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post #26 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 01:25 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by triciakoontz View Post
I’m so very sorry for this nightmare you’re dealing with. Just from the standpoint of having seen a good number of dogs over the decades of owning a vet clinic who had problems involving both hind legs, those are often based in genetic faults. Those inherent genetic issues plus the fact that there is not one strong leg to support the other during healing, can bode ill for decisions about how to “fix” the problem.

So, I’d want a good evaluation about the rest of her body and how it might stand up to any treatment and a very long prolonged rehabilitation. What is the actual condition of her hips? Her spine? That requires films by an expert. Her mental state during recovery is a huge issue. Can she endure it or will it cause her great stress?

It’s very important to ask: what other genetic and temperament problems could crop up, possibly permanently, because of the recommended treatment? And, is this all just too much for this sweet girl? I’m sorry, but a caring veterinarian would be addressing that with you. What are the chances she will actually be HAPPY and PAIN FREE as a result of this?

I will step up and say that I believe that any veterinarian should advise you if this dog has a strong potential to live in pain for the rest of its life even after treatment. I, personally, don’t think we talk about that elephant in the room, setting a dog up for a lifetime of chronic pain, nearly enough these days when such very serious problems arise. Humane ethics in the pet ownership world has not necessarily kept up with modern technologies. Those technologies can often be miserable failures for the patient in ways that count, specifically, quality of life.

It’s very hard. Hugs to you for all the difficult decisions. I know you love your girl and just want her to be okay.
Hi Tricia and thank you. You actually said exactly what I'd been worrying about and trying to ignore; what if there's no solution for her? You're right in that the vet really should be discussing all avenues with me and with a greater understanding of what he's dealing with. There are so many factors in making the right decision and not every treatment is right for every dog. If this had happened to my chilled out, gentle Lab it would have been fine but for Darcy (who's as mad as a box of frogs) I know it would be a disaster.

I'm asking for a referral to a more experienced surgeon because I need to know more about her options and what the consequences of these will be. I'm hopeful that if there's no magic cure there might be something that could just improve her situation and if that means she won't be able to run like a charging bull anymore but she's mobile and most importantly not in any pain, we'll take it.

It's ironic really because living with Darcy has never been easy and our lives would be very simple without her but the thought of losing her fills me with dread. Who would lovingly headbutt me in the face five or six times a day trying to lick my face when I sit down or bruise my shins spinning like a top when I get up in the morning?

It's a holiday weekend now but I'll let you know how we get on with a second opinion.

Thanks again x
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post #27 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by melbrod View Post
We tried Platelet Rich Plasma injection with Capri; I didn't really see that it made any difference. But the vet gave her the injection before her brace to stabilize her wrist was completed and then there was a longish delay in getting the brace finished....so basically it was money down the drain, as far as I was concerned.

I am so sorry you're having to deal with this issue...tough decisions all of the way around.
Hi Melbrod. Thank you for letting me know of your experience with the plasma injection and for your kind words. Yours and the experience and advice shared by everyone in this thread has been invaluable in helping me decide my next steps and I couldn't have found that anywhere else. Thanks everyone.

If any of you happen to come across any other information I'd love to hear about it and I'll keep you posted on how this situation develops.

Many many thanks, Dan xx
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post #28 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 06:52 AM
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Hi Rosemary and Dobebug and thank you. I've just posted a little bit about it and now know its the gastrocnemius which is the largest of the 3 tendons that make up the achilles. The surgeon has consulted with other specialists and they are quite adamant that, because it's both legs, surgery for Darcy is not an option. Not only would she be a terrible patient but in order for one leg to recover, the other needs to be strong enough to support it and this just isn't the case. Particularly after the first has had surgery. Flippin' nightmare

Really do appreciate all of the help. x

I would ask if a two wheeled cart would help in the recovery process, this way she wouldn’t be putting too much pressure on either leg.

Sorry you’re going through this.
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post #29 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 06:27 PM
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It sounds like a cart could be very dangerous with this dog. Any owner of a large active powerful dog has to carefully evaluate their use, but it’s nice to have all ideas out on the table. I wondered if there are any custom made leather foot coverings that could be made for her and she continue with the way she is moving now. Have no idea if that’s an option, but, have certainly known special needs humans who had various physiological reasons to have protective devices for limbs that got unusual wear and tear.


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post #30 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by triciakoontz View Post
It sounds like a cart could be very dangerous with this dog. Any owner of a large active powerful dog has to carefully evaluate their use, but it’s nice to have all ideas out on the table. I wondered if there are any custom made leather foot coverings that could be made for her and she continue with the way she is moving now. Have no idea if that’s an option, but, have certainly known special needs humans who had various physiological reasons to have protective devices for limbs that got unusual wear and tear.
So, years ago, The Sheriff was born with a congenital CVI (not Wobblers) issue. His prognosis was extremely poor. The general consensus was to euthanize him.

Long story short: Surgery, many different treatments and long term meds... He survived and recovered. Still his physical recovery was arduous. One of the major issues was that even once he was ambulatory, he dragged his paws when walking. The damage was harsh.

So... He spent a year in "booties". Ruffwear was the brand. It really worked out well.

Today he is an old grey muzzled senior. Very healthy and as happy as can be.

Yeah... he still walks a bit weird, but he is quite agile. He kind of "prances" when he walks and holds his head very high. Kind of like a deer.

He has been on steroids his entire life and a special diet. Oh well.

His original rehab was completely dependent on his boots. They kept his feet injury free.

A small price to pay for a dog who may have been put down at a few months and now where he is today.

Explore all possibilities.

@ dan

Wishing you and yours all the best

John, McCoy and The Sheriff

Portland OR

Last edited by 4x4bike ped; 05-04-2019 at 08:56 PM.
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post #31 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-05-2019, 12:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 4x4bike ped View Post
So, years ago, The Sheriff was born with a congenital CVI (not Wobblers) issue. His prognosis was extremely poor. The general consensus was to euthanize him.

Long story short: Surgery, many different treatments and long term meds... He survived and recovered. Still his physical recovery was arduous. One of the major issues was that even once he was ambulatory, he dragged his paws when walking. The damage was harsh.

So... He spent a year in "booties". Ruffwear was the brand. It really worked out well.

Today he is an old grey muzzled senior. Very healthy and as happy as can be.

Yeah... he still walks a bit weird, but he is quite agile. He kind of "prances" when he walks and holds his head very high. Kind of like a deer.

He has been on steroids his entire life and a special diet. Oh well.

His original rehab was completely dependent on his boots. They kept his feet injury free.

A small price to pay for a dog who may have been put down at a few months and now where he is today.

Explore all possibilities.

@ dan

Wishing you and yours all the best

John, McCoy and The Sheriff

Portland OR
Hi John and thank you. Wow, you both really went through it and your dedication to Sheriff is inspirational. Bet he was worth every moment of it too. Before I saw your post I was looking into hock supports but hadn't really thought about foot protectors. She used to have a pair of Ruffwear booties to protect her front paws when we were out running in the woods because she cut them so often and they are brilliant. It would make sense to get some for the back.

I've found splinted hock protectors that I'm going to ask the vet about. Thought they could give her the additional support she needs. https://zoomadog.co.uk/products/385-...vable-splints/

Thanks for the suggestion, much appreciated. x
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post #32 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-05-2019, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Control_Freak View Post
I would ask if a two wheeled cart would help in the recovery process, this way she wouldn’t be putting too much pressure on either leg.

Sorry you’re going through this.
Hi. I wouldn't rule anything out if I thought it would help, thank you for the suggestion. x
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