Uses and Positioning of Carpal Supports for Dogs
Carpal supports for dogs are used for carpal instability, for dogs with carpal hyperextension or mild to moderate carpal osteoarthritis. They can be used following surgery or as a conservative treatment.
Ortocanis carpal supports are made of 2mm thick neoprene. They undergo comprehensive quality testing and the cutting edge Velcro used on the supports is specially designed to avoid it catching on the animal’s fur.
The innovative design provides various degrees of support, using a stay that is included with the pack. The support available can be adjusted from 1 to 3 on a scale of 0 to 4, 4 being complete immobilisation.
Loosely fastening the velcro provides grade 1 (of 4) support, which is sufficient for mild cases of osteoarthritis or the end of post-surgical treatment.
If you add the stay and apply consistent pressure then you reach a grade 3 degree (out of 4) of immobilisation, which is necessary when treating cases of moderate or severe instability or carpal hyperextension, or for post-surgical treatment or severe cases of osteoarthritis, where substantial support is necessary.
The carpal support is positioned just above the dog’s carpus, approximately one or two centimetres above the metacarpal phalangeal joint.
The support must exert an even level of pressure on the whole area. Therefore you have to tauten all of the material when you put the support on. To tighten the material the support is made from correctly you must completely separate it from the velcro tapes.
The stabilising stay should be placed in the Velcro pocket which is on the front of the support. The Ortocanis label should be positioned on the front area of the dog’s leg. There is extra protection on the inside of the support to protect the extensor tendons.
The dog may feel odd when using the support for the first few days. It is possible to only use it for a few hours so that it the animal gets used to it. After the first week, the support can be left on all day. Dogs that have undergone surgery should use the support on a permanent basis from the first day onwards.
It is possible to put the support in the washing machine from time to time and wash it with cold or tepid water, however we recommend that you remove stains using a damp cloth.
You can cut off any extra material on the Velcro strips if necessary. However before doing this, you should ensure that it fastens correctly.
It is very important to check your pet’s skin every two or three hours during the first few days that it uses the support. Small lacerations or irritated skin may appear. If this is the case the support should only be used for two or three hours for the first few days to let the animal’s skin breathe.
The brace can be removed at night or during long periods of rest. (Except when using the brace after surgery).
It is crucial that the skin is dry when you put the support on..
If the distal limbs (paws and toes) start to sweat a few minutes after putting the support on, you should remove it and put it on again less tightly later.
How to know which size to choose
In order to choose the right size, you need to measure the perimeter of your dog’s leg at carpus level.
If the perimeter is:
Less than 6 cm: Size XS
Between 6 and 8 cm: Size S
Between 8 and 10 cm: Size M
Between 10 and 12.5 cm: Size L
Between 12.5 and 15 cm: Size XL
Between 15 and 19 cm: Size XXL
More than 19 cm: Size XXXL
Ortocanis Technical Team