Rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament

Physiotherapy and advice during recovery

Of the four knee ligaments that form the dog, the rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament is one of the most common diseases and the most common cause of secondary degenerative osteoarthritis in the knee joint. The functions of the cranial cruciate ligament is to limit internal rotation of the tibia and cranial displacement of the tibia relative to the femur and prevent hyperextension of the knee.

Recuperación de Rotura de ligamentos cruzados en perrosIf your dog appears with an acute limp, not to support the foot on the floor, the supports taking some steps and shrink or has inflamed knee, may his ACL this affected.

There predisposition in certain dogs to suffer this injury. On the one hand we find the dog (breed or not) of small-medium size with short legs and usually overweight, on the other, large and giant breeds by its morphologytend to have damaged ligaments. Among the latter we find the Labradors, Rottweilers, Neapolitan Mastiffs, Boxers, etc. Anyway this is not a rule, and any dog can take over your life a hamstring injury.

A part of the races mentioned other factors such as overweight, physical inactivity, endocrine disorders, dogs do not make good sport overheating, overloads up or down stairs, abrupt to the couch or the car rises, or activities subject to the ligaments micro trauma and ultimately damaging them partially or fully completed.

There are two types of treatment, conservative and surgical, whether the choice is one or the other, the animal must perform a successful recovery of the knee to be functional again and thus avoid relapses appear.

The recovery objectives are to relieve pain, inflammation and lameness, regain full mobility, strength and muscle mass and control over the joint.

Physical therapy varies depending on the animal and the type of treatment, conservative or operative, and in the case of surgery,the type of intervention. There are surgeries that require more rest and stabilization than others. Fully complete the recovery process when the animal is able to perform daily activities and his knee is capable of receiving loads and movement without risk of relesión.

It is important that your pet receives rehabilitation treatment by trained professionals who will choose the best techniques to make recovery fast and effective. Among the most commonly used therapies to treat a cross find massage, mobilization, current therapy, ultrasound, laser, aquatic therapy, balance training and coordination.

During the recovery period is important that:

  1. Take your pet for walks tied and avoid sudden departures to other dogs, and changes of pace, especially in the beginning of recovery. Your veterinarian or therapist will modify the intensity of activity as you go past the recovery period.
  2. Keep the dog out of slippery floors. A common cause is recurrent ligament rupture accompanied by injury of the medial meniscus.
  3. Avoid ramps and stairs at the beginning of treatment in operated animals and animals that make conservative treatment. Once rehabilitated can be used ramps to help get on the couch and the car, since, it is advisable not to do so alone, could have a relapse.
  4. It is advisable to rest on soft, clean surfaces, but are strong enough to help the integration of the animal special mattress for dogs
  5. Keeping the skin clean and dry.
  6. Proper diet and weight control. Being overweight impairs the joints and creates more pain for the animal.

Carritos para perro. Rehabilitación, fisioterapia y ortopedia Canina -

During recovery or those animals that instability may arise in the knee using a knee protector can benefit you and warn of possible relapse or complications.

The knee brace can be used in cases where surgery is not possible or is there any impediment to realizing it. These splints, designed exclusively for knee problems, allow progressively increasing degrees of flexion-extension while limiting unwanted movements, providing stability throughout the recovery.

Marta Subirats
Animal Physiotherapist