A: Hi Dina,
The injury that your sister’s dog sustained is probably a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). It is a fairly common injury of a dog’s knee. Diagnosis of the injury can be made on sometimes be made on simple examination of the knee. However, an exam under sedation and x-rays may be necessary. The only treatment option for a torn ACL is surgery. Leaving the knee untreated is not an option because arthritis will develop fairly quickly and the knee will be a chronic source of pain for the dog. There are several surgical options for repairing this injury. Unfortunately none of them are cheap. However, if your sister is on a limited budget then she could try to find a general practitioner who performs the FLO technique. This is an older but still excellent method. It is also less expensive and can be done well by non-specialists who do a lot of them. Good luck to your sister’s dog.