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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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Be More DogWhat does it mean to Be More Dog?

Find out in Be More Dog: Learning to Live in the Now by Tripawds founders Rene and Jim. Learn life lessons learned from their Chief Fun Officer Jerry G. Dawg! Get the book and find fun gifts in the Be More Dog Bookstore.

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Forum Posts: 2
Member Since:
23 June 2011
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5 August 2011 - 12:50 pm
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Just wanted to say that that our little boy Tommy swam for the first time today. Went to the New Forest and the stream was just deep enough to entice him in to chase his ball. Great to see the first attempt. How aboput everyone else's experiences?

Hemet Ca.
Forum Posts: 46
Member Since:
25 April 2011
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5 August 2011 - 4:48 pm
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I'd like to hear some experiences as well , the only dog friendly body of water nearby is the beach, I'm more concerned about the journey through the sand to get to the water than the water itself.

Forum Posts: 303
Member Since:
13 June 2011
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5 August 2011 - 4:55 pm
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Bo has always been a water dog. When he had the tumor on his leg, swimming was painful for him, but then, after surgery it didn't hurt anymore. I love watching him swim because he doesn't limp or hop, he just swims like every other dog! 🙂

The Rainbow Bridge

Forum Posts: 30837
Member Since:
25 April 2007
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5 August 2011 - 5:34 pm
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Awww, that's enough to put a tear in our eyes! Go Tommy!!

I pawsitively loved swimming as a Tripawd, as you can see in my pre Float Coat days!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Madison, WI
Forum Posts: 616
Member Since:
5 December 2009
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5 August 2011 - 6:26 pm
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Wow, front leg amputees swimming is extra impressive.  Gerry's roommate Biggie loves to swim, but isn't quite as well built for it.  With his big head and short neck, he swallows at least as much water as it looks like Jerry was.


Anyway, what a coincidence!  Gerry just swam for the first time!  (Since I've had him and therefore since he has been three-legged).  He blogged about it:   There's a video there from our vacation, which a little of him swimming.  It's at the end.  I didn't think I was going to catch him swimming again after he surprised us the first evening by starting to swim.  For the next two days he would only lay in the water when he was hot, but then he finally did it again big-grin                                                                

Gerry has been a tripawd since 12/16/2009.

He was a shelter dog with a mysterious past and an irrepairable knee injury.

Videos and pics of Gerry's pawesomeness can be found at:

Leicester, NY
Forum Posts: 215
Member Since:
23 August 2010
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5 August 2011 - 6:40 pm
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I hates the swimmin! Mom bought me a pool and makes me swim 3x week evil


Of course Monkeybutt likes it

Daisy earned her wings on Oct 22, 2011 at 14 years old

She is now the official greeter at the rainbow bridge

Everyone is guaranteed a welcome sniff and Dalmatian smile

Forum Posts: 732
Member Since:
10 February 2011
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6 August 2011 - 7:35 pm
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Glad he is doing so well!!!!

 Bud just returned from his 3rd trip to the lake and we have the ruff wear float coat and it is AWESOME!!!!

I love the xtra security and have considered even gettin 4 legged Daisy one!

6 August 2011 - 7:42 pm
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That a boy Tommy! Swim boy swim. It's as good for you as it is fun. Fortis absolutely loved swimming (as long as the water wasn't clear) and having 3 legs didn't slow him down one bit. It was slow going as a puppy but with patient persistence he soon discovered the freedom and magic of the river.

Pictures please smiley

Spirit Fortis' Dad

Orange County, CA
Forum Posts: 226
Member Since:
2 January 2010
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6 August 2011 - 8:35 pm
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Even though he liked the beach and wading around at the waterline, Max never liked swimming. For the longest time, Linda (and later, Bernie bin Laden) swam like fish at the beach, but wouldn't get anywhere near the pool in our backyard. I always thought it was because of the steps into the pool making sudden drops instead of a nice gradual slope like the shoreline.

But about two weeks ago, I threw Linda's favorite beach toy into the pool, and with a little coaxing, she went in after it. Hesitant at first, but soon she was going right in and swimming for her beloved stick (a piece of PVC sprinkler pipe capped off on each end with some striped tape around it to make it more visible in the water). This was, of course, much to Bernie's upset because now Linda had a safe spot where he couldn't follow and bite her. I told my wife that it was just a matter of time before Bernie went in, because the one thing he hates more than anything else in the world is the sight of Linda enjoying herself.

And sure enough, less than a week later, Bernie bin Laden could stand it no more and flung himself into the pool. Fun for Linda while it lasted, I guess...

Palm Desert, California
Forum Posts: 123
Member Since:
8 February 2010
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7 August 2011 - 4:52 pm
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Take a look at Rusty's surfin' video from last year ; having only three legs does not slow him down!  I am working on this years video which will be more swimming than surfin'; here is an underwater shot from the video.

Chuck & Rusty


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Rusty is a Labradoodle who was diagnosed with level 3 Fibrosarcoma on January 16th, 2010 and had his left hind leg amputated on January 25th, 2010 five days before his 18 month birthday. Please see Rusty's blog  He is putting up one heck of a fight against this terrible disease.

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