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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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Should we amputate?
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Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
11 April 2021
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12 April 2021 - 11:04 am
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Hello Everyone! and nice to meet you!

My partner and I have adopted a puppy, we think she's mostly a Golden Retriever, and she was diagnosed with Neospora around 9 weeks of age. If you have never heard of it, feel free to message me, I have done weeks of research. It's very hard to find information online about it since it is so rare and the prognosis usually isn't very good for puppies. Luckily we caught it in time and she's a survivor! However her right hind leg may not be. 

The parasite got to her right hind leg so bad that the muscle atrophy has made it nearly impossible for us to bend (which is what we've been trying to do to save it). The vet just told us her quality of life may be better without it, as she is basically already a 3 legged dog and that leg is just holding her back since she isn't using it. 

This is probably a longshot but does anyone have a similar story with Neospora or muscle atrophy? Or a recommendation on what we should do with her leg? Most people have to amputate due to cancer, pain, an accident or old age, so it seems crazy to amputate a puppies leg for none of those reasons.

We never expected this and we're doing the best we can, we love her so much we just want her to have the best quality of life possible! Any advice or feedback will be much appreciated.

Best, 

Jen (Lily's mom)

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 31074
Member Since:
25 April 2007
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12 April 2021 - 2:41 pm
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Jen and Lily, welcome! Wow, in all our years of being online, you are the first to come here because of neosporosis in dogs. I'm so sorry! Had to look that one up and put a link in here in case someone else some day is dealing with the same thing. It is a blessing that she survived though, what a strong girl! 

So my first question is: how many opinions have you had about her leg prognosis? I would get at least 2 more: one from a rehabilitation therapist and one from an orthopedic specialist. Both can give you their perspectives on the possibility of saving the leg, or at least doing a partial amputation which could enable her to use a prosthetic if you are willing to give it a try. 

She's a very lucky girl to have you for parents!

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