Veterinary Orthopedic Surgery for Cats & Dogs
At Meadow Vista Veterinary Clinic, we offer comprehensive orthopedic vet surgeries that address the joints, skeletal system and their associated soft tissues, including muscles, cartilage, tendons, and ligaments.
Based on your pet’s problems, our surgical specialists will perform a detailed examination and discuss recommended diagnostic tests, procedures, risks and expected outcomes with you.
Board-Certified Veterinary Orthopedic Surgeon
A veterinary surgeon undergoes additional training after veterinary school to become a certified specialist. This training consists of a one-year internship followed by a three-year residency that meets guidelines established by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS).
Common Orthopedic Conditions
There is a wide range of orthopedic conditions that affect cats and dogs. The following are among the most common:
Hip dysplasia is the medical term for a hip socket that doesn't fully cover the ball joint, causing the hip joint to become partially or completely dislocated. It is most common in German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers and other large dogs.
Total hip replacement is the most effective treatment for hip dysplasia. The surgeon replaces the joint with metal and plastic implants, returning more normal hip function.
Cruciate Ligament Tears
Torn cruciate ligaments in dogs, just like in people, must be surgically repaired to prevent arthritis in the dog's leg. There are many different types of surgical procedures that can be used to repair this injury, and the type used typically depends on the size of the dog.
CCL surgery for dogs may include a number of different techniques that aim to provide stability to the joint.
The patella (knee cap) lies in a cartilaginous groove at the end of the femur at the stifle. A luxating patella occurs when the knee cap moves out of its natural position. Knee cap problems are common in many dog breeds, both large and small.
Surgery is recommended for animals that have significant lameness as a result of luxating patellas, with the goal of keeping the patella in its appropriate location at all times.
Just like humans, dogs can develop disc problems in their neck and backs. Breeds that commonly suffer from neck disc problems are Cocker Spaniels, Poodles, Dachshunds and Lhasa Apsos. Large breed dogs are more likely to have chronic lower back issues.
Dogs with advanced disc disease should have surgery quickly. The sooner that surgery is done, the better the prognosis.
Veterinary Orthopedic Surgery FAQs
- Does my pet have to stay at the hospital overnight either before or after the surgery?
Depending on the time of day that the surgery is scheduled, it may be necessary to drop your pet off the night before.
Many of our patients need to stay with us overnight after surgery so that we can monitor them as they recover from anesthesia. Depending on the type of surgery that is performed and how quickly they recover after anesthesia and surgery, your pet may be able to go home on the same day.
- How long will the surgery take?
Orthopedic surgeries usually last anywhere from two to four hours, depending on the type of surgery being performed and on your pet’s specific condition.
- What happens during the surgical consultation?
During the surgical consultation, we will perform a physical exam and review your pet’s medical history. Blood work, and any other diagnostic tests that are needed to determine the nature of your pet's condition will also be undertaken at this time.
Diagnostics may include X-rays, a CT scan, an ultrasound, or biopsies. Once the results are back, a plan for surgery is developed and discussed with you.
- Will the surgery and consultation happen on the same day?
No. The consultation appointment is required for testing and examination, to determine the nature of your pet's health problem. Once any diagnostic test results have come back from our lab, a surgery appointment can be scheduled.