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Tripawd Tips for Using Wheelchairs and Carts | Hopping Around

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Tripawd Tips for Using Wheelchairs and Carts
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The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 25081
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8 February 2011 - 4:33 pm
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Are you thinking about a wheel chair for your three legged pal?

If so, you’ll want to read this brief interview with our favorite canine rehab veterinarian Dr. Jessica Waldman, VMD, CVA, CCRT, co-founder of California Animal Rehabilitation Center in Los Angeles.

We asked  Dr. Waldman when and how a wheel chair or cart can benefit a Tripawd and how it should be used. Here’s what she had to say:

Under what circumstances are carts appropriate for a Tripawd?

Carts are appropriate if the pet has severe compensatory issues or severe pain and therefore dysfunction with mobility. This should be considered after appropriate pain management , rehabilitation, and acupuncture.

Rehabilitation veterinarians or physical therapists* can aid in this decision and in measurements and fittings for the cart.

If the pet is unable to walk comfortably or without rest for more than 30 feet after these other approaches have been tried, a cart may be acceptable.

(*Qualified rehabilitation therapists have the initials CCRT: Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist or CCRP: Certified Canine Rehabilitaiton Practitioner after their name. To find one, visit the Canine Rehabilitation Institute or the University of Tennessee Animal Rehabilitation program website.

What are benefits and drawbacks of using a cart with a Tripawd?

Carts can be helpful to increase mobility, but a pet that uses a cart must use it in moderation (starting with just a minute or two at a time a few times daily.)

It is also important for owners to know that pets may do short walks (I would always limit to 15-20 minutes maximum) in carts, but that they cannot lie down in a cart and shouldn’t because it stresses their back.

Carts are really just a walking aid. Carts do not replace the need for strengthening, range of motion, or flexibility issues.

Are there steps can a human take to avoid needing a cart for their Tripawd?

LOTS!! Rehab, exercise restriction is key, acupuncture, pain management , strengthening!!!

What kinds of qualifications/experience should a human look for in a company that makes carts?

Good question. Reputation, experience. Check the Better Business Bureau. Ask: Do they make rear wheel carts only or both front and rear limb carts (meaning, the more variety they have the more understanding they have)? Do they provide carts with counterbalance?

How do you know if a cart is properly fitted?

Hard to say, we have physical therapists do this because it isn’t easy to explain. The dog needs to be in “as normal an anatomic position” as possible.

Many thanks to Dr. Waldman and California Animal Rehabilitation Center for helping us bring this valuable information to you. If you are lucky enough to live nearby, be sure to visit Dr. Waldman’s incredible facility and see how her staff can help your Tripawd dog stay strong and live hoppy!

Check out Tripawd Daisy and her Eddie’s Wheels Cart:

https://youtube.com/watch?v=eMMr928PmVY%3Ffeature%3Doembed%22+frameborder%3D%220%22+allow%3D%22accelerometer%3B+autoplay%3B+encrypted-media%3B+gyroscope%3B+picture-in-picture%22+allowfullscreen%3E%3C

For more information about rehabilitation therapy, wheel chairs and wheel carts for three legged dogs, please see our previous news stories:

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Ithaca, NY
Forum Posts: 9
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11 April 2011 - 12:16 pm
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Moderator- feel free to move if in wrong spot!

 

I just got a Walkin Wheels dog cart for my 75lb GSD with rear leg amputation (Osteosarcoma). She had a previous injury to her other rear leg, so she is left with only 3 toes and some arthritis, making it even more difficult for her to get used to her three legs. We are hoping the cart will allow her to go more than 10 steps without having to lie down for 5 minutes. So far she seems to like the idea of the cart, but we are struggling with adjusting it properly to account for her missing leg. The folks at Walkin Wheels have been friendly with trying to help us adjust things, but I am wondering if anyone else out there has used a Walkin Wheels cart for their rear leg amputee, and if so what modifications have you made?

It seems that the straps are not holding her in the right places, so I have noticed bruising near her stitch site. It also does not seem to hold her up enough. I've added padding and adjusted straps as best as I can. Looking for more ideas.

Thanks!

Ellie, 8 yo German Shepherd

Rear left leg amputation 3/21/11  (happy 1 month ampuversary!)

Osteosarcoma, so far no signs of metastasis to lungs (using Budwig Protocol, meloxicam, grain-free diet only; no chemo/radiation)

Here and Now


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11 April 2011 - 12:39 pm
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Welcome and thanks for joining kaelara! Sorry to hear about your pup, what's her name?

