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Tripawd Tuesday: Hank and Mable Fight Wobblers, Osteosarcoma

The shock of being told your dog has osteosarcoma is difficult enough, but when you learn your other dog has cancer, the impact is twice as hard. Today we’d like to introduce you to Hank and Mable, a brother and sister duo who aren’t letting cancer stop them from loving life.


Hank is an osteosarcoma survivor of nearly three years! He’s a Mastiff who, like our friend Atlas, is concurrently battling Wobbler’s disease and osteosarcoma, while his sister Mable is just learning how to live life on three legs after a recent osteosarcoma diagnosis.

Read on to learn how this strong, brave pack from Ohio isn’t letting cancer slow them down! Their Momma Trina wrote this for Tripawd Tuesday:

It all started in July of 2010. My six year-old Mastiff Hank started limping. I am a registered veterinary technician so I like to think I pick up on things early. He is wild and crazy which is unusual for a Mastiff. I thought he just twisted something. We tried him on non-steroidal anti-infammatories to which he did not respond. He would not give us any indication where he hurt. Long story short after three months of limping, xrays and an MRI later, he was diagnosed with Wobblers disease and Osteosarcoma.


Since he had the Wobblers we were not sure how well he would do as a Tripawd. I felt we owed it to him to try. We are now 2 years and 9 months post amputation. We did six rounds of chemotherapy. He has been the greatest inspiration to all he meets. He is now 9 1/2 years old and his arthritis is catching him quickly. We are keeping him as comfortable as possible but even now his incredible zest for life amazes us daily.

Unfortunately four weeks ago his younger sister Mable (same parents, different litter) started limping. Since she was older I was truly hoping it was just arthritis. This time she let us know where it hurt and her xrays showed an abnormality. Again after biopsies and x-rays she was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma.


She is now three weeks post amputation and doing just as well as her brother. We have done one round of chemotherapy so far. I don’t know why we were dealt these horrible cards twice now. We hope and pray she does as well. We have a third unrelated Mastiff and pray we do not have to face this again. Our dogs are like children to us. We have two small children that think of them as giant teddy bears.

Hank and Mable are true survivors. I only hope our story will help give hope and inspiration to anyone contemplating giving their dogs a chance as a Tripawd.

Celebrate your own three-legged hero in
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25 more inspawrational canine amputees
loving life on three legs!

How to Get Featured on Tripawd Tuesday

Each Tuesday, Tripawds from around the world can enter for a chance to be “Tripawd of the Week.” Just share your Tripawd’s story and you’re entered to win!

On every Tuesday of the week, tell us about your three-legged hero here in the Tripawds Discussion Forums or on the Tripawds Facebook page. Just follow these easy steps:

  1. In a few short sentences, describe your three-legged hero’s story.
  2. Include a photo or video.
  3. Include a link to your Trpawds Facebook page, Forum topic and/or Tripawds blog (if applicable)

All entries must be received by Saturday at 11:59 pm. One Tripawd story will be selected at random to be featured the following Tuesday.

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7 thoughts on “Tripawd Tuesday: Hank and Mable Fight Wobblers, Osteosarcoma”

  1. I am so sorry about Hank and Mable; Hank is truly an inspiration! Thank you so much for sharing your story: I can’t imagine your pain of having to go through this twice. (Unfortunately I have started thinking about it because Oscar and Gus (my other mastiff-same parents-different litter-Gus was from mom’s first litter and is 10 months older than Oscar who is from mom’s 2nd litter.) So Oscar is my baby 6 year old mastiff; he was given his “official” diagnosis on tuesday although my vet suspected the bone biopsy would turn out to be osteosarcoma. Initially I had thought “no way-no amputation.” He was just diagnosed in April with hip dysplasia and arthritis in both hips and I thought that if his right front leg was missing, there would be no way he could handle it, he was too big plus I thought it was cruel etc

