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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

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Will only lie on one side... Advice?
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Hunter Valley, NSW
Member Since:
25 May 2013
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25 May 2013 - 10:31 pm
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My husky, Rade, and I are new to the community.  He has been doing very well but will still only lie on the one side. I was wondering if anyone had any experience with this?


His right front leg was removed almost a month ago.


Thanks.  :)

25 May 2013 - 10:44 pm
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Welcome to Tripawds, your future posts will not require moderation.
Why the amputation? It's nice to hear he is doing well so far. My pug Maggie was a rear amp, she did not lay on her amp side for weeks after surgery. Eventually her amp side became her preferred side for sitting and laying.
A month post amp is not that long, his amp site might still be tender, or he may not be comfortable getting onto, or up from his amp side. As long as he is doing well physically he might just need a little more time.


Rock Hill, SC
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28 November 2011
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26 May 2013 - 6:29 am
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Awww, HUSKY!  I hear that and I'm hooked!

Our Zeus (husky mix) didn't lay on his amp side for weeks.  Finally he got to the point that we could tell he wanted to, but was still anxious.  We started propping a pillow against that side so that he could 'sorta' lean that way and work himself into it.  After a while he made the bill roll over and before we knew it that was his preferred side.

It will happen when he is comfortable.  :)


Zeus was a Husky mix diagnosed with Osteosarcoma at age 11.  A visible lung met and suspicious spot on his liver meant a poor prognosis-six weeks was our vet's best guess. We decided to fight for our boy and his right front leg was amputated on 12/1/11. We did six rounds of chemo, changed his diet and spoiled him completely rotten. We were blessed with 10 great months after diagnosis. Against the odds, the lung met remained a single met and grew very little over those months. A wonderful furbaby with the most gentle spirit, he fought with a strength that we never imagined he possessed. We have no regrets...

Hunter Valley, NSW
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25 May 2013
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26 May 2013 - 7:34 am
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Thanks Lisa and Karen for your replies. It eases the mind a little to know that others have taken as long. :)   It's hard to know what's worrisome and when to be patient without hearing about other pups going through similar things.

Rade had an injury to his leg. I actually don't really know much about it. I was away from home for a fortnight to study (much to my eternal guilt). What was thought to be a sore paw/damaged tendon, turned out to be some sort of crush injury. The small blood vessels were destroyed and there was nothing that could be done. Since there was nothing that could be done I decided against grilling everyone involved for more details, it wouldn't change anything anyway. I had a lot of very varied emotions running around at the time and barely kept it together as it was. There was a definite risk of blaming everyone, which wouldn't have done Rade any good.

Rade does sometimes angle himself to lie on his wound side, but then switches.  I guess I'll just keep an eye on it and see how he goes. I've been very paranoid about pressure sores and my inabillity to properly check that side for prickles etc whilst he's always lying on it.


He does have a 'slight' tendency to be stubborn, so I guess this might take a while.

Thanks again,


Member Since:
16 October 2012
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26 May 2013 - 8:21 am
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Sassy is a right rear amputee.  It took her several months to finally lay on her amputated side.  When she did she just rolled over on it.  Her right side was her favorite side to lay before the amputation so I am sure it probably felt weird to her without her leg there.  No she lays there all the time. 


It will just take a little bit but when they do it you won't stop them from laying in that side :)


Michelle & Sassy


Sassy is a proud member of the Winter Warriors. Live long, & strong Winter Warriors.
07/26/2006 - Sassy earned her wings 08/20/2013

05/04/2006 -  Bosch, Sassy's pal, earned his wings 03/29/19  fought cancer for 4 months.

"You aren't doing it TO her, you are doing it FOR her. Give her a chance at life."

On The Road

Member Since:
24 September 2009
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26 May 2013 - 8:56 am
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Hi Noni and Rade, welcome! I just answered your other post about phantom pain , you can ignore my questions about the when and why for his amputation.

As everyone else said, some dogs will take weeks before they lie on the amp side. Fear not, it'll happen when you least expect it!

