Moderate to full weight bearing (basically normal).
Our goal at this point is to strengthen the leg for a return to full function.
1. NSAIDs: Most dogs don’t need any at this point.
2. Warm Pack and Massage: Less value at this point but some dogs enjoy it.
3. Flexion/Extension Exercises: Continue these only if range of motion has not returned to 100%.
4. Strengthening Exercises: Continue to increase the frequency, duration and intensity of the workout. Do a variety of activities to keep the workout interesting for you and your dog.
- Walk in tight circles, figure eights and serpentine patterns with the surgery leg closest to you.
- Hopping/Dancing – hold the front feet up (to the height of the dog’s shoulders) and walk forward and backward.
- Hold your dogs good knee up and have another person slowly walk your dog, encouraging it to use the surgery leg
- Walk or trot at a faster pace doing more hills and stairs
- Put obstacles in the yard so that your dog has to step over them. A few 2×4’s spaced a few feet apart does the trick. This forces them to re-coordinate their legs and use all four to navigate successfully.
- Tug-of-war, or backing up- only do this if your dog does not have neck or back issues.
5. Cold Packing: is not necessary unless swelling and inflammation is still present.