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We went to our consultation today and the vet is very concerned about Kane's leg and the fast progression of the join and loss of muscle mass just over the past two weeks.

He thinks it's likely that Kane has either close to or a complete tear of his cranial cruciate, because the dramatic muscle loss shows that Kane is not putting ANY weight on his bum knee. He said Kane is being a typical pit bull and pushing through the pain to use his leg when he gets the zoomies and goes up and down the stairs and shouldn't be.

He is so concerned about the leg that he offered to have me admit him today, do the surgery tomorrow, and release him on Saturday. I told him I couldn't do that with my work schedule.

So, instead, Kane is going in on Monday at noon, surgery on Tuesday, and he'll be released on Wednesday in late afternoon. MSU was actually fully booked next week for surgery, but the vet made it a point to tell the receptionist he wanted Kane in on those days and to make room for him. It's a little scary to think of the vet being that concerned. I'll just be happy when this is all over.

We did discuss the difference between a TPLO and a TTA surgery. The vet said there was no difference in outcome/recovery time/regained mobility on the TPLO versus the TTA, and that the only difference was the technicalities of surgery. They cut and shave the tibia in a different spot is all.

The TTA costs a little less, but he said he's never done a TTA on a clinical case (ie, an actual patient) because 1) the TTA is new, and 2) people want the surgery he has more experience with, so he's having a hard time getting people to allow the TTA instead. He says he has the implements and the technical abilities to do it (and boy did he go into a lot of detail), but, honestly, my gut reaction was to go with the surgery he does more of. He said he did two TPLOs yesterday and 12 last week. I was like, well, sign me up for the surgery you could probably do blindfolded and with your hands tied behind your back, LOL.

The total estimate is $2800-$3300. He understands my financial situation and will be cutting costs every where he can (he can't cut corners on the actual surgery or anesthesia of course). My mother is being a saint and putting it on her CareCredit. Yay parents.

Cross your fingers and send Kane good thoughts for surgery!!
 

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Did he do the pros and cons to the TTA vs to TPLO? The only reason I say that is I know many people who were not happy with the TPLO and if there is a better, newer surgery it might be worth doing some research on.

Either way I am sure he will do a great job on Kane and good thing you are getting it fixed now.

Now some harsh words of advice ;)

I have seen many clients dogs go through these surgeries and many of them have problems and it is all the owners fault! Not saying you are going to do this but it takes a while to fully heal from injuries like this and you have to be the brains behind your dog no matter how it may pull at your heart strings. CRATE REST means no movement, no stairs not even a curb! You have to give things time to heal up then start exercising him slowly not letting him off leash. A good example is now that you knew he had a tear you still let him get the zoomies or climb stairs..... BAD MOM! lol You have to be so careful or you are throwing away your money and Kane pays the price!n Do not feel bad he is on crate rest or has to stay on leash around the house so he does not run or slip. It will take a few months to get him back on track but you have to go slow.
Did he tell you there is a chance of the other side going? There really is because he ill be compensating on the other leg and many times when one side has to be repaired the other side goes either right after or later on in life.
Now once he is healed up you need to avoid things that could make it blow again. So if you were playing fetch maybe you need to find a new game that he can play safely. No jumping high, no tight turns, no abrupt stops. I have had many working dogs over the years and our kennel has stayed relatively injury free (as far as surgeries go) because I am cautious with everything my dogs do. They still get worked hard but certain things that can put them at risk we stopped doing.

Good luck with the surgery and I hope that helps with some things to watch for after the surgery. All this is based on my experience watching others have to go through it and having knees done on one of my dogs too.

Kisses for Kane!
 

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Did he do the pros and cons to the TTA vs to TPLO? The only reason I say that is I know many people who were not happy with the TPLO and if there is a better, newer surgery it might be worth doing some research on.

Now some harsh words of advice ;)

I have seen many clients dogs go through these surgeries and many of them have problems and it is all the owners fault! Not saying you are going to do this but it takes a while to fully heal from injuries like this and you have to be the brains behind your dog no matter how it may pull at your heart strings. CRATE REST means no movement, no stairs not even a curb! You have to give things time to heal up then start exercising him slowly not letting him off leash. A good example is now that you knew he had a tear you still let him get the zoomies or climb stairs..... BAD MOM! lol You have to be so careful or you are throwing away your money and Kane pays the price!n Do not feel bad he is on crate rest or has to stay on leash around the house so he does not run or slip. It will take a few months to get him back on track but you have to go slow.
Did he tell you there is a chance of the other side going? There really is because he ill be compensating on the other leg and many times when one side has to be repaired the other side goes either right after or later on in life.
Now once he is healed up you need to avoid things that could make it blow again. So if you were playing fetch maybe you need to find a new game that he can play safely. No jumping high, no tight turns, no abrupt stops. I have had many working dogs over the years and our kennel has stayed relatively injury free (as far as surgeries go) because I am cautious with everything my dogs do. They still get worked hard but certain things that can put them at risk we stopped doing.
Thanks for the advice. :) I appreciate it.

He did go through the benefits of the TTA versus the TPLO. TTA has a shorter recovery time since it is less invasive and the recovery of mobility tends to happen faster, over weeks instead of sometimes months with the TPLO. It also has a lower risk of arthritis in the knee when Kane is older. However, he hasn't done a TTA on an actual dog yet and, while he demonstrated a clear knowledge on how to do the TTA and seemed very enthusiastic about it, I would still rather him do the surgery that he has more hands-on experience with. It's not going to kill me if Kane has too much arthritis in his knee when he's older to do dog sports or hike.

