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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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Cat just home from surgery and crying periodically
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Forum Posts: 28
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24 September 2021 - 4:36 pm
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Hi there, my cat had surgery earlier today. They do not have 24 hour care so I just picked her up. Every so often she makes a few long cries and it is making me nervous. The paperwork says that they sometimes do this and she even did it while I was there to pick her up. The vet said that she probably is in some pain and out of it and that “they walk a fine balance between managing pain and not knocking her out too much”. She was given Gabapentin and Buprenorphine and I guess I should have gotten more clarification as to if she can take those tonight or if to wait until morning. Anyone here have any idea? I’m worried with the periodic cries about her pain but in between she has long boughts of sleeping so I also don’t want to over Medicare her

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24 September 2021 - 4:37 pm
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Sorry on previous post I meant over medicate her.  As an Update, I did end up giving her a dose of the Buprenorphine and a few hours later some Gabapentin so she is sleeping pretty calmly now just hoping she stays quiet through the night…at least her vet is open a half day tomorrow morning.  This is gonna rough! I have her in an extra large dog cage but she’s tried to walk around in there and already took a few tumbles and ended up just lying in the small litter box I have in there. It is so heartbreaking to watch. I know it’s only been a few hours they she’s been home but she zero interest in food or water and obviously already fasted for surgery since yesterday evening so I sure hope that doesn’t last long. She also has a drain in and they put like a medical grade compression onesie on her which seems to be a little damp, not sure if it’s the drain that got it wet or if she could have peed on it? She certainly hasn’t used the litter box since we’ve been home as she’s not really coordinated enough to do so.

Virginia




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24 September 2021 - 8:34 pm
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Okay, deep breaths....B R E A T H E....... B R E A T HE......Bringing  a cat or dog home the same day of sur can be scary and exhausting!   You are seeing your kitty shaking off anesthesia and, hopefully, still has some strong hospital pain meds in her.  And it's  not easy watching this.  When they can stay at a fully staffed overnight for one or two nights, we hoomans  are spared seeing this "unpleasantness".  She's gonna act drunk and probably  will make some weird vocalizations.

I wish they had given you more clarity as to when to start the pain meds protocol.   Other kitty members can chime in based on their experiences  Of course, we aren't  Vets and not giving  Vet advice. 

You will want to keep an eye on her to make sure she does and, if possible, get her drinking  water.  Pooping and eat aren't  quite as important  right now.  Most food, baby food...they have a lot of moisture content. 

If you haven't  already done so check out Cool Tips for Three Legged Cats

I know it's hard not to worry at this point,  but everything sounds "normal" for just be out of surgery.   Just think if you had MAJOR surgery that involved  cutting through bone and muscle and joints.  All while figuring  out how to walk....all while shaking off anesthesia...and all while on pain meds.  Hoomans would be in a hospital on a morphine drip!!

We're here for you,okay?  Stay connected.  Hang in there!!!

Hugs

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!

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24 September 2021 - 8:46 pm
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Thanks 💜 boy do I wish she could’ve stayed the night to avoid seeing this early “unpleasantness” as you put it.

The Rainbow Bridge



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24 September 2021 - 9:40 pm
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I'm so sorry you are dealing with this rough patch on your own. It does sound like your cat is getting good pain management . Yes she is probably dysmorphic right now but that should subside as the days go on. Just stay ahead of the pain and be on schedule with her meds. Try not to panic, this all sounds very normal! If her would covering still seems wet in the morning check to make sure it's not still leaking fluid. If so, call the clinic and let them know.

You are doing a really good job managing her care. Stay strong amd keep us posted!

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




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24 September 2021 - 9:47 pm
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FWIW, and this  is just me, it's better to have her home with you than to leave her unattended  at night.  If I didn't have overnight clinic care, I would absolutely bring them home.  Rarely does anything "-go wrong", but if it did you would be able to get her to the ER.

Even when I brought my dog Happy Hannah home AGTER the first night in a staff3d clinic, it was still very hard!  She whined,  could not get comfortable,  very restless.  Did not sleep at all those first couple of nights. 

