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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3 February 2015
I have been looking to adopt a tripod lab and noticed that his hind leg was limping during the visit from the foster. I asked her to take the dog to the vet and they found that the dog needs Patellar Luxation surgery. The surgery is going to happen and AFT SEPA (adoption agency) is going to pay for it. The leg with Patellar Luxation is directly behind the amputated leg. Is there any way that the dog will recover and live a semi-normal life. This will directly impact in my decision to adopt the dog. I am also going to call my vet today and confer with him. But id really like as many opinions as possible. I have never adopted a tripod and am very cautious about his health needs.
Sex/Neuter status:male neutered
Breed: Lab Mix Body weight: 60lbs History: Hit by car, tripod
25 April 2007
Hello and welcome. That’s awesome you’re thinking of adopting this pup. I’m not a vet but hopefully our fairy vet mother can chime in. I can tell you that many Tripawds here have had some sort of leg surgery on a remaining limb. The recovery isn’t easy but it’s definitely do-able. And yes they’ve gone on to lead normal lives. My biggest questions would be:
- Is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon doing the surgery? I would want that for my dog to ensure against any post-op complications.
- Who will the dog be cared for during recovery? Are you ready for it? There is a degree of care and mobility assistance required, you’ll need to be informed as much as possible by the surgeon before the procedure.
- Who will pay for any post-op complications?
Here are some stories that you can check out in the meantime:
22 August 2008
In general the larger breeds do well with the surgery because they typically do not have rotated tibias like tiny dogs (Pomeranians or Yorkies). I would make sure that the vet doing this is comfortable with the procedure since there are several different ways to re-groove the trochlear notch (area where the patella sits).