I've read many stories online that echo what you say--of problems developing with the knee later on, and it all seems to boil down to how strictly the owner followed the recommendations for crate rest and gradual return to exercise. I've read variations of recommendations and am not sure what they'll suggest for Kane when I pick him up on Thursday. I'll be doing a minimum of 7-8 weeks of strict crate rest except for potty breaks, I think, and then start with short leashed walks of 5-10 minutes twice a day. We're getting runners to put on our hardwoods so he doesn't slip. His crate is big enough that he can lay down and stretch out, so I'll probs end up putting his food and water in there and calling it a day. I sure as heck am not slapping $28-$3200 down on this surgery and messing it up, lol.

I'm also aware that the other knee can go. Dr M told me that when she first diagnosed the injury. She said about 40-60% of dogs have their other knee go because they're putting so much stress on it to compensate for their bum leg.

She did say she has a SIL has a german shepherd that blew his cruciate when he was 4. She followed the recovery guidelines to a TEE and the GSD got back into the agility ring 9 months later and earned his MACH and is still doing agility at 11 years old.

That's what I'm hoping for, for Kane. Best case scenario, IMO.

Also, what do you think of the long-term use of sedatives? The surgeon asked me what I did to exercise Kane and based on what I told him, he's going to prescribe me some sedatives to make sure Kane doesn't use his leg before it's ready.
 

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Oh, btw, I'll probably be messaging you Lisa to help me stay strong during the crate rest, LOL. I've been trying to "practice" tough love this weekend by keeping him in his crate and I can already feel myself weakening a little. Those little "well, a couple minutes out of his crate won't hurt" thoughts are very very sneaky and seem to come out of nowhere.
 

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lol yes tough love!! After it's been a week you can take him out of his crate on leash and put him on the couch and just hang on to his leash. You will have to take him on and off the couch but it helps the heart ;)
I would not use sedatives some dogs can have hallucinations and basically a bad trip. If you have him on leash at all times he will be fine. Lift him up and down any steps.

My vet did a great job on Tasha and she was back to agility in 4 months and competing in 6. She is 13 years old and just now showing a little bit of stiffness in her joints.
I would do the TEE and take a chance but I can understand about you wanting to the TPLO. Good luck with it! ;)
 

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I've read many stories online that echo what you say--of problems developing with the knee later on, and it all seems to boil down to how strictly the owner followed the recommendations for crate rest and gradual return to exercise. I've read variations of recommendations and am not sure what they'll suggest for Kane when I pick him up on Thursday. I'll be doing a minimum of 7-8 weeks of strict crate rest except for potty breaks, I think, and then start with short leashed walks of 5-10 minutes twice a day. We're getting runners to put on our hardwoods so he doesn't slip. His crate is big enough that he can lay down and stretch out, so I'll probs end up putting his food and water in there and calling it a day.

.....She followed the recovery guidelines to a TEE and the GSD got back into the agility ring 9 months later and earned his MACH and is still doing agility at 11 years old....
I'm sure your vet will give you instructions regarding the post-surgery regimen. To reinforce your vet's instructions, here's a link to a free rehab regimen download for TTA and videos made by one of the best animal rehab specialists in the US, Dr. James St. Clair on how to execute the rehab exercises correctly to avoid injuries and promote better healing of the joint.
 

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lol yes tough love!! After it's been a week you can take him out of his crate on leash and put him on the couch and just hang on to his leash. You will have to take him on and off the couch but it helps the heart ;)
I would not use sedatives some dogs can have hallucinations and basically a bad trip. If you have him on leash at all times he will be fine. Lift him up and down any steps.

My vet did a great job on Tasha and she was back to agility in 4 months and competing in 6. She is 13 years old and just now showing a little bit of stiffness in her joints.
I would do the TEE and take a chance but I can understand about you wanting to the TPLO. Good luck with it! ;)
I'm just nervous that as this goes on longer he'll get more out of control. I've already noticed a difference in the past month in how he responds to me without being exercised except for the occasional bursts he's not supposed to have. He's very bratty sometimes, and I've had to nail his butt to the ground a few times over stuff that I didn't think he'd try to pull in a million years (sometimes right in front of me!!). I know it's because he's frustrated and has too much energy right now, but I don't want to be forced to correct him like that after surgery, if he's on his leash and he decides to try to pull something on me. Bratty puppy. That's why I thought about the sedatives ...

I'm sure your vet will give you instructions regarding the post-surgery regimen. To reinforce your vet's instructions, here's a link to a free rehab regimen download for TTA and videos made by one of the best animal rehab specialists in the US, Dr. James St. Clair on how to execute the rehab exercises correctly to avoid injuries and promote better healing of the joint.
Thanks for the links! I'll check them out for sure. :)
 

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I now you will do what you feel best but I am totally against sedatives, if he is on leash he cannot bolt. I know it's hard but rotate toys in his crate so he does not get board. I like to get a Kong and fill it with wet dog food and freeze it. They love it and it takes hours to get the stuff out. Also raw leg bones last for a long time too. He will totally be frustrated but in the end it is worth it.

I have seen dogs have really bad trips from sedatives including attacking the owner. Even mom's who had c sections then were given sedatives and they have killed the whole litter..... Bad stuff, you never know how they are going to react.
 

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I hope it works out for you! I would have the hardest time with a crate myself so I hope it works out for you and Kane is all better soon!!! Good luck Monday!
 
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