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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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GSD - rear leg amputation with hip dysplasia
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Forum Posts: 3
Member Since:
14 July 2015
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14 July 2015 - 5:43 am
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Hello,

My three year old German Shepherd x Old English Sheepdog has hip dysplasia and was recently diagnosed with a sarcoma in one of his hind legs. He will be operated on tomorrow and it’s likely that he may lose his leg. Thankfully the sarcoma itself is ‘low grade’ and has only started invading other tissues locally.

I wondered if there are other tripawds with hip dysplasia out there? If so, I’d love to know how they are coping with a rear leg amputation? My boy has some arthritis developing but so far in life he has been doing okay!

I know that a hip replacement may be needed sooner rather than later, but the recovery seems so much more complicated for tripawds. I’d love to hear some success stories if there are any 🙂

I’m also keen to hear about any accessories/support aids. I’m thinking about ordering the Ruffwear webmaster harness today!

Nathalie

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 28739
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14 July 2015 - 6:21 am
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Hi Nathalie, welcome! Your future posts won’t need approval so post away. Hope you don’t mind I moved your post to this topic, it’s a great place to see how other dogs with mobility challenges get around (most do great!). Also check out our “Beyond Cancer” discussion forum too, lots of good examples there.

Sorry about your pup’s amputation. What’s his name? He sounds like he’s young and healthy and if your vet thinks he’s a good candidate for surgery, that’s great! 

Our own Jerry, Tripawds founder, had mild displaysia, as does our Wyatt. Both had/have no problems with mobility as long as we are very careful about monitoring activity and keeping weight down (super important!). Being vigilant about activity levels and making sure your dog doesn’t get overweight is key to a long, healthy life on three legs. 

The Tripawd e-book library has great tips about that as does our Tripawds Gear blog and Tripawds Nutrition blog . Also, have you seeen Jerry’s Required Reading List ? Great info there too.

Stay tuned, more folks will chime in!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Forum Posts: 3
Member Since:
14 July 2015
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14 July 2015 - 6:44 am
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Many thanks for your reply. Lenny is the name of my pup – or sometimes Leonard if he’s being naughty! I shall take a look around the forum. Have been so panicked about Lenny’s impending operation, but Wyatt looks like he copes very well. He is beautiful.

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 28739
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14 July 2015 - 8:49 am
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Naughty Leonard, I love it!

Who can blame you for feeling panicked? We can totally relate. Just remember to breathe, and that Lenny is stronger than you think. Whatever we can do to help you stay strong, just holler OK?

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Columbia, MO
Forum Posts: 483
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10 December 2011
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14 July 2015 - 1:18 pm
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Hi and welcome to you and Lenny.  My Daisy was a front amp with hip dysplasia.  She thrived for 3.5 years on three legs.  Daisy’s case is a little different because she lost her leg to an elbow joint destroyed by arthritis and had pretty advanced arthritis in her hips at the time of her amputation.  I was always amazed at how well she got on and she was a pretty good sized girl at 80 lbs.

Don’t feel bad for being panicked.  Trust me everyone here on this site were panicked, too!

Marla, Biscuit and Spirit Daisy

My Two Tripawds...Biscuit and Spirit Daisy

Idaho
Forum Posts: 1601
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12 March 2013
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14 July 2015 - 1:36 pm
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Our Murphy was a rear Tripawd due to being hit by a car. He kept dislocating his other hip, so had a total hip replacement just over two months after becoming a Tripawd. Recovery was a lot of work, but he was such a happy, enthusiastic dog even while doing all the rehabbing. We felt it was well worth the time and investment to make his life as good as it possibly could have been. He hopped through life as if he had no idea that there should have been a second rear leg.

You can check his story in the Beyond Cancer forum.

Kathi and the Turbotail April Angel….and the Labradork

Murphy is a five year old Lab/Chessie cross. He was hit by a car on 10/29/12 and became a Tripawd on 11/24/12. On 2/5/13, he had a total hip replacement on his remaining back leg. He has absolutely no idea that he has only three legs!

UPDATE: Murphy lived his life to the fullest, right up until an aggressive bone lesion took him across the Rainbow Bridge on April 9, 2015 and he gained his membership in the April Angels. Run free, my love. You deserve it!

Virginia




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14 July 2015 - 6:02 pm
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There you go! Some real life experiences from Kerry, Daisy and Murphy to help take you out of the panic zone and into the “We’ve Got This” zone!!

Surgery is scary regardless of the reason and recovery is not exactly a cake walk for the first several weeks. But you are DEFINITELY in the right place for support and guidance!

