Instructions For Cruciate Surgery – De Angelies Technique
After the surgery
- • If your pet is discharged with bandage, it needs to be kept clean and dry and should be recheck after 3 days
- • This means no bathing or chewing. If he/she is licking or chewing at the bandage then they will require an Elizabethan collar (a plastic cone around the neck) to prevent this. There will also be sutures/staples in the wound that will need to be removed 10 days after the surgery.
- • Your animal needs to have confined rest (no physical activity) for the next 3-4 weeks (except for physiotherapy exercises).
- • He/she should be kept in a small area like a laundry room or pen with their food and water bowls.
- • Please do not encourage exuberant walking or jumping of any kind.
- • If your animal is too excitable and jumping can’t be stopped in the first 3 weeks then continued thick bandaging is advised . He/she may need a light sedative tablet prescribed by your veterinarian to calm them down.
All cruciate patients should undergo a course of Pentosan injections. These are injections which preserve healthy cartilage. It is given weekly for 4 weeks and started when the stitches are removed. The course should be repeated every 6 months ongoing.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories are given for pain relief after the surgery. They also help to protect cartilage and maintain muscle mass after the procedure.
Omega 3 fatty acids, glucosamine and chondroitin may also benefit your pet in the long term. Please discuss this with the Vet.
- Week 1: Perform 30 repetitions of passive range of motion (PROM) exercise three times daily. This includes holding the animal by its back legs and cycling them to mimic normal walking whilst the dog is balancing on its front legs. This may also be done whilst the animal is lying on its side. Optionally can follow this with ice pack therapy for 20 minutes. Allow short, controlled, slow leashed walks (to tolerance) on level surfaces only.
- Week 2: Start slow leash walks up to 10 minutes per day and PROM. Ideally but not essential apply moist heat to the knee for 15 minutes at least once daily before exercise Continue ice pack therapy after exercise.
- Week 3: Continue exercises and therapy initiated in weeks 2; increase leash walks to 20 minutes and include uneven surfaces (grass along with concrete).
- Week 4: Continue exercises and therapy; increase leash walks to 30 minutes and include gradual inclines and declines in the walk. Continue ice therapy if swelling is observed.
- Week 5: Discontinue heat therapy if normal range of motion is present; continue leash walks and PROM.
- Week 6: Continue PROM and leash walks. Initiate stair climbing or swimming (or both).
- Week 7 through to 12: Progress by increasing length of time for walking, swimming or stair climbing. By week 12 resume normal exercise. At all times during physical therapy program, improvement should be noted. If the dog becomes more painful or lame during the program, back up to the easier exercises and contact your veterinarian.