Hopefully you'll hear from Daisy, She had her people modify her cart with of all things, a silicone bra insert they found at Walmart. here are a couple existing topics with more information and videos…

Hopping Around:

Wheelchairs and amputees

Hopping Around:

Zoom Zoom! Daisys Wheelchair and did you know Walmart sells silicone breast “enhancements”??

Ithaca, NY
Forum Posts: 9
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11 April 2011 - 6:54 pm
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Oh thank you! I did get some good ideas there. Foam knee pads and silicone bra, never thought of those! I've been using egg crate material, foam kneeling pad (like for gardeners) and added a belly strap. I like the foam knee pad idea, and I bet the silicone insert would feel better against her sore belly.

My darling's name is Ellie. She's a fantastic, smart, spunky, affectionate girl who stole my heart and won't give it back. She continues to steel my shoes too, even with her gimpy three legs. <3

Here is a photo of Ellie in her walkin wheels. As you can see she slides over to the right. I'll get a better pic tomorrow from the side, where her tail is not blocking the view with it's magnificence.

More ideas gladly welcomed!

Walkin Wheels offered to let me buy another style harness for another $75 dollars, but I am not inclined to do that yet since there's no guarantee it will help and they are non-refundable.

Ellie, 8 yo German Shepherd

Rear left leg amputation 3/21/11  (happy 1 month ampuversary!)

Osteosarcoma, so far no signs of metastasis to lungs (using Budwig Protocol, meloxicam, grain-free diet only; no chemo/radiation)

The Rainbow Bridge



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12 April 2011 - 8:29 am
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A magnificent tail indeed!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Leicester, NY
Forum Posts: 215
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12 April 2011 - 3:00 pm
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Welcome Ellie and Kaelara!

We got Daisy an Eddies Chair in Oct and have been working her with and without it the past month. I will be updating her blog shortly.

Is Ellie leaning toward her missing leg side or on the side of her remaining leg? Daisy is a left rear amputee and when she is tired she lets her hip on the missing side drop onto the frame which lets her right leg kick into the path of the right wheel. I have fiddled with memory foam, kneeling pads, tried sculpting a nerf ball and yes fake boobs from Walmart all held together with a XXXXLLLL pair of panty hose to support her on the missing leg side. You may just have to try different things until you find something that works.

Recently we have been without Daisy's chair for about 3 weeks due to a cracked frame. Since the winter has let up and we can get out more, she is starting to build up enough strength so that she rarely “falls in” to the saddle frame. It may take Ellie a little bit of time to build up her “cart” muscles.

 

Is Ellie seeing a physical therapy vet? The water treadmill really helped Daisy a lot. I couldn't take her there this winter but I have an appointment to start up again in May. If you have any questions on how to “McGyver” a foam support smile (or anything else) please feel free to post of send me a PM.

PS-We are also so excited about having another NY Tripawd !!! Woo-Hoo!!, I'm hosting a Tripawd Pawrty this summer!!

Julie, Bob, Tripawd Daisy and Monkeybutt Samson

 

 

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

Ithaca, NY
Forum Posts: 9
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12 April 2011 - 5:50 pm
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Yay for NY tripawds!  I love all your ideas to McGuyver something. I'm gonna give it another go this weekend. We haven't been to a PT for her yet. Honestly I did not think she'd be around for more than a couple of months, since the vet said her cancer is so aggressive and we are choosing not to do chemo/radiation (though at $7K it was never really a choice to do it anyway). We got the cart simply hoping she could enjoy a few more trips to the dog park before she passes. Thankfully she seems as happy and healthy as she has ever been, so maybe we've managed to buy some extra time somehow!

She doesn't seem to put any weight on her stump at all in the cart. I think this is partly due to her still being sore from the surgery. When she's in the cart she is right up against the right side of the frame, because the design assumes two rear legs to provide alignment. So, without one in the left leg ring she is off center. When she walks she pulls her rear leg to her midline so she never has a problem hitting the wheel, even though she's against the right side of the frame. She's awkward, but once she's in she seems perfectly happy to “make it work”.

Heading to Wallyworld this weekend with my list of supplies!!! 🙂

Ellie, 8 yo German Shepherd

Rear left leg amputation 3/21/11  (happy 1 month ampuversary!)

Osteosarcoma, so far no signs of metastasis to lungs (using Budwig Protocol, meloxicam, grain-free diet only; no chemo/radiation)

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