We quite rightly hear a lot in the press about the responsible use of antibiotics, in people and in animals. We all know that we should avoid the use of antibiotics unless absoutely necessary, but what about using antibiotics prophylactically after surgery? In the veterinary literature there is conflicting evidence on the benefit of antibiotic use after a clean elective implant procedure such as TPLO -some studies report that a short course after surgery can reduce the risk of infection and other studies report they make no difference. Not all of these studies are very well controlled though and so drawing conclusions from the data can be challenging. At Anderson Moores we have started a study to robustly address this important issue. Owners of dogs with cruciate ligament disease/rupture, between 15 and 60 kg body weight, with no other serious health issues or infections, and undergoing a unilateral TPLO surgery, will be invited to enter their dog into the study. Their dog will be treated exactly the same as any other dog that we see with a cruciate ligament problem but after surgery they will be randomised to recieve or not receive a postoperative oral course of antibiotics (all dogs will be given perioperative intravenous antibiotics). We will follow these cases for 12 months and compare infection rates in both groups. As a thank you to these clients and to ensure that clients are not disadvantaged by their pet being in one group or the other, there will be no charges for postoperative antibiotics and no charges for any treatment performed at Anderson Moores to manage any dog (of either group) that is unlucky enough to develop an infection after surgery. So, when you next see a cruciate case, do please think of referring the case to us in the knowledge that you will be helping us to research this important issue (and possibly saving your clients some money too).