Dog Bob

Strategies for a wounded Newf …

xena.jpgI’ve dreaded this day for a long time. Xena, the best dog I’ve every owned, came up lame while tormenting Gilligan in the lake on Saturday. A vet visit has confirmed that Xena suffered the equivalent of a human ACL injury in her hind knee. And I’m trying to decide how to proceed.

I’ve been here before. My childhood dog, Mitzie, suffered a similar injury that we never treated. She hobbled along pretty well for the rest of her life. And my cocker spaniel, the late, great Crystal, suffered the injury on both of her hind legs. I went the surgical route there. I worked on the first one but the second wasn’t as effective.

The vet suggested a consultation with a local veterinary surgeon who does TPLO (tibial plateau leveling osetotomy) surgeries, but I was a bit put off when the surgeon was pushing to schedule the consultation and the surgery on the same day. I told her I wanted just the consultation, then I started poking around on the Internet. It seems there are mixed opinions of the TPLO procedure, ranging from folks who had it done on their dogs and were thrilled to people who think it’s a largely unnecessary scam that vets use to rake in lots of cash.

Looking for perspective, I posted on to see what that community had to say, and the consensus seems to be toward Conservative Management.That’s where I’m leaning right now, but I intend to go to the consultation with the surgeon anyway and ask a lot of questions. Complicating factors are Xena’s age (10 is pretty old for a Newf) and the waterfall of stairs that flows through our house and property.

If anyone out there has been through something similar, I’d appreciate your input.