Health: Luxating Patella Surgery (Pre-op)

Luxating Patella in Dogs | Vanillapup

Hi, everyone. I’m not sure if this is good news or bad news but I am going to have my left leg operated on this Friday to fix my luxating patella. After much research, mama has chosen to go with Dr Hsu from The Animal Clinic for my operation. He’s also the vet who sterilised me when I was seven months old. Mama was impressed by how neat my stitches were and my wound healed perfectly. You can’t even see the scar anymore!

What to Expect

To be honest, I’m not sure what’s going to happen, but I am getting really nervous vibes from mama. I can’t help but to feel anxious too! It’s going to be a day surgery, and according to Dr Hsu, my leg is going to be shaved and there will be quite a long cut along my knee. The procedure is called sulcoplasty, where he will create a deep enough groove that the patella sits in, so it doesn’t snap out anymore. Undissolvable sutures will be used so that they hold better during my healing process.

Just from the sound of everything, mama’s heart sank. She told me that she cannot bear for me to suffer, but she had to make this difficult decision for my long-term health. If I don’t get this problem fixed early, there’s a chance that I may get arthritis, which is a chronic and extremely painful condition. Both my legs suffer from luxating patella, but my left leg has it worse. It is constantly popping in and out, which will eventually wear out my joint. Dr Hsu said that if I fix the bad leg, it will also put less pressure on my right leg, preventing deterioration. Mama decided that fixing one leg now is better than fixing two in the future, or worse, fighting arthritis.


It will take me a week or two before I can use my left leg, which really doesn’t sound too bad. Even though Dr Hsu said it isn’t necessary, mama will be staying home with me the whole time, which makes me feel a lot better. Mama read online that for a full recovery, it will take roughly one to two months. This means no jumping or running as much as possible! That doesn’t sound doable to me but we will see how it goes. Mama isn’t looking forward to seeing my poor shaved leg with a long stitched up wound, but I know she will do well in taking care of me. I will also try to be as brave as I can!


With each surgery, comes the dangers of anaesthesia and wound infection. There’s no running away from those! Also, there’s a chance that the groove in my knee may not be deepened enough, causing my patella to luxate again. However, Dr Hsu seemed really confident in curing me, so mama and I will be putting all our trust in him. I’m praying hard that I will be running, swimming and jumping happily again soon!

I will be updating on my progress here and also on my Instagram.

Wish me luck!

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Latte is the happy Westie behind Vanillapup, a website for dog lovers. Discover latest products and services, dog-friendly hangouts, helpful tips and advice, and exclusive perks.


  1. Mavis

    July 11, 2016 at 9:45 am

    hi.. would like to know more about the surgery.
    hope you wouldn’t mind to share with me…
    possible to communicate via email?

    thanks in advance!~

    • Vanillapup

      July 11, 2016 at 5:23 pm

      Hi Mavis, sent you an email 🙂

  2. Taro

    November 15, 2014 at 11:00 pm

    Dont worry latte!!! I went when i was a few months old! U will start hopping around like a bunny for a few days after surgery! But it’s quite a fast recovery process! And now my leg feels so much better hehe. It’s good to go for the ops! Take care and dont worry so much loveeeee

    • vanillapup

      November 16, 2014 at 9:44 am

      Thanks for the encouraging words! I am so glad you have recovered well! I am currently feeling bored because mama won’t let me do anything 😛

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