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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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A friend for a Tripawd
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Forum Posts: 3
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28 June 2014 - 9:18 pm
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Willow is a 2 yr old tripawd wolfhound x.  She loves company and her friends.  Unfortunately, after rough play with some of them, especially the bigger dogs (Lab and Weimariner) she has problems with her hip and goes lame.  It breaks my heart.  She just loves her friends and when I have to keep her in I know she gets lonely, especially when I have to go to work all day and her grandparents are away and there is no company.  I also found a little hole where she has been digging.  I’ve been contemplating getting her a sister or brother, can anyone with a Tripawd with a friend give some advice?  I want to do the right thing by her so any advice would be grateful.  I also fear that with another dog around she may go all the way down in the pecking order.  Any ideas, experience or insights?

The Rainbow Bridge



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28 June 2014 - 9:44 pm
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This is such a great topic, thank you for posting here. Not having multiple dogs I’m not the best person to give you insight about a good companion for a Tripawd, but I know others can help you with that. I do think it’s very smart to question what kind of dog should get for Willow, because yes, dogs will play to the point of exhaustion and for a Tripawd that is not good for the long term. Kudos to you for thinking ahead and being so conscientious about her care.

I’d love to hear what others with multiple dogs think and as I mentioned, will write about this topic as a future Tripawds News Blog post. Thank you for taking the time to stop by!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Westminster, MD
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29 June 2014 - 10:10 am
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Hi Willowmum, and welcome to Tripawds. After reading your post, I was wondering if maybe adopting an older, more calmed dog as a companion to your sweet Willow would work? She would have the companionship, and not so rough of a playtime, hopefully. Of course this would depend on the breed…..I know from personal experience that Labs don’t calm down till they are about 12, lol !! But there are so many other not so active dogs that would more than likely be a great companion. I am a firm believer in a 2-at-time dog household, but I usually get mine together when they are young. My Polly and Pearl were the only exception, but that still turned out very well for everyone.

As for the pecking order, generally, I think the pups work that out by themselves, but usually the new pup respects the idea that the first pup is the Queen bee. It was always that way in my house but that is something they will work out.

Keep us updated on Willow, and whatever decision you make regarding this…..I am sure there will be many others chiming in with their wonderful insight

Best wishes,
Bonnie & Angel Polly

Virginia
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29 June 2014 - 10:14 am
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Hi Willowsmum, so sorry that Willow is having a rough time with playing with her old friends and misses them. Dogs are definitely pack animals, and I’d think about a few options.

Is there anyone in your neighborhood who might have an older more mellow dog, or a smaller dog, who would enjoy the company of another friend during the day?

Or could you work with a rescue to foster a mellow smaller dog and see how Willow does with him/her? Or foster an older mid-life dog?

In our case, having Lexie’s younger brother around plus some visiting dogs we dog-sat for was a huge plus for Lexie’s recovery and helping her feel like she was a normal dog. I’m a big fan of having two dogs, but would favor an older or mid-life dog over a puppy given the time and attention they demand and their tendency to roughhouse.

I’m sure you can find Willow a compatible buddy in one form or another. Good luck, and keep us posted!

Deb and Angel Lexie* Diagnosed at age 13. Tried radiation first; wish we had amputated upon diagnosis (even with lung mets). Joined Club Tripawd April 2014 & Lexie loved life on 3 legs! Advice: Start physical therapy as soon as your vet clears it, especially hydrotherapy if available :-) See Lexie pics here.  

Virginia
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29 June 2014 - 10:16 am
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P.S. Ditto everything Bonnie said above. smiley

Deb and Angel Lexie* Diagnosed at age 13. Tried radiation first; wish we had amputated upon diagnosis (even with lung mets). Joined Club Tripawd April 2014 & Lexie loved life on 3 legs! Advice: Start physical therapy as soon as your vet clears it, especially hydrotherapy if available :-) See Lexie pics here.  

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29 June 2014 - 10:42 am
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Hey! I totally agree with Bonnie. And older dog may provide the companionship and limited play that she may need. I currently have 3 dogs, a 14 year old border collie mix, a 5 year old Anatolian Shepherd and Domino who is  1 year old Australian Shepherd and tripawd. My 14 year old is a great companion for Domino, but never wants to play, my 5 year old and Domino love each other, but they do get a little too rambunctious for my liking. Maybe if you were to look for a middle aged lower energy breed it may be a perfect fit. Even though I trust all three of my dogs together, I never leave all three unsupervised for an extended period of time. So when I go to work the two younger ones are in kennels next to each other. A companion can do wonders for a dogs attitude and mental state, it just takes finding the right one. Most rescues and no kill shelters encourage you to bring your current dog to meet the new addition to ensure a perfect match. Hopefully this helps!

Cassie and Domino 

“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.”
Domino had his left front leg amputate on May 13th 2014 after being hit by a car. He's now living a happy healthy life on three legs :)

Virginia
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29 June 2014 - 12:21 pm
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Ditto everything everyone ^ said! You can do always call one of the local rescues, tell them your situation and what you are looking for (an older, calmer dog). I bet they would be more than willing to help you find a great match. I have a one dog household and would love to have a playmate for Tanner, he loves to be around other dogs but I have a small house and 3 cats, and I think my family would kill me…..but I have made it clear that if I ever see a tripawd boston terrier around our area, all bets are off! LOL 

Rene I’m looking forward to your News Blog Post. Tanner is an extremely crazy (eh hmm, active) pup and I’m learning that there is a very fine line between letting him be all out puppy and being careful. Tanner is like the energizer bunny but trying to “be careful” is really difficult…especially with other dogs b/c he loves them so much. 

Mom to Tripawd Angels Jake (2001-2014) and Rosco (2012-2015) and Tripawd Tanner. “Whatever happens tomorrow, we had today; and I'll always remember it”  

      

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29 June 2014 - 2:29 pm
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elizabeth said

Rene I’m looking forward to your News Blog Post. Tanner is an extremely crazy (eh hmm, active) pup and I’m learning that there is a very fine line between letting him be all out puppy and being careful. Tanner is like the energizer bunny but trying to “be careful” is really difficult…especially with other dogs b/c he loves them so much. 

Thanks! I’ll be referencing these responses so stay tuned.

P.S. And yes, totally know what you mean about walking that line. How much do we let them “just be a dog” versus protecting them from long-term damage? It’s so hard.

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