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Hello Boxer people!


I'm afraid Boswell (1 1/2 yrs) is going to need TPLO surgery. It has been many months that he was favoring it on and off - it would seem to get better, then worse again. I was totallly ignorant and thought he must have been pulling a muscle or something jumping around with other dogs. Our local vet diagnosed CCL damage (probably not severe) - and we have now been for one consult with an orthopedic surgeon who wants to do radiographs to confirm, but thinks it is most likely CCL injury. Because of his age and activity level, we were told the TPLO surgery is really the best option to get his joint as stable as possible for the rest of his life.


More than just the cost (will probably run $4 - $5K when all is said and done) - I am terrified about the 12 week recovery period. How does one keep a 1.5 yr old boxer still?? Boswell gets frantic when confined in a crate (we tried everything) - which is not helpful if he has to keep as still as possible. I do have a room I can set up for him without furniture to jump on, and I can put up gates.


Any experience out there with TPLO and recovery? He's also quite an anxious dog - not good with strangers - so the rehab will likely be with us, at home.



I would dearly appreciate any help or words of advice (or consolation) -- thanks!
 

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Wow, 12 weeks?

When I was younger our family's Shepard mix had acl surgery. He was quite the hyper dog. I believe we blocked him off in one room when no one was there, he wasn't crate trained. Anytime he was out of that room he had to be leashed. It was constant. I think it was only 4-6 weeks though.

Hopefully someone on here has more updated information they can give you about the specific surgery.

Good luck.

Also forgot to add, anywhere there were stairs we had to make it into a temporary ramp. Luckily it was a ranch so only 2-3 stairs in the front and back.
 

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Sorry to hear about Boswells injury. Chase had a partial tear and Angel came to us with terrible arthritis originally diagnosed as a tear. I did a ton of reasearch and to be perfectly honest I found as much to support conservative treatment (no surgery but extremely modified activity,much the same as post surgery restrictions) as I did to support surgery?? Both run the risk of blowing out the other leg while healing is taking place in the injured leg due to over weight bearing and over use, both run about the same odds of reoccurring injury later on. There is a ton of legit advice out there pro and con as well as a lot of unsupported evidence. The following article is from Whole Dog Journal - a well known and respected source of dog info Injuries,... if it doesn't copy (it's a rather loooong article) you can find it on line. btw we elected for no surgery and 6 weeks of extreme lock down, massages and home range of motion and other than the occasional day of limping from over playing both dogs have been fine. Not saying it works for everyone but worth reading up on...good luck with Boswell
Home Treatments for Injured Dogs
Preventing Exercise Injury for Your Dog by Warming Up and Cooling Down
Canine Sports and Proper Canine Injury Prevention Through Conditioning
Enzyme Therapy for Quicker Canine Injury Recovery
Canine Acupressure Techniques to Promote Healing
Alternatives to Surgery for Ligament Injuries in Dogs


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Dogs suffering ligament injuries such as torn ACLs or CCLs have the option of conservative management, as opposed to invasive surgery.
By CJ Puotinen

[Updated April 20, 2018]
 

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TPLO surgery to me sounds like the best option considering the dog is only 1 1/2 years old, Non correction will lead to osteo arthritis. I have read that the healing is rapid but it will take 6 months before the dog can resume all activity. At 12 weeks he will appear to be normal but stressful activities will still be restricted. (not sure what that mean by stressful activity, but I'd guess rapid running with jumping). I'd talk more to my vet about that. Since your dog does like like the crate, I would gate him in that room you mentioned being sure the gate is high enough that he doesn't jump up on it or over it, and no stairs. I would keep him tethered to me all the time to prevent him from running or jumping. I would also ask the vet about rehab. physical therapy and pain management. Since he is a anxious dog I would also discuss that and the best way to keep in in a calm state be it the pain meds or anxiety meds while he heals. (4-5000) is a lot of money . I'm sure I could not afford it so I really don't know what I would do. Thoughts will be with you .
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the information! I will check out those links for sure.



I did read a bit about the conservative treatment before we saw our vet and I asked about it. She basically said that because he is SO young and so active, it is more than likely that he will just continue to injure it and will very quickly become arthritic with the scar tissue that forms around the injury. Luckily, we're not in a position where we simply don't have the means to pay. The vet did say that with an older/ less active/ or smaller dogs they do take a non-surgical approach. He is just over 70 lbs and 18 months old.



Even with the surgery, it is 50/50 chance that the other leg will be injured, so there is that to look forward to! :( I'm hanging on to the fact that it's not 100% -- and I've added glucosamine and fish oil to his diet in the hopes it will help strengthen his ligaments and joints.
 

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I am glad you are in a position to have the surgery done. That being the case Me..I'd move forward . I have also read its the best option and that TPLO is one of the best surgeries for repair. It will be a long recovery but I'm sure worth it when all is said and done.
I had a rescue chihuahua, well still do he is 16 now. At 5 he ruptured the discs in his neck, cost me $3000. I thought hard about it, he has never been a friendly dog but use to sleep with me, just didn't like anyone else lol. He recovered well and has had no problems and runs and jumps around just like he did back then, no arthritis. But I have kept he more restricted over the years and no longer allowed him to sleep in the bed (its high) and he would ump up and down so it was safer to keep in crate at night. Good luck and I hope you will let us know how he does along the way.
 

