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Mon - Dec 11
2017


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General Principles
  • Examine all extremities for swelling and abnormal movement.

  • Compare Left and Right limbs and tail.

  • X-ray fractures if appropriate.

  • Immobilise for 4 weeks.

  • Recheck all casts weekly and replace when required. Remember young animals are growing rapidly and casts may become too tight and have to be replaced.

  • Give a Calcium supplement - Calcium Gluconate Syrup, Calcium Carbonate powder or Dicalcium Phosphate powder.

  • Adequate restraint during healing.


Injuries due to Restraint

Rupture of the Tarsal / Metatarsal Ligament

The correct handling techniques must always be used when handling struggling macropods.

The main ligament supporting the plantar surface of the tarsal/metatarsal joint can be ruptured when a struggling macropod is held off the ground by the distal metatarsals and toes.

This does not involve a fracture but can be more debilitating and will leave a permanent deformity. My experience is that these animals may cope in captivity but I have severe reservations about their release back to nature.

Surgical treatment of this condition requires extensive orthopaedics including opening the unstable joint, reaming out all the cartilage, packing the joint with cancellous bone harvested from the tibia or pelvis, then fixing the joint with plates or pins for 6-8 weeks followed by a cast for a further 4 weeks. This operation for a dog would cost well in excess of $1000.00 with at least 2-3 months of intense aftercare.

One must remember that macropods have long tibias and the stresses that can be generated by the lever action along this long “lever arm” when struggling can cause these problems of ruptured ligaments.

FROM "HANDBOOK OF SMALL ANIMAL ORTHOPEDICS
& FRACTURE TREATMENT" BINKER, PIEMATTEI & FLO.



FROM "HANDBOOK OF SMALL ANIMAL ORTHOPEDICS
& FRACTURE TREATMENT" BINKER, PIEMATTEI & FLO.


Spectacled Hare Wallaby - Tarsal / metatarsal Joint injury
Photos by Linda Staker



Grey Kangaroo Tarsal /metatarsal joint injury
Photo by Linda Staker





PROPER HANDLING PREVENTS THIS INJURY




PAGE 5 - Fractures Caused by Poor Husbandry


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Fractures in Macropods - Jim Pollock B.V.Sc


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