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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25 December 2013
Kira “chose” us in September, 2001. After touring our local shelter, looking for our first fur-ever friend as a married couple, my husband and I stopped amidst the kennels to talk about the dogs we’d seen. Suddenly, Kira emerged from the shadows in her kennel, jumped up on the kennel door and licked my husband’s fingers, where they were poking through the chain link. We really hadn’t “seen” her before and were smitten. We took her out to the recreation area and played with her, then sat on a bench as she sniffed around. Before we knew it, she jumped up between us on the bench and sat down. The deal was sealed.
Kira graced our lives for 13 wonderful years. She was a loving companion, at times a fierce guardian, and always a very bright spot in our home. Kira loved her human parents and children, walks, running swiftly along the beach and chasing the occasional seagull, exploring new territory and her fur sister Jessie.
In September, 2013, Kira was diagnosed with soft tissue sarcoma in her right leg. Vets couldn’t save the leg and Kira joined the ranks of the tripawd crew just before Christmas that year. Never daunted by a challenge, our Big Dog soldiered on, not only healing like a champ but continuing to play and live like a boss! A subsequent cruciate ligament tear in one of her knees slowed her down and she couldn’t travel far after that. However, a sturdy wagon with red nylon sides allowed her to accompany us on walks around the neighborhood that took us much farther afield than Kira would have been able to go unassisted. She loved that wagon and, every time it showed up, Kira ran to it in anticipation of another adventure. It always interested us to see how people reacted with Kira in the wagon. There were many smiles and waves or surprised looks. We would sometimes giggle at the response of some, who couldn’t see she was missing a leg, and likely thought we were Kira’s loyal subjects. Of course, there is plenty of truth to that. lol There is nothing we wouldn’t have done for her.
We had Kira’s chest x-rayed as the vet instructed, since the type of cancer she had was known to travel to the lungs. The first two x-rays, at 3 and 6 months, were clear. However, before we could make it to the 12-month x-ray, Kira began coughing and was diagnosed with a rapidly-advancing lung tumor. It was inoperable.
The next few months were sweetly-lived. We spent lots of time with Kira, took her out in her wagon, played, spoiled her and made lots of good memories. On January 9, 2015, when her breathing suddenly became labored and she couldn’t get up, our sweet, beautiful fur child received her angel wings. She went swiftly and quietly over the Rainbow Bridge with my husband and I holding her outside in a field near our vet’s office.
How blessed we were to have such a sweet, brave, loving, bright doggie soul in our lives for so long! Though she is gone from our sight, Kira will always be most dearly loved and deeply missed. Shine on, precious Big Dog!
13 June 2013
My deepest condolences for your loss…. it sounds like Kira had the best life a dog could hope for… starting from a shelter life!
May those memories comfort you in your time of sadness…
alison with spirit shelby furever in her heart (and little jasper too)
Shelby Lynne; Jack Russell/Shiba Inu mix. Proud member of the April Angels of 2014.
October 15, 2000 to April 8, 2014
Our story: Broke rear leg in June 2013 - non-conclusive results for cancer so leg was plated and pinned. Enlarged spleen in September 2013 and had it removed and was diagnosed with Hemangiosarcoma and started chemotherapy. Became a Tripawd January 8th, 2014 and definitive Hemangiosarcoma diagnosis. Three major surgeries in 7 months and Shelby took them all like a champ only to lose her battle to cancer in her brain. We had 8 amazing extra months together and no regrets. #shelbystrong #loveofmylife
28 March 2015
What a sweet tribute. I’m sure she was loved and I’m sure she knew it too.
Active 10+ Pyr mix suddenly came up lame with ACL tear in left rear leg. Scheduled for a TPLO but final pre-op x-rays indicated a small suspicious area, possibly OSA, which could have caused the ACL tear. Surgeon opened the knee for TPLO but found soft bone. Biopsy came back positive for OSA. Became a Tripawd 9/18/14. Carbo6 with Cerenia and Fluids. Pain free and living in the moment. Crossed the Bridge on 7/12/15 after probable spread of cancer to her cervical spine. A whole lifetime of memories squeezed into 10 months. Here's her story: Eloise
31 August 2013
What a beautiful girl Kira was, and your tribute to her is amazingly sweet and inspirational. You and your husband gave her the best and happiest life possible, and hopefully many, many great memories will always remain within your hearts.
Time will ease your heartache, and eventually with Kira’s help, a new fur-love will come into your lives to fill it with joy again.
Keeping you in my thoughts,
Bonnie, Angel Polly, and new crew
22 February 2013
Lovely heartfelt tribute. Your heart and Kira clearly guided your words today. Yes, it brought tears as I read this AND it brought such a warm feeling of subdued happiness knowing how well lpved Kira is…and how her life was sooooo well lived!!
