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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13 December 2008
My name is Maura and I am the proud owner of Andy! I rescued my Dobe four years ago from the Atlanta Human Society. He has been the greatest treasure of my life.
Last April, we discovered he has osteosarcoma. It was devastating. At the time, my mother was being treated for a rare and aggressive cancer, and the thought of losing both her and my best friend was beyond imaginable.
We opted to amputate the leg. The surgery went smoothly, but the recovery was a disaster. Andy! crashed the day after and I spent two nights on the floor in the vet clinic with him. Finally, he was well enough to come home. 🙂
He has acclimated to three leggedness pretty well. He runs and jumps and doesn’t seem to be to slowed down at all.
As far as after treatment is concerened, I opted not to go through chemo. It was hard enough to watch my mother deal with it, and I just couldn’t bear the the thought of having to put Andy! through it, too. Instead, I found a wonderful holistic vet who was willing to work in conjuncture with my regular vet. Together, they have provided Andy! with an amazing amount of support and me with a wealth of knowledge. I am happy to report that he has outlived his "expected survival time" by six months, and only recently has there been indication of possible mets.
Andy! has developed some rather puzzling tumors, however, one directly on the scar of his amputation and another where his fentanyl patch was. They are both grapefruit sized and the fine needle aspiration came back inconclusive. We will not remove them due to the questionable condition of his lungs.
My buddy has seen me through the most difficult times of my life and while accepting that we have limited time together is very hard (sometimes impossible) for me, I treasure every moment with him. He has been my best teacher in this life, and when he goes, I know that my mom will be waiting to take great care of him on the other side.
25 April 2007
Thank you for joining the discussion and sharing Andy’s wonderful success story. My people also opted not to do chemo after my surgery, then started me on Cytoxan oral chemotherapy pills as part of my metronomic protocol about 16 months later.
I lived nearly two years with a harmless fatty tumor near my incision site. Hopefully yours are no big deal either, please keep us posted.
27 July 2008
Hi Maura and Andy!
Andy! is so lucky to have a Mom like you, Maura. You have tenderly cared for him and I am so glad to hear that he has done so well beyond the vets’ expectations of 6 months. Hopefully, the tumors that are showing up are not a cause for concern. I hope that he isn’t showing any mets, but as you say, you know that your time together is limited and very difficult to face. I have no doubts that you are giving this dog all of your love, just as he has done for you. What a wonderful Mom you are, Maura. I’m glad you know that your Mom will be waiting for Andy! when his time comes. Hopefully, that will provide you with a lot of comfort.
Love, Blazer, Kitty Kimber & Mom (Vicki)