Preventing Torn Cruciate Ligaments in Dogs

Veterinary advice

HIF Australia

Video Transcription

Dr Melissa Meehan: Little Billy here just turned 11 years old when he decided to jump out of a van without waiting to be lifted down and ruptured his cruciate ligament on impact.
That must have been so hard to see. What did you do Liz?
Liz Drury: It was hard because obviously it hurt him, and he couldn’t put any weight on the leg at all. So, we took him straight to the vet.
Dr Melissa: And when you got to the vet what did they say?
Liz: They knew straight away what it was but not how severe. We took him for a few days to see if he got any better and had him on painkillers, but it didn’t so we had to have surgery.
Dr Melissa: With the surgery was it a day procedure or was it quite quick?
Liz: It was a quick procedure he did well under anaesthetic and it was all done in about half a day. Then he had to have a bandage on and he wasn’t allowed to walk properly for about 10 weeks.
Dr Melissa: That’s that sort of rehab time, he looks like he coped with that ok though.
Liz: He did, and he hasn’t had any issues since which is great!
Dr Melissa: He is walking really well, so if we have a look here let’s show your little leg here. We can see a bit of a scar, see that little scar there that’s where the surgical wound was. They made an incision over the knee joint and that’s the equivalent of our heel and our foot.
This here is the tibia and that’s the femur and this is the knee joint, so you can see it flexes backwards. The cruciate ligament - the anterior cruciate ligament specifically, which is what Billy ruptured.
So effectively in his jump it keeps this knee joint stable, so when I do this it feels nice and stable.
In a dog that’s ruptured their cruciate ligament the femur and the tibia (if I use my hands like this) there just sliding all over the place. So, it’s very painful and that’s why they don’t put any weight on it. So, in doing the surgery there re-stabilising that joint and it looks like it as super effective!
I know these sorts of things cost a lot of money and they come out of the blue, did you have pet insurance?
Liz: I did fortunately, I’ve had Billy since he was 7-weeks old and when he was 6, I decided to get pet insurance because I thought perhaps as he got older, he would need major vet treatment. So, it turned out really well.
Dr Melissa: So, from that 6-years when you took it out to the 11-year cruciate incident, did you have any other claims that you were able to make? Did he any other problems?
Liz: There have been a few small things like skin irritations and infections.
Dr Melissa: Have they all been covered pretty well?
Liz: They have.
Dr Melissa: Well that’s good isn’t it! You’re a healthy little dog and what about Bobby here…
Liz: We adopted Bobby last year when she was 12 years old and fortunately, we’d already had our experience with insurance, so I got insurance straight away for her and we were able to have her covered and we’ve actually already claimed on things for her.
Dr Melissa: Have you? What she been up to already?
Liz: She did step on an insect or something that bit her and she had a bite on her foot and we had to get treatment for that.
Dr Melissa: Well thanks Liz and thanks Bobby and Billy for sitting there so patiently.
If you’d like to find out any more information on obtaining pet insurance for your dog or cat at any age, visit HIF Pet Insurance for more information.


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