Hi @ mtaylor - thanks for your question, we'll have one of our team look at your issue and get back to you soon. Thanks for your patience.
Hi there @mtaylor,
Sorry to hear your little old lady has torn her cruciate ligament.
Cruciate ligaments are two bands of fibrous tissue that are present inside the knee joint. They get their name as they ‘cross over’ inside the joint.
The purpose of these ligaments is to help stabilise the knee joint and therefore when a tear occurs the result is an unstable joint which is very painful for the dog. Injury to the cruciate ligament is the most common cause of hindlimb lameness. Non-surgical options for treatment would involve physiotherapy, an exercise plan body weight management and pain medication.
Large dogs have a poor chance of recovering completely with non-surgical treatment. Smaller dogs have a better chance however it can take months to see improvement and rarely do they fully recover. The majority of cases are managed surgically and this is the mainstay of treatment. There are a variety of techniques used that aim to stabilise the joint after inspection has taken place. The technique used depends on the nature of the injury to the ligament and the size of the dog. I would advise discussing with your vet as to what the best option is for your dog as they can examine and assess the amount of damage enabling them to provide the best course of action for her moving forward.
I hope she has speedy recovery!