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Some Advice re: surgery for dog?

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AmberWaves

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The other day, our mini-dachshund was coming inside the house and he hit his knee on something. He whimpered and started limping, so we took him to the vet who said he knocked his kneecap WAY loose. We''ve had him on painkillers for a week and pick him up to take him outside, and we''ve stopped most of his walks per the orders of the vet. The reason I''m posting is, she said the only way to ensure he has the best kness possible is to have him undergo surgery. Woofie is only two years old, and dachsies can live to be 14. Does anyone have experience with dog kneecap surgery? Is this really necessary? I don''t want him in pain, and he is walking normally now, (a week later) but I don''t want him permanently scarred.
 

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Dee*Jay

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Amber, so sorry to hear your pup hurt his knee. I agree, a second opinion is a great idea.
 

AmberWaves

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Thanks you guys, sadly I never thought to get a second opinion. Such a bad mommy I am. I will get on that ASAP, though. Dur. Thanks! He seems to be feeling much better, and now that we''ve taken him of the pain meds, he''s still not limping, which is good. Plus, our house is now the proud owner of a couch ramp!
 

Mara

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i was just going to say get a 2nd opinion..

our inlaws have a daschund and they are always worried about her hurting her back and stuff...i would get the surgery for sure if the 2nd opinion swore that the surgery was the way to go...but just make sure it''s absolutely necessary. you don''t want to be having surgeries unless it''s necessary.
 

bee*

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After working in a vets for two years, I would get a second opinion also. The vet I worked for carried out quite a few surgeries where dogs knocked their legs but the dogs couldnt put any weight down on them at all. Did your vet take x-rays of your dogs leg? Unfortunately I havent got to that stage in my veterinary course yet(only in first year!!) but it does seem like he is jumping to extremes straight away. It can be a big op and your doggie could need to be rested for many weeks afterwards so I would just get it checked with someone else before you go ahead with it to make sure that it''s whats required
 

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Boy, I sure would want to avoid surgery if at all possible. I agree about the second opinion, and even then would be hesitant to do anything unless it happens again..

When Bogie was young, he used to pop out his knee fairly frequently. I''d just manually "pop it back" and he''d be fine until the next time. I knew that surgery was an option, but kept putting it off. For some reason it just stopped happening...I guess he ''out-grew'' it. He lived to a ripe old age, completely sound...

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aussiegirl23

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Amber,

one of our old Aussies used to do Agility trials before living with us-- his knee had a similar problem that went unfixed (by previous owners) for 2+ years. when we rescued him, he was to the point of running of 3 legs (like a tripod) to avoid putting any pressure on it. supposedly the problem started as no big deal, and progressed fairly slowly until he just wouldn''t use it. we took him in to get surgery when he was 4 (about 3 months after he came to live with us) and he was a-okay about 2 weeks later. Was back on ALL 4 legs, running up a storm. He then lived to the ripe old age of 15. His knee was never an issue again, though we didn''t have him doing the agility work again. The only issue regarding surgery was that he had a bad reaction to some of the painkillers (made him very nauseous). Other than that, it was no big deal.

Get your 2nd opinion, and if they recommend surgery, don''t worry about it -- it''s not so big a deal, and worked incredibly well, for our dog at least.

Best of luck,
Aussie : p
 

gail013

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Amber-

I am something of an unfortunate expert on dog surgeries. We are on dogs #4 and 5, in 20 years of marraige. The first dog was a runner and ran onto a highway, having run out the door when company came over, but all the rest have required major surgery.

We had a beagle who had knee surgery and it was a difficult surgery on her-she was 6. When you have this surgery you also have to be committed to exercising the dogs knee 3 times a day, otherwise atrophy (sp?) sets in and they won''t use the leg. There is always risk with surgery, but this surgery caused our dog to have other issues, and at the age of 7, one year after her surgery, we had to put her to sleepk from kidney failure-her system couldn''t handle the knee surgery/trauma.

Our next dog was a doxie mix, very healthy until the age of 6, when all of a sudden he couldn''t use his back legs. We eventually had 3 back surgeries on him, two of which he fully recovered from. But it took weeks, and each time we didn''t know if he would walk again. But he was a member of our family...... SO, please be careful about letting your doxie jump, and run up and down stairs. If I had known to be more careful. we maybe would still have this dog with us. I would want to make sure it isn''t a back problem your dog is experiencing, which causes limping and appears to look like sudden pain.

I agree with the second opinion, but I would also want to know more abut future risks involved. Most vets I know are very hesitant to reccomend extreme procedures as they are cost sensitive.
 

AmberWaves

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Thank you all for your advice and experiences. I would have responded sooner had I not gotten caught up in that "Living together pre-marriage" thread.


