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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…ask them about gabapentin. I am not a vet, and I know she's older, but most of us control phantom limb pain very well with gabapentin.
Hard to say if the shivering is brought on by the medication in her system or phantom limb pain but it's truly worth…
…looking in to.
Anesthesia takes several days to leave the system and getting pain control under control now can make a big difference for all of you.
Jackie and Huckleberry ❤
…you very much for sharing that. Thankfully we've noticed no phantom pains. He's eating and getting around. We have physical therapy starting a week from Friday. He only had 3 bad days post chemo, and most of it was pure
…make an appointment, but unfortunately since it's 9pm here I won't be able to schedule an appointment until tomorrow.
My question: Could this be phantom limb pain? What can I do to make her more comfortable? How can I prevent her from making her raw spot worse? And, unrelated to this but related
…always, talk to your vet about the things you are seeing with him right now, just to make sure you've got things covered. But here's what I see:
Pain medication definitely affects a dog's appetite. Picky dogs become pickier for sure. But this is only temporary. When he is recovered, he will want…
…stinkiest, yummiest, most favourite treats EVER? Check our our Tripawds Nutrition blog
posts for appetite booster ideas.
Meanwhile, if he had phantom pain
you would know it. It typically presents as a sharp yelp, cry or biting of the stump area. If Arty is having it, let your vet know so they…
…can adjust his medications. Gabapentin is typically given post operatively to avoid phantom leg pains.
As for the cancer taking over....the best thing you can do right now is not focus on that. Odds are it has not. You acted quickly, you
…clear. Started a different set of antibiotics for longer - seemed to work. Then came back lame again. Now Arty is tricky because he doesn't do pain well but also sometimes would present hopping lame but then you watch him outside when he thinks your not looking and he's putting weight on it.…
…for Arty and our options weren't great - nothing is with this disease. Amputation and chemo or nothing. They felt they could't contain the pain with drugs alone and the other option was euthanasia.
Can't describe how I feel just now.
We opted for amputation on Friday just gone (1 week…
…have been pretty traumatic. Arty hasn't eaten a great deal - he wasn't eating massively before the op. He's a fussy eater anyway and I guess the pain he was in was pretty awful. We have managed to get some steak, sausages and chicken in him over the last couple of days. He was very whingey (but…
…he is always like this after any anaesthetic). I also think he was suffering from some phantom limb pain as he was very sensitive to anything - even me pulling a loose bit of fur out of him. This in turn is making him pretty anxious.
He had a better…
…really flat - is that the cancer or the op? Logic would say he's had such a big ordeal but you hear everyone say, he'll bounce back, he won't be in pain anymore etc etc, and I'm just so worried because I don't know whether I've put him through something he perhaps can't deal with and made whatever
…and her left front leg was amputated. She has adjusted very well and I am handling it so much better as well.
I believe Sadie is experiencing phantom pains overnight. She wakes up with a quick Yelp then cries for just a few minutes. I was prescribed trazadone to help her sleep after the surgery
…on the pathology report & how you guys were doing.
Great news on curative! YAAAY! From what I understand, bone biopsies are extremely painful, and most people don't do the bone biopsy because the leg needs to go anyway, just like in Mew's case. Never doubt yourself see it all worked out…
…to use that leg will happen Purrkins still tries using his no leg. His left leg was his dominant leg we figure that is why he still tries using it. Phantom limb pain they are distressed and aggressively going after the leg, chewing, licking, crying out. It happens really fast. Thankfully it doesn't
…to use the leg that was no longer there. It hasn't happened again thankfully, she seems to be adjusting well. Really hope she doesn't run into phantom limb pain down the road
…so make sure they wrap her surgery site as this protects the incision but also helps prevent seroma
. Also make sure she is still on gabapentin for phantom pain
Thank you Dr. Pam! They actually did not wrap her surgery site. The incision looks great and there are no sutures. They
…so make sure they wrap her surgery site as this protects the incision but also helps prevent seroma
. Also make sure she is still on gabapentin for phantom pain
…are clear of cancer cells. We were told that there is always a chance (30%) of regrowth up towards the neck, and a sign of this would include neck pain. We are feeling optimistic and will take one day at a time.
Wolfie is doing great, amazing really no huge issues his appetite is great, he is…
…resting a lot which I am thinking is a result pain killers but rest is what he needs right now. I do think he is getting phantom pains as he has burst of whines and cries maybe last 15 to 20 seconds then all is good. I do have a odd question for everyone, I realize they probably
…trying to move the missing limb, so his hip area is just like flexing. Is this him just trying to move the leg to itch himself or if this a sign of phantom limb/pain? We figured if he was going to have phantom limb it would have shown up much sooner than this. He seems to only do this when he is laying
…I did have a scare with Mew on the 10th, her incision area was twitching the same way it was when she was in pain/needed more medication. By the time I prepared her a syringe of Hydromorphone the twitching had stopped and she was moving around and talking to me…
…her leg that is no longer there? IF so yes, that will happen for a while if that is what you are describing. I want to make sure she is not having phantom limb pain.
