Speed Up Canine ACL Surgery Recovery

Canine ACL surgery could be an option if your dog injures his anterior cruciate ligament (one of the four major ligaments in the knee). ACL surgery has a high success rate for canines, with eighty-five to ninety-five percent of patients regaining a full range of movement in the affected limb. Here are some tips to help you speed up your dog's ACL surgery recovery.

Limit Physical Activity After ACL Surgery

Your dog's movement will be severely limited during the first week following surgery. Your vet will want you to spend at least six to twelve weeks gradually resuming a normal level of activity. It's important to follow your vet's instructions to the letter, or the surgery may ultimately provide no benefit at all.

Keep Your Dog Confined

Especially during the first post-op week, keep your dog confined to a pet carrier and only allow him outside to relieve himself. Keep him away from other dogs who might harm him by trying to play, and from small children who might not understand that he's recovering from surgery.

Range of Motion Knee Exercises

Your vet can instruct you on how you and your dog can perform range-of-motion exercises to help your dog's knee regain its former strength and flexibility.

Encourage Your Dog to Do Low-Impact Exercises

Once your dog has passed the first week or two of recovery, you can encourage him to do low-impact exercises that are safe for the knee. Swimming is one example.