I can't stress enough, the importance of "keeping him down" during the recovery process.
It'll seem like cruel and unusual punishment, and he'll look at you like he's done something wrong, but just spend a lot of time sitting with him while hes off his feet.
It'll be over before you know it (although it'll seem never ending while he's recovering) and your guy will be as good as new.
Heck, if you lived close to me, I'd GIVE you a crate. I have plenty of them to go around.
Actually, that being said, visit your local ASPCA and see if they'll "give" you a crate for him. You may have to make a small donation, but you might be able to get one for cheap.
Good luck and keep us posted on his progress.
Thank you!!! My baby had the surgery yesterday and is doing extremely well. He is coming home tonight.
The doctor has stressed about how important recovery is now. It is going to be hard, but I am going to be strict. If need be, I will buy a crate. We are going to try to confine him to our living room. Its not a huge room. But he'll have no choice but to lay down.
Shoot... sorry for not responding to this earlier. I only JUST saw it.
My English-Mastiff (Condi) had bi-lateral TPLO's performed when she was 18 months old. I did her right side first, then after she'd recovered, immediately did the left side.
I didn't crate her during the recovery period, which was approximately 10-12 weeks per side, and chose to leash her to the foot of the bed, leaving only about 2 feet of slack in the leash.
Yes, it seems harsh to leash a dog to the foot of the bed for 10-12 weeks, but quite honestly, you can't tell a dog to "stay off your leg and don't put any weight on it, okay?", so you either have to crate or do as I did.
As for taking time off, that's completely up to you. Once they're home from the hospital (Condi was there for 2 days, including the day of the surgery), all you have to do is keep him down. Dogs are quite stoic when it comes to pain (they hide it well), so keep up with the Tramadol (which is what I'm guessing they'll give you for him), and keep to the taper that the vet suggests.
I would leave the TV on in my room for Condi, and that kept her company while I was at work, I'd come home for lunch every day to briefly walk her, and spent a lot of time sitting with her watching TV while she was recovering.
3 months seems like a long recovery, I know, but you don't want the implant to not heal correctly, or the screws to start backing out. Keep him down, and he'll be a different dog when he's done.
During her recovery, it seemed like it'd never end, and keeping her apart from her 5 other sisters was torture, as she was the alpha in the house, but it was worth the time and effort. She was a different dog when all was said and done.
For the first 8 weeks, I didn't let ANY of the others even into the room with her, for fear she'd front and try to assert dominance (as alpha's tend to do when they've been away from their pack), but at week 8, I started bringing one of them in at a time and sort of "reintroduced them". By week 12, she was good to go.
Just remember, keep him down as much as possible (keep him off his leg). If you get a crate, you almost want one that's a little too small, so he can't stand up. Remember, putting weight on the leg will only hurt the healing process. Tying up to the foot of your bed, just make sure there's not too much leash/slack. If a dog CAN stand, they WILL stand, and you don't want that.
Feel free to message me if you have more questions.