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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29 December 2021
Our otherwise healthy 9 year old lab will have her front left leg amputated next week, due to cancer. She's pretty stoic and adaptable, and we anticipate she'll come through ok. But we do live in a situation that requires going up and down some stairs. How do your dogs with fronts amputated handle stair climbing and (eek!) descending? Any tips would be more than welcome. Thanks
24 September 2009
Hi and welcome! Your future posts won't need to wait for approval so post away.
What is your girl's name? We are sorry you found yourself facing amputation together but we are here to help! She sounds like a good candidate for life on three legs!
Stairs and Tripawds are tricky, especially with a front leg amputee. Are your stairs carpeted? How many are there? And are they inside, outside, or both?
Going up for a front leg Tripawd is easy since they still have all the propulsion in their rear end. Going down, they are top heavy so your girl will need help. Our top recommendation for front leg amputees is the Ruffwear Flagline Harness. You can assist going down with the top handle. Otherwise keep baby gates blocking the stairs until her stitches are out to avoid excess activity.
We recommend traction on the floors over anything like boots, which are a great temporary measure but not all dogs will tolerate them. Dr. Buzby's Toe Gripsare awesome as a tool you can use with carpet runners and stair treads.
Tell us more, we'd love to learn about your girl!