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Old 11-18-2011, 03:55 PM   #1
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Totally and completely bummed.

My Aussie, Mink, turned up limping this week. I figured he had just pulled a muscle chasing a bunny, but the vet says he has torn his ACL, and the only fix is surgery. Surgery is $2000-2500. Worse than that, the doc said that many dogs tear the other knee within a year.

Mink is 10--I worry about putting him thru a major surgery at his age, let alone 2 surgeries.

Not to mention the fact that I do not have an extra couple of thousand dollars.

Just sad.

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Old 11-18-2011, 04:13 PM   #2
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Much sympathy to you and Mink, Sparrow. Such sad news.
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Old 11-18-2011, 04:21 PM   #3
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so sorry it is really tough to have to make those types of decision. wish i could help
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Old 11-18-2011, 04:35 PM   #4
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Read through this website, Sparrow. It may give you some ideas.
Dog Ligament Injury-- Is Surgery Really Needed?

And get yourself some Liquid Health Level 5000. It's absolutely the best glucosamine supplement out there.

I would not put a 10 year old dog through surgery myself. They make braces/harnesses to help alleviate pressure on the joint. I think that would be a better option.
And they also have less expensive surgeries. My guess is they are quoting you a price on the TPLO, tibial plateau leveling osteotomy... or something like that. They can also do a suture job to replicate the torn tendons and that is much cheaper. It's also not as good in the long run, but we are talking an older dog here, too.

And second opinions are always nice. It depends on your relationship with your vet. Some are just in it for the money.
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Old 11-18-2011, 04:45 PM   #5
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I have been googling since I posted--and I found several websites like the one Pacanis found, which gives me some hope. I was planning to watch him for a couple weeks to see how he fared, and now I see that watchful waiting is recommended on a number of websites.

Minky has some pain meds, and when they are gone, I will start aspirins, and his activity will be restricted for a couple months. If that doesn't work--I will consider other options.

He is eating and doesn't seem to be in great pain, but of course, it is hard to tell just how much it hurts. He is touching that foot to the ground, but not bearing weight on it.

I don't think my vet is in it for the money--he is a small town vet, does a lot of large animal work for farmers who can't spend lots of money on their stock. He also, bless his heart, does low cost spay/neuters for our little humane society group.
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Old 11-18-2011, 06:05 PM   #6
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I feel so bad for you and for Mink, Sparrow. Please give him my best. Sure hope he heals quickly.
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Old 11-19-2011, 04:33 AM   #7
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Poor Mink! I hope he's doing okay and not in too much pain. I agree, at his age surgery is not a good idea. The splint/brace idea seems the best if he doesn't improved with the watch and wait. I'm so glad my kitties are doing okay...they are getting to that age.
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Old 11-19-2011, 07:29 AM   #8
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Doc gave him some Rimadyl, which makes him feel TOO good! He wants to run and play and wrestle with the other dogs.

Poor guy--he also has a bad tooth that needs to be pulled--I will see if we can take care of that next week.
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Old 11-19-2011, 10:42 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparrowgrass
Doc gave him some Rimadyl, which makes him feel TOO good! He wants to run and play and wrestle with the other dogs.
.
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!
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Old 11-23-2011, 07:58 AM   #10
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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.)
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