Things I've learned since Darby's surgery



It's been quite a few years since Darby's surgery. These are some of the things I've learned since then and wanted to pass on to you.


First of all, it's extremely important to get a referral to a qualified Orthopedic Veterinarian if you decide to have surgery on your dog. One place to find an Ortho Vet is at the North American Academy of Veterinary Orthopedic Surgery. You want a Board Certified Orthopedic Veterinarian doing the surgery, not your local family vet. Would you want your family doctor doing your knee replacement? Of course not. Your vet might say they can do the surgery for half the price a Ortho Vet can do it, but now is not the time to pinch pennies. You want a SPECIALIST.

When Darby had her surgery, it took a little bit before she even tried to walk on it. Now days, it can be the next day! When one of my other dogs had a TPLO, I was shocked and afraid when he actually put his foot down to walk on the leg the very next day after surgery. Wow, what a difference in just a few years!


Instead of a crate, I kept the dog in an 4 x 4 exercise pen. I put in a dog bed and a water bucket along with a Nylabone or other toy to keep him occupied.

The pen kept him secure and the other dogs from possibly stepping on his leg.


Instead of a cone, I used a ProCollar inflatible dog collar to keep him from bothering his incision.

As you can see in the picture above, he used it as a pillow.


While he might not have been thrilled, he was still around his buddies, but separated enough that he couldn't injure the leg.

This dog was completely healed and able to live a normal life which including running, swimming and rough housing with the other dogs.


With a little preparation and forethought, you can get through the post-surgery. Remember, you want a Board Certified Orthopedic Vet to do the surgery. Ask your family vet for a referral to one. If they won't give you a referral, telling you that they can also do the surgery or just refusing to refer you, then find a new vet.

Good luck!



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