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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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7 year old beagle getting front limb removed tomorrow
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Forum Posts: 4
Member Since:
11 April 2011
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11 April 2011 - 10:25 pm
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Well, what hasn't happened to us in the past 6 months?  My wife and I are in the process of adopting two little fellas from eastern europe, both with down syndrome and it has been one thing after another during the whole adoption process.


We returned to our home in tennessee from an adoption benefit in Michigan and when 3 hours away got a call from our friends who are feeding our pack.  Our youngest is a rescued itialian greyhound, our middle is a pit/lab mix and our oldest is sadie…our 7 year old beagle.  The call was on sadie's front leg, they were concerned it was broken and she seemed in pain and was a bit gimpy.  She hurt her shoulder a couple of years ago and has had spuratic bouts of pain, our vet said evasive surgery or pain meds when it flairs up…so pain meds it was. She would hold her right arm almost straight out while running, but would walk on it almost normally.  Well, when I went out to feed them today, I heard her yelp and saw her trying to walk…then saw her arm swinging in circles under her.  I immeadiatly took her to the vet and discussed the options.  It was her shoulder that was broken, leaving us with reconstructive surgery, amputation or bracing it and hoping it would heal right.  Well, he is removing her arm tomorrow.  All of our dogs have transitioned to outside dogs over the last 6 months, we have hundreds of acres around us and they do good at keeping the coyotes away and seem to enjoy the outdoor life better (especially sadie as she runs the rabbit trails)


I am wondering about recovery time inside and how to transition her back outside and a bit concerned about how she will hold up to chasing those waskally wabbits.  her soccer skills will never be the same, but we are eager to see what she will be able to do with a ball now that her anchor is gone.



11 April 2011 - 10:53 pm
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Welcome to Tripawds,

Sounds like you have your hands full!

You should read through Jerry's Required Reading list, a compilation of information from this site on what to expect with amputation and recovery. 

I'm guessing since she has had a bum leg for awhile she will adapt to being a tripawd faster than most. That being said- many of us have found the first couple of weeks or so full of ups and downs.  You may have to contain Sadie while she heals from the surgery so she doesn't hurt herself until the incision heals.


Karen and the pugapalooza

Forum Posts: 4
Member Since:
11 April 2011
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11 April 2011 - 11:01 pm
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We have her old crate coming back to us tomorrow and a place set up for her on the back porch/sun room.  I'll take a look at the required reading in a few.  Thanks…and yes, our hands are full but we are blessed!

The Rainbow Bridge

Forum Posts: 25594
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25 April 2007
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12 April 2011 - 9:02 am
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Hi Joel, thanks so much for joining us here. I hope you don't mind but I moved your post here since this “Beyond Cancer” forum is where it's so helpful to have non-cancer stories like Sadie's.

Small pups like Beagles generally have an easier time getting around as Tripawds. I'm betting she'll be just fine. I would take it easy on having her outside for a while, just to make sure she doesn't overdo it. She will try to keep up with her packmates and hide her weakness. It will take her time to figure out how to regulate herself so for now it'll be up to you to ensure that she doesn't get too wiped out while healing.

I think you'll find that her ball and wabbit chasing skills are just as sharp as ever! Here's what I could do with a ball after my amputation!


It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Golden Girls
12 April 2011 - 10:02 am
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Welcome to Tripawds! Hope the surgery for Sadie goes well today for all of you. The next few weeks will be tough, but you'll get through it just fine. Sending you lots of pawsitive thoughts & prayers…and some golden hugs too!


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12 April 2011 - 3:43 pm
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Sending Sadie healing and speedy recovery wishes!

 Hope the surgery goes well for your girl!

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