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Necessities for when Tripawd comes home for the first time??
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5 January 2017 - 2:19 pm
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Hi everyone.

I'm trying to think of what I need and get everything ready for when we bring Otis home after surgery.

I know I need

1.  Ramp(s) - anyone have any great ideas for easy quick ramps?  I was thinking plywood and non skid sticky thingies.  That is what the vet mentioned. 

2.  Cone - can I buy an inflatable one instead?  A big dog with a cone is a dangerous not only to himself but everyone and everything around him!  If so is there a specific one any of you have used and would recommend?

3.  Non skid carpets on the floors

4.  Something for a sling

I know I need a harness for after the stitches are taken out, but what do we use now?  Is this the point that you guys recommend using a canvas grocery bag?

5.  Thermometer and lube.

6.  A firm bed (he has a big fluffy one now and an orthopedic one but may need a bigger firm one now as he probably won't be curling up at first. 

7.  A raised dish.  Yeah have one of those but being a giant, we need to make it even higher so we plan to put it on top of something and secure it.  Maybe a wood crate.  He has one of those fancy things that catch any water he sloshes around so it does not end up on the floor.

Getting him comfy in the car for the 2 hour ride home is going to be a challenge.  Any ideas for that?  I plan on having hubby sit in the back with him, but do I put blankets on the seats or what?  I don't even know how to get him in the car OMG

Otis - 121 lbs pre amp - 114 lbs post amp and now 118 lb Great Dane - English Mastiff X.  Started limping on 12/24/16.  Diagnosed with Osteosarcoma 12/28/16 - amputation of front left leg on 1/6/17.  Stitches out and 1st round of Chemo on 1/19/17.   2nd round of Carboplatin on 2/10/17 - 3rd round on 3/2/2017.  4th round was scheduled for 3/22/17 - however due to low WBC postponed - 4th Chemo completed on 3/28/17.  Had breathing difficulties, stayed in Tufts ICU overnight.  Due for 2 more rounds of Chemo but we are opting to go with homeopathy with Dr. Loops instead.

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5 January 2017 - 5:46 pm
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Please check the Tripawds Gear blog for plenty of recommendations about ramps, cone of shame alternatives, traction solutions, and the best dog beds. (Consider the Big Barker or Urban Sprawl for big dogs.)

If you need to provide lift assistance before getting a harness, cut a canvas shopping bag down the sides to create a handy sling.

Otis is clearly in good hands, please keep us posted!

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5 January 2017 - 6:47 pm
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Oh, best of luck to you!  Looks like you have all of your bases pretty well covered.  I thought for sure we would need ramps as we have steps going down from all entrances to our house, but my Eddy surprised us and handled the steps with ease.  Even the 14 steps up to our bedroom!  He navigated them like a champ!  You may be surprised!  Even getting in the car, he just hopped right in!  I remember picking him up the day after his amp, he literally hopped right out to greet us.  The day after we got home, he beat me going down our long driveway to get the mail (our daily routine)!   

I did buy the harness from the Tripawds website and we used it a LOT!  It was indispensable at times.  I highly recommend it.

I definitely recommend the Big Barker Bed!  Eddy LOVED it!  It was large and like a temperpedic bed.  He was always laying on it!  It has now been passed down to our new Golden, and she loves it as well!

We have hardwood on our first level and I bought rubber backed runners and basically made a trail through the house for Eddy to walk on.  It worked great!

We bought a raised water and food bowl set and that was great for him.  Highly recommend!

Please keep us updated on how Otis is doing.  If you have any questions, please message me.  Prayers for a successful recovery!

Betsy Golden and Angel, Eddy.  Eddy was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma 7-23-14, had a left rear amputation 8-07-14, had 3 rounds of carboplatin chemotherapy,  a small lung met was discovered in October, had 2 rounds of doxorubicin, and unfortunately more lung mets were discovered.  Eddy fought cancer valiantly and went to the Rainbow Bridge 1-6-15, at the age of 7 years and 359 days, just six days short of his 8th birthday.   Best Dog, Ever....you will never be forgotten.

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5 January 2017 - 7:50 pm
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You'll get tons of good replies, here's our $0.02:

Cheap yoga mats at either TJMaxx/Homegoods/Marshalls or WalMart come in very very handy for traction on areas where there aren't rugs on your floors.

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5 January 2017 - 8:24 pm
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Body pillow(s) for propping Otis up and if he gets tired of lying flat on his bed. 

Interlocking mats or yoga mats. 

Cheap fake fleece to line grocery bag " harness" or for when harness arrives. 

A pill box to divide up the meds! 

An EAR thermometer! CharlieBear insists on that one!!! 

And then whatever Otis wants:):):)

( Your list is spot on though!!!) 

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5 January 2017 - 9:30 pm
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Whew just ordered the big barker and liner, waterproof pads (liner won't be here for at least a week), canvas tote bags and an inflatable collar.  

Thanks to everyone for the ideas.  Now off to order more stuff!

Otis - 121 lbs pre amp - 114 lbs post amp and now 118 lb Great Dane - English Mastiff X.  Started limping on 12/24/16.  Diagnosed with Osteosarcoma 12/28/16 - amputation of front left leg on 1/6/17.  Stitches out and 1st round of Chemo on 1/19/17.   2nd round of Carboplatin on 2/10/17 - 3rd round on 3/2/2017.  4th round was scheduled for 3/22/17 - however due to low WBC postponed - 4th Chemo completed on 3/28/17.  Had breathing difficulties, stayed in Tufts ICU overnight.  Due for 2 more rounds of Chemo but we are opting to go with homeopathy with Dr. Loops instead.

