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Archer- car accident this morning, front legs fractured.
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Virginia
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19 April 2017 - 5:03 pm
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Not a lo g post at all! We've all been waiting to hear from you so we very much appreciate you updating us.

As Alison said, you now have a plan and can move forward. Yes, it will be a loooong road and I'm sure there will be ups and downs and twists and turns, but Archer is with you!!!! You and Archer will be taking one step at a time TOGETHER!

The thing about the amputation is that it's ONE surgery, a pretty rough recovery sometimes for about two weeks...And then that's it! Done!

What is the order of the path forward at this point? When are they planning on proceeding with the amputation with the "bad" leg and when are they planning on planning in repairing and casting the "good" leg...relatively speaking?!

STAY CONNECTED!!! Vent, rage, cry, scream, purge! We all do it so well nere! And as Alison alluded, we all feel better and stronger and more positive as we do! It will be a long road and we are with you and your beloved Archer every step of the way!!

Stay strong and confident arpu d Archer! He will feed off your energy and he will know everything will be okey dokey!

When you can catch your breath, we would love to see pictures of this cutie pie!!

((((((((((((((((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))))))))))

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Georgia
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20 April 2017 - 7:11 am
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A note of agreement with Sally and group, it was just a couple weeks ago that I hit the board in emotional meltdown and everyone was fantastically supportive, informative and walked me through what truthfully was an unexpected emotional drain.  No matter how much I vented and purged and despite some super long posts and a few very helpful chatroom sessions that never changed.  And now that Ginger and I are mostly on the other side we are more than willing to help do the same.   Will keep following you and Archer, it's a tough road but it gets easier for you both, though I have to admit Ginger bounced back faster than I did.  Hang in there.

Joined forum after Ginger, 2 1/2 year old German Shepherd, had front leg shattered by car on 4/1/17. Front leg amputated on 4/5/17. Still learning to be a tripawd mom.

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20 April 2017 - 9:42 am
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I am so pleased you've decided on this. If I may say so, I am certain that this is the best option. I didn't want to come on to strong about the grafts and stuff because every case is different, I'm not an expert and I obviously don't know the full facts of yours anyway, but skin grafts in any situation carry a considerable risk of infection. In a case like this in a large wound resulting from trauma, and when Archer needs his strength and healing energy to be focused on his other leg, it would seem particularly dicey. My Meg's graft failed, as did her skin flap. After months spent trying to save it, a chronic infection set in, and she ended up losing her leg in any case. 

This is by far the best option for Archer. Yes, it will be tough for a while, but you'll come through, and Archer will be absolutely fine and have a fantastic quality of life. We are all here to support you. All posts, however long or short are absolutely and always welcome.

Big hug,

Meg, Clare and Elsie Pie xxx

Meg, Mutt, aged around 8, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Elsie Pie, & Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Billie
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20 April 2017 - 10:24 am
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Kat,

Thank you for the update on Archer.   Prayers that his healing is great and speedy.   We are a great community and here for you to lean on.  Don't worry about meltdowns we are here to help.  I am sure there will be plenty on the road to recovery.  Writing is a good therapy consider starting a blog or even your own journal.  I did a private journal which I wrote down many feelings that I didn't want to share especially towards the end of our journey.  In that I wrote meds etc as well. But I also did a blog to share our story.

hugs

Michelle & Angel Sassy

Sassy & MichelleSassy is a proud member of the Winter Warriors. Live long, & strong Winter Warriors.

sassysugarbear.tripawds.com

07/26/2006 - Sassy earned her wings 08/20/2013

 

 "You aren't doing it TO her, you are doing it FOR her. Give her a chance at life."

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20 April 2017 - 8:56 pm
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Hi everyone. 

Thanks for the kind words and the support. Archer is officially a tripod. He had his surgery this afternoon and is resting comfortably. 

We (my boyfriend and I) we're nervous all day. Our friends and family have been extremely supportive and we feel we have made progress towards having a healthy tripod. 

