Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat
Tripawds is the place to learn how to care for a three legged dog or cat, with answers about dog leg amputation, and cat amputation recovery from many years of member experiences.
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Obie had his leg amputated this last Wednesday, sent home Thursday with 4 doses of pain meds. That seems very short based on what I am reading. I am stretching the last bit out, but am concerned that this was a very short time. Is that common? Most of the other posts indicate more time for pain medications.
Hello and welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.
Our cat parents will give you better advice than I can but 3 days sounds too short for pain meds to me. All my pugs and mixes have been on at least 2 weeks of pain meds for major surgeries (amputation, 2 knee surgeries).
My pug mix Elly had more than 3 days of pain meds after an oral surgery to remove a baby tooth.
How is Obie acting? Is he showing signs of pain? Here is a good blog post to help you see signs of pain.
When you have a chance, tell us more about Obie. Why the amputation? Front or back leg?
Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls
p.s. I have a quad pug boy named Obie!
Obie is a 10-year old male. He had an injection site sarcoma on his right back leg. After trying several options, we ended up amputating the leg.
He’s sleeping a lot and not moving around much. Just now started to eat a little. Clearly glad to be home practically as much as the vets were glad to have him go home.
He only came home with 4 doses of pain medication and an anti-inflammatory. No antibiotics.
Hi Obie. My cat Mona had her leg amputated for the same reason – her front leg was amputated in June 2014 and she’d doing great. Amputation is the best way to remove the tumour in order to get wide margins.
I can’t remember exactly how long she was on pain meds but certainly longer than 3 days. She was on buprenex, an opioid, for at least 5 days and also metacam (anti-inflammatory/pain relief) for about 10 days until her stitches came out.
Sleeping more from the pain meds which is good for Obie, and for you.
My vet took Mona home to his house for the first night and when I picked her up the vet said she was doing great with eating and using the litter box. I think she really enjoyed herself at his house. She was a little too rambunctious when she got home! The vet sent her home with canned kitten food which she just gobbled up. The wet kitten food is good because it’s high in protein, has moisture, and obviously very tasty.
What kind of pain meds is Obie on? Did you know that the pharmaceutical company may pay for part or all of the amputation costs?
Hope all goes well,
Kerren and Tripawd Kitty Mona
25 April 2007
Hi Obie and family! I think it’s adorable we have another Obie in the Tripawds community. Sorry you had to be here though.
Ditto on the pain meds. The pain signals cats give us are similar to what you are describing. Call your vet and explain the symptoms after reading the article I linked to. Advocate for more pain meds and I’ll bet that Obie will thank you for it.
I apologize for the fast reply but I’m in transit and about to get out of the car. Please see this article about getting reimbursed for the surgery, as Kerren referred to:
Hello & Welcome Obie & Mom we are sorry you have to be here and are dealing with VAS and amputation. We are glad you found us.
Our 6 year old cat Purrkins had his front left leg and shoulder amputated 11 months ago due to soft tissue sarcoma on his wrist.
We were sent home with 3 days worth of Buprenorphine and 14 days of Gabapentin. No antibiotics.
We had to call our surgeon to get more pain meds .
Purrkins signs of pain were meowing, growling & hissing at me & he would not let me near him. That is never Purrkins!
We had no problem getting more meds prescribed I called the surgeon and explained what Purrkins was doing and the surgeon agreed more pain meds were needed.
Purrkins ended up being on Buprenoprhine for 12 days & Gabapentin 14 days,
We see kitties sent home with not enough pain medication often here! What were your sent home with and how often were you to give it to Obie?
If you believe Obie is pain do not hesitate to call & get more pain meds prescribed.
Keep us posted please.
Holly & Purrkins
Thank you very much everyone! I appreciate the quick response and answers. The animal hospital is a teaching hospital, and we haven’t had the best communications. Almost all information is coming through a student, although a very diligent one.
I called the animal hospital and they provided 8 more doses of Buprenorphine liquid without hesitation. Just back from picking it up. I am sure Obie and I both feel better now. Waiting an entire Sunday without any meds wasn’t looking good at all. We were to give him .3 mg/L every 8 hours or as needed, but those initial 4 doses would have been finished Friday night if we had. So I stretched out the time and lowered the dose to get us this far.
We were also given 3 days of Onsior, and anti-inflammatory. That finished yesterday.
Obie, is short for Oberon, King of the Fairies in Midsummer’s Nights Dream. Glad to meet another Obie, it is a great name!
He hasn’t eaten or drank enough to use the kitty box yet. I’ve been adding water to wet food and squirting it into his mouth, which he tolerates well enough. Took a few bites on his own this afternoon for the first time.
He seems depressed and fidgety. I think he wants to lay on his other, legless side but that won’t work. His stomach skin is pulled up to the top of the hip area, which also adds to the discomfort.
I’ll check into the vaccination reimbursement when things are better. I do have his early records, and his first rabies shot was in that leg.
As the swelling is going down, there are red patches. Did anyone else see those? They don’t look infected, but I am wondering what these are. I took a photo so I can do some comparison tomorrow.