    Last night I couldn’t sleep (Oscar and I had out initial consultation at the University of Wisconsin vet school this am) so I was on the computer and found myself on “You Tube” looking at video’s of people and their 3 legged dogs and how well they were doing and started to wonder about amputation. When the vet said that after the surgery pain goes away, pain control is usually 100%, I was looking at amputation vs increasing pain and possible/probable leg fracture and amputation was looking better. Told the vet I would decide tonight and she gave me this website to check out . As I kept getting closer to the amputation decision, I found your story and it’s helped me so much; I was looking for “a mastiff story” and again, Hank is so inspiring. The vet told me surgery plus chemo could (on average) give us 10-14 months plus more importantly take away his pain.

    Again thank you for sharing your story to give those of us who are just starting on this journey “hope and inspiration” as you stated and also to help me make a very difficult decision. May God bless you and your family, and may Hank and Mable continue to thrive.

    A big thank you also for Snoop’s update; with every positive story it makes the decision less scary and seem like the best option!

    Lora, Gus and Oscar

    • Lora, Gus and Oscar, we are sorry you’re dealing with this scary situation but so glad you found the wonderful people and animals here at Tripawds. For more inspawration with Mastiffs, see Tazzie’s story. Her Mom, Dr. Wiltzius, is our “Fairy Vet Mother” and she has been here for years with lots of great insight and tips, especially for folks with giant breed dogs, her specialty. She has posted many, many times so just click on her profile and you’ll see them, including this great story and video of Tazzie herself. We wish you all the best, please thank your vet for the referral and do keep us posted in our Discussion Forums. We are here to help.

  2. Your sharing your story of both Hank and for your Mable who unfortunately has to journey the same road is truly inspirational. It is a testament to you and your family to the love and commitment you have with your dogs. It gives hope to those of us who are on the same road with our osteo diagnosis and amputation. It also allows those who have just found out the difficult diagnosis that life continued as a tripawd is possible. We know with our boy Snoop we made the best decision for him, and us. He’s six weeks post op and second chemo completed. Doing well and happy.

  3. Sorry, my computer cut off.

    Your pictures show how adorable our pups are! Those migs just ake you wanto co eover and kiss them all!

    Thanks for sharing our heartwarming amd inspirimg journey. Your Hank has already set his own rules and made his own statistics!! Way to go Hank! And he’s a big sweet Mastiff who kows how to be loved and get all the spoiling he wamts! Guess he’s showig your lovely Mable the ropes on ow to show this stupid diesease who’s boss!

    Ejo everh sacred moment with your pups….your heroes….. and you are theirs:-)

    Hank, your are a beacon of hope for all! Mable, best to you for a continued recovery and taking after our brother in setting your own statistics too!

    YAY for Mastiffs!

    Sally and Hapoy Hannah (a Bull Mastiff)

  4. Trina!
    I am so very sorry!!! That is just completely devastating! Those sweet, brave dogs, I am so sorry! You are a wonderful inspiration! I hope other read your story and don’t give up!!! Ace and Ruby are my family, my children…i feel the same! God bless you in this hard time:) Hugs!! What a blessing that Mable had Hank to learn from with his ‘disability’.

    Much Love,
    The Brown Family
    Lora, Dave, Cody, Alexa, Ace, & Ruby

  5. Wow! Thanks so much for posting you story. Hank is truly an inspiration! Great job buddy! You and Atlas have a lot in common.
    I’m so sorry to hear about Mable, that just stinks.
    Sending you all pawsitive thoughts and prayers for living life to the fullest each and every day.

    Patricia & Mighty Atlas

  6. Youve acheived the goal ofyour post… have,indeed, given HOPE AND INSPIRATIONSto all!! WOW! What a jourey!

    AND, not only do yoj jave two incredibly brave and strong dogs, you are INCREDIBLY brave and strong dog pawrents! Oh my goodnesw, I cannot imagine ….-striking twice….amd Hank havi g wobblers on top of that!

    Your pictures show


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