Orthopedic Surgeries

TLC hospital is excited to offer a wide variety of orthopedic procedures for our clients as well as referred clients. Here are some of procedures we offer:


Cranial Cruciate rupture repair

This is a common issue that can arise in any age of dog. It is similar to humans having a torn ACL, MCL, or PCL. There can be a genetic aspect to this problem or something that occurs from an animal causing progressive mechanical damage to the ligament from stopping and starting or other reasons to put strain on the ligament. Since there is a genetic aspect to it, commonly dogs who have one legs affects have the other leg have the same issue in 1-2 years. 

When this ligament ruptures, the stability of the knee is compromised and requires surgical intervention to repair. There are multiple ways to repair the knee. The gold standard of treatment is a Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO), which is what our surgeon is skilled in doing. The procedure uses hardware and the dog's own structures to stabilize the joint. 

To the right is an image of the x-ray after the procedure.

mpl pre

Medial Luxating Patella:

This is an ailment that occurs commonly in small dogs and is something the animal is born with or develops with time. Patella is a fancy word for kneecap, so this condition occurs when the kneecap sits abnormal out of the socket it is supposed to lay in. usually since it is a genetic condition both limbs are affected with this condition. Some animals live with this condition, and you just see some bouts of mild lameness. Sometimes though the animal has difficulty walking since the kneecap is not in the right position, so your dog may show limping or not using that limb at all for periods of time. 

What the surgeon does then is stabilize the kneecap in place to prevent future lameness. Image of a pre-(top) and post-surgery (bottom) are on the right.



Fracture Repair:

This is obviously an accident that occurs to cause this, but sadly accidents happen. Sometimes these can be managed with a cast or splint. Although if fracture is in odd place or the animal is very hyper, it is difficult to keep animal still long enough to allow the bone(s) to heal properly. In these cases to assure the best apposition between bone parts we are able to place a pin and or plates to assure correct apposition in a fracture. 

To the right is an example of one we performed at the clinic. The bottom picture is after we put a plate in to stabilize the bone:


If there any other orthopedic problems not listed that your pet may experience, please contact us to see the next step for you and your pet. 

In any of these orthopedic cases, post care is key in to allow the bone and/or joint to heal properly. We will send home with instructions to follow and we can refer to physical therapy places if the owner desires. 

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  • "I have taken my fur babies to Tender Loving Care Dr. Heitzman for over 12 years now and won't go anywhere but! Dr. Heitzman and staff have ALWAYS been so caring, gentle and compassionate with my animals as if they were their own! Not only putting animals health first, but listening to my concerns as pet owner. Every concern or question is addressed with the utmost compassion, even silly questions are answered with the same sincere care! Thank You Dr. Heitzman and staff for your compassion, concern and truly caring for my babies as you have from day one many years ago and continuing thru the present to the future!!!!"
    Colleen M
  • "Dr. Heitzman and his staff are so wonderful and caring! They understand that our furry friends mean so much to us. They listen and care about what we tell them. To me and my four legged friends they are truly the best around! Thank you so much!"
    Melissa C.
  • "Super Vet...calm, caring and conscientious! Office staff are efficient and courteous."
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  • "This is the place to take your pet! I love that when I call them, say who I am, they remember me and my dog. Dr. Heitzman is wonderful and I totally trust him in the care of my furry baby. He also took care of both of my cats before they passed away. I won't take my pet any where else."
    Amy P.

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