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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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Vaccine Schedule post Amputation Surgery
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Member Since:
14 May 2022
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27 May 2022 - 1:49 pm
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It has been 2 weeks since Stevie’s amputation surgery. He has not had his Rabies shot yet and I wondered if anyone here knows if it is safe to administer his routine shots so soon after surgery? Is there a standard wait? I am taking him to a regular vet to see their opinion but would like to gather as much info as I can. Thanks!

Katy and Stevie 😸

Member Since:
14 May 2022
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27 May 2022 - 4:49 pm
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They said it was fine to do so and gave him Rabies and Distemper.

I kind of freaked out about them injecting one of them on the hip instead of the leg. I asked them to inject on the leg after that… now I wish I had specified beforehand. x(

Katy and Stevie 😸

The Rainbow Bridge

Member Since:
25 April 2007
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27 May 2022 - 6:34 pm
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You asked a great question, I’m sorry I didn’t catch it sooner. Don’t panic though. You did exactly what most people do in this situation.

Vaccines are suuuuuch a tricky thing for us Tripawd parents who’ve also gone through the amputation recovery and even cancer diagnosis. We wrestled with that decision for our Jerry, most people do. Every health care decision gets scrutinized afterward and we walk that line between being a good advocate and being hypervigilant.

Some people opt out of vaccines for good after they go through this, but the rabies one is a tough one to avoid because it’s basically the law everywhere that domestic animals must get it. Sometimes you can get a medical exemption sign-off by your vet, but that’s tough, most vets won’t allow it.

So, now that the injection has been done, he’s almost 99.9999% certainly going to be just fine. If he starts to show atypical behavior let your vet know (but I’m betting that everything will be a-ok!). Keep us posted.

Member Since:
14 May 2022
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27 May 2022 - 7:38 pm
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Oh Jerry your timing is alright! I posted it last minute, silly me. It’s been a worrisome question in my head and I had a “go ahead” answer from the doctor that did surgery, at least until after the stitches are removed and there is no sign of him feeling badly. I just hadn’t asked the regular vet.

But I keep worrying anyway. I asked here too late to influence any decision and I put myself in a situation where I felt pressured to say okay to everything. I don’t have to worry about rabies for 3 more years at least. And next time we do a wellness check I think I’m changing vets to one in town that is sooo kind and I don’t think he will balk at my hyper-worried quirks (like asking to inject the limb/tail vs body lol). Everybody that takes pets to him loves him.

I feel so much better after reading your reply!

Katy and Stevie 😸


Member Since:
22 February 2013
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27 May 2022 - 8:21 pm
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And just to reiterate,  the rabies vaccine is harder to avoid than others.  In Virginia it is the law.  And, if a dog or cat has to go in for emergency  whatever in an ER hospital  they will most likely  require up to date vaccine.  And, without knowing the medical mumbo  jumbo, the rabies vaccine  is a little “different” in the makeup  than other “vaccines” and, supposedly,  not “quite” as controversial  as others.  Take that for whatever  it’s worth, okay?

As Jerry said, unless there is some noticeable  adverse reaction,  which I highly, highly doubt there will be, you’re  home free.


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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