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Both of my boxers (same litter) had both knees done - TPLO. In fact my male had both knees done at the same time. I now call them my bionic dogs. They were about 3 years old when this all started, and honestly it was the best thing I did for my dogs. After the healing time you would have never known they had knee problems. My male is now showing a little arthritis in his knees (which I was warned about) but he is 9 and it is barely slowing him down.

The recovery is tough but doable. For the first week I had a child's play gate (six sided gate similar to this: https://www.amazon.com/Evenflo-Vers...1QC-LY-PJL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch&th=1) they were confined too.

The first week they were confined to that area only. Their bed was on one side of it and water and food on the other. I let them out every two hours on leash for 5 minute walks and potty time. After about the 2 week mark, they did get more room, but not much and then around 4 weeks they had the whole family room (which is carpeted and that is important). They cannot be on hard surface floors without carpet that does not slide. They need very sure footing. I noticed with both of mine they really were not up for playing and such for the first couple weeks. The rest of the time it was a struggle but I tried to find things to keep their mind occupied. Also I spent as much time as possible with them in their "area". As long as they had attention they seemed to be under control.

I would definitely say the money and time are well worth the outcome. You would never know today my dogs had any knee issues except for the scars. Feel free to reach out if you have any other questions.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks mattsmom13! I'll definitely be asking you some more questions! So after seeing the orthopedic surgeon, he is not 100% sure that it is a ccl injury (although it's top of his list) so he wants to rule out a growth plate injury. We had Boswell neutered at 4.5 months (vet's recommendation) and this lameness has already been there for a while - so he is very young.


He's going to be sedated for radiographs and more manipulations on Monday, so I'll know more then and will update on here.

Thanks everybody - so stressed! It's great to have your advice here!
 

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TPLO is the way to go if the doc says the ligament is torn

I had a couple dogs go through this...yes the recovery is a bit tough...keeping them from injuring themselves during the recovery but the outcome was amazing...you couldn't tell they had any surgery...they ran and played for years after...the doc explained it to me that its like the knee must be stabilized. He said that for my dogs it was similar to a boat being tied up to a dock...and the boat keeps pulling at the line until one day the line breaks...I was extremely pleased with the outcome of the 3 surgeries we went through.
Just to clarify the 3 surgeries were for 2 dogs, the one dog had to have TPLO on one leg and then the other leg and then my second dog had a TPLO surgery on one of his legs....
 

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We are about to have TPLO surgery on our 8 year old boxer's right leg. I have such mixed feelings, but want him to have fun running again, and i know he's older and the recovery is rough.......so i'm wondering how old was your boxer when it had their second TPLO surgery?
What kind of questions should I ask the vet before surgery?
Did you get pet insurance?




TPLO is the way to go if the doc says the ligament is torn

I had a couple dogs go through this...yes the recovery is a bit tough...keeping them from injuring themselves during the recovery but the outcome was amazing...you couldn't tell they had any surgery...they ran and played for years after...the doc explained it to me that its like the knee must be stabilized. He said that for my dogs it was similar to a boat being tied up to a dock...and the boat keeps pulling at the line until one day the line breaks...I was extremely pleased with the outcome of the 3 surgeries we went through.
Just to clarify the 3 surgeries were for 2 dogs, the one dog had to have TPLO on one leg and then the other leg and then my second dog had a TPLO surgery on one of his legs....
 

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I was curious is your dog totally lame? That's a big surgery to go thru at 8. Did they give him any prospect to just allow healing and let him live out his life? My friend has an 8 year old Boxer as well as she has chosen to not do it at her age. Her knee though is stable and she can run and play sometimes if she over does it she will be a little lame but she gives her a little anti inflammatory and she is fine so she limits her running activities and she is doing very well. All cases are different.
 

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He can't put any pressure on his foot. It's been 6 weeks.


QUOTE="[email protected], post: 1996597, member: 194564"]
I was curious is your dog totally lame? That's a big surgery to go thru at 8. Did they give him any prospect to just allow healing and let him live out his life? My friend has an 8 year old Boxer as well as she has chosen to not do it at her age. Her knee though is stable and she can run and play sometimes if she over does it she will be a little lame but she gives her a little anti inflammatory and she is fine so she limits her running activities and she is doing very well. All cases are different.
[/QUOTE]
 

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After 6 weeks he should be able to walk on it pretty well so its looking like you probably don't have much of a choice here usually knee healing takes at least 6 weeks and they have to be kept quiet during this time as well leash walking no running twisting and turning stuff like ball and running the fence are a big no no. I only say all this because I have had to deal with knee injuries before several times now. I have successfully used anti inflammatory (dispensed by the Vet) and therapy like laser therapy or shockwave therapy to help with the healing. Your dog must have really severely hurt himself. I wish you good luck it is a big surgery and you do will have to keep him super quiet while he heals our thoughts go out to you. Let us know how he does
 
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