Anyway, Woofie isn''t allowed up or down stairs, we researched their problems even before getting one, so we''re well aware of the disc problems.
The vet did not x-ray, but felt him all over, the spine, the legs, the tendons, knees, back and tail. His back seems to be fine, and isn''t allowed on furniture and the bed.

I''ve read that this knee thing is common with mini-dogs, and could possibly be a hereditary thing. Still, I will get a 2nd opinion, and if surgery is needed, it will be the soonest time available!!
 

gail013

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Woofie is adorable by the way. I am sure he will be fine, and the knee problem will get fixed in no time. I miss my Sparky, I was just thinking it was this time last year and I was thinking he is doing so well, and then all of a sudden his back legs went out on him again. But now I have two pups almost a year old-and totally adorable mixes of westie, poodle and schnauzer. I sure there is a designer dog name for those, but I don''t know what that is. I got them from Last Hope.

One other thing about the back issues I learned, is that a dog has a good chance of recovering the use of their legs and spinal functions if they have the needed back surgery right away-like within 24 hours. The longer you wait, the more their recovery chances go down. There were times I waited thinking maybe it was my imagination, or that they would get better. You are smart to be so careful now, so that woofie will live a long and happy, and I''m sure pampered life.
 

kcoursolle

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Hi Amber, I''m afraid I really can''t give you any advice on this subject. But I just wanted to say I''m sorry your doggie isn''t feeling well, and I will cross his fingers he recovers and doesn''t need the surgery.
 

AmberWaves

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Thanks for the wishes guys! I''m sure the Woofman wlll be okay (I HOPE
), but we''re taking extra good care of him right now. FI refers to call it: babying. I pick him up and put him on the couch with me, his blanket (pottery barn kids, can you believe that?), toys, bones and a book (for me). If he needs to get down, I put him down. One thing we''ve agreed to: the second that leg is better, he''s going on a diet! He''s 18 pounds!! The kind vet receptionist said, "No wonder he hurt his leg."
She''d better hope my dog didn''t understand what she said! Okay, so ya''ll don''t think Woofie is being overfed, he gets 3/4 of a cup of mini chunks a day, One half in the morning, and 1/4th at night. His mom was a tweenie (not mini and not standard) and his pa was a mini. So according to his genes, he is the right size.
 

ursulawrite

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Date: 12/11/2006 2:13:40 PM
Author: AmberWaves
Thank you all for your advice and experiences. I would have responded sooner had I not gotten caught up in that ''Living together pre-marriage'' thread.


Anyway, Woofie isn''t allowed up or down stairs, we researched their problems even before getting one, so we''re well aware of the disc problems.
The vet did not x-ray, but felt him all over, the spine, the legs, the tendons, knees, back and tail. His back seems to be fine, and isn''t allowed on furniture and the bed.

I''ve read that this knee thing is common with mini-dogs, and could possibly be a hereditary thing. Still, I will get a 2nd opinion, and if surgery is needed, it will be the soonest time available!!
You''re right -- luxating patella is a hereditary condition in many small breeds. It''s seen in a lot of pet store and BYB-bought dogs, because the ''breeders'' can''t be bothered getting the OFA patella exam done on their breeding stock.

Correcting a luxating patella is quite an expensive surgery but your little one should be fine. The seriousness of the condition is graded 1-4, with 4 being the most serious. Grade 1 patella needn''t always be operated on, as long as you do not let your dog get overweight (very important), give them ample exercise and supplement their diet with glucosamine and cod liver capsules.
 

aljdewey

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Yikes! So sorry he''s hurt.

I agree on the 2nd opinion. I hate to see them go through it unless it''s totally necessary.
 

swingirl

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We have a pug and they are notorious for kneecap and hip problems. Our dog tweaks his knee every-so-often and the vet said if it got worse he''d need surgery. But there would be no guarentee with surgery and it could make it worse. But our dog doesn''t tweak himself very often anymore. I think he''s learned what movements not to do and we are careful how we handle him.

So don''t rush off to surgery, get another opinion if you want, but give your dog some time to heal, mature, and become less active.

By the way, my dog would tweak his kneecap by himself doing absolutly nothing. Sometimes he''d be playing, sometimes he''d be walking and sometimes we wouldn''t know what he was doing because we''d just hear a yelp and see him limping on 3 legs.

Sorry little Woofie is hurting. He will get better with your loving care!
 

Kaleigh

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A second opinion is always wise, you really don''t want your doggie to have surgery unless it''s absolutely necessary. Callie my 5 year old Bichon Frise, hit her knee cap the same way. She was limping and in pain. My vet, said let''s see what happens. I had her on pain meds, and didn''t allow her to climb stairs etc... This happened when she was 2 also. So far so good. I hope your sweet doggie gets better, there is nothing worse than seeing them in pain. Get the second opinion and go from there. Good luck Amber, sending positive healing vibes to your fur baby!!!
 
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