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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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13yr old Lab/Rottie mix with left front amputation
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Forum Posts: 49
Member Since:
14 March 2021
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16 March 2021 - 2:01 pm
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Hi Everyone

First off, thank you for offering such a wealth of information on this site…I have spent the past few days reading dozens of posts, watching videos and looking at recommendations.

I’d like to introduce my 13yr old black Lab/Rottie mix Mojo who will become a tripawd tomorrow. We started noticing symptoms about a month ago, the first being mid Feb and awoken from a dead sleep to a loud thud. Hubby and I jump out of bed and Mojo is in the foyer limping so we figured she fell down the hardwood stairs. She has fallen down the last 3-4 before spread eagle like superman and has gotten up and walked away like nothing happened. So we gave it a few days but she wasn’t able to shake the limp. She was already scheduled to see her Oncologist that week for her regular 8 week check (she was diagnosed with lymphoma about a year ago) so he went ahead and did a physical exam and recommended xrays. X-ray came back showing bone loss in her left front elbow, he took her off her chemo since the lymphoma has been in remission and we went home with some pain meds and anti-inflammatory pills and strict low to no activity for two weeks to rest her leg. The limp went away and she seemed back to herself. Two weeks went by and we go back for another x-ray…more bone change is noticed and while there could have been a hairline fracture in her elbow from her fall which wouldn’t show but the bone changes could be a result of the bone trying to heal. The oncologist consulted with the surgeon and the thought it that while it could be a hairline fracture trying to heal, it could also be Osteosarcoma. We went home with instructions to come back in a month (March 8) for another X-ray. Well the Sunday prior Mojo start limping again (we already started blocking the stairs after her last superman imitation. So March 8 comes and we see the surgeon who does another x-ray (more bone changes) and can tell that she is in pain just from a physical exam. At this point I learn of the possible options to try and treat a dog with Osteosarcoma (the hairline fracture notion just doesn’t support the x-ray) and spend the week having various calls with the Oncologist.

While nervous about it in terms of her age, Mojo is a very stubborn/hard headed dog who does not act 13 and we think she will pull thru okay, we decide to amputate. 

Mojo goes to VCA South Paws in Virginia and they are participating in the ELIAS Animal Health Canine Osteosarcoma Immunotherapy Trial (https://eliasan…..ci-osa-04/) and Mojo has been accepted into the trial! I don’t know at this point if she will be put in the chemo group or the immunotherapy group. Anyone else on here have a dog in the study?

Again, thanks for all the information that has been shared so far. 

The Rainbow Bridge



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16 March 2021 - 2:40 pm
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Mojo and family, welcome! You guys have been through so much, and I’m sorry you are dealing with another type of cancer. If it’s any comfort, I hear GREAT things about South Paws from members who have had their own pets treated there. It’s an awesome hospital! 

And, I’m super glad you are in the clinical trial! Yes, we do have another member who is in the study! Meet Tiny, the Cane Corso.

Here’s a couple of Tripawds News stories about the ELIAS vaccine that you’ll be interested in checking out:

The Greatest Dane Thrives with ELIAS Dog Cancer Immunotherapy Treatment

Dogs Beat Osteosarcoma Odds with ELIAS Cancer Immunotherapy Treatment

You sound confident in Mojo’s ability to bounce back, which is spectacular! If you have anything at all you want to ask, please do. Be sure to check out Jerry’s Required Reading List and the Tripawds e-books for answers to your burning questions. 

Best wishes to Mojo on surgery day, keep us posted!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Forum Posts: 49
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18 March 2021 - 6:14 am
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The surgeon said that Mojo did great yesterday and everything went well. A friend of a friend who works the overnight at SouthPaws sent me a pic of Mojo that I woke up to today. All I could see was her face and the big blue floppy cone. I should be getting a call around 10am to discuss discharge and all for later today. My friend said that when she talked to her friend, Mojo hadn’t eaten anything yet but that is typical bc of the pain meds. 

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 29607
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18 March 2021 - 11:11 am
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WOOOHOO! That’s wonderful! How cool you have a friend that works there, giving you the inside scoop.

Yep, pain meds do a number on new Tripawds. Lack of appetite is also common. 

I’m hoping by now he’s home and snuggled up next to you. Keep us posted.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Virginia




Forum Posts: 20607
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18 March 2021 - 9:31 pm
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I just joined the Mojo Fan Club❤  Clearly age is just a humber to Mojo.  She obviously  is a strong determined Warrior surrounded by a whole lot of love from her hooman!

When  you go to pick her up, don’t  even bother to look at her incision or draw attention to it.  She just wants to know she’s going home and that she’s a very good girl!!

Sloooow and easy for the first two weeks.  It may take her a few days to get her sea legs and balance.  Just let her recover at her own pace. And yes, not eating right away is no biggie.  Peeing and drinking are important though.  Pooping  may take a few days too.

Stay co and let us know as any questions arise, okay?  Recovery is no picni for a couple of weeks, but it doesn’t  last furever!  Mojo will have her Mojo back in no time!

Hugs

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!

Forum Posts: 49
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19 March 2021 - 6:39 am
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Thanks so much for all the pawsitive vibes! We got her home last night and she was still a bit outta it. We’ve got her blocked off in our living room which is all carpeted. She had eaten a good amount around 5 (before we picked her up) and they were able to give her the evening meds then. She ate a few (not her normal) kibbles from my hand once home but pretty much stayed zonked out in her bed. She has a compression shirt on and they said to keep it on her till she goes back for suture removal…saves her from having to wear the floppy blue cone as well. We put her in her bed last night and when I came down this morning found that she made it outta her bed and was sleeping next to it. Her big brown eyes looked right at me when I turned the light on and told her “good morning”. She took her regular supplements right off the bat this morning and ate a decent amount (regular kibble mixed with some wet (which she never gets)) and then took all her Rxs. I couldn’t get her up on my own so hubby had to help. We used a towel under her front and the sling helper under her belly that I still had from her TPLO surgery. Once we were outside with the wind blowing her tail started wagging. sp_hearticon2She peed with her butt in the air and trying to rest her chest on the ground. We got her back inside and laying on some really soft fleece blankets that we laid on the carpet. She’s drinking water well, just have to put the bowl down to her. It seems that her right front paw is a bit swollen. Is that to be expected because of the IV line that was there?

I’ve created a new thread for her post-op recovery.

Virginia




Forum Posts: 20607
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19 March 2021 - 12:35 pm
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Sounds like things are gping really, really well this early on !  

And yes, she deserves  some extra yummy food for being such a good girl.  Yeah, may have to bring her water and food to her til she gets her sea legs.  Right now she’s still got so e good pain meds in her from the surgery.  ,

Love that her tail started wagging  once she got outside in the Fresh air😊  

Of course keep your Vet Iin the loop if the swelling  gets worse,  but quite often swelling  forms in the other limb right after surgery. 

You’re doing a great job of overseeing her recovery. 👍

Hugs

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!

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 29607
Member Since:
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19 March 2021 - 1:01 pm
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Aww sweet pup! The vision of her peeing with her butt in the air is too cute icon_lol A little wonky from the meds perhaps?!

That all sounds really normal and yep, sometimes the swelling happens. Going over to your other post now, thanks for starting a new topic about recovery!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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