Thanks again for the posts. I feel much better and so does Obie!
Good for your!! Great job advocating for Obie!!
Obie will be a lot more comfortable on the Buprenorphine . It will make him sleepy as Kerren mentioned earlier or he could get wired we had both happen . The best thing for Obie is to rest .
What your seeing I do believe is pain not depression. Things will improve now!
Good job on helping him eat too! I believe with the pain managed he will start to eat better. We used smelly foods in recovery that seemed to work great for us. Baby food is great to have on hand too. Turkey & Gravy is always a go to.
We did not have any red patches, If you can post the picture that may be helpful.
Again great job on taking pictures! Your on top of it!
You both are going to feel a lot better and recovery will go smoother! We are all here if you need anything we will do our best to help you thru!.
Hugs Holly & Purrkins
Here is a link on how to add photos.
I’m happy to hear you got more pain meds. I don’t know why so many vets are so tight with them to begin with.
The redness is probably bruising and is normal. Here’s what Mona’s looked like:
Certainly with the vet if you are still concerned.
Mona like it when I put a cool, damp facecloth over the surgical site. I’d also clean any leakage because I think it would get itchy if it dried on her skin. Mona likes being fussed over and brushed so I did a lot of that. She’d worm off to her sleeping space when she had enough of me.
Hugs to you and Obie.
Kerren and Tripawd Kitty Mona
My Obie is also Oberon from Midsummer. I used to have a Titania (Tani), she passed a couple years ago at almost 15 years old.
The Shakespeare Company I work for is doing Midsummer again this summer- I’ll be thinking of your Obie a lot!
Good job advocating for your boy! Overall it sounds like he is having a normal recovery.
Hang in there, it does get better!
Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls
Thanks for the picture of Mona. That looks like the same red patches we are seeing on Obie. We will keep an eye on them, but that looks very much the same. I will try the wet washcloth on him. Our regular vet suggested baby wipes to clean him because he came home from the clinic a smelly, wet mess from laying in his own urine. We’re pretty convinced he was very unpleasant to all at the clinic.
I’m wasn’t sure if baby wipes would be a good idea on the stitches. The washcloth sounds much better. Thank you!
He finally peed last night, so we know things are starting to get back to the new normal. Wish he had chosen a kitty box instead of the carpet, but success is success. Looking forward to him eating on his own and eventually pooping.
His incision is much larger than Mona’s appears to be. It’s a big right angle while Mona’s looks much more dainty. I see that she lost a front leg instead of the rear, which is the difference.
My niece had the Titania to our Oberon. She too has passed on. I am glad that the Obies share the same name. Hope your play is a success!
I appreciate the support from you all. It really helps!
Here’s a photo of Mona’s full incision where they took her leg and shoulder:
She is a small cat once you take away the fur. The bruising was further from the incision, likely where the blood was pooling. She also had a small rubber drain.
I agree with keeping the wipes away from the incision. Others may have some ideas but the damp washcloth worked well for Mona.
Mona chose to pee everywhere except for the litter box. She even peed in a desk drawer. I must commend her for her creativity. It’s easier to laugh now that it’s 3 years later. The best thing for cat pee on carpets is an enzyme cleaner you can get in pet stores. Carpet cleaners can make the smell much worse unless the urine is neutralized first.
So Obie, do not follow Mona’s example. Give us a poo in the litter box!
Hugs to you both,
Kerren and Tripawd Kitty Mona
22 February 2013
Lmust catching up on sweet Obie! ‘As you already know, you jave fotten some of the best advice possible from our kitty family…and Stubborn Pug Maggie family!!
And yes, SUCCESS IS SUCCESS!! YAY FOR PEE! And pee on the carpet is a victory!!
Keep us posted. Popping and getting his appetite back should come in the near furture 🙂
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!
Another full day of feeding Obie with a syringe. But he looks much more alert this evening. The red near his incision is starting to turn into a major bruise, so thank you so much Kerren!
So glad Obie peed on the carpet and not in a desk drawer. Mona is a determined little kitty to do that! Such beautiful dark fur also!
Holly, Obie loves the turkey and gravy baby food and is happily licking what escapes the syringe from his cone. thank you!
Annette and Obie
Yaaaaaay for pee! Sorry it was on the carpet! Yaaay for Turkey & Gravy baby food!
It’s high in calories and a life saver. Just keeping him eating is key! Syringe or otherwise! Tuna & salmon anything fishy is also helpful! The smellier the better it seems.
The hospital iced Purrkins incision for 3 days and our instructions were to do warm compresses at home.
2-3 times a day for 3-5 days – heat a moistened clean washcloth in a sealed ziplock bag, warm in microwave. (test the warmth on yourself before applying) apply for ten minutes.
Purrkins loved his warm compress the ice and warmth helps with the swelling and bruising . We did not have any problems with Purrkins incision.
Purrkins was pee soaked when I picked him up from the hospital, I just used a warm washcloth and that was enough to get the pee smell off.
I would not use a baby wipe on the incision either, its ok to clean anything else with the baby wipe.
Hugs and ear scratches to Obie!
Holly & Purrkins