Hi everyone- we are kicking off a series of info-blurbs highlighting some of the services we perform here at Packerland. To start off, we are going to talk about cruciate (ie ACL) injuries in dogs because we see this condition a lot, and our own employees have gone through these situations themselves. This is a common injury in football players and even though your dog may not be out there running a screen play, it can happen to them too. The cranial cruciate ligament (the ACL in people) is one of the ligaments in the knee that help to keep the knee stable. This is a condition that can affect dogs of all ages (and much less commonly cats) and results in instability of the knee that causes pain, inflammation, and arthritis. Some dogs sustain an injury and the ligament is torn completely resulting in sudden, severe lameness of one of the back legs and others have a partial tear (think of a fraying rope) that may have more subtle symptoms. We diagnose these with physical examination and x-rays of the knee. If an ACL tear is diagnosed, we do offer several surgical options for repair. They range from Extra-articular stabilization (essentially using a heavy suture to tie the joint back together) to the TPLO or CBLO procedures (which change the angle of the shin bone portion of the knee joint to provide stabilization). Fortunately, we do perform these procedures here at Packerland, so if your dog has the bad luck to tear their cruciate ligament you don’t have to go far to have them fixed.