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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My dog was recently hit by a truck and luckily the only damage was to her front left leg. Most of the damage was caused to the joint attached to her paw, which was cracked also caused nerve damage to it. Luckily, she’s healed well enough that they haven’t decided to amputate unless her paw gets damaged in the future because she doesn’t have the ability to move it so she has to drag it. Even though she still has her leg, should I still treat her as a tripawd? I was also wondering if she would be able to use some sort of brace to support her foot so she could use her left leg? I’ve been giving her CBD (along with her other meds) to help her her pain, nerve damage, and her joints even though she is young. She’s just turned one and is a little 18lb mix of a little bit of every small dog you can think of. I would upload a picture but I’m on my phone and can’t seem to do it.
18 October 2009
Hello and welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.
I’m sorry to hear about your girl’s accident! What is her name?
My current Tripawd Elly is a little Pug mix who lost her right rear leg after being hit by a car at 7 months old. She weighs about 16 pounds and is now 3.5 years old. She was amputated before I adopted her at 10 months old so I had no input on the surgery.
When you say she can’t use her paw- is it her lower leg or her whole leg? Do they think she will have chronic pain in her leg? Have you consulted with an orthopedic surgeon or a certified rehab vet? It would probably be a good idea to have her evaluated before using any kind of brace for her leg.
From what I have seen here when dogs don’t have use of leg it becomes a hindrance. It might be chronic pain, or the limb gets caught on things, or they develop sores from dragging. The best thing long term would of course be that she keep her leg if there is a way to keep her comfortable- that’s why I think a vet consult would be a good idea.
Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls
15 December 2015
Hi there and welcome! I’m so sorry this has happened, but pleased that she managed, in the circumstances to escape with the rest of her unscathed. I would very much second what Karen has said re a consult with a board certified orthopaedic specialist, and also with a certified rehab vet, to fully evaluate the situation. My dog Meg lost sensation in her foot after an explosive fracture of her elbow. This was caused by nerve damage to the elbow joint affecting the sensation further down her leg. She also dragged her foot, and it was very hard to protect it from getting injured. In her case, the sensation came back, and with extensive physio she relearned to turn her foot and walk properly again. Is your girl having physio?
If your girl does end up needing an amputation then she might potentially be a good candidate for a prosthetic, as she would still have two functioning joints (shoulder and elbow). Again, it would be important to discuss this with the professionals in advance, as it affects how they do the amputation.
Wishing you all the best. Please do stay connected, as there is a wealth of experience and support on this site, however you decide to proceed.
Meg, Clare and Angel Pie xxx
Meg, Mutt, aged around 10, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. Lives with Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Pie and Angel Billie My life as a MEG-A-STAR
25 April 2007
Emma Joy and family, welcome. Sorry about the accident but glad she survived.
I second the insight that Meg’s mum and Karen have provided. Seeking the guidance of a canine rehabilitation / physio therapist is the best thing you can do right now, to find out the best ways to care for her so she can stay fit and injury free.
Meanwhile, here is a post about adding images to the Forums. Basically you upload your photos to either your own Tripawds blog, or a photo imaging site like imgur.com or Facebook. Then copy the image url and paste it into your forum post. The instructions offer more details but if you’d like help just private message me and I’ll get your photos in here.
Thanks for joining!