Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat
Tripawds is your home 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.
My 4-year-old Golden Retriever had her left rear leg amputated in June 2023 and it was found to be Chondrosarcoma-Grade 2. This was surprising because many aspirations, cut-down biopsies, and an ONCOk9 blood test were negative (march-June 2023). The initial diagnosis was a torn CCL and it wasn't until a scan before surgery that the abnormal growth was found.
After she recovered from amputation she received six rounds of carboplatin. She did well -- at times she was nauseous; but this was the biggest side effect. It was determined at a scan after her fifth round of carbo that her lungs, etc. were clear of any metastasis. On November 11, 2023 she was declared in remission.
Our first "regular" check-up to look for metastasis was on January 2nd, 2024. There was a nodule seen on her Left 9th rib. Aspiration turned up with abnormal spindle cells but not confirmed cancer. We are thinking most likely Chondro again because this is how it presented initially with her leg. A CT scan showed us this is the only nodule on her body. We were told this is called oligometastasis. We were told our best path forward (and the one we chose) was to start 3 rounds of Doxorubicin to try and keep the metastasis from continuing and if after around 3 months (3 treatments) there are no signs of further nodules or metastasis we should consider chest resection surgery.
My concern: If we get to the point where chest resection is an option what is her recovery going to look like? Is it within a good quality of life to get potentially 2 ribs taken out (for the best margins) on the same side as the amputation?
Has anyone ever had this before a rib resection AND amputation of a leg?
22 February 2013
Did a quick search on the site and couldn't find anything similar, but our volunteer Vet will chiime in with insight. Will be following the journey.
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!
Alyssa, I'm sorry to hear about the current diagnosis. Hopefully our fairy vet mother will have some insight. That's a term I haven't heard of before. Looked it up and found this definition for those who are interested:
Oligometastasis is just a little bit of metastasis; definitions vary, but generally, scientists who use this word are generally talking about fewer than 3 or 5 spots of cancer that have escaped from the main tumor. It’s not widespread; it’s limited. That doesn’t mean it can’t go on to cause trouble later.
Dr. Pam can correct me if I'm wrong, but this is similar like what we have seen here before, which is the same cancer appearing in other parts of the body, like the spine or skull, right?
Anyhoo, I'll let her shine a light for us. Alyssa, it would be super helpful if after you get feedback here, you could start a new topic in Treatment and Recovery, so that the general community can find your post and follow your journey with your girl. We'd also love to get to know her better over there too. Thanks!
I have seen this before but have never had a client pursue rib removal; in general it is a pretty major surgery. However she is young which is a plus for recovery. My concerns if this was my dog is that it has not been that long since her amputation so this tumor seems to be behaving in an aggressive manner; if you put her through this surgery how long before it goes somewhere else? You would have to ask your oncologist but I wonder if some sort of metronomic chemotherapy might not be a better option.
This is true. It is behaving more aggressively but then odd that it is only located in a nodule on the 9th rib. This issue is that it is in the bone. Our goal was to pursue chemo for 3 months to see if any more nodules showed up/somewhere else. What would metronomic chemotherapy look like?