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Need your experience
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Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
18 September 2017
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18 September 2017 - 6:59 pm
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My 8 y/o german shepherd Amber had 2 masses removed on 9/11/17,  The mammary mass was confirmed as cancer - vet believes the cancer was contained (thru blood work and x-rays).  Amber is healing fine from that part of the surgery.  The 2nd mass was on her hind right leg just below her ankle.  This mass was not cancerous.  Vet said surgery on this mass was simple.  Amber was released from the vet the same day with compression bandage.  5 days later I returned to have the vet look at both sites of surgery.  He removed the compression bandage and removed 2 stitches as they had broke.  He wanted the leg to remain uncovered and to return the following week for the remainder of the stitches to be removed. Upon driving home from the vet, I noticed blood dripping from the leg.  I called the vet immediately was told to return.  They cleaned the leg and reapplied a bandage telling me to return on 9/18/17.  On Saturday morning I noticed a terrible odor from the bandage from the leg and swelling in the foot, so I removed the bandage and called the vet.  They told me to leave it open and not allow Amber to lick the leg.  I spent the entire weekend practically sitting with her so she would not lick the leg (she broke the collar of shame). Monday morning (today) Amber went back to the vet.  Her foot was still very swollen.  The vet immediately looked concerned.  He cleaned the leg and paw, removed the remainder of the stitches and applied a compression bandage.  I have to return on Wednesday to have him look at the leg.  He said if the compression bandage does not work, Amber may lose her foot. Honestly I have a very bad feeling that this will be the end result.  Amber was placed on 1000mg antibiotics and pain med after surgery and still remains.  She is a 75lb female, spayed german shepherd.  I am so worried and to be honest scared facing Amber having to possibly have her left leg amputated.  Please give me any guidance or ideas to help Amber through this as the only thing I believe will prevent her leg amputation is a pure miracle.

Livermore, CA

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18 September 2017 - 8:46 pm
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Hello and welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.

I'm sorry Amber is having such a hard time!

A couple things come to mind:

First-was the mass removed from the ankle sent to a pathologist to determine it was non-cancerous?  The fact that the wound is not healing brings to mind a mass cell tumor.  Obviously that is not applicable if the mass was confirmed non cancerous.  If the mass was mast cell then I think amputation might be needed.

Second- has the vet cultured the wound to see what is causing the infection?  We have seen MRSA infections here and they are difficult to treat, but they can be.  Click on the link for more info on MRSA .  If it is an infection it seems like a specific course of antibiotics could be tried before amputation is considered.

If it comes to amputation then I bet Amber will do fine. We have several rear amp GSDs here including our current spokes-dog Wyatt Ray Dawg.  The Oaktown pack has three rear amp GSDs!

Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010


              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo


Forum Posts: 16023
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18 September 2017 - 10:15 pm
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YIKES!!! Sweet Amber has really had a rough time!  Seems like things got out of hand  pretty quickly.  YOU ARE to be commended for staying in topmof things and being a strong advocate for Amber!!  

Ditto everything Karen said.  And yes, a culture really needs to be done,as well as checking for mass cell with a pathologist (which may have already been done which is why he said it wasn't that).

Also want to add we are all really big in second opinions around nere.  If you don't feel comfortable with the results you have gotten so far, don't hesitate to have anither set of eyes check Amber over!

Now,as scary as it sounds, and we were all petrified o ce we heard the word "amputation", we are all here to tellnyou dogs generally do great on three legs!!  And as Karen said, GSD seem to master the new walk very quickly!

IF that is what is required, believe or not, she will feel sooooo much better once that painful leg is gone!  Sure, recovery is no picnic for a couple of weeks, but we'll help you navigate through all that.  If that's the best solution, we'll tell you what to expect, how to lrepare your home with non slip rugs if you have hardwoods, raised food vowls.....stuff like that.  

Also, if it comes to that, is this Vet an Orthopedic Surgeon and does he have a 24/7 clinic?  That would be ideal.

YOU ARE NOT ALONE, OKAY'???'   We're right by your side the whole way! 🙂


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!

Schofield, WI
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19 September 2017 - 6:14 am
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Hoping you can soon get some good news on beautiful Amber and avoid amputation.  Others here have given you good advice.  If it does come to amputation know your girl will do just fine!  GSD are so stoic and tough!  Our sweet Max was 110#s and did just fine as a tripawd.  Sadly we couldn't fight the cancer for long but he did just fine on the tripawd end of it.  Hugs and please keep us posted on your girl!

The Rainbow Bridge

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19 September 2017 - 2:47 pm
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Oh gosh what an ordeal. I can only echo what others have said about second opinions and checking for MRSA . And yep, GSDs do make great Tripawds. But try not to think about that right now. First, focus on making sure the infection is brought under control quickly. We're sending Tripawd Power to make it happen.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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