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Old 11-23-2011, 07:04 AM   #11
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As long as he is happy and not in pain! Good Luck SG!

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Old 11-23-2011, 07:09 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by sparrowgrass View Post
An update--Mink also had a bad tooth, and I took him in yesterday to have it pulled. I met with a different vet, and asked him about the knee. He said, unequivocably, NO to surgery, citing the dog's age. He said the surgery was unlikely to give him much pain relief, that dogs develop arthritis after the surgery which is as painful as the ACL.

So--Minkie is on Rimadyl, and as long as he seems happy, I will just watch and wait. I really don't want him to be in pain, but the meds seem to be helping. He is still in the acute phase of the injury, so I expect some improvement--if that doesn't happen, then I will have to rethink.

I also will not be going back to the original vet. He really tried hard to guilt me into that surgery, and I think that was unnecessary. (He pointed out that I had had knee replacement surgery, with the implication that it was the same thing.)
Do you understand the point I was trying to make now?
I'm glad you got a second opinion.

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Old 11-23-2011, 07:10 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Dawgluver View Post
Rimadyl had the same effect on one of my cockers, and the neighbor dog, who is 15 and a big girl. Wonder if they have a human equivalent?

So glad Mink is feeling better!
human equivalent for rimadyl is apparently ibuprofen. side effects of humans taking rimadyl are listed as chasing cars, barking at the mailman, and licking your own genitals....
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Old 11-23-2011, 07:59 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by vitauta View Post
human equivalent for rimadyl is apparently ibuprofen. side effects of humans taking rimadyl are listed as chasing cars, barking at the mailman, and licking your own genitals....

Glad Mink is feeling better sparrow.
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Old 11-23-2011, 10:32 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by vitauta

human equivalent for rimadyl is apparently ibuprofen. side effects of humans taking rimadyl are listed as chasing cars, barking at the mailman, and licking your own genitals....
Apparently much improved flexibility....

I'm happy for Mink, Sparrow!
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Old 11-23-2011, 11:17 AM   #16
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lol, vit!!!

i hope mink is felling better, sg.
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beidh ar la linn.
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Old 11-23-2011, 11:43 AM   #17
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Sparrowgrass--so sorry that Mink has a torn ACL. Is it a complete tear or partial? The ACL, when completely torn, looks like a shredded rubber band. I have a lot of experience rehabbing dogs that have had ACL surgery and have been present during the surgery of 4 of them (my last count was 9 dogs with ACL). Some have had the plate (younger dogs--Saint Bernards, LARGE males). Others have had the clamp and suture type of surgery (cheaper surgery--but involves about 8-12 weeks of intensive rehab work--about 17 hours/week excluding hydrotherapy).

There are about 36 different options when it comes to surgery and which surgery to do. Having said that, the oldest dog one which I had this surgery done was 8. That was a Newfoundland. Once the ACL is torn, it is "blowing in the wind" and doesn't regenerate. If it is a partial tear, it can develop scar tissue (a knot develops in the dog's leg).

There was some research being done at UofPenn (I think) where they were working on having the body regenerate the ACL. Don't know where that is at or if it is feasible to do on a dog.

After the initial couple of days, the pain level is stablized. Remember, pain is what keeps animals from over doing it. If he's feeling too good on the meds, talk about giving him less to keep him a bit quieter. I gave Metacam (Deramaxx in the US?) because of concerns re: liver damage with other drugs. Metacam has the same potential. I always have bloodwork drawn before starting (baseline) and follow up every 2-3 months. Yes, arthritis develops. Arthritis develops if you don't do surgery.

Many years ago when speaking with one of my friends who is a veterinarian, the concensus was that strict crate rest for about 4 months would possibly help in a smaller breed, but I'd have to crate rest a Saint for about 3-4 x that length of time--muscle atrophy and crate-stir craziness would be the result. I have not had any of the dogs that underwent this surgery tear the other side.

There is a genetic component to ACL tears in Giants. The gene is on chromosome 3. With Giants, there is also a link to hypothyroidism and ACL tears, especially in the under 2 years' of age Giants. The thyroid places a role in collagen production. This is needed for the ligaments.

Glucosamine won't hurt, giving that won't make the ACL regenerate. It is gone for good if it is a complete tear. The lateral meniscus is also at risk of being damaged as a result of the ACL tear.

I had arthoscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus. As I recall, it would catch and was quite painful. I think the vet school in Raleigh, NC does arthoscopic knee surgeries. There may be others that do it now as well.

Keep an eye on him, restrict his running on wet/slippery surfaces (often a diagonal slip sideways is what cases the ACL to tear), and love him up. If the first vet is primarily a surgeon, the recommendation is surgery because the ACL is "broken"--it won't fix itself. Can a 10-year old otherwise healthy dog still enjoy quality of life w/out doing the surgery--yes. Just because there are options to "fix" the problem doesn't always mean that is the route to take.

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