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Osteoarthritis in Tripawds Happens, Even to the Best

The effects of osteoarthritis in Tripawds is something every one of us might deal with if our three-legged cat or dog lives to a ripe old age. Osteoarthritis happens to the best — even the amazing Spree, an ideal example of a lifetime of Tripawd health and fitness.

In Memory of Spree, the Tripawd Role Model

Tripawd health and fitness Spree
Spree enjoyed the ideal Tripawd life.

In another era, the tiny puppy who became known as Spree would have been doomed when she was born with a malformed limb that needed amputation. Lucky for her, she landed on the doorstep of Connie Fredman’s Canine Health Resort in Fort Collins, Colorado. It was love at first sight and thanks to her mom’s dedication, Spree grew up to enjoy the dream life of a Tripawd.

Tripawd osteoarthritis rehabilitation therapy
Her rehabilitation therapy started at an early age.

Today, we are sad to report that ten year-old Spree has gone to the Rainbow Bridge. She passed from organ failure, unrelated to her life on three legs.

Senior Tripawd fitness guru Spree
Spree with Deacon, two weeks before she passed.

Spree thrived up until the end as Tripawd Queen of the medical boarding facility run by Connie. During her lifetime, the health care Spree got was what every Tripawd dog or cat should have during their life:

Spree’s outstanding veterinary team helped her through numerous issues that would have taken down a less hearty Tripawd.

Senior Tripawd Spree
She was sturdy right up until the end.

Growing up, she faced multiple remaining leg surgeries, including a TPLO and a bi-lateral femoral head ostectomy (FHO) surgery on both hips. At age eight, she fractured her remaining rear leg when the old metal TPLO implant caused the bone to turn necrotic.

Senior Tripawd Spree
Spree was unstoppable!

Even fit Tripawds suffer from the effects of osteoarthritis in three-legged animals

This remarkable Tripawd recovered from each health challenge because of the diligence of her mom and veterinary caregivers. Her team left no stone unturned to help Spree be as healthy and strong as possible for a Tripawd.

Tripawd Spree Ages Gracefully
Basking in the sunshine and ruling the pack.

But despite her top-notch care, she still suffered from the effects of osteoarthritis in Tripawd animals. The painful condition ravaged her bones.

So in an amazingly kind gesture when Spree died, Connie is allowing veterinarians studying in private practice and at the Orthopedic Medicine and Mobility team at Colorado State University’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital to study Spree’s most arthritic leg bones.

osteoarthritis Tripawd leg bone
Spree’s radius, ulna and humerus bones show the effects of osteoarthritis.

“I want them to be used as a teaching tool,” Connie told us. “Nobody really knows what this (osteoarthritis) looks like in a three legged dog. Now they can.”

We were fortunate enough to see Spree’s leg bones in person. Words cannot describe the shock of seeing how osteoarthritis created such awful bone abnormalities. Normal bones have a smooth surface, Spree’s clearly didn’t.

Imagine, trying to live your life as a Tripawd dog with bones that look like this!

osteoarthritis Tripawd leg bone
Spree’s arthritic femur bone with FHO: there is no socket “ball.”

If what we see here is the end result of the best example of Tripawd health and fitness, what does a bad example look like? A lot worse, we imagine.

Help Your Tripawd Beat Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis pain is the biggest issue any of our Tripawds will face. The longer we help our three-legged heroes live to a ripe old age, the worse this chronic condition gets — even with the very best care.

Tripawd beach games
We will always remember you Spree.

Thankfully, there is lots we can do to ease the pain of osteoarthritis in Tripawd dogs and cats. If you haven’t already, please check out our e-books for Tripawd cats and dogs.

Best Tripawd health tips
Find more great pain management tips in the Tripawds e-books!

These tools include the best Tripawd health tips from our Tripawds Nutrition and Tripawds Gear blogs, and so much more.

And don’t forget to take advantage of the Tripawds the Maggie Moo Fund for Tripawd Rehabilitation Therapy.

beat osteoarthritis in Tripawds
Anyone can apply, this is not an income-qualified program.

Getting educated from a professional therapist is the best way you can learn what your special three-legged hero needs to live a long, pain-free life. We hope you will do it for your Tripawd, so that your dog or cat can live a great life just like Spree did.

The Tripawds Foundation looks forward to seeing your application!

Recommended Reading

How to Recognize and Manage Arthritis in Tripawd Dogs and Cats

2 thoughts on “Osteoarthritis in Tripawds Happens, Even to the Best”

  1. What a beautiful gift from you al! This is one of the most informative cases I have seen. It was majorly impactful and I am so grateful Spree made such a contribution with her life. Every tripawd owner (and not the case here but also owners of unfit pets at unhealthy weights) should see what osteoarthritis does to these poor pups. I’ve never seen this …and all most owners see are the examples of healthy plastic bones in our vets offices. A big thank you to Spree and her mom. Such. Valuable. Knowledge. Xoxo. My heart is with you.

  2. God Bless your heart Spree. Journey isn’t easy but we all need this inspiration. I too have a tripawd and she has been diagnosed with Hip Dyspepsia and arthritis.
    Therapy and diet are a must but along with that, the love of their humans is the best medicine of all…
    Thanks for sharing.
    Kathy and my GSD Aksel_Rose

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