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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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Qualify of life - Mobility
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Forum Posts: 3
Member Since:
16 January 2019
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16 January 2019 - 10:40 pm
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For the past year and a half, I’ve been watching my senior tripawd’s mobility decline due to age and arthritis. His pain is manageable, & he mostly sleeps. However, he can barely get around any more. He is able to stand up on his own & walk right outside to use the bathroom. He can walk from one room to another. He does fall down, & his falls have become more frequent. But he always stands right back up.

At what point do you think mobility becomes a reason to say goodbye to your dog? When they become totally unable to stand & walk? Also, what if they get to that point (immobile) nur are otherwise healthy??

My dog currently seems happy, wags his tail like crazy when he sees me, gives me lots of slobbery kisses, has a strong appetite, still has control of his bladder & bowels. Do you think that is a good quality of life still, despite his mobility? I feel that it is. Just curious what others think as this is something all senior tripawd owners will likely face. 

The Rainbow Bridge

Forum Posts: 27258
Member Since:
25 April 2007
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17 January 2019 - 10:58 am
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Hi and welcome. Thank you for joining, and for reaching out to our community because we’re here to help. What’s your dog’s name? He’s such a lucky dog to have you for a parent. You ask some great and important questions, and we hopefully have some things you can consider.

First, I moved your post here from coping with loss because based on what you wrote, I kinda feel that what you are describing is not a dog who is ready to say goodbye yet, especially what you shared in your other post about his recent diagnosis. Yes, all Tripawds will face mobility challenges eventually. It is the price of having an altered gait, and unfortunately there’s no way to get around it. But, that doesn’t mean the situation, when it does happen, is hopeless.

One of our primary missions here at Tripawds is to ensure that Tripawd cats and dogs grow up with a safe, protected lifestyle so that when those senior mobility issues occur, they aren’t as severe. We recently wrote this blog post I think you will find helpful:

Arthritis and the Senior Tripawd Dog: Wyatt’s Story (so far)

Also, this interview with the renowned animal rehabilitation therapist Sasha Foster may also give you some insight:

How to Help Aging Tripawds Live Better

So, I guess my main question to you is, has he been evaluated by a canine rehabilitation therapist yet? If not, we can help with that: the Tripawds Foundation may pay for your first rehab visit , just click on the link for more details.

Oh and to answer your question:

At what point do you think mobility becomes a reason to say goodbye to your dog? 

Every dog is different. To some, when it’s time for wheels it’s time to say goodbye (not me). For others, when the dog can’t stand or potty on their own. It all depends. A canine rehab therapist is one of the very best people help you asses whether or not your own dog’s quality of life is lacking so much that it’s time. Oftentimes, once a dog or cat’s pain is better managed through rehab and pain management , they go on to enjoy much more time with their people. It’s amazing what we  have seen it do to give a Tripawd their quality of life back, even the seniors.

I know you’re also dealing with the spleen issue, so I’m going to go over there to offer that kind of feedback. And thank you for posting in two separate places, it really helps!

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Forum Posts: 19144
Member Since:
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17 January 2019 - 11:38 am
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I can only say that, based on what you’ve  described,  your pup is still enjoying himself.  He sounds engaged,  alert, eating, drinking, all good signs.

Yes, aging ducks! You have a senior fella ‘ who has been a tripawd for NINE YEARS (saw that on your other post) and it is pretty much “expec9” that his mobility  is not as good as it used to be.  When humans age, they have walkers to help them et UO and moving, hall sorts of tools to support their mobility  issues.  

Jerry gave you some great recommendations and great links  to help maintain  quality. Somplease check them out.

Advanced Dasuquin, Rimadyl, Gilliprant, Sonovi, Adequan Injections.all proven ways to help IMPROVE mobility.   You may also want to check into a Webmaster Harness, etc,  in our Gear Shop as another tool to help if stand up becomes harder 

I was owned by a senior four legger (best guess 15 – 16  rescue) who, even when unable to get up on her own, I could help her outside for potty, she would snif around for a few minutes and then wanted to come back in and nap.   Yes, senior dogs enjoy napping 😎

So yeah, I think your pup is DEFINITELY  not ready to head to the Bridge yet.  And I do think you still have some good optio s ro help extend  quality  time.  Of course, we are not there and you k ow you’re dog better than anyone.   But just based on your description,  it sounds like he’s  doing very well, all things considered!

Just continue  to spoil and make every moment the best moment ever!!  Oh, and do .lots of massages!  They help.


Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie 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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