(Welcome to the weekly pet column of Pet Connection Programs Inc. of Marilla, N.Y. A new article is posted each week, so be sure to check back on a regular basis!)
It’s been a “ruff” year so far for Sadie, Goettl Air Conditioning‘s mascot and Chief Employee Screener. She’s been on “medical leave” after tearing her ACL, undergoing surgery and doing daily physical therapy to get back on her paws. It’s a very common, yet largely preventable pet injury for most dogs.
“She’s a tough cookie,” said her owner, Ken Goodrich, adding that Sadie naturally took to her role to sniff out employee talent after a bad meeting at his home with a landscaper who later stole from the Goodrich family. “Sadie knew this guy was bad news and I should have paid attention to her instincts,” recalls Goodrich, who later began having Sadie meet prospective employees and see if they were made of the right stuff.
Sadie was happy as a pup over the holidays and attended the company’s holiday party in good spirits. Shortly after Ken noticed her limping and discovered the playful and affable Sadie injured her leg resulting in a torn ACL. After surgery and some doggy down time, Sadie now is in getting her bark back with daily physical therapy. “She’ll be up and running in no time,” said Goodrich.
Veterinarians report that K9 and ACL injuries are one of the most commonly seen orthopedic issues in dogs. Most vets believe ACL injuries have to do with activity, breed, age and excess weight. Jumping off a couch, landing badly or stepping in a hole while playing ball are common reasons for the injury.
In addition, certain breeds such as Labradors, Golden Retrievers, Rottweiler’s and Newfoundland’sare particularly susceptible to ACL injuries. Dogs who exercise strenuously periodically and overweight pups are prone to the injury as well.
Treatment includes surgery and vigorous physical therapy. To prevent ACL injuries, veterinarians suggest regular exercise – swimming is particularly recommended, which helps build muscle around the joints in the leg – and avoiding excessive jumping and sudden twists and turns are the best precautions pet owners can take.
Besides the physical toll on man and beast alike, it can be costly as well. Surgery and ongoing physical therapy for ACL injuries typically run in the thousands of dollars. Still, a few preventative measures can keep you dog injury free.
And take it from Sadie – it’s not fun being on medical leave.
— PR Newswire
(For more information on pets and animal adoption, please visit www.petconnectionprogramsinc.com. Or, visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PetConnectionProgramsinc. Located in Marilla, N.Y., Pet Connection Programs Inc. is a nonprofit maternity and special care shelter founded in 1984.)