The right leg was cleaned and stitched back up. There was no need for pins or plates. The doctor is concerned about "crush paw" and they did some hydrotherapy today. Only time will tell but as of this afternoon the doctor said he should make a full recovery. Obviously the crush paw is in the back of or minds but we'll do any preventative treatment to avoid it. 

The left leg was more damaged than stated yesterday. The artery had partial blockage which would of made the healing process very difficult. Overall, we're confident we made the right choice. If all goes well he should be home by Monday. 

My boyfriend started an Instagram account for Archer and I will be his personal photographer. We realize his story is just starting and we have so many more adventures ahead of us. 

His Instagram is archer_and_friends 

Virginia
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20 April 2017 - 9:30 pm
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WHEW!!! What a crazy time to get to this point!!! SURGERY IS OVER AND ARCHER IS SEEING PINK ELEPHANTS!!! 🙂 TRY and get some rest yourself while Archer is at the Vet. Recovery for a "regular" amputation is no picnic, so this is a double whammy of "no picnic"!! 🙂

You ABSOLUTELY made the right decision! Yes, it was a "forced choice", vut it was still a decision made out of love and courage and that is always the right decision!

I'm glad CLARE shared Meg's story. It really does help you know you are doing what needs to be done for Archer's well being.

Archer certainly picked the best humans ever to be by his side on his earthly journey! 🙂

Look forward ro following the journey of ARCHER THE MIRACLE DOG as he continues to heal and live life to the fullest! 🙂

Hugs and love!

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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21 April 2017 - 9:34 am
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Oh that's good to hear he made it through surgery ... and let the healing begin!

Thank you for the update !!! Keep us posted!

Shelby Lynne; Jack Russell/Shiba Inu mix. Proud member of the April Angels of 2014.

October 15, 2000 to April 8, 2014

Our story: Broke rear leg in June 2013 - non-conclusive results for cancer so leg was plated and pinned. Enlarged spleen in September 2013 and had it removed and was diagnosed with Hemangiosarcoma and started chemotherapy. Became a Tripawd January 8th, 2014 and definitive Hemangiosarcoma diagnosis. Three major surgeries in 7 months and Shelby took them all like a champ only to lose her battle to cancer in her brain. We had 8 amazing extra months together and no regrets. #shelbystrong #loveofmylife

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21 April 2017 - 7:57 pm
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Thank you for the update.  Glad he is recovering.  🙂

Sassy & MichelleSassy is a proud member of the Winter Warriors. Live long, & strong Winter Warriors.

sassysugarbear.tripawds.com

07/26/2006 - Sassy earned her wings 08/20/2013

 

 "You aren't doing it TO her, you are doing it FOR her. Give her a chance at life."

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22 April 2017 - 7:33 am
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Hello everyone, 

We just got the oh so exciting call, Archer is coming HOME!!!!!!!!!. We're sheduled to pick him up at 5pm.

We've made it to this point!! But, It has been the craziest 5 days of my life. So now we're prepping the house. Gates are going up and his beds are being set up.  I've been doing a lot of reading about what to expect when he comes home. 

We have a full house today, my boyfriends kids (6,11,14) and all the fur children are home. We've talked to the kids and they know to give him space. The 6 yr oldnis making welcome home banners and has picked out toys to share with him. And some friends will be taking furkids over the next few days so we can focus on Archer.

I was wondering if anyone had advice. What was the most difficult part of bringing them home? What worked for you or what did you wish you knew then that you know now. 

 Also, I've been reading about phantom limb pain. We have to talk to the doctor about it, but I'm sure Archer was on some meds to prevent it. Has anyone had experience with this and what did you to do to help and how soon did you start? 

Thanks again for for all the support. 

Kat 

Virginia
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22 April 2017 - 11:13 am
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YAAAAAAAAAY FOR HOME!!! Can't wait to see pictures of all the welcome home banners, etc! Soooo sweet!!

