Goldendoodle Lame after Surgery for Osteochondritis Dissecans (OCD)

Goldendoodle Lame After OCD Surgery

My 8 month old goldendoodle had ocd shoulder surgery 10 weeks ago.  It was not arthroscopic, but open surgery.  He was still limping 4 weeks later, so he was opened up again for a second surgery on the same shoulder.  It has been five weeks.  He has been given the series of 8 adequan shots, which he just finished, and he limps as bad or worse that he did at the beginning. What can we do?  I am heartbroken.  My vet says he has ocd in the other shoulder as well, but I’m not about to do anything about it, until we can get our dog out of pain from his first shoulder.

hi! I just finished my last appointment and I’m on my phone right now voice texting you via email.
are you near me in Austin, Texas?
my first thought is this takes quite a while to heal and your dog needs more pain medication.
what meds is your dog on right now?
also, since this takes a while to heal, she should be doing specific short controlled walks and no extra activity around the house.
let me know what’s going on with these things-


Sadly, I am not near you.  I live in Missouri.  We actually have 2 doodles.  They are brothers.  I think that might be part of the problem, however, the vet said that after 4 weeks of quiet time, that there are no restrictions on Cxxx (my poor puppy).  He can run like the wind with his brother, but walking slowly is a real challenge.  I could go on forever.  Are you in the medical field, or are you familiar with this problem?  I feel so bad for him.  Yesterday was a beautiful day, so he ran around alot.  Today, he walks almost like his leg is broken.  I give him 1/2 of a Rimadyl tablet, every few days.  I’ve heard so many bad stories about how that drug hurts his liver, so I hate to keep him on it. I also have some tramadol left over from the second surgery, but I didn’t know if it was okay to use it.  I really thought the adequan shots were going to be the miracle drug, but I don’t see any change at all.  I so appreciate taking the time to discuss this with me, as I am at wits end, and the thought of putting him through another surgery just sounds awful to me.  Thanks again for your response.   P


Thank you 🙂 (for the kudos on the FB page)
So, from what you have said, everything I have posted on my WordPress website should answer your dilemma  even though this info is different from what you might have heard to do.
Cxxx needs pain relief and at least 12 weeks of no crashing around and very slow exercise protocol. No wild running. Read all my posts on pain after surgery.
Yes, I am very familiar, as you may have figured out by now, and I was blessed to have Grace Great Dane in my life for 10.5 yrs, and she had very bad OCD in one knee and mild in the other. That’s a longer story I haven’t written.
Anyway, in all my years of athletic involvement and now animal recovery, the biggest issue I have seen is lack of appropriate recovery time.
Get a harness and MAKE him go slowly, following any of my post-surgical homework assignments beginning at WEEK 1.
Use the Tramadol as if just after surgery, and see if that is enough to enable solid leg use during the very, very slow walks, and if so, you won’t need to use the nsaid for now. If you need to use the anti-inflammatory (nsaid), it is likely not going to do a bunch of damage. Usually vets don’t prescribe the meds without checking blood work anyway, and that was likely checked prior to surgery, at the least.
The bone was modified, and at the least the recovery time is 12 weeks. That is a general statement, but you will almost never, ever go wrong with strict control and specific recovery and rest.
I am currently working with two Goldendoodle sisters, and yes, they collaborate to damage each other.
This is a good opportunity to work on your being the alpha and doing some training. 🙂

You also said this in the other mail stream:
The Rimadyl doesn’t seem to take the edge off either. I give him a baby aspirin sometimes too. He was first diagnosed with pano. I knew something was wrong since he was 5 months old, but I was always told it was “growing pains”. We went to a different vet, who took xrays and found the divit in his bone. The Dr. said it was about the size of his thumbnail. When he went in the second time, he went in the backside and found more, some of the cartilage had taken hold, but some had not. I could explain more, but don’t want to bore you with details. Wish I could bring him in to see you. P

So, more replies for you…
Adequan is ok. In theory it is better than ok, however in my experience, very many animals do not respond notably to it. It is expensive for something that often doesn’t bring the expected relief. If you have a pet that doesn’t seem to notably benefit, then it is likely that he is not getting enough benefit to warrant the cost and potential drama of application. My Dane didn’t seem to benefit. Once in a while I see a pet that the owners REALLY think is benefiting from Adequan, so it’s likely a good choice for them.

Do not give baby aspirin along with another anti-inflammatory. It is very important to not double up on any nsaids (anti-inflammatories: Prednisone, Rimadyl, Deramaxx, Previcox, Metacam, Meloxicam, Vetprofen, etc…). They will be quick to give a bleeding stomach ulcer. Like I suggested previously, stick to the dog nsaid and let it do the work is is supposed to, use it as a good tool, and then he will be able to get off it for longer periods in his life. ALWAYS give an nsaid on a full meal, not just with a snack and definitely not an empty stomach. Tramadol may be given on an empty stomach, as may Gabapentin.

If you don’t give more restricted care and medication to the shoulder(s) now, the chance for arthritis increases, and since arthritis is likely at this point, take care and be gentle to let the body heal better.

I highly recommend Omega 3’s in fish oil, either by using sardines as part of daily food (reduce kibble accordingly and don’t make him fat :)), or using a good quality supplement. Find a supplement that contains about 400 mg of EPA in each capsule and start with one of those daily, moving up to 2 daily after about a week and after seeing that he adjusts in his gut (no squishy poop).

I also really like Xymogen DJD as a joint health formula.

I also highly recommend going grain-free in food and treats. Short story is that grains are difficult to digest and they are pro-inflammatory. End of short story. Substantial clinical research validates this.

Gotta go-

3 Replies to “Goldendoodle Lame after Surgery for Osteochondritis Dissecans (OCD)”

    1. Hi!
      The short answer is yes. The long answer involves a further discussion regarding OCD and what type(s) of healing to expect.
      Thanks for reading!

      1. Glad to hear it.. our puppy just had OCD shoulder three weeks ago and he’s recovering well. The surgeon said at 4 weeks to give him a bit more activity and that he might limp a bit but it will take about 8 weeks to recover fully. We will manage with carprofen when needed and not let him do too much. Long process indeed

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