DESIGNER PUPPYS: Everything you wanted to know about raising designer or mixed breed dogs,
featuring The BOYZ: Prince Alvin His Cuteness (on left) and Sir Simon The Sad, Cockapoo pups.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Tips For Post Dog Knee Surgery - What If Your Dog Is Still Limping?

What if your dog is still limping post knee surgery?

Alvin's Case
Pretty boy Alvin, the Bichon Cockapoo, was still limping and hopping a month after ACL tear surgery DESPITE the fact that we had followed the vet's instructions to the letter. That included exercise and restricted activity.

Major concern 
We were concerned that six year old Alvin would not walk normally again. The dog was way too young to risk limited mobility, so off to the vet we went.

We visited a vet who had not done the surgery. Granted, this was due to scheduling, but it was the right thing to do. She recommended two actions - get the dog on Dasuquin with MSM and get Alvin into physical therapy. Apparently, Alvin had developed a hopping, limping habit to relieve his knee pain.

So, if you have a dog who is still having an issue several weeks post surgery:

  1. Please see your vet first. 
  2. Ask about PT inn your local vet hospital. See my prior posts for what's involved with doggie PT.
  3. Ask about supplementation like Nutramax Dasuquin with MSM Soft Chews, Small/Medium Dog, 84 Count.

What if you are cash poor? 
The vet visit is mandatory. Don't mess with your dog's long term health and activity levels. The last thing an owner wants is to sentence a dog to lifetime disability when it's possible to avoid it.

See what your vet says about supplementation. Dasuquin is about $50 a package and lasts about 3 months. That's $50/84 = $0.60/day. Amazon sells it much cheaper than the vets office (see link above).

See what the vet recommends in place of PT. If you can do water therapy yourself, try it. Be careful not too push too hard or he will re-injure the limb. Also, be aware that some dogs do not like water. Alvin hated the water tank (his video is in prior posts) and whined the entire time he was in it (up to 20 plus minutes in the last session).

Friday, October 9, 2015

Fun Dog Physical Therapy - Walking on the Beach

Picture this beach without peeps. Alvin and I walked this beach today as part of his physical therapy post ACL surgery. Apparently walking in the sand helps the dog balance and works his muscles. Who knew?

Anyway, Al seemed to enjoy his walk UNTIL we approached the water. Then he jumped up on me as if to say "I ain't going anywhere near them waves!" The picture above shows a calm sea. Today the wind created 2 foot waves. Little woosy boy!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

After the 5th water therapy session, Alvin's limp stopped

Today is 8 weeks post surgery. Alvin did 12 minutes in the water therapy tank today (that's Al in the pic above). He's exhausted, but the therapy works. No limping and no 3-legged hopping.

If your dog has had ACL or luxating patella surgery, water therapy helps the dog rehab quickly. And its affordable at about $45 per session (at least in the CT veterinary hospital where Al had the surgery).
You can tell the dog works because he collapsed on the couch once we got home. He was very active in the therapy session - he ran hurdles, did balancing, ran a regular treadmill for 2 minutes (he hated every second), and swam (water therapy). The PT tech suggested he walk in sand between now and the next session.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Post ACL Surgery - Alvin's Recovery

Alvin's recovery from ACL surgery (2 months ago) is accelerating. He continues to do well in the water tank at the PT Center.

He's stopped walking 3-legged but still limps after therapy or after a walk. In fact, he passes out after PT (see pic).

For more information about Alvin's surgery, see the previous post ( and this article (

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Water Therapy for Dogs Post ACL Surgery

Seven weeks ago, Alvin had surgery for an ACL tear.  He developed a bad habit after surgery - refusing to walk normally. He would walk three-legged or limp badly even though we tried to exercise his surgically repaired knee.

Now he's in the PT program at a local veterinary hospital. Today, his third PT session, he's in the water tank high stepping and restoring muscle strength to his leg.