We got the pathology report back on the leg on the 6th day. I would also call tomorrow that will be 2 weeks it should be back by now,…
…limb. I can't speak for rear leg kitties, but I can see them scaling a baby gate
too. If there is a will, there is a way. I know the kitchen is a pain in the arse to block off. If you have had luck before with a baby gate
with Mew disregard but we had to do three here, and they still tried to get
Kudos to you for being such a strong and knowledgeable advocate for Ronnie. Based on what you described, it certainly does sound like phantom pain
. You can try GENTLE massage AROUND the incision site IF he will let you. There may also be a bit of stitch pulling/sticking foing on too
…he pretty much slept apart from a break to eat, and i managed to get him outside for a wee and a poop which is good as im conscious on this amount of painkillers that we keep him regular and hydrated.
1st night was fine he slept straight through bar waking me up once crying, he just needed turning…
… which really shocked me, i quickly went over and he beared his teeth when i tried to sooth him so i know he must have been in a huge amount of pain. after around 20 seconds it subsided and he switched sides and lay back to sleep.
I had a fairly good idea that sudden pain related to nerves…
…could present after the initial hospitalisation drugs wore off and then PLP phantom pain
could well present quickly after surgery, but my word nothing prepares you for that noise your baby makes! 🙁
This happened again in the night…
… warning. again it quickly passed and he slept again.
This has happened maybe another 2 times around 4am and 7:30am. He was fed and given his pain control around 8am, and while he did jump up in the same way around an hour later, it was clearly well numbed as he gave no more than a wimper.
Hopefully this will pass with time or certainly lessen in terms of the pain he experiences. However i've noticed that while it flares now and again, it will be onset if i try to lift him to go up and downstairs (hardly
… agree that this could be a sign of phantom pain
. Your vet will be able to confirm. Usually it can be treated with Gabapentin and if it's possible for you to get her into acupuncture, that can
… ditto Karen. Phantom pain comes with sudden yelps out of rhe blue, often with the dog trying to get up and "run away from the pain". It comes on quickly and leaves quickly. The brain is still firing off messages ro nerve endings that no longer have a leg to go to causing
…does sound like phantom limb pain from what I've seen here. And gaba is the 'go to' med for that. Her stitches could also be pulling a bit.
I did a blog search on Phantom and…
…got these results.
When Maggie had her amp she was on pain meds a full 14 days although we were tapering a bit the last couple of days. Dogs are pretty good at hiding pain, it may be that you have decreased…
…the pain meds a bit too early for her. Chat with your vet and maybe see if increasing the dose up again helps. Or maybe the frequency of dosing.
…has been going well and she is doing a bit better everyday. Tripawds.com has been such a comfort through this challenging time!
Her overall pain levels seem to have gone down considerably from the first few days, and we were even able to slowly decrease the amount of Gabapentin from 2ml to 1…
…of nowhere while she was sitting or laying down in her bed. None of these times did she appear to move or do anything that would naturally cause pain. Could it be phantom limb pain? What are other signs of phantom limb pain, and should we continue to manage that with Gabapentin? Is there
Roxi is going on day 3 post-op.
I also agree this could be a sign of phantom pain
. Talk to your vet about modifying pain management
plan and see if that helps.
P.S. Would you mind starting a new topic in "Treatment and Recovery" not that she's graduated from the
...first time I heard her yelp and I'm not sure what it was from...
Sudden outbursts are a common symptom of phantom pain
, and there are many things you can do to help - from a warm compress and using Farabloc
to asking your vet about Gabapentin.
…. Many cats get caught in a bed's box springs so if you have to move the mattresses to the ground, that will ensure his safety.
2) Regarding the pain. I'm not a vet, but it is my understanding that if pain isn't properly controlled before, of course during, and after surgery, then a cat will…
…experience "wind-up pain," that is hard to control even with a medication like Gabapentin. Your cat may need more, he may be experiencing phantom pain
I would call your vet and let them know what's going on. Gabapentin works best in conjunction with a NSAID, which is what Metacam is, as well…
…as sometimes a third one like Amantadine.
Here is an article about controlling feline amputation pain that you may want to read before calling:
Tripawd Cats Pain Management Tips and Tricks
Our Best Tripawd Pain Management Tips (So Far
…you for giving so much love and care to all your pups and cats. They are so lucky to have you as their hooman!
So glad you got some good pain meds fot Jake now. And we, like your Bet too!! If he is having any phantom limb pain, the Gaba should take care of it.
Sounds like Jake is
…s Pawgress! And I love that your vet isn't disregarding the phantom pain
possibility, what a great vet.
