What do pet cranial cruciate ligament tears entail?

When you watch a sporting event, you probably cringe when you see an athlete fall and grab their knee. You are aware that they most likely tore their anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), one of the important ligaments in charge of supporting the knee.

Did you realize that the same knee ligament can be torn in a pet? Although it goes by a different name—cranial cruciate ligament (CCL)—the issue remains the same.

What does a pet’s cranial cruciate ligament injury entail?

The cranial cruciate ligament, which joins the thigh bone (the femur) to the shin bone (the tibia), is crucial for maintaining the stability of the knee joint. The shin moves away from the femur as your pet walks when the CCL ruptures or tears, which causes instability and pain.

How does cranial cruciate ligament damage happen in animals?

A CCL rupture or tear in animals is caused by a variety of reasons, such as:

  • Ligament deterioration
  • Obesity
  • Ill health
  • Genetics
  • the configuration and geometry of the skeleton
  • Breed

As opposed to an abrupt injury to a healthy ligament, CCL rupture typically results from the ligament steadily deteriorating over months or years.

What are the symptoms of a cranial cruciate ligament injury in animals?

It can be difficult for pet owners to decide whether their animal requires veterinary care because a CCL tear, especially a partial tear, can result in symptoms of varying seriousness. However, if your pet exhibits any of the following symptoms of a CCL rupture, you must make an appointment with our staff right away:

  • Pain Stiffness
  • Lameness on the back leg
  • Difficulty getting up after sitting
  • Difficulty getting up from a chair
  • Difficulty jumping into a car or onto furniture
  • Decreased activity level
  • Muscle wasting in the afflicted leg
  • Reduced knee range of motion

How is a damaged cranial cruciate ligament repaired?

The degree of knee instability, size, age, and level of activity of your pet’s knee will all affect the course of treatment for a torn CCL. As an osteotomy or suture-based approach is the only means to permanently treat the instability, surgery is often the best option. However, medicinal management could also be a possibility.

Your pet may have torn their cranial cruciate ligament if they limp on one of their back legs. Call us to arrange an orthopedic examination.