- Keep your pet confined with no running, jumping or playing for four weeks post-op. A cage or crate can be used to assist confinement.
- We recommend a protective Elizabethan collar to prevent biting the bandage or chewing at sutures.
- A bandage is commonly placed for 1 week after surgery. Sutures are removed after two weeks.
- We usually use a series of glycosaminoglycan injections (such as “Synovan”) to help prevent arthritis.
- The rate of recovery is individual to each pet. The grade of presentation, size of dog, resting etc. all are variables in the recovery process.
It’s important to contact Sydney Animal Hospitals if you have any questions or concerns.
Following surgery, there are muscle and joint exercises we recommend to help recovery and assist range of motion / flexibility. To assist your pet to make the best recovery possible:
- Allocate time for two 5 to 10 minute exercise sessions each day.
- Concentrate on all joints in the recovering limb. Include the hock and the hip.
Things to avoid
For a minimum of 4 weeks following the surgery, you must restrict your dog’s activity to assist the healing process. Try to keep your pet inside under your direct supervision and avoid:
- Slippery surfaces
- Any form of jumping
Try to keep your dog on a lead at all times when outside and confine them to a small space if not able to supervise them
Post operative exercises
- Flex and extend each joint on the recovering limb a minimum of 10 times.
- Cycle the leg through its full, pain free range-of-motion 10 times.
- DO NOT FORCE THE JOINTS OR CAUSE PAIN. It is very important that you gently manoeuvre the limb through a comfortable range of motion.
Walking your dog
For the first four weeks, try to restrict your pet to slow walks on a lead if you go outside the house. Begin with a slow three-minute walk once a day just for toileting and some air. Maintain the highest level of rest until you are given the go ahead from your vet to allow an increase.
If recovery is progressing well, at about 6 – 8 weeks you can start exercising your dog off leash. You may want to do this once you have progressed your dog from a short lead to a long lead initially. Try to prevent your dog running or playing with other animals.
Longer term follow up and care
ere are a number of follow-up and general strengthening exercises that you can perform with your pet after the four-week rest period.
As well as increasing the walking time for your dog over the following months, it’s highly recommended that you also do some sit and stand exercises with your dog. Sit and stand exercises can be done during leash walks simply by commanding your pet to “sit” and, just before it assumes the sitting position, the “walk- on” command is given.
This routine should be repeated 10 or more times every walk as it helps build up the hind leg muscles, which is highly important in your pet’s rehabilitation. If you have further questions regarding any aspect of post-operative care, don’t hesitate to call us at one of our practices and our friendly staff will help you in any way they can.