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Old 05-21-2012, 01:23 PM   #1
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Love I am in need of some LP opinions

Hello YT family. This post may be a bit long but I am in desperate need of opinions about Layla's LP.
Here's what I know:

Layla saw a specialist and she has grade 3 LP. He says her knee is spending more time out than in.

She has a slightly bowed leg so the muscle that attaches to her knee cap and the bone above and below is constantly pulling the knee cap out. Strengthening her muscles/tendons will really only make things worse.

When we went to the specialist she was not walking normal. She favours that knee however, she has never pulled it up in pain. He wanted to make sure that it is in fact the knee cap that is causing the issues, not say- a muscle problem.

Since then she has gone back to full exercise. Last night when we walked I could see her knee popping out (not unusual), however she quickly sat down twice during our walk- not sure if it is knee related.

SO here are my pro surgery and con surgery.

Pros-
Her knee is bothering her sometimes- how often, I don't know
- Most of the time I can see it pop out (no idea if this causes pain??)
- She is young (6) so her recovery would be better than say if she was 10
- It is not going to get better
- If we have it done in July I can spend two months taking care of her
- Her bow is making things worse
- Her vet said if we don't do surgery, arthritis will likely set in.

Cons-
*here is the biggie* from what i can tell- she is not in any obvious pain (this decision would be a million times easier if she yelped or pulled up her knee in pain)
- I don't want her to have any surgery. I dread the idea of something going wrong.
- Long recovery
- I feel like this is an "elective" surgery because it isn't an emergency
- I don't want to make things worse.


So this is what I know. The pros and cons occupy a good part of my day. I go back and forth. I knew I could come on here and hear from people who have been there and know more than I do. I don't know what to do. Help
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:29 PM   #2
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Honestly, I think you need to take up the pros and cons with the specialist. Let him explain it all thoroughly to you.

As for a pup pulling the leg up, I have never seen that happen with LP except in cases where they irritated it by jumping off of something and usually it clears up in a few days. The real reason some with LP end up pulling the leg up in pain is due to CCL tears which often happen with an unstable knee.

I guess I am not much help. I will keep you and her in my prayers...I am sure you will make the right decision.
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:32 PM   #3
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Honestly, I think you need to take up the pros and cons with the specialist. Let him explain it all thoroughly to you.

As for a pup pulling the leg up, I have never seen that happen with LP except in cases where they irritated it by jumping off of something and usually it clears up in a few days. The real reason some with LP end up pulling the leg up in pain is due to CCL tears which often happen with an unstable knee.

I guess I am not much help. I will keep you and her in my prayers...I am sure you will make the right decision.
Ah yes, he did mention tearing a ligament which could cause the problem, however I don't think that is the case with Lay.

Thanks for your prayers. This is weighing SO heavily on my heart. I never did think about making another appointment. He said to give it until around Mid June- if nothing has made itself clear by then, I think I will make another appointment to talk to him. Great idea- thanks
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:39 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by marcerella02 View Post
Ah yes, he did mention tearing a ligament which could cause the problem, however I don't think that is the case with Lay.

