@zande - That is so true Zande, when you have a pack of bitches, the one "low" on the totem pole may be the last to come in heat in many cases... "want a be's" many times will come in first... depends on the pack.
I haven't had any experience either so googled it and got this
The success rate of TPLO surgery is extremely high, with as great as 90 percent of dogs who undergo TPLO surgery returning to normal or almost normal function. Because of the high degree of success, it has become the treatment of choice in large-breed and/or athletic dogs.
So @DonC has the right of it - talk to people with larger dogs. Not sure that I would class Poms as 'athletic' though !!!
How are you preparing the potato? I'm guessing not raw, although I enjoy a salted slice of raw potato once in a while.... are you boiling, nuking, baking... I'd consider trying this to see if I can shed some of doodles extra weight.
I would never take a chance with heart worm... I use NuHeart that is just for heart worm... small pill once a month... we do not have issues with heart worm in NoCal but I do not take a chance. I use it year round. In the area that there is frost/frozen for the winter you can use it just in the spring/summer/fall months.
For fleas/ticks I use frontline but only when I see fleas... again in NoCal not too much of an issue.. I need to use it maybe about twice a year and only when need or if I am traveling with the pups.