Have you read up on hyperalgesia? I think this may be exactly what your vet is referring to. Check out our…
…interview with pain management expert Dr. Petty, about halfway down ("Pain Sensitivity in Post-Op Tripawd Dogs"):
The first and most difficult to manage is the development of something called hyperalgesia—an increased…
…sensitivity to pain—that is the result of enduring, untreated pain conditions.
…update. Today was better. Sutures are out. Incision is healing nicely.
Spent some time talking with the vet in depth about Pete's pain and whining. We have concluded sometimes it is phantom pain
and sometimes it is anticipatory anxiety that something *might* hurt.
…to leave him alone as he looks for someone to comfort him. Any thoughts on what this could be?
Maria I'm sorry to read about Morgan's ongoing pain. Rimadyl is an anti-inflammatory and if this is phantom pain
, probably won't do much good. I'm not a pharmacologist so take that for what it's…
…worth, it just that I've interviewed a lot of experts and this is not a drug that specifically alleviates phantom pain
on it's own. Typically a dog may receive a regular dose of a NSAID along with gabapentin and amantadine. Click on our pain management
Also, please don't be afraid of keeping your dog on a long-term pain medication. It's not unusual for Tripawds to need something on a daily basis. Even our Wyatt Ray
is on 3 meds daily, and he is in pretty good…
…to lab work as prescribed, he should be fine if he has to take meds long term.
Did you mention these episodes to the acupuncturist? Oftentimes phantom limb pain can be resolved with dry needle acupuncture, along with regular pain management
medications. I would definitely talk to them about his…
…episodes so you can pinpoint the cause (pun not intended 😉 If you don't get an answer you like find a new veterinary pain management specialist. Let me know if we can help find one for you, the IVAPM website is a bit clunky.
Please consider starting a new topic all
…dog Morgan is now just over 4 weeks post amputation. He was doing great, healed well and is getting around great. He didn't seem to have any real pain and shortly after his stitches were out (2 weeks post op) he was off all pain meds. Then at about three weeks he started randomly yelping. This…
…the shaking just comes on by itself. This started two days after he had accupuncture which I assume would not be the reason. He shows no signs of pain when you put pressure on the surgery site but if you apply pressure when shaking, it stops. The vet of course said put him back on Rimadyl and…
…. It really scares him and I am nervous to leave him alone as he looks for someone to comfort him. Any thoughts on what this could be? A never? Phantom pain? Did you all still need pain meds 4 weeks post op and for how long. I guess I am just not sure why it came on after he had been off them for a
…do the trick, he may need an additional medication like amantadine and if you are able, acupuncture can make a big difference too. Sometimes severe phantom pain
management requires multiple approaches to resolve it.
…. Honestly its been awful. then the other day he started having theses "episodes" where he will out of nowhere start crying out in excruciating pain. Its loud, he freaks out, running around like a headless chicken just howling in pain. he won't let me near him to calm him. Progressively its…
…just gotten worse. My vet said this was phantom leg pain
, and to keep giving him his medication as directed. he is on gabapentin for this exact reason. 100 mg twice daily, but it doesn't seem to be
… on his own timeline.
I'll try to address your concerns:
arthur is only 3 weeks post op tomorrow so I am fully aware he will still be in mild pain etc and I also know that he’ll never be fully 100% again.
You are correct, three weeks isn't a long time. However, Arthur has every chance to be…
…100% happy, healthy and pain-free as a Tripawd. It will be a new normal different from his life as a four legger, but by no means will he always be in pain or hobbling around.…
… Which leads me to my thought about the pain he seems to be experiencing. He should not be having pain on a daily basis, it sounds like it needs to be alleviated and controlled with good pain management
and canine rehabilitation therapy.
it happens and he’s crying his stump trembles (no other part of his body does) but whenever I rub it he settles down.
The pain signals
Arthur is experiencing are probably not directly related to his trembling stump. This is normal behavior for an amputee's stump, even years…
has a stump with a mind of its own. It is simply a disconnect of the nerves between the brain and the body. In some dogs its a sign of phantom pain
but that doesn't sound like what you are describing.
Do you have any advice on this, should I pad it, is there anything I can do to prevent…
…this? There is no point in dosing him up with pain relief in case he hurts himself, it only happens every few days.
Absolutely! Based on everything I'm reading about his activity level, and I'm…
…this is to take his activity level much, much slower, more gradually, and according to a canine rehabilitation expert's guidance. Keep in mind that pain medication is not always an "in case" of thing when it comes to new amputees. Some need ongoing medication for several weeks after surgery as their…
…get used to moving in an all new way. When combined with safer activity, and according to an expert's guidance, it's one of many parts to minimizing pain and stress in Tripawds.
Our own Wyatt Ray
takes pain medication on a daily basis, at the age of ten. It does not "dope him up" it manages the pain of being on three legs for 10 years. He started about 2 years ago. We give it to him with guidance by his rehab therapist, and it's made a