When she picked you that day of connection, she knew exactly what she was doing! She wanted to feel love, joy, happiness, safe, peace, security and lots of tummy rubs and good treats…and she succeeded beyond even her wildest expectations!!
The visuals you painted of Kira getting excited ro see her red wagon and how you happily became her loyal subjects as you carted her Royal Highness around her domain!
You were so devoted to Kira, and she to you, and you both felt it every single day kf her almost fourteen years with you!!! FOURTEEN YEARS! Whatever challenges were thrown her way never stopped her from being “The Boss”! And the Seagulls always knew she was indeed Their Boss!
We all know how much this hurts and how the void just rips your heart out. No matter how much time we have with our fur souls, it’s never enough. But may the bliss of Kira’s soul continue to refresh your memory of nothing but the happy times you shared. And there were thousands and tousands of days of happy and joyful memories!!
Perhaps you can turn her little red wagon into a wonderful little “celebration of life” wagon, full of slecial mementos that will warm your heart and remind you that Kira is ALWAYS by your side. Her bright light can never be dimmed.
Thank you so much for allowing us to get to know Kira even more through this beautiful celebration tribute. I hope you will continue to stay connected and carry on Kira’s inspirational story. She jas wuite a legacy for anyone faci g this journey…ESPECIALLY SENIORS!! And when you can, maybe you can share some more pictures of this very special soul.
She will always be remembered here…she, and you, are family!!
Surrounding you with Kira’s eternal grace.
Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle 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!
26 January 2014
I am so sorry, it is never ever easy. You gave her the last act of love you could possibly give her. Isn’t it just amazing how they choose us sometimes? Like they know they are our heart dogs before we do. Sending you lots of hugs
Mom to Tripawd Angels Jake (2001-2014) and Rosco (2012-2015) and Tripawd Tanner. “Whatever happens tomorrow, we had today; and I'll always remember it”
25 January 2014
So sorry for your loss of sweet Kira. I love the story of how she chose you at the shelter. 13&1/2 years, what a wonderful life. She sounds like she enjoyed every minute. Hey, she knew she would from the moment that tongue reached out to those fingers. I hope your memories make you smile. May your tears of grief be replaced by tears of joy that she was yours. Lori, Ty & gang
TY GUY, Best Black Lab ever! Diagnosed and had amp in January, 2014. Kicked MRSA's butt. Earned his angel wings on April 16, 2014. Run Free my boy and don't forget a shoe. Ty is a proud member of the " April Angels". Ty sent us Daryl, a Tripawd rescue in Sept. of 2016. Daryl is 5 +or -. We are also Pawrents to Chandler, a Border Collie mix who is 15 and 1/2, Lucy, a Corgi who is 7, 2 minis, 2 horses, and a feisty cat named Zoe. Zoe had a non skeletal Osteosarcoma removed in July 2015. No Chemo, she was at least 16. She is going strong although she is now completely blind. She is now close to 20 and her hobbies are eating and sleeping in front of her personal heater.
25 April 2007
Oh what a sweet tribute to a once-in-a-lifetime doggie. Thank you for bringing us into your lives to witness your beautiful relationship. She sounded like such a great pup, so grateful for pawrents who chose her and gave her the life every shelter dog dreams of. Kira sure won the doggie lotto with you two. I’m so sorry she is an angel now. Even all those years together isn’t long enough is it?
Kira’s personality and the story of how you found her at the shelter sounds so much like our Jerry’s. He was our first dog too and we had a very similar introduction at a shelter. It makes me smile knowing that they probably found each other in doggie heaven and are having a ball with their pals.
Run Kira, run, play, romp and watch over our Tripawd heroes here on earth. You are never forgotten, always loved. xoxo
17 May 2014
Thanks for sharing such a beautiful tribute to another wonderful canine angel. Every parting is a sad story, because we all wish they could be with us for much longer, and this is the emotional price we pay when we let a dog (or cat) into our lives. RIP Kira. You will always be a special part of your family’s history.
Daniela & Johnnie
Our awesome Golden Boy was diagnosed for OSA in April 2014 in the proximal humerus, front-leg amp on 05/20/2014. Finished chemo (Carbo6) on 07/10/2014. Ongoing treatment: acupuncture + K-9 Immunity Plus ( 3chews) and home-cooked no-grain diet. Stopped Apocaps because of liver issues. Liver issues: controlling altered enzymes with SAM-e and Milk Thistle. October 17: started having seizures. Taking fenobarbital for seizures. April 18: started prednisone.
3 June 2014
I’m so sorry for your loss of your sweet Kira. Your tribute to Kira is simply beautiful and heartfelt. She lived a wonderful life with you and your family and knew what true love was. She will forever be your guardian angel.
Sahana and her Angel Leland
November 17, 2009 - June 30, 2014
May you finally be healthy and running free at the Rainbow Bridge. Until we meet again my sweet boy!