Dogs should not jump for at least several weeks after TPLO surgery. But there are times when, in spite of the best precautions, the dogs do so. And this leads to questions like on what is likely to happen next, and what to do about the dog jumping after TPLO surgery. This article has the answers.
If a dog jumped after TPLO surgery, this may slow down or completely hinder recovery. And it may cause complications. It is thus best to report the jumping incident: ideally to the vet who did the surgery and request for guidance on the best way forward.
Much of course depends on how soon after the surgery the dog jumped. Take a case in which the dog did a small jump 3 weeks after TPLO surgery.
That has different implications from one in which the dog jumped on the next day right after the surgery.
How big the jump was is also a key consideration. Take a case in which the dog did a huge jump after TPLO surgery. That surely has different implications from one in which the dog only did a small jump.
What you need to know is that any jumping is not proper for dogs in the first 2-3 months after TPLO surgery. It can lead to major complications.
You may even end up with the dog limping 1 year after TPLO surgery on account of those complications.
In fact jumping after TPLO surgery can even cause death. But that sort of outcome is more likely if, for instance, the dog fell after TPLO surgery, rather than ordinary jumping per se.
All in all, any case in which a dog jumped after TPLO surgery should be cause for concern.
What Does TPLO Surgery Usually Entail?
We are trying to understand what is likely to happen if a dog jumped after TPLO surgery. For us to do so well, it can be helpful to have some basic understanding of what TPLO surgery entails.
After understanding what TPLO surgery entails, it becomes easier to know what happens if a dog jumped after TPLO surgery.
So, what does TPLO surgery entail? At its core, TPLO surgery entails making a certain cut in the dog’s tibia bone. Then it entails rotating the tibia in a special manner, to align with the femur at a set angle.
Thereafter, there is attachment of a special metal plate (using screws), to ensure stability.
The vet is doing all this in a bid to help a dog with torn cranial cruciate ligament. So the idea is to get the dog to be using the limb without need for the ligament.
That is why the vet cuts the tibia, rotates it, aligns it with the femur at a certain angle, then stabilizes it with a metal plate.
The initials TPLO stand for Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy. And the term ‘osteotomy’ refers to a surgical operation in which a bone is cut.
The fact that this surgery entails cutting bones and installing metal plates means that it is a big deal.
It should then be clear that a case in which a dog jumped after TPLO surgery has major potential consequences.
Can A Dog Re Injure After TPLO Surgery?
The question on whether a dog can reinjure after TPLO surgery is a common one. It is definitely a question one is likely to have, if their dog jumped after TPLO surgery.
So, indeed can a dog injure a TPLO operated limb after the surgery? The answer is ‘yes’. A dog can indeed re injure after TPLO surgery.
For instance, if a dog jumped off couch after surgery (TPLO surgery), it may break the metal plate. This is the metal plate that the vet attaches, in order to stabilize the tibia-femur joint after the operation.
Or if the dog jumped on bed after TPLO surgery, it may bend or break the screws with which the stabilizing metal is attached.
There is of course also the possibility of the dog fracturing the tibia or femur. These are the bones that the vet touches (cuts or aligns) in the surgery, leaving them in a tender state.
Further, there is the possibility of the dog getting an infection of the bone or surgical wound infection.
The effects of the re-injury may be visible soon. Or you may get TPLO failure years later, due to this sort of re-injury.
Thus the bottom-line is that a dog can reinjure after TPLO surgery.
This is why TPLO recovery week by week follow-up is so essential. In other words, dog ACL surgery recovery week by week follow-up is not something to take for granted.
What Happens If My Dog Jumped After TPLO Surgery?
If your dog jumped after TPLO surgery, that may slow his recovery. In the worse cases, if the dog jumped after a TPLO surgery, that may hinder his recovery completely.
In most specific terms, jumping may cause the tibia and femur bones that are still healing to fracture.
Or the jumping may cause the stabilizing plate that the vet attached during the operation to slip. It could even bend or simply break, due to the jump.
What about the TPLO screws? Can TPLO screws come loose if a dog jumps too soon after TPLO surgery? The answer is ‘yes’. This too is a possibility.
Taking it further, can a dog break a TPLO surgery screw due to jumping? The answer is still yes. If the screw doesn’t come loose, it may end up simply breaking, due to the dog jumping too soon.
Jumping may also cause issues to the healing TPLO surgical wound…
So these are some of the possible outcomes if, for instance, the dog jumped on couch after TPLO surgery. They can also be the outcomes in a case in which the dog jumped off couch after TPLO surgery.
