TRIPAWDS: Home to 15619 Members and 1726 Blogs.

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.

Join The Tripawds Community

Learn how to help three legged dogs and cats in the forums below. Browse and search as a guest or register for free and get full member benefits:

  • Instant post approval.
  • Private messages to members.
  • Subscribe to favorite topics.
  • Live Chat and much more!


Be More DogNEW! Be More Dog – Learning to Live in The Now

Get the new book by the Tripawds founders for life lessons learned from their Chief Fun Officer Jerry G. Dawg! Download the e-book, and find fun Be More Dog apparel and gifts in the Be More Dog Bookstore.

Please consider registering
Forum Scope


Forum Options

Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters
Register Lost password?
Search results for 'limb sparing' (244)

…in a similar situation. Great Pyrenees weighing at 165lbs. Osteosarcoma of the left distal radius.  We want to give him the chance of a partial limb amputation to get a partial limb prosthetic to keep him all fours if possible . But with covid, we have had a hard time 1) finding vets who are…

…familiar with/willing to do a partial limb amputation and 2) have any availability in the next month. We did find two vets, one in Augusta GA and one in Flint MI. We were also told several…

…vet schools, including U of FL, U of GA, and U of MI, do these kind of procedures plus have many other similar procedures (like limb sparing and stereotactic radiation) that may also be good choices to consider, but they are booked out for a few weeks right now. Not sure how far you are

…all, new here.  I was recommended this forum from a Great Dane FB page and I am glad I found it.

Hank entered a limb sparing trial at Ohio State after his diagnosis of Osteo in feb. He was doing very well but alas the tumor began to grow again ever after 3 rounds of

…you had her evaluated by a surgeon?  Their input might help you make a decision. Talking with an oncologist would be helpful too.  There are some limb sparing options out there, not everyone offers them, but in general there are more options than amputation or pain management
. To be honest the

19 January 2020 1:25 pm
Posts: 70
Views: 1543

…out to UW. GO BADGERS! They have the best care and most current protocols, you will get a definitive answer there. Also be sure to mention the limb sparing by Dr. Boston to them if you get a chance. Because they're a research and teaching hospital they may be interested in a surgery like this

10 January 2020 11:28 am
Posts: 17
Views: 405

…and require support via a harness like the one Admin mentioned.

If amputation is ruled out, did anyone talk to you about the possibility of a limb sparing procedure?  If so, and this is a long-shot but if you're anywhere near Toronto you may want to consult with Dr. Sarah Boston. She performed this…

…procedure when a giant breed dog needed an amputation, and the dog got lots of quality time afterward. Here's our interview with her?

New Limb Sparing Surgery for Dogs Makes It More Accessible, Potentially Less Risky
Finally, radiation therapy is also something to discuss with an oncology surgeon.…

… Hazel did great with it.

Unfortunately, both limb sparing and radiation therapy are far more expensive than amputation. If you have pet insurance that would cover either treatment, it's something to

8 January 2020 4:13 pm
Posts: 17
Views: 405

…dogs have had amputations, but are they also overweight? I had a consult with a radiation oncologist (who mentioned this website!) to consider limb-sparing radiation, and we are fortunate to have a facility that can do stereotactic radiation therapy. Unfortunately, a CT scan revealed that her

…12, he's in his early 20's now and is working to become a doctor like both his parents and his grandpas. Basically, though he was a candidate for limb sparing surgery, his treatment was essentially the same as Samson's, gotta get rid of the cancer bits!  I'm also thankful that Samson's leg didn't

… there is hope. 3-paws up to Dr. Seguin & the pawesome team at Colorado State University's Flint Animal Cancer Center are developing a new limb sparing technique!

Using 3-D Printing Technology to Personalize Limb-Spare Implants

One of the most common cancers in dogs is osteosarcoma …

…treatment includes amputation, but for some patients, amputation is not an option due to neurologic or orthopedic issues
, such as arthritis. The limb-spare technique developed by Flint Animal Cancer Center’s founding director Dr. Steve Withrow provided a solution for those patients (and human

…unlikely that it is Osteomyelitis still.

Presented with all the facts and based on my research i didn't hesitate in opting for amputation. While limb sparing and bone removal analysis options are there, my primary concern is Ronnie having the healthiest longest happy pain free life possible and we

27 April 2019 4:11 am
Posts: 160
Views: 3885

…microscopic things as more comfort is generated with this technology and more evidence supports its effectiveness. The possibility of doing a limb sparing surgery where you just remove the segment of bone that was affected could become more and more realistically practical. And so the dog could

…. Would this be an option for you and Jack? How big is he? We've seen strollers be used for Rotties, so pretty big ones area available.

Would a limb salvage procedure like this one be an option?

It sounds like Jack is very healthy and strong otherwise. He has every chance of bouncing back and

21 January 2019 9:37 pm
Posts: 3
Views: 275

…it's not uncommon for someone to do that.