Yes, complete and total rest, rest, rest and quiet and calm.. Archer has been through a huge ordeal! Not sure how you'll be handling potty, but puppy lads may work for now as walking would be wuite difficult with his remaining front leg in a cast!

Peeing a d drinking water are more important than pooping and eating for now. Although, you do want enough food in him to coat his tummy for the pills.

The Vet will send you home with an antibiotic, Tramadol, maybe a pain patch and Gabapentin and Rimadyl. The Gaba will help keep phantom pain at bay.
IF he has phantom limb pain it usually presents itself as out of the blue loud help and trying to get up and move away from the pain. It's over in less than a minute. Just soothe and masssge and remain confident and calm. For now, I wouldn't be concerned at all. It may not even happen, but we have plenty of tips if it does.

I guess in retrospect I would have worked on portraying a more confident and calm energy those first several days. It is just myself and my dogs. I didn't find this wo derful site until day six and was not prepared at all for seeing my Happy Hannah cry and restless and wondering what I had done TO my dog! Recovery is a process and it doesn't happen over night. It is full of ups and downs...all normal!! I was completely sleep deprived. You have plenty of family members to watch over Archer while you sleep, so take advantage of it!

He may, or may not, be quite restless and whiny the first several nights. It can be a combo of the pain meds and even some pain.

Your recovery period is far more extensive than most dogs here. CLARE (Meg's mom) and KATHI (Murphy and Gus's mom) have experience in that regard. Murphy had hip surgery within six weeks of amputation and a lot of patience and confinement and more patience were required!

Archer survived the accident and he is with you!!!! Holding into the bliss of that will get you through anything! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Hugs!!

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

PS. Don't forget the pictures!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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22 April 2017 - 1:02 pm
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Archer's coming home! He's coming home! He's coming home! YAY for Archer! YAY for all of you!

I love the preparations your kids are making. Just adorable!

Ditto everything Sally says. Make sure you have got the traction issue covered. You will need to place non slip rugs/runners or yoga mats etc. on any hardwood floors or tiles to which Archer will have access. Obviously you will need to keep him calm and quiet. It's hard to know how mobile he will be, but certainly you do not want him slipping. When Meg fractured her elbow, I was told that bearing weight on it stimulated the bone to grow and aided healing. You will obviously be given advice by the vet. Make sure you ask them absolutely anything you want to know (and get a number to call for anything that comes up, or anything that, in the joy of your reunion with Archer, you forget to ask). Don't worry about asking 'stupid' questions. There is no such thing.

If you haven't already, I would personally ask to see the X-rays of his leg, post op. I think it can be helpful when caring for them to know exactly where the plates and pins are. Just helps to picture it, I think. Maybe that's just me.

They will advise you re the level of confinement required. Personally, I didn't crate Meg, but I removed all furniture from the room and slept on a mattress with her on the floor. I work largely from home, so was able to be with her all the time. If I had to go out at all, I got a neighbour to sit with her. We were very lucky to have these options. Had I absolutely had to leave her, I would have crated her.

One thing I found useful, when she started to get a bit fed up, was setting up a small pen outside, so she could get some fresh air safely. To be honest, I generally sat in it with her, which kind of made the pen a bit pointless, but it might be an option for Archer.

She also loved doing food puzzles (I'm not talking about the first few days, to be clear. At that point she was mostly asleep, but as she got stronger, but still needed to be confined). We still do these a lot (her favourites are the Nina Ottosson ones), and they really eem to satisfy her, and tire her out, which is great.

Archer will probably have some sort of cone to stop him worrying at his incision. It is absolutely critical that he doesn't lick the incision on his healing leg in particular. It is very easy to introduce infection this way, and with the implants (pins/plates etc) this would be a very serious issue, as implants store infection and make it impossible to get rid of. Meg much preferred an inflatable buster collar to the plastic cone of shame, as she could rest her chin on it, and it did prevent her reaching her elbow. Of course, it depends how far Archer's incision stretches. If you do use one, just be absolutely sure to thread his collar through the loops and check he can't wriggle it round.

