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Small dog need amputation I NEED HELP! | Presentation and Diagnosis

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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Small dog need amputation I NEED HELP!
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Forum Posts: 10
Member Since:
10 January 2016
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17 January 2016 - 2:46 pm
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HI there recently my 7 pound maltese was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in the right front leg. We have decided to proceed with surgery which is on Wednesday 1/20. I was wondering are there any other members that have had an experience with a smaller dog/breed and if so how did they adjust and handle it? My baby is only 7 years old and I can’t bear to take the chance away from him to have a little bit longer of a life with surgery and chemo. I hope we can be as lucky as some of you can get longer than the averaged 11 months but I will take what I can get. Lastly my dog is on tramadol and gabapentin and is experiencing rapid breathing. His lung xrays came back clear so I don’t think it’s mets and I can’t imagine it would spread there in a matter of a week any how but a mom can’t help but to worry. I appreciate this forum so much it has done wonders to put my mind at ease and because of the family success stories it is the reason my husband and I decided to go forward with surgery. So if anyone has any experience going through this with a smaller breed and their outcome with adjustment to life on 3 legs and any opinions on the rapid breathing (which I’m guessing is from meds and pain) it would be so greatly appreciated to help this nervous mom get some much needed sleep. THANK YOU SO MUCH!! xoxo 

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 25088
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17 January 2016 - 7:20 pm
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Hello and welcome. We are glad you found us too! Your future posts won’t need approval so post away (sorry for the delay approving this one, busy day here). Hope you don’t mind I moved your post here but since he hasn’t had surgery yet this is a good place to begin. When he does have surgery our Treatment and Recovery Forum is a great place to ask specific questions about recovery.

I’m sorry to hear about your pup, what’s his name? Osteo in a small breed like yours is rare, what a shock. The good news though is that his size is a great advantage; small dogs do really well on three legs! With less weight to move around they typically bounce back from surgery in no time at all.  Have you had a chance to check out Jerry’s Required Reading List or the Tripawds e-books Library? You’ll find lots of answers to your questions there, and folks in this great community will chime in too.

About the panting…panting is either a reaction to pain medication or a sign that he needs more pain control. I know, crazy huh? We talked about this last week on Tripawd Talk Radio. The fact that your pup is on both medications indicates to me that he’s getting great vet care. Let them know that you are seeing these signs, they will fine-tune the pain meds so he is able to feel better now and after surgery.

Meanwhile, what’s his name?

Try to relax, breathe and know that you can get through this and your dog will be the best teacher!

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




Forum Posts: 3499
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17 January 2016 - 7:46 pm
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Welcome to Tripawds.

I’m sorry you are dealing with OSA- I think this is the first time I’ve heard of it here in a dog so small.

My Tri-pug Maggie was a 17 pound pug and 7.5 years old when she lost her left rear leg to mast cell cancer.  After a longer than normal adjustment time (no medical issues, Maggie was stubborn!) she was fine on three legs for almost 4 years.

I have recently adopted another rear leg tripawd, she was hit by a car.  Elly is a 14 pound mix who just turned one year old and my biggest issue with her is slowing her down!

Everyone says that small dogs adapt very quickly (most of them have big dogs big-grin).  Maggie was definitely an exception. The good thing with a small tripawd is that you can pick them up.  The bad thing with a small tripawd is that you can pick them up!  It is easier (on your back) to pick up and carry a smaller dog then to bend over and try and help them balance.  But in the long run they need to have 3 feet on the ground and figure out how to hop and balance for bathroom, etc.  I’ve had several instances where I’ve needed to help one of my small dogs get around.  I found a harness and a leash worked well to assist. The vet may send you home with a sling to assist your boy. For your small guy I would also think a long sleeved shirt would work as a sling, the long sleeves should give you enough length.

Let us know what specific questions you have.  We do need to know his name, and pictures are always welcome.

Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

Virginia




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17 January 2016 - 9:43 pm
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YOU ARE NOT ALONE! We are all right here by your side, okay? You have DEFINITELY come ro the right place for support and information. We understand like no others can!

Take some deep BREATHS! Real k y…right now…before you go any further…B R E A T H E…..B R E A T H E…..B R E A T H E..
If you are anything like me, I felt like I was stuck in a nightmare. I couldn’t stop crying. I first was completely opposed to amputation (I had not found this site yet). Then yes…then no…yes..no…yes. Once I decided to go ahead I cancelled the first surgery appt. because I could not believe my chunky 125 lb Bull Mastiff could possibly walk on three legs, among a thousand other fears!

