hurting for you...
I hope this will help you..... in 1993 (I know, a LONG time ago) we had a two year old westie who had patellar subluxation (her knee kept popping out of the knee cap. The surgery was a total knee replacement for a dog. My husband had just returned to work after two years of layoff, we had three young children, and I was working full time as a nurse. This was a tremendous decision for us because there was no guarentee it would work, it cost what I took home for three weeks work, and we had to keep a westie quiet for 8 weeks after. A westie is a ball of energy, like a lab only FASTER. We had the surgery, we took turns laying on an air mattress holding the dog any time she was not in the indoor kennel, and we carried her up and down the steps to go out to potty. It was the right choice for us. She lived to be 14 and we eventually forgot which knee was fixed because the outcome was so good. My kids learned alot about empathy and caring for an animal. I miss her even today. I hope you can come to grips with a decision.... whatever you decide will be right.