Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat
Tripawds is your home 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.
Hi There, I found this community through watching some three-legged cat videos on Youtube and decided to join.
A bit of a backstory - we have a family cat who has just been diagnosed with osteosarcoma. After 1st and 2nd opinions by local vets, my family has now been referred to an oncologist who has just run some test and performed a CT Scan on him yesterday. We are waiting for results.
The last 2 weeks of Christmas and New Years holidays has been a waiting game, and I am just heartbroken and worried for my family (another thing to add is that I live abroad as I am pursuing a career away from my home). I am heartbroken for my parents having to go through all the diagnoses and vet appointments alone, without me there. I am heartbroken that I am not there for our family cat at this time and miss everyone.
Amputation may be an option, but we are waiting for more news.
Everything hurts. The last 2 weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions, waiting for tests to come back, the holidays in between, and just watching from afar. I am trying to stay positive, but these past few days I've been feeling really overwhelmed, and so sad for my Mom, who calls almost every day crying.
Just wanted to send everyone out there love and encouragement, just feeling pretty sad at the moment and am glad to have found this community. If anyone has some feline osteosarcoma success stories, I'd love to hear them.
If anyone has some feline osteosarcoma success stories, I'd love to hear them.
You will find many successful stories thoroughly documented treatment plans here in the forums and the bogs!
Be sure to search the Three Legged Cats Forum and check the numerous tri-kitty blogs, or consider downloading Cool Tips for Tripawd Cats for fast answers and common concerns, and feel free to call the toll-free Tripawds Helpline anytime.
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22 February 2013
Aorry uou find yourself here, but you are definitely in the right place for support and information! You now have your new tripawd family with you overseas, and we are here with your Mom and Dad and kitty too! What is your kitty's name?
Ypu xan alao have your Mom and Dad join so we can better support them too. We have a helpline available, 1 844 TRIPAWD, as well as all the great links the Admin Guy gave you. Tons and tons of info there. The more information you have, the less scary this journey is.
And as odd as this sounds, once you get everything properly diagnosed and a treatment plan is developed, you WILL feel a sense of relief.
And remember, your kitty could care less about any old diagnosis, statistics and stuff like that. Your cat lives joyously from one moment to the next with no worries about anything. We have a saying, Be More Dog , and it applies to Be More Cat too!
Update us when you can.....eat chocolate....BREATHE....and eat more chocolate!
Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!
PS Where overseas are you? We have many members living outside of the States. We are with you, your Mom and Dad, right by your side wherever this journey leads you. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!
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!
Hi Everyone, I am so grateful to hear all the wonderful words of encouragement and support. I am really glad that I have found this site. Our cat's name is "Tabby."
We love him so much and hope for the best. Also benny55 you hit the nail on the head - these past weeks, just not having the answers all at once, the waiting, and partial answers from the vets (due to holidays in between, not getting results from diagnostics as quickly) has really driven us crazzzyy. Facing the facts and the shock of this new diagnoses has been hard.
Thank you Team Tripawd Admin for all the links, I will certainly peruse for feline osteosarcoma success stories to keep my spirits high during this time.
Sending everyone love, encouragement and prayers.
You hear a lot of the saying "Be More Dog " in here because they live for the moment. They do not worry about things like we do, they just live for the moment and love their families. Be More Cat... In respect to amputation, one and the same. My Huckleberry does not have cancer. He had his right rear leg amputated due to traumatic injury. I say that vaguely bc he was feral. I cannot help you in the cancer department but as far as taking the limb is concerned we have traveled down that road and that is a rollercoaster ride in itself of emotions.
He cares not about the limb that was taken. He lives happily as a semi domestic indoor only kitty now. It took several months of physical rehab and domestic rehab, but he's rocking life on three.
We have a good amount of cats here for various reasons, and the feline population thrive.
Obviously no two are the same, but a great majority act like they never started out with four.
Post surgery can be a challenge. It takes several weeks to heal and get back to their normal... But they do.
Proper litter boxes are important. Keeping them confined to small areas or a room that is safe during recovery is important too.
Be ready for the caregiver to spend lots of time medicating for pain, feeding, and keeping them comfy. I always say get your house in order and have comfort food for you (chocolate and ice cream) , and good stinky wet food and plenty of bedding for your feline. A short cardboard box lined with newspaper or disposable box with a side cut way down will suffice in the beginning.
I recovered Huckleberry in an extra large dog crate.. If your baby will allow that i would highly recommend it. If not, a spare room that is kitty safe from all jumping and leaping would be great too.
Good luck on your journey. Pain medication is a must. Don't let anybody tell you otherwise. Huck had antibiotics, buprenofren, and gabapentin which helps for phantom limb pain. Please make sure you have enough for a couple of weeks.