Sounds like you have a good set up for her.  It may take several days for her to get her sea legs, so keeping  her in a small area is a good idea.

TRY and get some resr.  If she "naps", you try and do the same.  I found eating ch and lots of junk food cery helpful.  Some people find wine works better😉

(((((((((Hugs)))))))))

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!

Virginia




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24 September 2021 - 10:23 pm
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Okay, let me try the link again......Cool Tips for Tripawd Cats

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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25 September 2021 - 11:21 am
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Thanks, she seemed to be quiet and sleeping the rest of the night (and still today) so I was able to get a decent amount of sleep with the help of a Xanax lol. Talked to the vet this morning and since they’ll be closed tomorrow I picked up an appetite stimulant and some high cal/high protein food for when she is willing to eat/drink hopefully that won’t be too long from now. I got that wet onesie off of her and since she’s not moving much and I’ll be here all weekend watching her to make sure she leaves the stitches alone (also have an inflatable cone for when I sleep or will be out of the room for any length of time) I think she’ll be ok and more comfortable without it. At least she’s stopped crying which was the hardest part to have to witness. Fingers crossed 🤞 that the rest of today stays much better than last night.

The Rainbow Bridge



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25 September 2021 - 2:04 pm
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@shananegen I'm in the Tripawds Chat right now if you are online. Back in a sec with some feedback.

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



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25 September 2021 - 2:07 pm
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It sounds like the situation is under control right now. I hope so! You appear to have everything on hand to help her recovery along, I love that your vet gave you the appetite stimulant and calorie booster.

How is her incision? Is it still leaking? If it is, it could be a seroma which is pretty common. As long as it's not funky smelling or more bloody than watery, it should be OK. 

WHEW! You are doing this, you've got it handled! smiley_clap

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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25 September 2021 - 3:24 pm
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The incision looks good, she has the two drains sticking out and because of that and everything that came out of their last night into her surrounding fur she smells pretty bad right now  😂 rather than wrapping it back up and putting the onesie back on I just put a pee pad under her and laid a clean sterile pad over it in case anything else comes out. I’m sure that is much comfortable for her anyway. At the moment I think things are pretty stable, trying not to stress too much about her lack of intake and figure I can stress more about tomorrow if it isn’t any better. It’s hard to tell how her pain is doing because I can’t judge that vs her just being doped up but I’m hoping it’s doing it’s job.

The Rainbow Bridge



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25 September 2021 - 5:09 pm
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Awwww poor thing, I'll bet she just hates the way she smells. That's a good idea about the pad. When you say intake, do you mean food, water, or both? If water, which is more important as you know, have you tried using tuna water to tempt her into drinking?

As for gauging her pain levels, there's a really good Feline Grimace Scale chart you might want to check out if you haven't already:
https://tripawd.....t-in-pain/

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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25 September 2021 - 6:31 pm
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For intake I mean both food and water, I tried tuna water snd she’s not interested in that either. I got a syringe from the vet earlier and periodically have tried to syringe a little bit of tuna water or both broth in her mouth but haven’t been able to get in too much, I keep trying though. I saw that grimace scale earlier and her ears do look a bit pushed back and eyes squinty so I couldn’t figure out if that is 100% pain or if it could be from the medicine? In thinking about it, the Gabapentin was written as twice a day but vet had said I could give it three times a day instead of twice if needed so I just gave an extra dose to see if that seems to change the ears/squinty eyes, suppose it couldn’t hurt to see

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26 September 2021 - 6:09 am
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Success!!! I think that extra dose of Gabapentin was the key. All of a sudden she is eating and drinking. I started late last night with these “squeeze up” cat treats which my friend who had her cat amputated last year suggested and that was the only thing she seemed interested in. Then this morning drinking water like a champ and even ate a bit of the high cal food. For sure looks like much improvement today. Phew…she’s even purring!

The Rainbow Bridge



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26 September 2021 - 11:38 am
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YESSSSSSS!!!!!! Oh this is such great news. When you get the pain management dialed in, it's like a new day!

Are you seeing a difference in her facial expression? Did the squint go away?

I can just hear her purr. This is wonderful! Great job!

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