The most common injury to a dog’s knee is an ACL tear, which stands for anterior cruciate ligament tear. In dogs, the more correct term is cranial cruciate ligament tear or rupture, CCLR. This is simply because of the fact that dogs walk on all fours instead of upright, but the ligament is the same and serves the same function regardless of what it is called. The ACL attaches at the rear of the femur, and crosses to the front of the knee to attach to the front of the tibia. It’s function is to prevent abnormal forward movement of the tibia relative to the knee joint. When torn, a veterinarian may be able to demonstrate this forward movement, called a drawer sign upon physical examination. A pet that has torn it’s ACL may suddenly become non weight bearing lame on a rear leg, or may only toe touch with that leg. If left alone, the pet seems to improve in a week or two, but this is simply because the body starts to make changes to the knee joint to try to stabilize it. There are usually significant arthritic changes that occur if the torn ligament is not repaired. In addition, dogs that tear one ligament are more likely to tear the other […]Learn More
In this first of two articles about knee injuries and issues, we will be talking about medial luxating patellas (MPLs), or in less medical speak, knee caps that pop out of place. This condition can be very common in smaller breed dogs, but can also occur in other pets and larger dogs. Often as a pet owner, the first sign of an issue that you may notice is that a pet may be running around and suddenly skips a step or starts running with only 3 legs, then a few steps later they may be back to running around like normal. Other times you don’t even notice and issue and the vet is the first to identify the problem. In severe cases, the knee cap may luxate out of position and remain out, causing discomfort and a lasting limp which may cause you to seek medical attention. The knee cap, or patella, usually sits in a groove on thigh bone or femur. In some dogs, this groove is not deep enough, and the forces of moving the leg cause the ligaments and patella to move out of the groove. About half of the dogs that have one leg affected will have both legs affected. There are 4 grades of MPLs based on their […]Learn More
Heritage Animal Hospital is a full-service veterinarian clinic that provides examinations, diagnostic services, dental care, surgical services, medicine, grooming and boarding services in Maple Grove, Minnesota. We are dedicated to providing the highest level of pet care possible and facilitating an environment where client communication and education are at the forefront of our practice.
12624 Base Lake Road
Maple Grove, MN 55369
Mon-Fri: 7:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Sat: 7:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.