We have had several dogs tear ACL. In the past, we opted for the "low-end" repair where the ends of the two bones were wired together. Takes about 6 months to heal, but in the long run, the dogs develop arthritis sooner and mobility is a bit awkward.
Our Tommy was the last to tear one. He was a rescue whose owners had opted for TPLO on the first knee. It was done in the Seattle area by a board certified ortho surgeon and cost them $3500. Tommy blew his other cruciate after he came to live with us. We decided on TPLO for him because there had been a record of great success with it since our first dogs had been injured. We were able to have the procedure done at our local vet clinic. The vet was not a board certified ortho surgeon but has done many TPLO procedures. We had great confidence in his abilities. This surgery cost $1800. And the recovery was faster than with the older method.
It's hard to compare Tommy's mobility with that of Jerry's Thor as Tommy is blind. But he runs around the yard as best he can and runs up and down stairs.
For me, the take it easy route, no surgery is not an option. The ligament is gone - will not come back so the leg will always be unstable.
Good luck! ""