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Dr. Whitehead
Dr. Whitehead, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 4055
Experience:  Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, internship trained, with 5 years of experience in high quality practice treating dogs, cats, and some exotics.
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I have a 3lb. Chihuahua who is scheduled to have surgery

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I have a 3lb. Chihuahua who is scheduled to have surgery done fairly soon by a skilled orthopedic veterinarian on both his hind legs for luxated patellar , one leg is an advanced stage four (the doctor says is a complicated procedure) and the other is a simpler stage four. These surgeries are going to be done two days in a row, the more complex operation first. My question is: Is it more dangerous ,considering his size, to have these surgeries done so close together or would it be better to wait a month between? I am very worried about him.
Hello there! My name isXXXXX and i am sorry to hear about Apollo's knees. I think doing the surgeries so close together is not any more risky then doing them a month apart because there is always some risk to go under anesthesia just like there is for us to go under anesthesia. the good thing is that he will not have to recover twice. He will go through the whole recovery process just one time then he will be a lot more comfortable. I have seen many dogs do the surgery so close together and once it is all said and done the dog and owner seem to be a lot happier. Just because of what i mentioned above. Going through the recovery just once. These little dogs do awesome after surgery even when both legs are affected. The first couple days will be the worse but with proper pain management you will see significant improvement quickly. I definitely think the size helps in his case with recovery being easier. Risk is minimalists by the surgeon with modern drugs and proper monitoring equipment. So i think you are making a good decision and will be happy in a month when your dog is almost better than he was before and you don't have to go through it again. I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any further questions
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I feel a lot better about having the surgery done on consecutive days. Thank you. Regarding pain management, it is difficult to get Apollo to take pills, even when I stick one in a piece of canned dog food. I am looking for another way to give him the pain medication. Are pain patches available for very small dogs?
You are very welcome. Patches are not available for that small of a pet so I would discuss with the surgeon about having pain medications compounded (made by a specialty pharmacy) into a liquid so you can give the medications more easily or to use already available liquid pain medications such as metacam (anti inflammatory) and buprenex (pain med). Those are the easiest to use in a small dog that doesn't like to take pain meds. I understand how difficult that can be. I wish they had pain patches small enough for little dogs like him but they don't as far as I know.
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for advice and for answering so promptly.

You are very welcome! I hope he is good as new very soon and please let me know if you have any further questions or concerns and please do not forget to rate my response so I receive credit. Thank you
Hi Patricia,

I'm just following up on our conversation about Apollo. How is everything going?

Dr. Whitehead