Our puppy is not recovering

(58 Posts)
anxiousbundle Fri 01-Feb-19 23:58:50

He's a beautiful cocker spaniel- it's his first birthday in a few days.

Since December he's had 2 surgeries to try and fix his Luxating Patella in his right knee to no availsad the first surgery was to attach a piece of plastic to hold the knee cap in place with 3 bone screws, the second was to relieve pressure on the wound 4 weeks later as he wasn't healing.

We went to the vets today and he's been given more anti inflammatory's and we're to go back in a week or so to see if the inflammation has gone down. The vet couldn't tell if he's healing or gotten worse as he inflammation was so bad. Poor boy yelped and cried when the vet was handling his leg examining it.

He's always been such a happy, bright dog- pleased to see me and OH, wagging his whole body even if we only popped out the room for 2 mins!
He's been crate bound for over 2 months now and it's killing me each day seeing his sad eyes. He can't understand we're trying to help him, all he must know is pain.

I feel exhausted from the whole ordeal and to make things even worse we've claimed all we can on our insurance for this condition.
Our vet wants another X-ray in a week or 2 which will cost around £250.

Then potentially another upwards of £1500 surgery.

I feel beaten down, I feel like we've failed him. I got so desperate this evening I've been emailing veterinary orthopaedic specialists that have treated luxating Patella successfully before literally begging for help.

It's hard work too, constant meds, making sure he doesn't leave his cage, ensuring when he has his 5min (he's not allowed more than that) wee and poo breaks outside 3 times a day that he doesn't jump up or run whilst on the lead. He barks and cries a lot, I sit with him all day when I can and stroke him, talk to him etc.


OP’s posts: |
luluskiptotheloo Sat 02-Feb-19 00:05:54

Have you tried the super vet chap ? Think it’s called Fitzpatrick? He always seems to give very straightforward advice. Just a thought.

anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 00:07:16

@luluskiptotheloo I've been contacting all his social media's this evening actually! I agree he seems lovely too, would be really lucky to get even a reply!

Thank you

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BiteyShark Sat 02-Feb-19 06:10:55

I haven't been in your exact position but for the first 18 months BiteyDog was constantly at the vets for injuries, illnesses and admissions and it took a lot out of me mentally so I can sympathise with that feeling of despair.

I am presuming that your vet isn't a specialist Center. If not I would definitely start looking for one even if it's just a second opinion to make sure you are on the right path. Are you able to afford a specialist referral (I know someone who went to one for cancer and the scans etc were very expensive).

adaline Sat 02-Feb-19 06:18:05

You won't get seen by Noel Fitzpatrick unless you have a referral from your vet - he doesn't just take cases from people who've rang up and asked.

Plus you'd need a hell of a lot if insurance coverage to be able to afford it!

BiteyShark Sat 02-Feb-19 06:23:03

I agree adaline about the price (the cost of an mri was eye watering expensive for my friends dog at a specialist Center).

Coolaschmoola Sat 02-Feb-19 06:32:59

Ask your vet to refer you.

Fitzpatrick's offer payment plans.


Coolaschmoola Sat 02-Feb-19 06:35:59

The estimated cost for patella luxation is £2800 - £3300.

SomethingWithLemons Sat 02-Feb-19 11:20:56

Is amputation an option or is that really too extreme? Some dogs seem to cope really well in three legs. flowersflowers

RandomWok Sat 02-Feb-19 11:27:17

Have you got a kong you can stuff and freeze? Keeps them busy for a little while. It's an absolute nightmare keeping an active dog inactive. I have a working gun dog and she had to have 4 weeks bed rest after a leg injury. Also a few months of only lead walks. We had to work her mentally to exhurst her to keep her resting. We played hide and seek with toys and stuff like that.

I really feel for you it's heart breaking. Sorry I have no advice in regards to the medical issues. All the best to you both x

Dowdydoes Sat 02-Feb-19 11:31:07

I would amputate even if it was the front leg, even giants can do better than would would expect on three. If it’s a rear leg then it’s a complete no brainier - you would hardly notice. It’s a tough call but after the op and a few weeks recovery you wonder why you didn’t do it quicker.

anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 12:57:04

@adaline our vets have actually mentioned they do refer to him.

I didn't ring him- just messaged him via social media.

We don't have any insurance money left for treatment is my point. Hence why I was desperately messaging people.

Our insurance finishes in May or June but even if we switch to a different one you can't claim on existing conditions.

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BiteyShark Sat 02-Feb-19 12:58:22

Is the insurance just a 12 month one rather than a for life policy?

anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:00:57

@Coolaschmoola I know, our first surgery was £1700 (at a cheaper vets- we had to search for a week to find that one, and we drove 4hrs away to get to it).

The second surgery was £400 as it was just an incision they had to make to relive pressure + around £150 since for meds.

We have a max claim of £3000 for any one condition on our insurance unfortunately. Kicking ourselves now we didn't go for either lifetime insurance or the more expensive one with £7500 max claim. You never think it'll happen to you.sad

We also asked our insurance if we could upgrade claims when he first got suspected for Luxated Patella (even before his surgeries and treatment etc) as obviously we would need more money but they said no. (Fair enough, just thought they'd be a bit more sympathetic!)

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anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:01:46

@SomethingWithLemons I have genuinely thought about that. They haven't mentioned anything yet.

I just want him to be able to not be in pain and be outside his cage again! Even with just 3 legs!

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anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:03:19

@RandomWok thank you, yeah we've done all the frozen/filled stuff and king toys he can use whilst in the cage (limited amount as he's not supposed to get excited and move around.

Pretty much just giving him frozen carrots/rawhide (which we hate!) to keep him busy.


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BiteyShark Sat 02-Feb-19 13:03:53

If you don't have a life cover then I would look at moving to one anyway even though this condition will be down as preexisting and not covered because you never know what else might pop up later.

anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:04:10

@Dowdydoes I'm really not against that idea! Have no idea if the vets would go with it though as it may put strain on his other back leg which we have been warned may luxate itself in the future.

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anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:04:26

@BiteyShark Yes, just a yearly one you renew.

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CottonSock Sat 02-Feb-19 13:05:00

How hard for you all. Maybe puppy would be better on 3 legs

anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:05:09

@BiteyShark Definitely, we are for sure moving to a life cover when this ones over. Our vets recommended petplan?

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anxiousbundle Sat 02-Feb-19 13:05:37

@CottonSock sad it's heartbreaking honestly. thank you.

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Myranium Sat 02-Feb-19 13:19:18

I'm sorry you're having such a rough time with this.

Have a look at these two FB groups:

Canine Enrichment

Beyond the Bowl - Canine Enrichment

It's common in both groups for people to ask for suggestions for dogs who are post orthopaedic surgery so well worth having a search and seeing if there's anything that would work for your boy.

Floralnomad Sat 02-Feb-19 13:31:10

If the other leg is ok now I wouldn’t worry too much about the future of it . Our patterdale x (13kg) was diagnosed with bilateral luxating patella at 3 , at that point he was intermittently lame and the vet could easily slip both in and out . Due to a history of poor healing we opted to treat conservatively and non surgically so we watch his weight , he has daily supplements , we exercise on stairs and the only thing we stopped was doing agility as I don’t think the fast landing / turning was going to help . Ddog is going to be 9 this year and it’s a good few years since he’s been lame and he goes off lead for at least an hour a day actively running . I only say this to reassure you that with a smallish breed you should hopefully be able to manage the ‘good ‘ leg in future years . Hope your pup gets well soon .

SomethingWithLemons Sat 02-Feb-19 14:45:46

Oh yes, second the canine enrichment Facebook page.

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