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Ola Barrett
Ola Barrett,
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 275
Experience:  Veterinarian at Lake Chatuge Animal Hospital
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My 12lb Maltese tried to jump up on the bed and somehow

Customer Question

My 12lb Maltese tried to jump up on the bed and somehow injured his hip/leg. When I first picked him up, I thought his leg was dislocated because there was a large bulge at his him area. So we immediately took him to a Vet. We don't have very much experience with Vets because our dogs have been pretty healthy. I just got a bad feeling from the Vet. He told us Maxx needed surgery and showed us his x-rays. I really didn't see anything that jumped out at me to show an injury, but we agreed. The Vet said they would do his blood work and to bring him back to the office on Sat for surgery. Is it normal to put on a bandage after a major blood work-up? Maxx had no bandages. They didn't give us any instructions or let us know what the cost was going to be for the surgery, just said to bring him in early Sat morning. They gave him an injection for pain and sent us home with medicine and a $450 bill. Maxx is still walking about on 3 legs and has not displayed any symptoms of pain or discomfort. I've notice this morning that he's trying to put his right rear leg down while eating. I've been researching his injury online and noticed others opted out of surgery and used braces and other non-surgical methods. What would you suggest?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Ola Barrett replied 1 year ago.

Hello, this is Dr. RB and I am a small animal veterinarian;) To help answer your questions, general blood work doesn't require any bandaging materials unless an intravenous catheter is placed which is usually not the case. Smaller needles are needed to obtain blood samples than in human medicine. And blood work, x-rays, exam and pain medications with a $450 bill is pretty reasonable. As far as surgery cost goes, I would call them and request the DVM and staff create an itemized surgical estimate for you so you will be better prepared. Most hip dislocations require a procedure known as a femoral head osteotomy (FHO) to remove the head of the femur (ball at the top of back leg that fits into the hip joint) and allow the muscles and cartilage material around the hip joint to stabilize the joint. By removing the femoral head, pain will be reduced because you eliminate the "rubbing" or motion created by the dislocation. I hope this is of help to you:)

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Do you think surgery is the only option or do you suggest other alternatives?
Expert:  Ola Barrett replied 1 year ago.

I think surgery is the best option in order for her to regain mobility in her hind limb.

Expert:  Ola Barrett replied 1 year ago.

Some hip injuries can be stabilized with a splint or sling applied to leg but there is a high incidence of the joint repeating it's dislocation. Surgery within a few days of the injury is best because the supporting structures around the joints are able to heal better after the surgery than if surgery is delayed long enough to allow these structures to thicken or fibrose around the joint capsule.