Home FamilyPets Oops, She Did It Again! Speckles’ Battle of Klutziness & Her Other Cruciate Ligament

Oops, She Did It Again! Speckles’ Battle of Klutziness & Her Other Cruciate Ligament

by TerriAnn
Speckles - Dog Cruciate Ligament TPLO CCL ACL Surgery & Recovery

Bilateral TLPO Surgery For Cruciate Ligament in Our Dog, Speckles . . .

Speckles - Dog Cruciate Ligament TPLO CCL ACL SurgerySpeckles, our lovable but awfully klutzy dog. Earlier this year I told you about how she had to have a TPLO Surgery on her hind left leg due to a fully torn cruciate ligament (CCL in dogs, similar to ACL in humans). She fully recovered and was able to run and play like a normal puppy . . . until she tore the other one. The veterinary surgeon warned us that there was a 50% chance the other would tear as well. We just didn’t expect it to be so soon.

At the end of July, I let Speckles out to use up some energy in a nearby patch of grass. At one point, she yelped and hobbled toward me. The vet told us it was likely the other ligament but to just rest it for a couple of weeks to see if there was any improvement. Since there wasn’t, we figured another surgery was inevitable. It’s a shame our pet insurance doesn’t cover bilateral procedures. We decided to wait just a bit so we could work out our finances to afford the costly surgery.

Last Thursday morning, exactly one month later, something was not right. Speckles was limping like crazy and her leg made a cracking /popping sound every time she moved her leg. I was able to get an appointment with our vet that afternoon. I gave Dr. Stiglich a short summary of what was going on and she said, “Let me stop you there. I don’t want to waste any more of your time or money. You need to get her into surgery immediately.” She then called the surgery clinic we used last time and arranged to have us seen the very next day.

Friday morning came. We brought Speckles in to see the veterinary surgeon. Not only did Speckles have a torn ligament but she also ruptured her meniscus. This was the cause of the horrid noise from her leg and Speckles’ terrible onset of pain. Also, with the right leg now being injured, extra pressure was being put on the leg that was operated on before. Not good.

It just so happened that the surgeon could take Speckles right then and there to remove the meniscus (cannot be repaired in dogs) and bind up the torn ligament. It was a tough decision but one that had to be made. We left Speckles at the clinic and they took her to the back to prep her for surgery. Fortunately, everything went well. We picked up our pup the next day. Her fur had only recently fully grown back and now it was gone again.

Speckles - Dog Cruciate Ligament TPLO CCL ACL Surgery

Speckles’ 8-12 weeks of recovery began at that time. Since we had been through this only eight months prior, we still had most of her medication and her cone/soft collar. Once again we would have to restrict her exercise to only going to the bathroom. No playing, jumping, running, etc. Poor, poor doggy 🙁

Speckles - Dog Cruciate Ligament TPLO CCL ACL Surgery & Recovery

We sincerely hope that our newly-bionic dog will heal well and finally be able to enjoy herself. She’s only 2-1/2 years old so we hope she can have a long, happy life ahead of her. Before owning a dog, I never understood how people could invest so much in their pets. I totally get it now. Dogs are loyal, cute, huggable, funny, mischievous, and so much more. Let’s just hope she doesn’t hurt herself again anytime soon!

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Dee September 4, 2013 - 6:42 am

Aww! Poor speckles! What a cutie!

TerriAnn van Gosliga September 18, 2013 - 9:23 pm

She’s recovering well so far so we’re happy about that. Yeah, our bionic dog is costing us quite a bit but, yeah, her cuteness saves her each time 😛

Teri Young January 31, 2019 - 8:46 am

Been there done that. River is in surgery on his right leg today for torn CCL after healing 8 weeks on left leg. $9000 but he’s my baby. ❤️❤️ Great story and very accurate about the surgery.

TerriAnn February 4, 2019 - 9:42 am

Poor River! I hope he is recovering well now. While the cost is high for the surgery, I’m happy to say that our pup hasn’t had any other problems with her legs since those surgeries six years ago. I wish you the best with your pup from here on 🙂 Glad you liked the article!

Henrietta September 5, 2013 - 4:07 am

Oh no! Poor Speckles! I hope she has a quick recovery, she’s lucky to have such a loving family!

TerriAnn van Gosliga September 18, 2013 - 9:22 pm

Thanks so much, Henrietta. Wow, this being our first dog, I had no idea how much these fuzzy pups can get in our hearts and become part of the family. She costs as much as a car but we love her 😛

Dee September 5, 2013 - 3:29 pm

Poor Speckles!! Our son’s service dog, an 82-pound Labrador, tore his first ACL on his back right leg at Christmas-time, 2011. (We’d just picked up our Yorkie from major surgery to remove a kidney and fix her liver on Thanksgiving. Ka-ching.) They did the loop repair and $2k later, we were on our way. Poor thing was slowed down but recovery went pretty quickly. We, too, were warned about the 50% likelihood of the other back leg within a year. Sure enough, 10 mths later, he was playing outside with my son and that familiar yelp returned; the back left leg was torn even worse, and he had to have that bionic $3k knee put in. It’s super hard keeping a big dog still, especially when you know that any walking (in slippery or cold weather) can break the new knee and you live in a house with stairs in/out in all directions. My husband had to build a special set of steps that were about 2″ tall so he could slow go in/out to go to the restroom, as he wouldn’t let us use the carry harness. That was almost a year ago though and he’s doing fantastic! I don’t envy you the second set recovery period..for us, that was much harder than the first, but what else do you do, you know? Good luck to Speckles for a speedy recovery that’s as painfree as possible!

TerriAnn van Gosliga September 18, 2013 - 9:21 pm

Poor baby! I’m glad to hear he’s doing much better now, especially since he plays such an important role in your son’s life. Thanks for the well wishes. Unfortunately, in our area, the surgery costs about $4500 so I don’t know how much more we can drop on our bionic pup 😛

Ada July 23, 2015 - 1:46 pm

Do you have a picture of the staircase you built for your pup.
our dog is having surgery in a couple of days.

We have a back deck with three steps each step is 6 inches high. There are 3 of them.

Would be great if we could have an idea of how to build alternative steps.
Thank you, Ada

Audrey September 11, 2013 - 2:58 pm

I feel so bad that such a young dog has gone through that surgery TWICE already! So so sad. She’s lucky to have such loving parents to take care of her :). I experience the dreaded CCL tear just once with my older dog. Couldn’t imagine going through that twice. Maybe Speckles would benefit from using a brace from time to time if you are worried about the possibility of re-injury *knocks on wood*. I had done research on said braces and I still sometimes put it on my dog as a precaution even though his injury healed months ago. It’s the over-cautious mother in me. Check out Woundwear’s brace if you think it could come in handy for Speckles. May her recovery be speedy!

TerriAnn van Gosliga September 18, 2013 - 9:16 pm

I know, the doctor even said, “Are we sure we have her age right?!” I’m glad to hear your dog recovered well though and is happily running around. Thanks for the info on the braces – I’ll have to look into that. Speckles is a totally happy, sweet, klutz so she’s already been jumping on her hind legs, crazy girl. We hope she recovers well too. I don’t know how much more we can afford!

Audrey September 24, 2013 - 1:32 pm

You are very welcome. Ahh, the lengths we’ll go for our beloved klutzy dogs!

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