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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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Leo needs exercise advice
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Forum Posts: 41
Member Since:
15 August 2008
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26 February 2009 - 5:51 pm
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Leo has put on a couple of pounds lately and I am working on getting him more exercise and walks.  He gets plenty of exercise chasing squirrels and running back and forth when my neighbor weed wacks his side of the fence.  Its a privacy fence so Leo is not harmed.  It hasn't been enough though.  I have been trying to get him out more often for walks but he seems to not be making much progress in terms of stamina.  He walks a certain distance (not far!) and then turns around and wants to go home.  Then he stops about 15 times on the way home and either sniffs something or just stands there.  I can't tell if he is stalling or if he is just tired.  When we get out there at first he takes off and I have to jog behind him to keep up and then it takes 3 times as long to get home.

I don't want to push him too far and I am scared that he might gett too tired and won't be able to make it home.  We also live on a rather busy road and my worst fear is that he is going to get too tired and stop in the middle of the road and we will have an accident with some crazy, impatient driver.  (There are a lot of those around here.)  We have to cross the road because there is no sidewalk on our side of the road.

What are some tips to increasing his stamina and hopes of being able to take longer walks?

Thanks!
Sheri and Leo


Forum Posts: 2013
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26 February 2009 - 8:06 pm
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I have a similiar problem with Tazzie.  She just doesn't have the endurance to walk very far and she gained a few pounds since amputation.  The best thing would be swimming but if that is not an option then frequent short walks would still burn calories.  Of course you also might have to cut back on food.  I was giving Tazzie lots of cheese with her evening pills so that will have to be reduced (poor Taz!).

Best of luck,

Pam and Tazzie

Here and Now


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26 February 2009 - 8:46 pm
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Thanks for re-posting, sorry for the inconvenience. When Jerry started to gain weight, we cut back on the cottage cheese we started feeding him as part of his new diet. We also discovered swimming was the best exercise, a good workout, low impact, and he loved it! (Check out the K9 Float Coat in the blog if your concerned about swimming.)

By all means, though, don’t push Leo. We learned to live life at Jerry’s pace. My best tip would be to focus on the diet and go on more frequent, shorter walks. Instead of walking for an hour, take four 15 minute walks.

Forum Posts: 48
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1 March 2009 - 11:28 am
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We are watching Lily's weight also but when we give her a little bit less food she claims she is STARVING!  We actually believe her because it looks like she has to use so much more energy to walk with us now.  The hopping seems so strenuous.  We'll keep watching but doesn't it seem like a big calorie burner to hop like that? 

Livermore CA
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1 March 2009 - 4:46 pm
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Cemil too–he starts out a walk at a good pace, then slows way down and has to stop a few times on the way back.  I've also had that fear that he would just lie down and not want to get up again, so now, as soon as he starts to slow down, we turn around, even if we're only two houses away.  “Living at his pace” is good advice, and is a work in process with us.

The vet suggested giving him non-starchy vegetables (green beans or cabbage family veg's) with his meal to add bulk without calories, since Cemil needs to shed a few pounds too.  I think, for him, that's going to work better than more exercise.

Cemil and mom Mary, Mujde and Radzi….appreciating and enjoying Today

Cemil's blog

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1 March 2009 - 5:46 pm
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Zeus is almost 11 months post-amputation and will also turn 11 this month…there are times where he doesn't have a ton of stamina and times where he goes for a solid 20 minute walk without stopping. I've noticed that Zeus enjoys the colder weather and has more stamina in it. I try and make sure he gets 3-4…15-20 minute walks a day. We're fortunate that we live in a neighborhood with not a ton of traffic and I have started letting him off leash more – he can run/hop at his own pace and I think not having the leash on him helps too. When he stops to lay down (which he actually did today), I just sit down with him and take 5. Going at their pace is wonderful and critical advice for loving and caring for a tripawd fur kid.

For weight control, I put green beans in Buddy's food. Zeus is on a special diet for other issues, but when Buddy needs to drop some pounds, I cut back his food by half a cup and fill it green beans. The fiber makes them feel full and doesn't carry the calories. Anything green actually like Cemil said too.

Hope this helps, though I didn't say anything that someone didn't already mention…just letting you know that we have similar experiences. 🙂

Happy hopping Leo!

Much love,

Heather and Zeus

Heather and Spirit Zeus - Our life changing journey…from the earth to the heavens…one day at a time…always together

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