Home » Bilateral Cranial Cruciate Ligament Tear » Movement is Medicine: Week 4 Post-Surgery

Movement is Medicine: Week 4 Post-Surgery

Last week Whiskey was tapered off of all meds for pain and sedation. She tolerated it well! I kept her PT exercises the same since the pain meds were being stopped, but her walking routine increased by five minutes each session to three walks a day at 10 minutes a piece.

This week marks 4-weeks post-surgery and we once again kicked her PT sessions up a notch. Along with the exercises Whiskey began at her 2-week post-surgery mark, I added in some tug in addition to backwards walking instead of using it as an alternative, and also introduced cavalettis. Whiskey’s three walks a day also increased to 15 minutes per session. She is tolerating all of this just fine, which is great because surgery number two on her left side is less than a week away – March 6th!

Whiskey’s schedule at Week 4:


Controlled “tug” is a great way to encourage use of hind quarters during recovery.


Cavalettis during rehab strengthens muscles involved in knee flexion (bending), increases range of motion in the knee joint and helps to ensure stiffness in the joint does not occur.

If you are setting up cavalettis for your dog, here is a general guideline on where to set the poles:

  • Pole Spacing
    • Measure your dog at the withers. Then set the poles at the same distance apart as your dog’s
      height at the withers. For example, if your dog is 22 inches tall at the withers, space the poles 22 inches apart.
  • Pole Height
    • Set the poles at a height that is equal to half your dog’s hock height. For example, if your dog’s hock measures 6 inches from the ground, set the poles no higher than 3″ high. For the purpose of rehabbing Whiskey’s knee, I set the poles on the ground at first to get her acclimated to them, and then set them at 2 inches.

*Adjusted from original guidelines at cleanrun.com

Intro to cavalettis

Cavaletti practice

Look Ma, No Sling!

Whiskey has been walking, doing her exercises, and using stairs without any assistance.

  • Stairs
Stairs (down)
Stairs (up)
  • Walking
Walking at 4 weeks post-surgery
Walking at 4 weeks post-surgery

Care Package

A very special someone sent Whiskey a “Get Well Soon” package! Yummy treats and the most PERFECT Benebone ever…a fish! Whiskey worked extra hard during her PT for the treats and was occupied all night with the Benebone fish! Such perfect gifts – and so thoughtful and generous! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Leave a Reply