I have a 3 year old female (Cira) who is from what the vet tells me very large for a female.... I have always walked her for at least an hour to 2 hours a day & on days I could brought her to the park...she just loves to run and run and run! So a year ago in the dog park she kind of fell into a hole and hurt her leg. She would limp but they said its just sore and it will get better. Two months ago she did it again and I brought her to a different vet because we had moved and they suggested an xray but she needs to put under to have it. I live in NY and they said it would be about $800 for just the xray. I was floored...I called around because I thought that was insane but I guess I was very naive. They all seem to charge in that area. Long story short she has a ruptured cruciate ligament. They said the surgery must be done by a specialist/ortho surgeon because she is so large and said to expect it to cost about $5,000.00. Since she has been hurt I obviously never run her and she has started gaining weight. They said her normal weight for her size should be about 95 pounds...she is now 115! I cut her food down considerably but my main question is during her recovery I am wondering how I will be able to pick her up to help her use the bathroom outside. We also have stairs as well. I can barely pick her up because i myself had spinal surgery so the last thing I want is for both of us to be in such terrible positions. Sorry for my insane babbling...I am just SOOO very worried. I want to be prepared in every way before her surgery (in 2 weeks). When I asked the surgery center they said they will tell me everything when I get there but I would like to know if anyone else had a similar problem and what helped them with these issues. I dont have anyone that is close by that I can call all day for help so I really want to take care of her so she heals correctly. The surgery center (Cornell in Ithaca NY) said it will take a good 6 months for her to be back to normal. Thank you as always for all your amazing information. I dont come on here very often but you are all very welcoming and helpful.