Lenny, welcome ro the family! And don’t worry about being called Leonard anymore, tripawds can get away with anything!! Naughty just became cute and acceptable!!

STAY CONNECTED! YOU ARE NOT ALONE, okay? Let us know when surgery is over and when his homecoming will be. And eat lots of CHOCOLATE!! He’ll be high on drugs so you might as well get a sugar high!!

((((((((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))))

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle 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!

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16 July 2015 - 8:40 am
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Thank you everyone for the well wishes and support for Lenny (and Ben and I). He had his operation yesterday and returned home with us last night. I am so glad I picked him up because he had a rough night whimpering a lot – no one slept a wink – but at least we were able to keep him calm and comforted with lots or love. He also ate and drank and peed etc so so far so good. The vet has seen his wound today (via photos) and thinks he is doing great as well. PHEW.

Lenny will go back in for his post-op check-up on Saturday.

I know this journey is going to take some time and there will be peaks and valleys, but I am sure Lenny will be a happy Tripawd. He always did have a heart of gold and now it shines even brighter.

I will have to try to figure out how to upload some photos of him.

Thanks again everyone. Your support has been very helpful to my partner and I.

Nathalie

Virginia




Forum Posts: 20108
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16 July 2015 - 9:13 am
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YAAAAAAAAAY FOR LENNY!! Surgery is over and Lenny is home!!! Drinking a d peeing! YAAAAAAAAAY!clap

Yeah, I remember those first long nights of whimpering, restlessness and no sleep all too well! And kudos to you for being brave enough to bring him home the night of surgery!. Almost all stay over the first night! You did an outstanding job!

Every recovery is different…every dog is different. My beloved Happy Hannah (a chunky hunk of love Bull Mastiff) did not sleep and barely even sat down (pacing, restless), for almost three days! Some dogs barely whine and all and rest fairly soundly. Almost all do have some up and down days though for the first couple of weeks.

Someone will come in with the link for posting oictures. I know for me, I jave to put mine on Photobucket first, then copy the link to here.

Try and get some rest when you can. Recovery is no picnic sometimes. But when the sparkle comes back bigger and brighter than before it is just spectacular! Nothing like spoiling a tripawd!

Hugs to all! Great job!

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle 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!

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 28739
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16 July 2015 - 9:29 am
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Glad to hear he’s doing so well and he’s home! Yay!

Here are instructions for sharing photos in the Forums. If you’d like some assistance just holler, I’m happy to help. Can’t wait to see them!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Oakland, CA
Forum Posts: 691
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20 December 2008
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27 July 2015 - 5:17 pm
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How did I miss this post?? Welcome to you and Lenny! How is his recovery going?

I have three GSD tripawds, two with dysplasia. Codie Rae has mild hip dysplasia with some arthritis (almost 10 yo) and has definitely slowed down but still walks a mile most days (she has been a tripawd since 8 months old). Austin Ray has hip and elbow dysplasia with horrible arthritis (5 yo). He is in pretty bad shape and can only walk about .25 miles a day. But he is one happy dawg in spite of it all. 

Another Tripawds member Chuy Maloney is a front leg amp who had FHO surgery awhile back. So his situation is a bit different but he has done really well and you might check his blog out for details on his rehab from the surgery. Yup, recovery from any surgery can be a bit more complicated for a tripawd but you can cross that bridge if and when you get to it. But now you have some great examples to follow if you have to go there smiley

xoxo,

Martha, Codie Rae, and the Oaktown Pack

Woohoo! Tripawds Rule!

Regulator of the Oaktown Pack, Sheriff of the Oaktown Pawsse, Founding member and President of the Tripawd Girldogs With 2 Names ROCK Club, and ... Tripawd Girldog Extraordinaire!

Visit Codie Rae's Blog!

Norene, TN
Forum Posts: 1072
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21 October 2014
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28 July 2015 - 7:33 am
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I’m with Martha, how tha heck did I miss this post!?

Howdy and Welcome! I love Lenny’s picture, what a beautiful pup. It sounds like you’ve got everything under control. I think the worst part of it all is the self-checks, you know, doubt, guilt, etc. I try to think about what’s going through my fur-babies minds during all of this . . . “SQUIRREL!!!???”

Looking forward to updates!

pam

Harmony became a Tripawd on 10/21/14 (MCT). She left us way too soon on 11/1/14.

"We miss you so much; our love, our heart, our Harmony."

- Pam, Ron and Melody, Meesha, Doublestuff and Mariah Carey

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