CANINE SURGERY: ACL Injuries Common In Dogs

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Sports fans are used to hearing about athletes having surgery for a torn ACL but it turns out the injury is common in dogs too.

“Both people and dogs have a lot of cruciate injury call that the ACL or the anterior cruciate ligament,” says Karl Krause, ISU Veterinary Chief of Surgery.

Dogs, like people need ACL surgery to help their injured knee joints function again. At Iowa State University’s veterinary school, this type of surgery is performed more and more.

Rehab also goes along with surgery. Dogs here can undergo a variety of treatments to help get their legs working again.

At ISU, veterinarians can do around 300 ACL surgeries a year.

This type of treatment can be for household pets or champion hunting dogs

“With hunting dogs, these high level athletes…we need to get these patients back to their high level of athleticism…for that reason we will bring them into rehabilitation,” says Krause.

“Rehabilitation can really benefit sporting dogs…other athletes, as well as family pets and for geriatric health,” says Mary Sarah Bergh, Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery.

Dog owners should see their local vet for a referral to this specialized treatment.  ACL surgery for a dog can cost around $2,500.

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