Thanks for your prayers. This is weighing SO heavily on my heart. I never did think about making another appointment. He said to give it until around Mid June- if nothing has made itself clear by then, I think I will make another appointment to talk to him. Great idea- thanks
I feel for you...I have been there.
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:26 PM   #5
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Please keep us posted as to what you decide. I actually was getting on line to post and ask for opinions of others who have faced this surgery when I saw your post. I have a dog that I'm going through that with now. It is my little 4 pound toy poodle. I got him when he was already a year old, and I didn't notice the problem...nor did the vet on his check initially. But he just made two, and I've noticed that his back legs have become progressively more bow legged, and yesterday, I noticed him running with one of the back legs up in the air. I've already been to the vet once about his bow legged appearance that seems to be worsening, and I now have an appointment scheduled for later this week. But I'm unsure of how to know who is the best possible person to do this surgery. I have insurance on him, but I don't think this will be covered. I've had two drastically different quotes on the prices of surgery. So, I'm so sorry you're also going through this with your precious one!! I lost my little dog last year, and I also have great hesitation about any complications with surgery. But the idea of him suffering with terrible arthritis pain is the motivating factor for me to proceed. I'm just in the process of trying to figure out how to know I'm at the very best place for his surgery! So good luck to you, and I'm extremely anxious to hear what your vet specialist says!!
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:33 PM   #6
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Please keep us posted as to what you decide. I actually was getting on line to post and ask for opinions of others who have faced this surgery when I saw your post. I have a dog that I'm going through that with now. It is my little 4 pound toy poodle. I got him when he was already a year old, and I didn't notice the problem...nor did the vet on his check initially. But he just made two, and I've noticed that his back legs have become progressively more bow legged, and yesterday, I noticed him running with one of the back legs up in the air. I've already been to the vet once about his bow legged appearance that seems to be worsening, and I now have an appointment scheduled for later this week. But I'm unsure of how to know who is the best possible person to do this surgery. I have insurance on him, but I don't think this will be covered. I've had two drastically different quotes on the prices of surgery. So, I'm so sorry you're also going through this with your precious one!! I lost my little dog last year, and I also have great hesitation about any complications with surgery. But the idea of him suffering with terrible arthritis pain is the motivating factor for me to proceed. I'm just in the process of trying to figure out how to know I'm at the very best place for his surgery! So good luck to you, and I'm extremely anxious to hear what your vet specialist says!!
Have you looked into having LSU check him out? I definitely recommend board certified surgeons for LP evaluations.
You can find one at: American College of Veterinary Surgeons
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Old 05-21-2012, 03:20 PM   #7
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It's a toughie. Lucy has Grade 3 LP as well; we thought she was having fainting spells (this was about 2 years ago) and an ER doctor diagnosed the LP. She would hold her leg out. The ER doctor gave us some recommendations but went on and on about not doing surgery unless it was absolutely necessary. Of course, she was just a puppy at the time.

But it has never happened since then.

I have noticed since we moved here - that she no longer offers to jump up on the couch or chair. Which makes Ringo very happy and is better for her.

But she's only 3 - which seems young to have such problems.

At any rate, I feel for you - I would do what the specialist said and see how things go until June. Your answer may be readily available by then.

I will be keeping an eye on things myself. Best of luck.
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Old 05-21-2012, 03:27 PM   #8
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I actually called there initially, and the wait was much longer ( which was to be expected. So I'm seeing my regular vet Friday. However, LSU is also supposed to call me back. We were just at the LSU vet school last Thursday seeing their dermatology specialists. I'm quite sure the surgery there will be much more expensive, but I am definitely going to take your advice and see them. The LSU just regular vet (not specialist) is who did his initial check a year ago. I am thinking that his LP had to be present then(maybe just not as severe, but there). One of the things I was concerned about a year ago was the stance of his back legs, but they thought everything was fine with him. He isn't whining, and hasn't cried out in pain at all, but the fact that he is keeping his weight off of it sporadically is proof enough for me that there is something concerning going on. So thank you very much for your advice!!! I want the very best outcome for him, and I don't want to do the wrong thing and in turn cause him undue pain and suffering down the road!! So, again thank you!! Have you had good experiences after the surgery with your dogs?
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Old 05-21-2012, 03:40 PM   #9
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I actually called there initially, and the wait was much longer ( which was to be expected. So I'm seeing my regular vet Friday. However, LSU is also supposed to call me back. We were just at the LSU vet school last Thursday seeing their dermatology specialists. I'm quite sure the surgery there will be much more expensive, but I am definitely going to take your advice and see them. The LSU just regular vet (not specialist) is who did his initial check a year ago. I am thinking that his LP had to be present then(maybe just not as severe, but there). One of the things I was concerned about a year ago was the stance of his back legs, but they thought everything was fine with him. He isn't whining, and hasn't cried out in pain at all, but the fact that he is keeping his weight off of it sporadically is proof enough for me that there is something concerning going on. So thank you very much for your advice!!! I want the very best outcome for him, and I don't want to do the wrong thing and in turn cause him undue pain and suffering down the road!! So, again thank you!! Have you had good experiences after the surgery with your dogs?
I have had many pups operated on for various ortho conditions....all of them were done by a surgeon in this area. thankfully, I have never had any issues with any of them. They recovered really well. I know that a lot of vets do these surgeries and it is cheaper...but sometimes cheaper is not better. He wrote some articles for YHR that you might find of interest:

