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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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Remaining leg giving out.
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Member Since:
22 April 2022
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1
5 January 2023 - 10:37 am
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I have an 11yo dog who is a recent front leg amputee. (7 mos).  She was doing really well but now it seems as if her remaining front leg is giving out and it has me very concerned.  I have an appointment with the vet tomorrow but not sure what can be done.  I have tried a harness but it just slips around her torso and is pointless.   She is at a disadvantage because even before the leg loss her hips were higher than her shoulders.  I have a stroller for her that I use on walks.  She gets out for a much or as little as she wants.  She is getting up and around less and less.  At her age I'm not really sure of my choices.  Any suggestions would be helpful.  It is breaking my heart. 

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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5 January 2023 - 11:33 am
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Dr Pam will chime jn with her valuable  feedback.

In the mean, CONGRATULATIONS  to you and Sadie both for handling tripawdness so well.

  Curious if you ever had a chance to get to a Rehabilitation Specialist?  Also, has Sadie been prescribed  any antiinflmmatory for her hipsituati9n  or possible arthritis?  Let us know how your Vet assessment goes tomorrow.  Maybe overuse and some more rest and Rimadyl, etc will help.

Hold on for our "volunteer" Vet.

Hugs

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!


Member Since:
22 August 2008
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6 January 2023 - 7:05 am
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Was her leg removed due to cancer or trauma?  What medications is she on?  Some harnesses are more helpful than others and sometimes splinting the remaining leg can help. Let us know what your vet said but I agree with Jerry if it is available in your area rehab might be the most helpful option.

Pam

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22 April 2022
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6 January 2023 - 12:52 pm
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Her leg was removed due to a soft tissue sarcoma attached to her shoulder blade.  I give her caprofen as needed, which I have been doing for the past few days.  It does seem to be helping somewhat.  She has not been to Rehab.  I will ask my vet today about referrals for one in our area.  When we decided to go ahead with the limb removal I was most concerned about her hips.  Honestly I didn't even think about the other front leg giving out.  I guess I will see what my vet says today.  

The Rainbow Bridge


Member Since:
25 April 2007
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6 January 2023 - 3:52 pm
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Glad she is feeling better. Keep us posted and if you'd like help finding a therapist just let us know.


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7 January 2023 - 7:18 am
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Let us know how your vet visit goes.

Pam

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9 January 2023 - 9:32 am
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Well sadly it was not good news.  They have discovered that the cancer has metastasized into her lungs.  She has multiple tumors.  On top of that she has developed severe arthritis in the elbow joint of her remaining leg.  Based on the scans of her lungs from September (which were clear), they are giving her about 3 mos.  They have prescribed prednisone for the inflammation.  She seem to be feeling a little better.  Now we will just have to decide when it is time to let her cross the Rainbow Bridge .  This is so heartbreaking!  Not sure I would make the same decision again to remove her leg but it was done. 

Now I just hope the end is not too painful for her!!   

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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9 January 2023 - 3:01 pm
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So bummed to hear the news.  Needless to say, I kmow feel defeated right and sad right now and your emotions are all over the place.

As hard as it is, remember  that Sadie knows nothing about what the xrays show and continues  to be blissfully  unaware  of any of thos  feedback from your Vet.  Of course we hoomans process things a lot differently.

One thing I can tell you without hesitation  based on my time here on this site, "prognosis schmognosis"  as we like to say.  That's  because  we have seen dogs retain quality  far longer than "prognosis ".  And yes, sadly some less.  Every dog is so different  in their make-up, etc.  "One size does not fit all". 

My Happy Hannah developed  a met "the size of a vaseball" is how the Vet described  it.  In her case, and in most cases, "living with mets"  aren't  necessarily  painful and some degree of quality can be maintained.   Yes, she did tire easily.  She was always preferred being a couch potato,  sunbathing and just laying outside enjoy edall the scents  Nature had to offer.  Once she started having very, very,  obvious difficulty sleeping I knew the odds were probably tipping out of her favor fairly quickly and I was able to release  her without any fear of a "crisis".  So no, becoming more and more tired and ultimately her inability  to lay down and sleep....it still was not a "painful" time per se.  I hope this brings  you some reassurance. 

I do believe the Prednisone helped keep her comfortable  and reduced  some of the inflammation  around the met.  If I recall, I also gave her a low dose of pain med to ensure comfort and quality. 

The most important  thing yiu can do right now is ti make every mo rogether count!  I know it's hard, but the present is what you jave now.  And presently  Sadie is still being Sadie, albeit  as a Senior and a tripawd with arthritis....but still enjoying  all the loving and spoiling  you continue  to bestow on her.  And you will be amazed at how much spoiling  you can cram jnto everyday.....especially  with yummy foods she loves!  Does she like riding in the car?  Does she like snuggling  with you on the sofa?  Does she like going through  drive-thrus and getting  cheeseburgers and French fries?  Just do more and more of everything  she loves.  Do not let this piece  of crap disease  interfere  with your time together.  Sadie sure isn't focused on anything but the NOW and how many treats she can eat in a day.

Dr Pam will chime in, but I just wanted to offer my support in any way I can.

With love and extra hugs

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!

Virginia




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22 February 2013
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9 January 2023 - 3:09 pm
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And if I may add one P.S.  With the amputation, you   gave Sadie a chance at extended  quality filled with love and spoiling.   I have no doubt  that is exactly  what Sadie wanted💖   Keep that in mind.  To not have given her that chance is something  you would have always second guessed.  You loved her enough to give her this chance......and she knows you loved her enough to do that for her.

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!

The Rainbow Bridge


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25 April 2007
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10
10 January 2023 - 10:44 am
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I'm so sorry. That kind of news is such a gut punch. As you cope with the upcoming journey try to remember that she is still the same dog. She doesn't care what the scans said, she just wants you to be happy and for her to feel good. By knowing what you are dealing with, you are already taking steps to make sure she is comfortable and able to have a good quality of life for as long as possible.

I'm not sure where you are, but did you see this post about a new lung metastasis removal treatment? It's being offered in San Diego but you can do the follow ups at any of the Ethos clinics around the country (there's a lot). The dog we profiled, Whiskey, is still going strong over a year after his surgery. Just something to consider if you're able to get out there. And if not, don't beat yourself up. You absolutely gave your girl a chance to be pain-free and spend quality time with you, and she can still do that. 

Keep us posted OK? We are sending lots of love your way. 


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22 August 2008
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11 January 2023 - 8:19 am
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I am so sorry to hear this!  I am glad that you are trying the prednisone; that can make a big difference for some dogs.  One thing you could add to help with her elbow arthritis is a Type II collagen supplement called Flexadin Advanced. You can ask your vet about it but you do not need a prescription for it. This supplement has really helped my dog Phil with his arthritis and I rarely need to give him his meloxicam now.  I have had many good reports from my clients as well and it is safe to combine with other supplements and medications.  It won't do anything for the lung mets but might help her elbow.

Pam

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