Also, one of our favorite vet surgeons, Dr. Sarah Boston, recently published a study about a new kind limb salvage procedure on a Mastiff dog. What she basically did was shorten the leg to save it. I'm thinking if they can do it on a Mastiff, why not a…

…certified as a Cat Friendly practice would be ideal. Cats get such a second-class back seat in the veterinary world, that if you decide to pursue a limb salvage you really want to make sure that vet understands cat through and through.

I hope this helps. Stay tuned for feedback from others and let

…to speak with the oncologist and surgeon at my original surgery appointment today. The oncologist said that he did not give me the option for any limb sparing procedures such as cyberknife, or linear accelerator radiation because, even though the bone was not yet broken, the damage was too extensive

16 October 2018 8:10 am
Forum: Ask A Vet!
Posts: 14
Views: 479

…Kuro and family 🐾🌻

Concerning the point for limb sparing surgery Tom referred above perhaps you should consider getting in touch with Clare, Meg’s Mom as she had several procedures done to her dog to avoid

…csu cancer center website, I am attempting to see 1 of the 3 board certified oncologists in GA before her surgery for a 2nd opinion and thoughts on limb sparing procedures. If I were closer to Colorado or if I could find out if she is a good candidate, I would take her there to be evaluated and

14 October 2018 8:48 am
Forum: Ask A Vet!
Posts: 14
Views: 479

…Beija and Dad 🐾

If you are considering limb sparing procedures I think it would be very useful for you to have a chat/PM Clare (megstamom) as she followed that route with her dog Meg and is probably

14 October 2018 5:32 am
Forum: Ask A Vet!
Posts: 14
Views: 479

and have abandoned that avenue. She is scheduled for amputation Tuesday and in the meantime i've come across extremely promising limb sparing procedures in CSU cancer research Center. Unfortunately I'm not near Colorado to get a consultation. Via the csu cancer center website, I am…

…attempting to see 1 of the 3 board certified oncologists in GA before her surgery for a 2nd opinion and thoughts on limb sparing procedures. If I were closer to Colorado or if I could find out if she is a good candidate, I would take her there to be evaluated and treated. But

13 October 2018 8:46 pm
Forum: Ask A Vet!
Posts: 14
Views: 479

*** Sorry, all the search terms matched were in html attributes (such as image source) and are not displayed in the results excerpt

26 July 2018 1:09 pm
Posts: 14
Views: 2346

…get another 14 months with Atlas to spoil and love him, it would feel like a bonus at this point. 

Jerry, unfortunately I researched Dr. Boston's limb-shortening technique and Altas isn't a candidate because he already has a pathological fracture. (He wouldn't be a candidate for any kind of limb

…-sparing procedure) I will still bring it up to the surgeon tomorrow just to confirm but I'm pretty sure our only option is amputation. 

5 July 2018 8:48 am
Posts: 65
Views: 3522

…big guy and obviously can handle him. We live near Sarasota, Florida. 

I'm not sure if we have a vet teaching hospital around here or if that new limb sparing surgery would be an option for us. I guess those are questions for the surgeon on Friday. Though, I feel like we're running out of time

3 July 2018 7:25 am
Posts: 65
Views: 3522

…better than anyone else. 

I'm also surprised that nobody has even mentioned stereotactic radiation surgery for palliative care, or perhaps even a limb sparing surgery. Have they? If not, then I would absolutely recommend a veterinary teaching hospital who can give you their take on whether or not…

…that is a good idea for him. Atlas may even be a candidate for this new kind of limb sparing surgery for dogs.

I hope this helps. Please do stay in touch and let us know how we can help you through this ruff time. We are here for you and

2 July 2018 11:36 am
Posts: 65
Views: 3522

…an excellent researcher! I looked it up and apparently it was documented as part of a 2004 study:

Intraoperative extracorporeal irradiation for limb sparing in 13 dogs.
One of the scientists involved was Dr. Withrow, a pioneer in limb salvage techniques, most of which occurred after this study.

14 June 2018 7:41 pm
Posts: 9
Views: 512

…now back in Toronto. She's been our special guest on Tripawd Talk Radio
a few times, here's here latest interview in case you're interested:

New Limb Sparing Surgery for Dogs Makes It More Accessible, Potentially Less Risky
Thanks for sharing so many great details. May Bree have a long, long

18 April 2018 10:13 pm
Topic: Bree Update
Posts: 10
Views: 794

…now back in Toronto. She's been our special guest on Tripawd Talk Radio
a few times, here's here latest interview in case you're interested:

New Limb Sparing Surgery for Dogs Makes It More Accessible, Potentially Less Risky
Thanks for sharing so many great details. May Bree have a long, long hoppy

18 April 2018 10:49 am
Topic: Bree Update
Posts: 10
Views: 794

…surgeries in an effort to save her right front leg because we had been told that amputation was not a viable option for her. And, to be clear, limb-sparing surgery is not for the faint-hearted. Meg spent a total of more than two months in hospital and endured, I think, nine separate surgeries. The…

…cost in both financial and emotional terms was astronomical. When limb-sparing works, it can be fantastic, but outcomes such as ours are by no means unusual. There are manifold potential complications - infection being just

…) her good leg, so its great that she's tried therapy.  I need to try that with Casey, but what I'm really wondering is whether, in your situation, limb sparing surgery is perhaps a better option.  Again, we needed to remove a cancer and were on a very tight budget.  Limb sparing surgery and

…and welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.

