My tiny dog broke her leg and it has not healed after casting. What next?


My tiny dog broke her leg about eight weeks ago. The vet told me she needed an operation to repair the bones but I wanted to try a cast first. The cast is off now and the leg has not healed. I even waited an extra couple of weeks to remove the cast hoping that would help. I want to know if the leg will become infected. I cannot afford the surgery to fix the lag and am afraid of something happening to her. She does seem to be doing well right now and I really need some advice.


From the information that you provided, I am going to make some assumptions - your dog is a tiny toy breed and broke its radius and ulna in the front leg.  This is a common fracture in these breeds.  Splinting or casting these fractures can be successful in achieving a healed bone, but there are often complications from this approach.  These bones are known to heal very slowly in toy breeds, they are hard to keep aligned properly while in the cast, and skin issues and sores resulting from prolonged casting are common.  Because of this, open surgery to realign the radius and apply a bone plate and screws is the most accepted way to manage these fractures.  Since it has been over 8 weeks since the fracture occurred, you should seek the opinion of a specialist in surgery who can assess current xrays and determine if there is a chance this fracture will heal with casting.  That person can also speak to you about the surgical options and costs involved if the fracture is not healing.  

Good luck with getting your little friend taken care of.