I can tell you now, after having the most glorious bonus time of over one year and two months anyone coukd imagine, it was a GREAT decision!!

Every recovery is different, every dog is different, but little dogs almost always recover quicker than most! Stubborn Pug Maggie referenced above had a few “.e tal issues”, but not physicalwinker

Your pup does not give a rip about statistics or days on a calendar! Your pup does NOT have a timeframe stamped on her butt! One of the lessons of this journey that we all master pretty quickly is to live in the now…in the moment… make every second count!!

And yes, the pain meds can cause the symptoms you mentioned. And, of course, the “catch 22” is that pain causes the same symptoms! I cannot even imagine how small the doses must be for your tiny doggy, but it must b small! Talk with your vet and see if he can determine if the meds need to be lowered or raised. No worries, this is fixable!

Cannot wait to see pictures of this cutie pie! I’m smiling already when I think about how cute she has to be!

Hang onto us. Stay connected. Grab some chocolate in between your deep breathing!

Love

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!

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19 January 2016 - 10:17 am
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Thank you everyone! I can not tell you how happy I am that this group exists. The amazing support that you have shown me already has lifted such a weight off my chest. My husband, Cosmo and I thank you so much. Cosmo is our little baby. He is a 7 pound maltese who is also only 7 years old. I could not bear to part with him so early and I couldn’t imagine putting him down with out giving him a fighting chance of a few more happy months. Tomorrow is our surgery and we are very anxious but excited at the same time to see our little baby out of so much pain. I am worried about him adapting to having only one front leg, I feel it may be easier if it was a back leg but we take the cards we are dealt. I am worried about his little back legs I think from them not being used in a week or two they are weak and the muscles are a little tight because he does whimper a bit when you touch them. We did have FULL body xrays done last week to ensure the cancer was no where else before we proceeded with surgery and thankfully he came back completely clean. I am now looking forward to the next step in our journey and I am so very thankful I have such a great group to go on it with me. I have been looking at having a wheel set made for him but I am having a hard time finding a set of wheels that can help dogs with front limb problems , many places have wheelchair sets for back limbs. Does anyone have any suggestions of personal experiences ordering from certain companies? Look forward to hearing from you. THank you again so much and I am very excited to officially a member of the tripawd family! xoxo 

The Rainbow Bridge



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19 January 2016 - 11:14 am
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Glad we could be of help.

This article will help you understand when and why wheelchairs are needed (they aren’t always). We advise having him evaluated by a rehab therapist before you do anything so they can advise how to get Cosmo strong again. Tripawds Foundation will even pay for your first visit 🙂

When and How a Dog Wheelchair Can Help a Tripawd

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

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Virginia




Forum Posts: 17445
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19 January 2016 - 3:15 pm
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Loving Cosmo’s avatar picture!!! So much CUTENESS is such a little fella!!!

I think you will be amazed at how well Cosmo does on tnree legs, especially since he’s already using it less and less because it hurts! And yes, there may be some adjustment period and some sore and sriff muscles. Some vets say it takes avout two weeks to recover from the surgery itself, (it is major surgery), and about one months for adjustment to three legs to adapt smoothly.

Just throwing this out in the “for whatever it’s worth” category. You maywant to hld off purchasing any wheelchairs, harnesses, etc. until you see what kind of help Cosmo may, or may not need. When my Happy Hannah came home, I tried to “help” her with a towel sling and she basically froze!

For now, jist keep things chunked down. Get the surgery done and get him through the recovery process. I’m assuming he will be spending the first night after surgery at the vet. That is a great night to try and catch up on your sleep as Gizmo will happily be chasing pink elephants!

Your vet will most likely give you Tramadol, Gabapentin, Rimadyl and an antibiotic. Getting the dose and the timing of the dose can take a little trial and error, but you’ll figure it out with the guidance of your vet.

And YAAAAAAAAAY FOR A GOOD CHECK UP!!

Stay connected and update Wednesday when he gets out of surgerh. In the meantime, we would LOVE to see more pictures of this ADORABLE pup!!

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!

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21 January 2016 - 9:48 pm
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Sorry, I just saw this post, but I wanted to mention that my little 10-year-old Westie, who was 15 pounds prior to amputation of her right front leg two weeks ago, is getting along pretty well on three legs. And I’ve just been using a collar and leash.

The past two weeks have been very intense…and I’m sure there will be more intense days in the near future as we have to decide about chemo, etc.

But I’m so glad I had the surgery done. She was in so much pain before the operation that I really couldn’t do anything else.

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