Yorkie Haven Rescue - Patellar Luxation Info

Yorkie Haven Rescue - Cranial Cruciate Ligament Tear Info
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Old 05-21-2012, 03:56 PM   #10
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Thank you so very much for the articles!!! I have scanned through the first one, and I'm about to head to the second. These are great!! You are COMPLETELY 100% right, cheaper isn't always better by any means. And for something this important, I don't want to just choose the cheaper option... not for something to do with my dog's health. I'm so glad to hear you've had good results!! That's great and encouraging to know!! I just want to do the best thing possible for him regardless of the cost!! I want him to have the best possible outcome with as little future pain and suffering as is possible!! He hasn't officially been diagnosed with this, but I am fairly certain this is what he has. Unfortunately, my other little dog has been diagnosed with grade 3 LP, and this is why I knew of the huge price difference between some of the vets. She's only been with me 4 months, and she has already had to be spayed and have oral surgery because her baby teeth were never pulled. So, she hasn't yet had any LP surgery. I'm definitely going to pursue getting him in to LSU, and I'm also interested to get their opinion on Bijou as well.
I have had little dogs for most of my life, but I guess prior to this I just got lucky in having no LP. But now, looks like I'll be getting a crash course!! So again LadyJane, thankyou!!!
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:18 PM   #11
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The key factor that you mentioned that would lead me to choose the surgery vs. not choose the surgery is your vet saying arthritis will set it. It probably already has if the knee is not stable. I would opt for the surgery in this situation.
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:35 PM   #12
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The key factor that you mentioned that would lead me to choose the surgery vs. not choose the surgery is your vet saying arthritis will set it. It probably already has if the knee is not stable. I would opt for the surgery in this situation.
Yes, this is one of the main things I keep going back to when I think= no I don't want to do it- Is not doing it making another condition even worse- and I'd HATE to have to deal with arthritis- she is too young for that.

I feel that my head knows the right way to go but I just can't get my heart to catch up.
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:40 PM   #13
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Yes, this is one of the main things I keep going back to when I think= no I don't want to do it- Is not doing it making another condition even worse- and I'd HATE to have to deal with arthritis- she is too young for that.

I feel that my head knows the right way to go but I just can't get my heart to catch up.
It is hard to make a decision about things that you have to think about. I mean, if it were bladder stones, there is no choice. What you need to think about is if it is affecting her life...or is it going to. One thing about LP surgery is that after they are fixed, they run around like puppies again. I think anyone who had a pup that had the surgery could tell you that....if you could just see into the future it would be easier to decide.
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:44 PM   #14
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It is hard to make a decision about things that you have to think about. I mean, if it were bladder stones, there is no choice. What you need to think about is if it is affecting her life...or is it going to. One thing about LP surgery is that after they are fixed, they run around like puppies again. I think anyone who had a pup that had the surgery could tell you that....if you could just see into the future it would be easier to decide.
That is why this is so hard- I (semi) wish she were in more pain so this would be obvious. I know that animals hide pain for as long as they can in order to not appear weak and thus, easy pray. When Layla had surgery to remove a bump on her back- they checked her teeth and she had a rotten tooth. I had NO idea- she never showed she was in pain. So for all I know this could be hurting her. She walks semi-normal. About 2 months ago she was playing ball and stopped immediately and was limping. Since then her walks have been 70% normal. Ugh, I am rambling. This is such a mental and emotional struggle. I just don't want to make the wrong choice.
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:51 PM   #15
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That is why this is so hard- I (semi) wish she were in more pain so this would be obvious. I know that animals hide pain for as long as they can in order to not appear weak and thus, easy pray. When Layla had surgery to remove a bump on her back- they checked her teeth and she had a rotten tooth. I had NO idea- she never showed she was in pain. So for all I know this could be hurting her. She walks semi-normal. About 2 months ago she was playing ball and stopped immediately and was limping. Since then her walks have been 70% normal. Ugh, I am rambling. This is such a mental and emotional struggle. I just don't want to make the wrong choice.
I think you already know what you need to do. You will not make the wrong choice.
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