find a underwater treadmill for her.

    Is he saying if you strenghten the other knee you will not have to do the surgery?
    Alicia

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    kaytris is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    Conservative Management works for SOME dogs - that's the choice I made for my (then 11 yo) senior girl - basically following the post-surgical protocol to slowly increase exercise and strength building rehab.

    I don't understand the vet's suggestion at all.

    there's a "conservative management" yahoo email group that offers wonderful support and suggestions.

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    brody's Avatar
    brody is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    my dad's airhead - oops I mean airdale (and a dear dog he was) tore his acl and went on crate rest and restricted ex for 4-6 weeks- he lived to be a healthy age and dispite the vets dire predictions of woe Ben did just fine with no arthritis and no real issues ..my dad was simply not in a position to afford surgery that wasn't life saving and as I say ben did fine - living a farm dog type life too - not exactly gentle leash walks for his remaining days
    http://andrea-agilityaddict.blogspot.com/

    “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” H. Keller

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    Labs4me is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    Yikes, no vet in their right mind should suggest walking her 5-6 miles a day with a torn ACL. If my doctor told me that I would RUN the other way fast and find a new one! I would not do any exercise until after surgery and then it is on a very controlled basis. At first the dog only goes out to use the bathroom and then you slowly start walking on leash for very short periods, ect... I do agree that swimming is best but you need to make sure you find a very good surgeon to do the repair. As for the TPLO I am not sold on it. Have had 2 girls that have had the traditional repair and have had wonderful results.


    Bonnie ~ Ellsworth Labradors
    Home to Ellsworth's Playing For Keeps CGC, U-CH SHR Ellsorth's Absolut Pleasure, Ellsworth's Good Luck Charm
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    He said that the walking will strengthen the injured leg by strengthening the remaining ligaments.

    What is APLO?

    Are you saying that conservative mgt works sometimes as opposed to the surgery?

  9. #7
    Lucky.N.Lucy Guest

    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    Yes, a carefully implemented exercise regimen can help to stabilize the joint. BUT I think that 5-6 miles a day is not a good starting point though, if your dog is not accustomed to that level of activity, not to mention during the acute inflammatory phase of the injury.

    Is it a complete rupture, or a partial tear?

  10. #8
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    I ASSUMED it was a complete tear but he did not say and I did not know any better to ask. :-\ During the summer I usually walk her 1 mile a day but in the winter she just chases the football around the yard once in a while. Since the injury I have not walked her more than 1 mile a day and it has not been daily per the weather. She DOES use that leg more now that we have been exercising it, but she is still careful with it.

  11. #9
    Labs4me is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muddog
    He said that the walking will strengthen the injured leg by strengthening the remaining ligaments.

    What is APLO?

    Are you saying that conservative mgt works sometimes as opposed to the surgery?
    Why stress an injured leg?

    If there is a tear you will need surgery it is just a matter of time. I had one with a partial tear and did the crate rest, ect did help but she still ended up completely tearing the ACL, so sooner or later you will end up needing the surgery. That said however the sooner it is fixed the less chance of ending up with arthritis.
    Bonnie ~ Ellsworth Labradors
    Home to Ellsworth's Playing For Keeps CGC, U-CH SHR Ellsorth's Absolut Pleasure, Ellsworth's Good Luck Charm
    Gone but not forgotten: Franklin's Lucy of Ellsworth; Franklin's Rare Treat; U-CD Franklin's Rockin' Robin CDX, WC, CGC; Alpha-Omega's Mustang Salli CDX, CGC

  12. #10
    kaytris is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: torn ACL healing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Muddog


    Are you saying that conservative mgt works sometimes as opposed to the surgery?
    The theory behind CM is that careful management, rehab and slowly increasing exercise will allow scar tissue to form and stabilize the tear. Will it be as strong as the original ligament? Not likely. Will it be as strong as a surgical repair? Maybe, maybe not. Many variables involved.

    For now, leash walks ONLY - even out to potty, no running at all, short and slow walks.

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