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6 January 2017 - 2:55 am
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Unless Otis is used to using a ramp, I might skip that.  I bought one for Tess' knee surgery and both dogs almost killed themselves in their efforts to avoid it.    

I also strongly recommend the Ruffwear Webmaster Plus harness.  You can see photos in the gear blog,mand Eurydice the Dane is usually wearing hers in her forum photos.

Another option to the yoga mats (hard to run a vacuum over) is industrial floor mats.  You can find them at stores like Home Depot.  Some of them are not too ugly.

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

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6 January 2017 - 2:58 am
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Car ride - blanket in back seat and someone riding there with him is your best option.  And my Otis got in the car himself, he was so eager to leave and so doped up on hospital meds.  His long legs made it more of a step up than a jump. Your husband and the vet hospital staff can probably help if Otis can't do it or if you have an SUV.

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

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6 January 2017 - 4:12 am
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The Vet School/ vet student will definitely walk you to your car and say goodbye and help you load Otis. Depending on your vehicle, I strongly recommend that the wheel well is filled with something solid ( at least where Otis' big old Otis head and chest is) so that should he try to move or get up, he won't slide off partly into the floor ( even given your husband riding in the back with him: it would be hard to stop a sliding Otis on happy pink elephant drugs). I have used blankets and books and whatever other objects there are at hand to get the wheel well/floor level with the seat. 

Do you have a car/truck/SUV? That makes a difference in how he loads/unloads.

(And totally agree with Otis and Tess about ramps: many, many dogs just try to avoid them unless they are used to them beforehand. sigh...)

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6 January 2017 - 4:17 am
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Wait!!! That should have read "big ol' Otis head..."which is a compliment in the South and NOT "big old"!!!!!! Dang autocorrect!!!! Charlie Bear and I send our deepest fauxpaw apologies!!!! You are NOT old Otis!!!!!!! You are SUPERDOG! Thinking of you guys today and sending best wishes, hugs, and PyrPaws!

London, UK
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6 January 2017 - 4:35 am
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This is great! You've had loads of ideas and will be wonderfully prepared for when Otis comes home. One thing I've found invaluable is having in a tub of liver paté. I use this to give Meg her meds. Stick the pill in the middle of a blob off paté and down it goes no questions asked. Really relieves the stress of medication time. 

Re the car. I have a small hatchback, so I put the back seats down and turned the back into a large dog bed, as you see from the pic. We had a similar distance to drive, but Meg was very comfortable and just lay down and slept. 

Don't have advice re getting him in, as Meg is much smaller and pickupable. I would have thought a large step might be easier for Otis than a ramp, but that's just a hunch.

Good luck with it all. We'll be thinking of you,

Meg, Clare and Elsie Pie xxx

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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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6 January 2017 - 6:45 am
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Hello - you have covered a lot of the main points here.

Recommendation on meds - have a thorough conversation on the meds schedule and dosages and what can be adjusted if it seems to be not enough or too much.  You are likely coming home with a few pain meds and maybe an antibiotic.  It seems like a lot, but the different meds address pain in different modalities and work together well.  Tramadol is a narcotic working in the brain on pain receptors, Rimadyl is an anti inflammatory and Gabapentin is a nerve pain med.  Not all vets will prescribe Gabapentin, but a lot of dogs do better with it added in for a period of time.  Tramadol and Gabapentin can be administered every 8 hours or every 12 hours - generally after the surgery it is every 8 hours.  But the schedules can be tweaked and staggered to try to stay ahead of the pain and there is usually a range that can be given safely on the dosage, too.  It is good to know what can be adjusted in advance instead of having to scramble to talk to someone about it in the moment if Otis seems to be in pain.

Rubber backed runners and area rugs if you have tile or hard wood floors for traction (or yoga matts).

On the inflatable cone - if this does not end up being enough to keep him from reaching the incision site, there is a foam Comfy Cone I can highly recommend.  

Comfy Cone Collar for Dogs & Cats

chewy.com/comfy-cone-collar-dogs-cats-black

In fact, I have a used one in the XXL size he would need and I could send it to you.  PM me if you find you think you need it.

Sending very best thoughts for the big lad!

Lisa, Minneapolis

On October 27, 2016, nearly 6 months after amputation, and 18 months since his cancer likely started, we lost Pofi to a recurrence of Soft Tissue Sarcoma in his spine quite suddenly.  His Daddy and I miss him terribly along with his canine sister, Mia, and two feline siblings, Lucia and Cliff.

Blog: Pofi, Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor Amputation

Virginia
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6 January 2017 - 10:43 am
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My reply is easy, but no less heartfelt: DITTO EVERYONE!!

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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6 January 2017 - 10:44 am
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otisgreatdane said
Now off to order more stuff!  

Thank you for your support! way-cool

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11 January 2017 - 8:54 pm
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Spot on.  Thanks again for "leading the way"! I feel loads better about being as prepared as possible. Any follow up thoughts as to what you did/didn't end up using?  Anything else you would add to the list?

megstamum said

Re the car. I have a small hatchback, so I put the back seats down and turned the back into a large dog bed, as you see from the pic. We had a similar distance to drive, but Meg was very comfortable and just lay down and slept.

 

and OMG, Clare, Meg's ride is STYLIN. clap

Thanks!

 - Kat and Astro

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