I'm sure much of this is stating the obvious, but hopefully some of it is helpful. If anything else occurs, I'll let you know.

Oh, one more thing... for us, liver pate was invaluable for smuggling meds down without protest. Stick the pill in the middle of  nice fat lump, and down it goes no questions asked.

Most important of all, stay connected. We are here for you, cheering Archer on. Any questions or concerns just ask. 

Big hug,

Meg, Clare and Elsie Pie xxx

Meg, Mutt, aged around 8, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Elsie Pie, & Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Billie
My life as a MEG-A-STAR
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22 April 2017 - 1:06 pm
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Duh! Sorry, just seen that Archer doesn't have any pins and plates. Sorry, I hadn't taken that onboard. Well that makes things simpler, which is great. 

Now get that boy home where he belongs! Mr. Archer is on the mend! heart

Meg, Mutt, aged around 8, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Elsie Pie, & Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Billie
My life as a MEG-A-STAR
The Rainbow Bridge

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22 April 2017 - 3:24 pm
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HOOORRAAAY! Oh my dog what a great day for you all. I can just see how adorable this reunion will be. Congrats Archer & family! 

I was wondering if anyone had advice. What was the most difficult part of bringing them home? What worked for you or what did you wish you knew then that you know now. 

I think for me, it was the uncertainty of what was ahead. At the time I had no idea what his life would be like without that fourth leg. I mourned for him, thinking he would really be a different dog. But soon I learned that nope, he was the same happy dog as ever. The biggest challenge was for me to get over the worry. He had no problem with moving ahead, it's just not in animals' nature.

phantom limb pain. We have to talk to the doctor about it, but I'm sure Archer was on some meds to prevent it. Has anyone had experience with this and what did you to do to help and how soon did you start? 

Not every dog will get it. If Archer had good pain management before and after the leg came off it probably won't be an issue. Watch him carefully and see if he shows signs. He just might not.

Since Archer had other injuries, he may have more challenges ahead than the typical amputee in recovery. But stay strong. That guy's got a lot of spunk and he'll get back to his old self before you know it.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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22 April 2017 - 7:20 pm
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Thanks for the feedback.

We are all very excited to have him home. He is currently sleeping on his dad. 

We will do our best to portray a calm and positive attitude. We were not sent home with Gabapentin. I asked the doctor and there was no concern at this time. We go back on Wednesday to change the bandages and again a week later to remove the staples. I will keep an eye out for any signs of phantom limb pain and will call the doctor immediately. He is allowed to Put weight on his right leg but only for bathroom breaks. We have to support him with a towel until further notice. He does have to be crated to help his right leg heel. But otherwise no issues. We have to figure out scheduling to take care of him but his dad will be be working from home int he mornings for the next few days. 

As of right now he's mostly just sleeping and we are just soooooo happy to have him home. 

18057902_10103906024372798_7925328221959860648_n.jpg?oh=908493a7ec85e7452c261c5b250b2386&oe=59892271

17972158_10103906115220738_7288163824254555354_o.jpg?oh=4425b0736ddbd6ae2c078b6f605b3f69&oe=5980391DImage Enlarger

P.S no ferrets were injured in the process of taking this picture. Morgan was unable to keep him still and he slid down her arms. He is currently sleeping in his cage. 

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22 April 2017 - 7:24 pm
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Thank you for sharing the update.  This is a great family photo.  Keeping him still and quiet is the important thing for that other leg to heal.   He sure is an adorable baby.

hugs

Michelle & Angel Sassy

Sassy & MichelleSassy is a proud member of the Winter Warriors. Live long, & strong Winter Warriors.

sassysugarbear.tripawds.com

07/26/2006 - Sassy earned her wings 08/20/2013

 

 "You aren't doing it TO her, you are doing it FOR her. Give her a chance at life."

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