It’s an exhilarating sight watching your athletic dog running at full speed. A very unwanted sight is seeing your dog run, and then suddenly cry out and unable to walk. This may be a sign of a cruciate ligament tear. Cruciate ligament tears, or ruptures, are a common knee injury in dogs. Your veterinarian can confirm a cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) tear with some diagnostic tests. Once confirmed, there’s a good chance your veterinarian will recommend surgery. But that’s not always possible for all dogs. Whether your dog is headed for surgery or not, there are some tools that may help him or her through a CCL injury.
Hero Knee Brace
Hero’s Knee Brace is a custom-fitted brace made from durable plastic that is both lightweight and supportive. It is also waterproof, which is helpful for dogs utilizing underwater treadmill therapy or swimming in rehab. Though surgery is often recommended for CCL tears, some dogs are unable to have surgery. Since the ligament will eventually heal, the Hero Knee Brace can be used to stabilize the ligament while it heals. This brace may also help your dog stay mobile and prevent muscle atrophy as he awaits surgery.
The GingerLead Harness is useful for helping dogs walk, getting in and out of cars, going potty, post-surgery and during physical therapy — all of which can support CCL injuries. It’s a lifting and support aid that helps you help your dog when he needs it. It is padded, adjustable for height and supports dogs up to 250 pounds. Several sizes are available. The pad runs below your dog’s rib cage and can attach to your dog’s collar or harness for extra support through an integrated leash.
Respond Systems PEMF Bed
In human use for fractures since the 1970s, Pulsed Electro-Magnetic Field (PEMF) uses pulsing electromagnetic fields to jumpstart biological cellular reactions in the body. Respond Systems Bio-Pulse PEMF Small Animal Bed penetrates through the body of a dog lying on it, into the joints and muscles to stimulate circulation, decrease inflammation and pain, and help healing. It may be used to help prevent injury as well as for conditions like arthritis, tendon and ligament (CCL) tears, hip dysplasia and more. The 30-minute treatment can be done on a couch, in a crate, under a pet bed or in a number of other locations, including the car. It’s often a relaxing experience for pets. Results are often seen within a couple of weeks. You might see a difference in how your pet gets up, walks or runs
Dr. Buzby’s ToeGrips
ToeGrips were developed for dogs struggling to walk on smooth surfaces like hardwood floors. The non-slip nail grips fit onto dogs’ individual toenails to provide traction for senior, arthritic, injured and disabled dogs or for those who have undergone surgery. Specific conditions the nail grips may help for are hip dysplasia, CCL tears, hind-leg weakness, blindness and more.
Elite Science’s 1-TDC stands for 1-TetraDecanol Complex and is a periodontal, joint and muscle supplement for dogs made from a blend of fatty acids derived from beef tallow. It can be applied topically on the gums or taken orally in capsule form and has an affinity for white blood cells, letting it get where it’s needed quickly.
Cannabidiol (or CBD) is a naturally occurring compound found in both hemp and marijuana. It’s been touted for its relaxation benefits as well as for helping with joint pain and inflammation, among other potential benefits. There are countless CBD products on the market for both humans and pets, but sourcing is key in finding quality products. Ideally the product is non-GMO and free of pesticide and herbicide use. Dogs with CCL injuries may benefit from CBD for both pain management and relaxation — which may be particularly helpful post-surgery when dogs should avoid activity during recovery.
Cryotherapy Brace with Compression
Cryotherapy (freezing cold) has analgesic, anti-inflammatory and other post-injury benefits. Compression helps decrease blood flow and reduce edema (fluid buildup leading to swelling). This unique brace combines both healing techniques for use in sprains, fractures and post-surgery. It may be very useful post-CCL surgery as well as immediately after injury.