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Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,940
Registered: ‎03-13-2010

Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

Our Lab tore her ACL in her knee and has to have surgery to get it repaired. The vet can't get her in for surger until some time in February. Right now, she's on pain management. They said it was congenital and if it happens to one knee, it will probably happen to the other one. Recuperation time is 2-3 months. Has anyone had this experience with their dog?

Originally joined board 12-14-2004
Honored Contributor
Posts: 70,911
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

I'd find another vet.  On the other hand, its so long, the leg may heal without surgery as often happens with larger dogs.

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Registered: ‎07-09-2011

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

[ Edited ]

@morganjen wrote:

Our Lab tore her ACL in her knee and has to have surgery to get it repaired. The vet can't get her in for surger until some time in February. Right now, she's on pain management. They said it was congenital and if it happens to one knee, it will probably happen to the other one. Recuperation time is 2-3 months. Has anyone had this experience with their dog?


@morganjen 

 

I’m sorry for your girl’s injury.  Please know my intention is not to argue with your vet’s recommendation, but just to tell you of an alternate method of repair which I chose for my Labrador - Allie.

 

When he fell while running hard through a field, and got up limping, I knew it was an ACL .  At that time he was about a year old.

 

I chose to have the vet cast his leg, and then crated him for 6 weeks.  He, of course eventually chewed off the hard cast, but

I kept him in a crate except for necessary walks, and slow walks inside the house a once a day.

 

This decision was made with the approval of my vet.  He put on the hard cast, and followed Allie’s progress.  He was thrilled with the results.  Allie healed with NO limp, and lived to age 12.  He was my soul mate, so please know this was done with full concern for him.  Allie was an Agility Dog, an International Pet Therapy Dog, an Earth Dog, and he swam daily all of his life.

He never developed arthritis.  He did not have to have the other knee done because he didn’t walk enough during this healing time to put stress on the other knee.

 

He did his healing during the 6 weeks he was crated, there was no additional 2 - 3 month recovery time.  While he was crated, I was at home with him, and moved his HUGE crate room to room to be with me.  Allie was a wonderful, intelligent, intuitive,  friendly boy, I love him dearly and miss him every day.

 

I am glad I chose this method.  At the time, he was a wild crazy Puppy who wanted to run hard, jump, and play, just like any other Lab pup.   But by doing this he avoided having the other knee done, months of surgical recovery, living with a limp, and future arthritis.  I would do it again.

 

Good Luck with your girl, I wish you all well.

"Animals are not my whole world, but they have made my world whole" ~ Roger Caras
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Posts: 33
Registered: ‎12-08-2018

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

I had 2 dogs that went thru that. Only one had to have the second knee done. After about a week had a hard time restricting them. Had to walk on leash every potty time to keep them from running too soon.  Cameron liked to toss his toys and run after and play so had to take away for a while. Taking away his friends made me feel worse then the surgery.   

As she gets older watch for limping, more likely to get arthritis on that joint. But only Casey did and glucosamine helped thru most of it until vet had to give something stronger.

On one knee, Cameron had severe swelling so he had to wait about a month before they could operate. As long as pain meds are working your girl should be fine. 

It is scary but when you finally get to see then running and pain free it is worth it. 

 

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,753
Registered: ‎06-07-2010

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

@morganjen   Waiting until next month to get that type of surgery? I would question that.  I would check with another vet to see if it can't be done sooner. I would not want my chocolate lab to be in pain (even with meds). If a torn ACL in a dog is the same pain as a human, he is in a lot of pain.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,505
Registered: ‎08-10-2013

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

I agree with @Kachina624.  I would find another vet, even if it's to get another opinion, but I would not wait until Feb. and let the poor dog have to go that long with pain.  I always question my vet just because I can.  Good luck and give your baby a kiss for me.

Contributor
Posts: 66
Registered: ‎08-11-2010

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

Oh I am so sorry to hear this. We had a lab who tires his acl and meniscus in his back right leg. We had no idea how or when he did it but he just started limping one day and walking on 3 legs. He had to have the surgery and was laid up for several months which was difficult as he wanted to be active. The doctor said that he would most likely need the opposite knee done. Sure enough, soon after he healed, his other knee went due to over use and compensating for the injured leg. It was awful because we knew what he and we had to go through again. 
To make it easier for us, we brought our mattress downstairs (as he couldn't do stairs) and slept next to him. It turned out to be about a year...but he lived many years after and  could run and swim as he enjoyed. We also used a towel to lift his back end to help him get up to walk. 
Go ahead and get a second opinion but if you choose to do the surgery, it is a long haul but worth it.  I wish you and your fur baby good health and happiness. 

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Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

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Registered: ‎03-19-2016

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

@morganjen  You could ask your Veterinarian for a recommendation to another Veterinarian who could possibly do the surgery earlier. 
  Your Veterinarian may decide he may be able to work your dog into his schedule. I wouldn't wait. 
 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,888
Registered: ‎11-20-2010

Re: Labrador Retriever tore her ACL

Please do not wait 2 months for the surgery. This is a very painful injury. I cannot imagine having let my boy spend 2 months in pain and limited activity then another 2 months limited activity - 4 months, no way.   Please get a second opinion for other options than waiting 2 months.  That does not even seem logical.

 

My dog had tiblial plateau leveling surgury to repair his torn ACL at the universary medical veteranian college. The recoup time was 8 weeks limited activity graually increasing.  He healed wonderfully and never developed arthritis.  There is also another less expensive type of surgery to repair.  

 

But two years later, he tore the other knee's ACL and had the same surgery with excellent results.   

 

We no longer allowed him to jump on and off the couch; he did not care as he had 4 very comfy beds throughout the house.  We got a ramp so he did not have to jump in or out of the truck afterwards as we felt this is what caused the ACL tears.