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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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Harness for tripawd that likes to chew?
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Forum Posts: 2
Member Since:
8 October 2010
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22 November 2010 - 3:38 pm
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Toby had his rear left leg amputated early January, and his recovery was lightning fast, he was even jumping on the bed and climbing up stairs before the month was over! But, he still has trouble getting up on to my new bed (it's sort of high), and getting on to some of the furniture. 

I've bought two harnesses for him in hopes not to pull him off balance during runs and to help in picking him up, and he's chewed them both off before the end of the day. He doesn't chew anything else, he's out of the puppy chew phase, but I can't get him to stop chewing off the harnesses. 

Has anyone else had this problem?

The Rainbow Bridge

Forum Posts: 30563
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25 April 2007
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22 November 2010 - 3:54 pm
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Hey Toby, those harnesses are tasty aren't they? Naughty boy!

Ok, first off...have you tried using something like Bitter Apple or even putting some tea tree oil on the harness? Both of these things taste terrible and are great deterrents.

If he's still determined to chew, I would say that maybe a harness isn't the solution for him. I would 1) get a ramp or pet stairs for the bed and furniture, and 2) try using a Gentle Leader on him. I was front leg amp and I didn't have any issues with balance during walking. As for running, remember that enduranced-based exercises aren't as great for a tripawd as core-building exercises OK?

Tanks for joining us! Good luck!

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Forum Posts: 2
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22 November 2010 - 5:59 pm
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Thanks for the advice! I'll have to try the bitter apple. My room isn't large enough to accommodate a ramp or stairs, so I'm hoping that will work. He's actually great at running, he outruns my parent's four-legged black lab. I keep the runs pretty short though, because neither of us have much endurance. 🙂 I'm hoping that the harness would help me pick him up to put him on the bed and into the car and such. 

Thanks again for the suggestions! 🙂

Kirkland, WA
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23 November 2010 - 8:30 am
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Are you leaving the harness on when you are not around?  The easiest solution is to just take it off when you don't need it.  If you're working on breaking the habit Lupine harnesses might be an option.  They are not specifically designed for tripawds, but they will replace the harness, even if chewed (that's their thing).

Las Vegas, Nevada
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23 November 2010 - 10:57 am
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Toby sure is a cutie!  I love the avatar pic!


Outside of the chewing, glad to hear he's doing so well!

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

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23 November 2010 - 11:45 am
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tombi said:

... If you're working on breaking the habit Lupine harnesses might be an option...

FYI: We found this info about Lupine harnesses at


[Image Can Not Be Found] Lupine Harnesses

3/4" wide, 14"- 24" girth Lupine harnesses are made with a strong woven nylon, adjustable shoulder straps and an extra long sternum strap to fit a wide range of body types. Welded steel D- and O-rings and a heavy duty side-release Snap on the adjustable girth. Slide the neck loop over your dog's head and then snap the Snap on the adjustable shoulder strap. Measuring Your Dog To measure girth, use a fabric measuring tape (not a metal tape) and measure your dog around the rib cage behind the front legs while your dog is standing. You can also use a leash around your dog and then measure the leash. Measure around the widest point of the ribcage. Then add 5-10% extra for comfort. Please note: Styles are different for each size. 1/2" wide 6 Styles available 3/4" wide 6 Styles available 1" wide 6 Styles available. If your Lupine harness has any sort of accidental damage or hardware failure, including chewage, you can exchange it for a new harness. This guarantee does not include harnesses that are simply dirty, outgrown or lost.

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