Monday, October 21, 2013

A Torn Cruciate - Oh No! Not Again!

Wolf and Bandit having fun running in the leaves.

It started off as any ordinary day...a fun Autumn afternoon of Wolf and Bandit enjoying some fun playing together in the backyard. We still can not believe it has happened again. While running around playing in the leaves with his sister Bandit, Wolf suddenly went down, screaming. I was out there with them, photographing their fun, and I still can't believe it happened. One second they are playing and running together, and then I am at his side trying to figure out what happened. Did Bandit crash into him? Did he step on something? Did he twist and sprain something? And then that little nagging voice whispers "CCL." Now I hear a lot of talk about odds...but seriously, what are the odds that four out of my five Huskies would have some degree of tears to their cruciate ligaments? Three of them from the same bloodline.

First off, we had Chloe, who if you recall blew out both of her knees over a year ago and underwent double imbrication surgery. (Chloe's story HERE). She is Wolf's full sister. Then Gibson, who is Wolf & Chloe's older brother, partially tore his last winter, and since he is a canine epileptic (Epi-dog), I opted for Conservative Care Management/Treatment with the use of a WoundWear A-Trac Stability Brace. (His story is HERE). He successfully came out of the brace this past spring, however, he is always under watch because nothing is a guarantee.

Our Harley, who is the only one to have come from a reputable, official breeder, tore hers from a slippery, crazy, swirl in the snow. (Harley's story HERE). Hers was a partial tear in the rotating section (from chasing her tail like a lunatic in several inches of snow after diving off the deck eight years old!) She just came out of the braces (so far successfully) this summer. She is not from the same bloodline, and we can accept statistics that she is an older dog who could get this type of injury.

But three others from the same family? We have to look at genetics here. An irresponsible backyard breeder. One has Canine Epilepsy and tears a CCL. Another blows out (shreds) both knees and requires emergency surgery. Another one is deaf. And then Wolf. Two years ago he had a nasty (thankfully benign) growth removed from his elbow that was originally thought to be just a simple bunch of papillomas. Once in surgery, he had such an ugly, oddity growth, my vet in all his years had never ever seen such a thing. And now he has a full tear of his right cranial cruciate ligament. 

So, Wolf went in to our vet this morning and was sedated as he was in great pain today for a full exam and x-rays. He is now back home, still groggy (see above), and resting next to me as I type this. He will be outfitted with a WoundWear brace, and in two weeks will be re-evaluated by our vet to determine if he, too, will need surgery. I do not know what the future holds, whether the brace will be enough, or if he will require the surgery. All I know is I want to help him and keep him as pain-free and comfortable as possible.

Here's where I go off on irresponsible backyard breeders. They need to be shut down. Period. No exceptions. Thankfully, the people responsible for Gibson, Chloe, Wolf, and Bandit's line are now shut down. These irresponsible backyard breeders do not see the results of their poor handiwork...we do...all of us who have opened our hearts and homes to puppies and dogs who may have questionable or unknown lineage. If you don't know the story of four of our FiveSibes, in a nutshell: a client owed my husband money so we asked for a puppy, knowing we would give it a wonderful forever home. When we went to pick her up and saw the horrible conditions, we left with three. I just couldn't leave them there...and sadly, they all have health issues. But...they are forever mine, they are forever loved, and they are forever safe

Happily playing right before "it" happened.
I look back on the photos of him happily playing with Bandit and think, "I wish I didn't let him run." But then again, do I? Isn't that what makes them happy? How they live? And how are we to know what is next? I think the big thing is what to do with the "what ifs." I've been down the CCL road enough times to know it is typically an "in-the-works" type of injury. A tear can happen over a period of time until it just snaps. Or, defective since birth, until it just snaps. While I do know, logically, it would have happened whether he was running in the yard, jumping on the bed, or wrestling with one of our other Sibes. Emotionally, the protective mother in me wishes I could have prevented it, even if it was inevitable. The amazing thing is when Wolf went down, Bandit stopped running and immediately went to his side and nuzzled him until I reached him. They are truly amazing.

As I am typing this post, Harley, Gibson, Chloe, and Bandit are howling out on the back deck for Wolf...and this is Wolf, still partly groggy answering the call of his family:

I pray Wolf will soon be on the road to recovery, whichever way the path takes us. Your prayers, thoughts, and pawcircles are so welcoming and so very appreciated. I will keep you up-to-date on how he is doing, and will try to catch up with as many of you as I can in between his napping and rehabbing.

Stay well and stay happy, our dear furfriends.

* * * * * *

We have not had much time to visit a lot of our furpals blogs the past couple months due to hu-mom with Rheumatoid Arthritis issues, and rehabbing Huskies, but while visiting a few over the past couple days, we were so saddened to learn two beloved Blogger furpals have now journeyed to the Rainbow Bridge. Run free, beautiful Sam and Pip, we will miss you and your stories. 
We  send loving hugs to your family, whose hearts 
you will forever live.

Run free and enjoy those forever flowers, beautiful Sam.
Photo from & © How Sam Sees It blog.

Run free, adorable Pip, and enjoy all the cheeseburgers you want.
Photo from & © Pip In the Game blog.


  1. Wow, I'm so sorry to hear about your ouchies, Wolf! I'm sending a whole bunch of my bestest healing vibes to help you heal up super-fast. Take care, my furiend.
    Grr and Woof,
    Sarge, COP

  2. Sending lots of healing vibes and pawsitive husky woooos,


  3. Oh thank you so much. Losing Sam has been so hard on our family. While it makes me cry to see him on other blogs, it also makes me so happy to know he meant so much to others.

    We are saying prayers that Wolf will only need rest and will quickly heal.

    Monty and Harlow

  4. Oh dear, we are sending Wolf gentle purrs and we sure hope that cast does the trick.

  5. Oh no, so very sorry to hear this. Dakota tore hers right before she left us but her muscles were all weak from her illness. You have always done what is best for your sibes, things like this shouldn't happen to good people. We hope Wolf's injury will be able to be fixed and healed without too much trouble. But we know how tough these injuries can be.

    Hugs and Woos - Phantom, Ciara, and Lightning

  6. All our feets are crossed for you Wolf
    Benny & Lily

  7. Oh I hope you are feeling better soon

    Stop on by for a visit

  8. Oh, please take care Wolf & get well soon! We send hugs & prayers for you...

  9. Dear friends, we so understand your anguish and pain. Sending soft woos of comfort to you all and our strongest White Dog healing energies to Wolf. He is in the most caring, compassionate and nurturing home possible to guarantee he will get the attention he needs. And the power of love is absolutely incredible. Our Army joins your pack in a circle of protection and positivity around Wolf.