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene | | |

Member Since:
2 April 2013
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26 May 2013 - 4:17 pm
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Roxy is a rear amp, and it took her a few weeks to lay down on her amputated side. She still favours the other side. At first, she'd only lay down on the amputated side when she was on the cushy couch. Eventually she was able to do it on her bed, on the floor, etc.

Welcome to Tripawds! You've come to the right place :)

Mica & Roxy

In your heart, where I belong.
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9 February 2011
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26 May 2013 - 10:20 pm
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I honestly don't remember how long it took Dakota to comfortably and intentionally lay on his amputation side, but we looked at it as one of those pain-in-the-butt things. You see, he used to lay in the doorway to the kitchen and reach out and smack at our legs when we stepped over him. I cannot count the number of near-misses, dropped food, trips and falls that dog caused. I cussed him frequently. Then once he lost his leg, I assumed he wouldn't do that anymore. Nah. He laid on the missing leg side and reached out with the remaining front leg (now on top) and kept on smacking us. I didn't know whether to celebrate or keep cussing him. smiley


From abandoned puppy to Tripawd Warrior Dude, Dakota became one of the 2011 February Furballs due to STS. Our incredibly sweet friend lived with grace and dignity till he impulsively raced over the Bridge on 12-15-12.

Dakota's thoughtful and erudite blog is at

Hunter Valley, NSW
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25 May 2013
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27 May 2013 - 11:34 pm
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It's definitely a relief to hear that this is actually very common!


Rade did actually lie on his wound side very briefly this afternoon, propped up on pillows, before deciding it was too early and changing position.  At least he's trying it out though.  I've bought him one of those big barker beds, maybe that will make a difference too.


Shari, I know exactly what you mean about bad habits you don't know whether to celebrate or vent over.  I had lots of trouble getting Rade to exercise (wouldn't come outside, wouldn't go past the gate etc). Then when I got him to come for a walk one morning, everything was lovely, until we got to our neighbours fence and much to my surprise he put himself through the fence and took off cross country with our labrador Rosie.  I couldn't believe it.  At that stage I was trying everything to get him up, about and moving, barely meeting any success, paranoid about lack of fitness and pressure sores etc...  Then, when it suits him...  Off he goes!  The nerve! There I was going to all this effort to get him out of the house, feeling good that I had started to get somewhere, and then they abandon me to go off and have fun sans Mum.

I couldn't decide between being thrilled that he was happy and energetic and having fun, and miffed that he'd been so naughty and had also ditched me without apology. 

In the end, I decided to be both.  :)





Member Since:
22 February 2013
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28 May 2013 - 8:56 am
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Hi Non I and "mind of his own Rade
Wow! Don't know how I missed your post-----I also had the privilege of being owned by a Huskey for many years and know exactly what you and Shari are talking about:-) :-)

Sounds like your update is a really good ones and Rade is using is Huskey brain to do what he wants, when he wants and that's all good:-) :-)

Really glad you got the Big Barker Bed . My chunk of a dog loves it and it made it so much easier for her to stand and ma ever around after her amputation because it is so sturdy......and it's been almost four months now (Wow! Yay Happy Hannqh:-) ). and it hasn't lost it's shape one bit!! Happy Hannah took almost a month to start laying on her surgery site , even a little. Now though, she's all over it!

Soooooo glad this gs are going so well! Looks like Rosie's the key!!

Please keep us posted----would love to see more photos of your handsome boy!!

You rock Rade!! Sally and Happy Hannah

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!

Member Since:
1 February 2013
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28 May 2013 - 9:20 am
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Welcome Noni & Rade!

Sounds like Rade is being a normal Huskysmiley! Shooter actually laid on his amp side within two weeks which actually surprised me as it remained fairly tender for a couple of months and even now he prefers we don't rub on it much. Now he seems to be equal opportunity to both sides. Glad to hear he gave it a try so will be working his way that direction.

Spirit Shooter was a Miniature Australian Shepherd who was diagnosed with a MCT and had a LF amp 1/28/13 at 13-1/2 years old. 

Shooter crossed the Bridge on 8/28/13, his 7 month ampuversary and two weeks from his 14th birthday.

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