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Extracapsular CCL Repair For Our Louie

The past two weeks have been rough for our beloved Louie. He underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament.

I've missed our morning walks; that first picture was taken last April during an outing to our closest train station. I know he also misses those long walks. 😕


It happened during his afternoon free time in the backyard. I have no idea if he was chasing a squirrel or perhaps being his usual crazy, running in circles when the neighbor's dogs got out.

Who knows.

When I opened the door to get him in, he was limping! 😭

My mind raced with guilt and ways to make him feel better.

Look at him. He was very distressed.

I waited until the next day to see if he somehow recovered the mobility in that leg, but nope. He continued limping.

The following morning, I took him to the emergency where, after the most extended wait, they told me that most probably it was a CCL or torn ligament.

They had to conduct X-rays to confirm their diagnosis. However, after spending almost an entire day trying to get that simple prognosis, I decided to do my research and find a better hospital.

I found an excellent hospital where the doctors explained everything very well. They agreed about it being a CCL. They told me that the best option would be surgery, which would make him get to almost 100% of his old self. They also noted that he could go through therapy and medicines, but his recuperation would be longer, and most likely, it wouldn't be a full recovery. 

After discussing the options with Mr. RLC, we took the surgery route for Louie. It is costly, but given he's still a youngster full of energy, we want him to keep the mobility he's been used to. 

The only problem at that time was that the only available spot for surgery was until November 29th. 
Luckily, there was a cancellation with another patient, and Louie underwent surgery a week later.

Look at that. My poor baby. :(


Post-operative care has been stressful not only for Louie but for us as well.

He didn't like that E-collar one single bit. Look at that sad face. :)

We had to buy this playpen where he's confined because he can't run, jump or climb.

He wasn't wearing his collar because it was feeding time, and I had to be inside the playpen, close to him; otherwise, he would chew on his knee.

This picture below was taken last week during his first Hydro-therapy. 😊
We also administered cold and warm compresses on that knee several times daily.

He's doing very well. He's already using that leg when walking.

Besides the E-collar, we also had a hard time giving him the pain medicine. He refused to take in that capsule! It didn't matter how we tried to conceal it. He smelled it and took it out. 

Carrying those 17 lbs. up and down the steps and all around, it's taking a toll on my back. He also needs to lose a couple of pounds. 

Little by little, he's getting back to his usual self. I know he can't wait. 

Me too. :D

You can find more info about CCL rupture here.

Seeing him get back to normal mobility makes me happy. 

Was this something we could prevent? Probably, if we keep him without running or jumping. 

As the doctor said, with mobility and/or age, this can happen to any dog.

Nonetheless, we will limit the activities he was so used to. No more jumping on or off furniture or running up or down staircases. We'll restrict access to certain areas of the backyard. No more crazy times out there. 

I'm glad we could give him the care he needed; we need to be more conscious about the activities he gets into from now on.

Enjoy what you read today?



  1. I'm sorry about Louie's CCL rupture. That's not any fun for anyone! Our dog, Dancer, ruptured her CCL last year, and we had to wait a couple of weeks until they had availability to do her surgery. Unfortunately, the night before surgery, she ruptured her CCL on the other leg:(! It was worse than the first so they ended up doing surgery on that leg. The vet told us that if a dog ruptures one CCL, there's a 60% chance that they'll rupture the other one. Dancer was 7 years old at the time. We had to wait a couple of months for the second surgery. It was a several month process to get her well with my husband having to take her out to potty while using a sling to hold her up so she could go, all this in the winter. She weighs 40 pounds, so no easy task. Of course, she also had to use a cone, and we had to keep her in a playpen...A little over a year later, she is good as new, thank goodness! In fact, the vet told us that her legs were even stronger than before. We haven't restricted her activity at all, and since she's a whippet and can run like the wind, it would have been almost impossible to do so. I hope Louie makes a full recovery as well!

    1. Oh no, Jeanine, I'm so sorry you went through such difficult time with Dancer. Poor baby, not only one but two ruptures!
      One thing I can't understand is why they couldn't operate both legs at the same time? I can't even imagine all the work and effort carrying those 40 pounds.
      Louie is also 7 years old, and he weights 17 pounds. I just have to cross my fingers for him to keep that other leg out of trouble.
      It's really good to hear that she's doing well and that you haven't restricted her activity. It's been hard keeping Louie confined there in the playpen and as soon as we get him out he wants to fly! :D

  2. Good to hear it went well, we had to do knee surgery on my big dog (70lbs, 3 year old at the time) 2 years ago, and we are getting ready to do it again soon, not looking forward to it! The water training was terrible for him, he hates wet paws! But for 2 years he was back, running like a champ, and I am looking forward to that!

    1. Hi Morgane, it seems this is a common condition for our furry babies, that's so sad.
      I thought that once it was operated it was good for life. Apparently not with what you're telling me. :( Two years pass way to fast.
      We're lucky with Louie don't minding the water training. Hopefully it all works great in their favor.


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