I am sorry that you are here for the reasons that you found us, but I am glad that you found Tripawds. There is a wealth of information here, and the support is pawsome!
Here are a couple of links that you may like to read along with the others offered. The second is a blog that will warm your heart.
Jackie and Huck ❤️
We heard back from the oncology specialist and surgeon on next steps. The latest is that amputation will only have a 50/50 chance of removing the entire tumour. She said that if there is a 95% chance that the amputation can remove the tumour she would feel more positive and recommend the surgery, in fact originally the vet was hoping that removing the leg could help our cat tremendously. The sarcoma is very close to the hip bone, and she is concerned about that the surgery and doesn't really recommend it. She also said that if the surgery didn't remove all of the tumour, they could try radiation on the remaining bits, but there is risk to the radiation as well. She listed some more options, but none sound very good right now as they aren't curative. She said we could try chemo, but the vet wasn't really able to provide any definite prognosis - just that it might slow things down a bit.
I have a call with a new holistic vet that I found online in a bit to see if there are any other options. Has anyone tried curcumin? Are there any side effects?
Is there a brand that you recommend? Is there a diet that we can put him on at this point that would ease his symptoms a bit? He's limping because of the sarcoma on his leg, but still eating relatively ok. He has been prescribed some pain meds.
Ouch, oh man I know that puts you all in a tough spot. I am glad you have pain meds for him. Hopefully the holistic vet can give you some guidance on supplements and diet. I am sorry that this rotten cancer is in such a delicate place, and I know you must be a mess.
Unfortunately I do not have the experience with the cancer or the supplements, but I really hope that you can find a way to manage this so that you have good quality time together. I truly wish you the best of luck with Tabby. He is very lucky to have parents working so hard to help give him the best life that you can.
Please let us know how you make out with the vet that you are going to speak with. I hope they are able to give you pawsitive insight and can help you out.
Jackie and Huck
6 July 2017
So sorry to hear Tabby's situation.
While I have no experience with cancer, my cat Tuxedo lost a rear leg and partial pelvis (hemipelvectomy) due to a dog attack. That was well over 1 & 1/2 years ago. He was 9 or 10 at the time. It was very close to his estimated birthday so I do not know which age for sure. He gets around fantastically now. Truly amazing what that little critter can get up to despite his disability. Run, jump, climb. You name it he has likely done it. About the only issues he has now are balance/stability related. If caught unaware, he often gets toppled over. Dazzle my other kitty loves to exploit this because Tuxedo is such a bully at times.
I mention it here, because of the concern about the tumor's proximity to Tabby's hip. Perhaps it might be worth asking to see if this type of amputation might be possible while you are seeking out other options.
If there is any advice I can offer, please feel free to message. While I do check in here every day or two, I usually do not say much because others see quicker with the post button.
Hugs and prayers for good options,
-Dawna, Tuxedo, & Dazzle
11 July 2016
Hi, I'm really sorry you had to join us and dealing with osteosarcoma.
I'm really surprised they are not taking the leg or as Dawna mentioned a hemipelvectomy.
We have another member named Sarah who kitty Leo also had bone cancer & had a hemipelvectomy. Sara also started a blog on Leo both links I will attach below. I don't know how Leo is doing currently you could always post on her blog.
We don't always take the leg for a cure but for the quality of life, not quantity. Are you comfortable with the vet's decision? If you are not please get a second opinion. We always strive for quality of life whichever route that is for Tabby we support you.
I have a call with a new holistic vet that I found online in a bit to see if there are any other options. Has anyone tried curcumin ? Are there any side effects?
Your holistic vet will guide you on diet and supplements. I use Dr. Mercola Curcumin and have had zero side effects. I feed our boys a rehydrated raw diet recommended from our holistic vet.
You want to feed the best diet you can afford and that Tabby will happily eat. High protein/low carb.
Here are some links on diet/cancer
Did they mention Bisphosphonates as an option?
If we can answer any questions or we can help in any way just ask.
Purrkins lost his front left leg due to a soft tissue sarcoma 2.5 years ago.
Thank you, Jackie, for directing to Purrkins blog!
Holly & Purrkins❤️
Hi there, I also have a kitty-Mummbles that has an osteosarcoma on his right hind paw. Our vet had indicated that in his opinion Mummbles wasn't a good candidate for surgery given that his xray of his lungs looked suspicious. He did say if I wanted another opinion to visit the vet oncology clinic but we believe our vet. Sorry, to get to the point of supplements, currently I treat Mummbles with CBD oil that is distributed from Back to the Bone in Burlington. This certainly has been helping tremendously and may even help curtail the growth - but we really dont know for sure. Aside from that I supplement his wet food with a cancer-immune support from Petwellbeing.ca. Sending your beautiful kitty healing wishes and a pawsitive outcome.