Update 8/16/2015: : Max the Akita had his second surgery on July 24, 2015. The knee cap had to be rebuilt and the muscle in the thigh area lengthened by 1 1/2 inches. There were bone fragments everywhere. ACL completely torn. The good news is that Max is doing very well. Despite the complicated nature of the surgery, having had the other leg operated on in April, Max had a good leg to help support him after the second surgery. Below is a video taken five days after this surgery. We are grateful to Dr. Galindo who performed the surgery, Leo's Helping Paws for the grant they provided, and everyone who donated so far. Max would still be in terrible pain if it were not for you! Please note we are still fundraising toward the costs and there are rehabilitation costs yet to come. Max Thanks You!
Update 7/11/2015: After Max's first surgery on April 27, he needed to keep weight off his leg for at least six weeks. He has been going to physical therapy for several weeks now and doing great. Max has an awesome spirit. His second surgery is scheduled for July 24. Stay tuned!
Update 5/19/2015: Max is doing well. On June 4, he goes for x-rays to see how his left leg is healing after the (first) operation. If all is going well, at that time, they will schedule the operation for the other leg. His caretaker had a good idea to take him for some cold laser treatments to aid in the healing process and Dr. Galindo agreed it would be helpful. Paws crossed...so far first surgery seems to have been successful but we will know for sure on June 4. See below two new pics of Max relaxing on the deck while recovering from surgery.
Update 5/2/15: Max had his first surgery on April 27. It took several hours longer than expected due to the complicated nature of his problem. He had a very rough night after the surgery, but thanks to his awesome foster mom, he got through it. He is doing better now as the swelling is going down. His next surgery will be in approx. 6 weeks. We could really use help financially as we are still several thousand dollars short despite some very generous donations as well as a grant from Leo's Helping Paws.
Update 4/21/15: After consulting with the vet hospitals at Cornell University and the University of Pennsylvania, (and doing some further research), we've scheduled Max's surgery with Dr. Galindo/Stroudsburg Animal Hospital. The surgery on his first leg is scheduled for April 27, 2015. We are still hoping to receive more donations to help with the costs. Please help if you can!
Update 3/12/15: We have been busy checking out different options for Max's surgery that may be more affordable. He is headed to the University of Pennsylvania Vet Clinic on Tuesday, March 17. We are hoping that they can do the surgery at a reduced cost as they often extend discounts to rescues. We will update after the visit.
Hi. My name is Max (initially known as Bear). I am an Akita estimated to be 3 years old. I would like to tell you my story. I showed up at a house in the Poconos. I was very thin and dragging a four foot chain. As a result of several people helping me, I've been given a temporary place to stay and was able to see a vet. I was neutered and checked over thoroughly. The vet noticed that I had a severe problem with my back legs. X-rays showed that both knee joints are "a mess". That would explain why my legs hurt a lot and I walk kind of funny. After seeing an orthopedic surgeon for a consultation, it was determined that I am in a good deal of pain due to defects in my knees. I am currently on medication and feel better than I ever did, however I am going to need extensive surgery on both knees. I have asked my friends to post a video so you can see that my back legs don't work right. I am hoping that my friends can raise enough money so I can get the operations and rehabilitation I need.
Here is what the surgeon said: "In regards of Bear's injuries, since they had been very chronic, it would be dishonest from me to say that he will be 100% pain free in both knees. I know that he will suffer from occasional or residual lameness, just like anybody who have had knee or hip injuries and surgery. One thing that I can guarantee is that he will be able to perform activities that he is not able to do right now, he will live a long life free of knee instability and patella luxation. In other words he will have an excellent quality of life, by providing him with knee stabilization and patella luxation repair. He will be able to walk and have a great range of motion., he will be a pup again and when he has healed from both will be able to play with other animals or children. Anyway, I can say for sure without exaggerating that I can make him close to 80-85 % out of 100 % pain free, and this is because of the chronic side effects that had already occurred within the knees."
My operations and rehabilitation will cost approximately $7000. My friends and I appreciate ANY donation you can give. If we cannot raise all the money needed, the funds received will be returned to the donors. Thank you, Max
max-aka-bear-paws-consult.docx Letter from Orthopedic Surgeon describing the problems with Max's knees and the surgery which would be required to repair them. Note that in the report Max was initially named Bear. 33.4 KB