Ultimately, what happens largely depends on how soon after the surgery the dog jumps.
For instance, take a case in which the dog jumped 5 weeks after TPLO surgery. Now compare that with a case in which the dog jumped the next day after the surgery.
Obviously, the latter case is likely to have direr consequences than the former.
If there are dog ACL surgery failure symptoms due to the jumping, then those will be worse in the latter case.
What Are The Signs Of TPLO Surgery Complications?
If your dog jumped after TPLO surgery, there may be certain complications.
So, for instance, how do I know if my dog ruined TPLO surgery by jumping?
One sign of TPLO surgery complication is swelling that goes beyond a week after the operation. So some swelling in the first 5 or so days after the operation may be normal.
But swelling that goes beyond 7 days may be concerning.
For instance, if you find swelling at 5 weeks post-surgery, this may/should get you worried dog is re-injured five weeks after TPLO surgery.
A discharge from the surgical site can also be a sign of a complication. This is especially so if the discharge is smelly. It may mean that, for instance, there is an infection there.
The infection may be (at best) in the surgical wound. At worst, it may be a bone infection.
If the dog doesn’t want to bear weight on the operated limb beyond 7 days, that is worrisome. It is normal for there to be reluctance to bear weight in the first 5 or so days.
But beyond 7 days, it becomes worrisome.
What if the dog seems to be in pain post-operatively (and in spite of him using the provided pain relief meds)? This too may be a sign of a complication.
Thus if your dog jumped after TPLO surgery, and you see these sorts of signs, be concerned. Know that there may be a complication.
When Can Dogs Jump After TPLO Surgery?
In this sort of discussion (on what happens if a dog jumped after TPLO surgery), several other questions are likely to come up.
One of those is on when can a dog jump after TPLO surgery? And the answer is typically 8 to 16 weeks after the operation.
During the checkups that follow the operation, the vet will keep on telling you to gradually increase the dog’s activities.
By the time the dog is at between 12 and 16 weeks after the operation, jumping may be safe.
So for some dogs, jumping at 12 weeks may be safe. For others, you may have to wait until 16 weeks, before you can allow jumping again.
So the whole thing is akin to asking, when can my dog lay on his leg after TPLO surgery? And the answer turns out to be from 2 weeks or so for some dogs.
But there are those that have to wait for longer, before they can lay on their legs. (These being the legs on which the operations are carried out).
How Do You Prevent A Dog From Jumping After TPLO Surgery
From what we have said so far, it is clear that dog jumping after TPLO surgery is truly worth avoiding.
This leads to other questions like, how do I stop my dog from jumping on the couch after surgery?
Now what you may need to do is crate the dog, especially in the first few days. Only allow it out when going for toilet visits.
Another useful strategy is that of covering the couches and other high places the dog could jump on and off.
When taking the dog out (say for toilet visits), keep him on a short leash.
So those are some of the ways to keep dog from jumping after TPLO surgery.
My Dog Jumped After TPLO Surgery – What To Do?
If your dog jumped after TPLO surgery, the main thing you need to do is consult a vet. The most ideal vet to consult would be the one who did the surgery.
But if you can’t get the vet who did the TPLO surgery, you may consult any other qualified vet. That includes your regular vet.
Tell the vet that your dog, which underwent TPLO surgery recently, has jumped. Then get guidance on the best way forward from the vet.
The vet may want to know how big the jump was. Another thing the vet may want to know is how soon after the surgery the dog jumped. And you may have to tell the dog’s age to the vet…
Usually, the vet will want to thoroughly examine the dog that jumped after TPLO surgery.
In some cases, all the vet may prescribe are some meds. But if the damage from the dog jumping is particularly bad, the vet may recommend other procedures.
So you may end up needing to take the dog back to the operating table. This is if the damage from the jump is so bad that it requires reoperation.
Final Verdict – Dog Jumped After TPLO Surgery
If your dog jumped after TPLO surgery, it may end up healing slower than would otherwise be the case. The jumping may even completely hinder the healing.
Due to the jump, the (healing) tibia and femur bones may get fractured. Or the metal plate with which the vet stabilized the joint after the surgery may slip, bend or get broken.
The jumping may also affect the surgical wound site.
Thus it is best to call a vet, report the jumping incident to the vet and seek guidance on the best way forward.
The vet may prescribe some meds to manage the damage from the jump. But if the damage from the jump is too much, the vet may recommend more radical measures: including reoperation.
Welcome to Learn About Pet. My name is Rajkumar Ravichandran and I love all pets, travel, and amazing food. I write about my passion and personal experience caring for multiple pets in this blog! ❤️
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