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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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Thinking of adopting a 'maybe' tripawd:
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24 January 2011 - 10:29 pm
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Wow, what a coincidence! I hope she lives up to the promise of that name!


Can you tell I'm not a drinker at all? I always thought Cuervo meant beer. Heh. Either way, tequila is an alcoholic beverage and it fits with my theme. My hedgehogs are named after cars (Hemi, Cuda, Vette, Nova, Shadow), and the dogs will be named after beer/alcohol. Heh.


Fun fact about my maybe girl – she lived on a boat in a marina in Mexico. She's a water dog!

Here and Now

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24 January 2011 - 10:56 pm
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Wait, you have a hedgehog named Hemi? No, wait, you have five hedgehogs?

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24 January 2011 - 11:08 pm
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Isn't there a worm in the bottom of tequilla, better have them give her some worm medicine alsolaughinglaughinglaughinglaughinglaughinglaughing

My buddy Gus had a left front amputation on April 7, 2010 and lived a great life until July 26,2010

My heart lives at Rainbow Bridge
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25 January 2011 - 3:51 am
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I think she is stuning.  She has very sad eyes, though.  She needs you.

Shanna & Spirit Trouble ~ Trouble gained her wings 3/16/2011, a 27 1/2 month cancer survivor, tail wagging. RIP sweetheart, you are my heart and soul.  Run free at Rainbow Bridge.
The November Five - Spirits Max, Cherry, Tika, Trouble & Nova. 11/2008 - 3/2013 An era ends as Queen Nova crossed the Bridge.

25 January 2011 - 5:53 am
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admin said:

Wait, you have a hedgehog named Hemi? No, wait, you have five hedgehogs?

Heh. I have 4 hedgehogs at the moment – 3 of which have been rescued from various bad situations. Hemi was my very first hedgehog who introduced me to the wonderful world of small animals. She came home in May 2005 and we had two years together before some form of cancer/illness took her in April 2007. She was a very special little creature.


At the moment, my crew is Kismet, Shadow, Chance and Nova. Chance just underwent oral surgery to save his life and had 8 teeth pulled + a massive infection cleaned from his jaw. We suspected cancer, but fortunately… it was 'just' an abscess.


Hugapitbull: Those eyes are what attracted me to her in the first place. She looks very sad, but deep down… you can see she's just looking for a home to let her prove what a wonderful girl she is. Canada is new to her, but you can tell there's a world of goodness and light in her spirit.

25 January 2011 - 8:49 am
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Welcome to Tripawds.  Sorry I'm late to the post but that's how I'm running now- always behind!

My pug Maggie was a rear amp- once the fur grew back you could not see her scar. She had a tumor removed about 6 months before her amp, it was on her side.  The way they like to remove mast cell tumors is with a lot of skin so you get good, clean margins.  There was one part of that scar that was always visible-it was a long 6 to 7 inch scar that ran sort of under her armpit (she was only about 21″ around her chest, so for her that was a BIG scar) but I think that was more a function of how the skin was stitched back together.

My cousin in Montana had a pug and a hedgehog at one point.  He used to tie one of his shoes to the back of the pug and the hedgehog would ride around the house on the pug.  Winters can be loooooong in Montana!


I hope you get to be Sonya/Cuervo's Mom, whether she comes with the 'normal' three legs or still has that extra one.


Karen and the pugapalooza

25 January 2011 - 3:09 pm
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I got to thinking today – does anyone use their tripawd as a Therapy dog? I used to bring Hemi the hedgehog to nursing homes to visit the elderly and most were absolutely thrilled when roly, poly, adorable Hemi came to visit. If MexicoDog's temperament is as good as they tell me, I think I want to get her Canine Good Citizen certification and take her to nursing homes and hospitals to visit with the patients. I have this crazy thought in my head that maybe, as a tripawd, she could help other amputees cope and show them that life doesn't have to change THAT drastically. It's a scientific fact that animals have a calming effect on people, and I think a tripawd could be a good fit in such an environment, especially for children. Is that a crazy idea or something worth pursuing?

Here and Now

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25 January 2011 - 4:00 pm
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Shelby is a certified three legged therapy princess. We had Jerry licensed by TDI as a therapy dog prior to his amputaiton.

Tripawds make wonderful therapy dogs, go for it!

25 January 2011 - 4:05 pm
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Definitely worth pursuing!!

Check out Shelby's blog– the Petite Princess and the rest of the pack do all kinds of therapy dog work.


Karen and the pugapalooza

25 January 2011 - 4:05 pm
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Dang, that Admin guy is quick!

Northeastern PA
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25 January 2011 - 5:15 pm
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Our Zack became a rear-leg tripawd at almost 14 years old, and did remarkably well on 3 legs.

Just over a week ago, we adopted Zula, a tripawd due to a car accident (we think). She is less than a year old, and unbelievable on 3 legs – if you couldn’t see her missing leg, you’d never even know it. The difference between how Zack did & how she gets around is worlds apart.

So, her age will only help with her recovery if amputation is the outcome.

Zack, King of Dogs, 1996 to 2010

Zack lived a full 14 years, even to the end.

The joy and memories he provided us will last a lifetime.

Surviving him is his sister, Izzy, a 12-year-old boxer mix quadpawd.
And the latest addition, Zula, an 11-month-old pit bull mix tripawd.

25 January 2011 - 5:21 pm
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Thanks for the quick responses!


Only one more day until I know if she keeps all four legs and if they've approved me to adopt her.

Madison, WI
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25 January 2011 - 8:27 pm
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Good luck!!!

(You know, even if she keeps her fourth leg, we'll still be excited for you to hear if you get her.  Be sure to update – tripawd-to-be or not!)


Regarding the therapy dog stuff, Gerry isn't certified, but he got approved to visit folks at a nursing home near us and we were doing that once a week.  He loooooves it and so do all the residents. 


We haven't been able to go for a while though and who knows how long it'll be before we can again.  Our household got infected with ringworm (pretty sure, because it's been spreading, but the culture hasn't turned positive yet), so we can't visit for dog knows how long.  Probably my fault too, cause I was volunteering with the cats at the Humane Society.  I don't know for sure if it's getting Gerry down, or if it's just frustration with being stuck inside in general, but I know I'm bummed about it! 

Oh and our local Humane Society has volunteer animal visitors (human volunteers and their well-behaved pets are recruited) for their daycamps for kids and other events and Gerry and I did one of those, which also didn't require certification.  Although I do hope to buckle down and get that one of these days.

Gerry has been a tripawd since 12/16/2009.

He was a shelter dog with a mysterious past and an irrepairable knee injury.

Videos and pics of Gerry's pawesomeness can be found at:

27 January 2011 - 10:07 am
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Quick little update: I spoke to the rescue that is currently watching over MexicoDog and they tell me her 'experimental' surgery went like clockwork. She still has her spare leg and has already been up and about. She is casted right now, and they'll be pulling the cast next Wednesday to see how the paw is doing. At that point in time, they'll call me and the adoption process will begin.

The Rainbow Bridge

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27 January 2011 - 11:52 am
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Terrific news!!!! We send lots of healing licks and wags her way. Keep us posted!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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