We have had some members who have either tried limb sparing surgery first, or radiation and then gone to amputation.  Here are search results on Limb Sparing.  Here are forum search results for radiation +

*** Sorry, all the search terms matched were in html attributes (such as image source) and are not displayed in the results excerpt

…complication rate and make life easier for the dog and their human. Today on Tripawd Talk Radio
's episode "All About the Bostonplasty Procedure for Limb Sparing in Dogs," you'll hear how veterinary oncologist Dr. Sarah Boston developed the technique for osteosarcoma dogs who aren't good candidates…

…Veterinary Emergency & Referral Hospital. In October 2017, she was the first veterinary oncology surgeon to publish a paper on her exciting new limb sparing surgery for dogs with bone cancer in the distal radius leg bone.

Officially called "Limb shortening as a strategy for limb sparing

…with bone cancer.

Can't listen to the interview right now? Here's a synopsis of our 40 minute chat. 

The Pros and Cons of Traditional Limb Spare Surgery for Dogs

Limb sparing is often presented as an option for dogs who aren’t amputation candidates or for pet parents who are hesitant…

…about removing the limb.

The goal in limb sparing is to remove the diseased bone and surrounding tissues while still preserving the function of the remaining limb. The piece of diseased bone that is…

…bone graft from other parts of the patient's body. While much of the leg's function is preserved, there is decreased range of motion in the treated limb, which results in limited activity for the dog. -- OncoLink: Limb Sparing in Dogs

But this procedure often comes at a high cost for the patient…


"Despite refinement, this procedure is accompanied with an unacceptably high complication rate.* The outcomes of endoprosthesis limb salvage in dogs were most recently reported to include a 95.5% complications rate, 64.4% of these considered as major complications. Surgical site…

…study. Successful management of both of these complications is extremely difficult. . . In many cases, a major complication will result in limb amputation." 

Knowing the high rate of infection and complication, Dr. Boston says she's always felt conflicted about recommending it for…

…lot for the owner to go through . . . I reserve it for the dogs I feel really need to have four legs."

How the Bostonplasty Differs from Other Limb Sparing Techniques

Dr. Boston had her light bulb moment for this procedure when she watched a "Rotationplasty" procedure performed on a young…

…patient. This limb sparing surgery is performed on adolescents with bone tumors right beside their knee. Essentially it involves removing the diseased lower leg bone but…

…surgery for a 14-year old dog whose owners declined amputation. Her goal was help the patient avoid the high complication rate of traditional limb salvage techniques and give the dog a good quality of life while fighting osteosarcoma. The foot was not put on backward, the limb was merely…

…shortened enough to get clean margins and allow the dog to comfortably walk.

Unlike a traditional limb salvage surgery, this procedure leaves the dog with one leg slightly shorter than the other. 

"I guess my thinking was, why are we trying to…

…literature indicates that a dog's unique body structure and loose shoulder joints enable them to tolerate up to a 20 percent discrepancy between limbs. This degree of difference is so minimal that Dr. Boston knew the dog could still function well. And she did!

The Bostonplasty is…

…metacarpals.. . . then let that heal," she said. Bone plates are used all the time in veterinary medicine, as opposed to the "mega prosthesis" limb salvage implant that has such a high infection rate.

"Hopefully the infection rates (with this procedure) will be similar to what we see with…

…for dogs who aren't good candidates for amputation. "Ultimately, if these dogs can be happy on three legs, it's probably the best thing for them. Limb salvage should be for dogs that we don't think will manage on three legs."

The first Bostonplasty dog was the perfect candidate for this procedure…


Where to Learn More
Boarded veterinary surgeons perform carpal arthrodesis all the time. Dr. Boston says "My hope is that this will make the (limb sparing) technique more simplified and more accessible to more surgeons and more dogs, for the dogs that need it." 

The Veterinary Society…

…them with other surgeons who are getting trained in this procedure. 

Listen to the Interview with Dr. Boston

Read the Subdy Abstract:
Limb shortening as a strategy for limb sparing treatment of appendicular osteosarcoma of the distal radius in a dog (LSLS). Journal of Veterinary…

…Surgery October 2017,

More About Limb Sparing Surgery for Dogs

FAQs About Artificial Limbs for Pets on Tripawd Talk Radio

Bone Cancer Tumors and Treatment Options for Dogs

Oncolink: Limb Sparing in Dogs

Happy Ampuversary Lily. Two

*** Sorry, all the search terms matched were in html attributes (such as image source) and are not displayed in the results excerpt

Forum Timezone: America/Denver
Most Users Ever Online: 946
Currently Online: brownie1201, hattieon3
Guest(s) 66
Member Stats:
Guest Posters: 1091
Members: 10981
Moderators: 2
Admins: 3
Forum Stats:
Groups: 4
Forums: 23
Topics: 16295
Posts: 228897
Administrators: admin, jerry, jim
Moderators: betaman, krun15
Tripawds is brought to you by Tripawds.