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.
JUMP TO FORUMS ↓
Join The Tripawds Community
Learn how to help three legged dogs and cats in the forums below. Browse and search as a guest or register for free and get full member benefits:
Get the new book by the Tripawds founders for life lessons learned from their Chief Fun Officer Jerry G. Dawg! Download the e-book, and find fun Be More Dog apparel and gifts in the Be More Dog Bookstore.
I am Charlie Brown. (Charlie for short) I am a 5 year old chocolate lab. My story sounds so much like many of the other stories here. I started out with a limp early last summer. I am very active, running hills and swimming. The vets thought that I must have pulled something.
The following month, when the limp didn’t go away, I had an xray. The vet thought that I had arthritis. Six weeks later, my arthritis medicine wasn’t working so I had another xray. That was in August. My Mom took me to see an orthopedic specialist and again, this vet thought arthritis.
The limp became accompanied by a lump this past winter. This time my vet was more concerned. I had a punch biopsy performed on the lump that now clearly showed on my front leg, and some lung xrays. Well, the good news is that my lungs came back clear. The bad news is that my leg has an osteosarcoma. (That diagnosis came this past Friday)
What a whirlwind! My Mom took me back to the specialist yersterday. He looked over all of this new information. He told my mom that I was a great candidate for amputation. He explained everything very clearly, and my Mom had a list of questions. (My Mom had found this website weeks ago !!!)
Anyway, today I had my surgery. The vet called to tell my pawrents that I did great. I am on alot of pain medicine so I am mostly sleeping. My vet wants to keep me a whole extra day just for pain medicine, so I can’t go home tomorrow. My Mom can’t decide if she should come visit. Did your pawprints come or wait a bit?
I have read so many great stories here and I am encouraged by what I have read. I look forward to getting well with your help. This sounds like a group of dogs that I am proud to be a part of. Many snuggles and kisses to you.
Hi Charlie Brown, good to hear your surgery went well and you are recovering. Good news come in pair, you and Kellie are the super twinstars here.
I had to stay overnight at the hopital as well. My mom didn’t come visit me. She said she didn’t want me to feel disappointed after seeing her but wasn’t able to go home with her.
I am sure the vet’s phone was ringing off the hook, my mom was checking me out over the phone every so often until the following day, the homecoming day!
Just rest well tonight and let your pawrents rest as well. All of you need to get fully recharged tonight for the recovering and rehabilitation journey.
Congratulations on the successful surgery Charlie. I was lucky enough to go home the day after my surgery so I only spent one doped up night in the hospital.
I don’t think I would’ve wanted my people to visi if i had to stay though. Being dropped off there once was bad enough. And the thought of getting all excited to go home, then not being abe to sounds tough.
Best wishes for a speedy recovery! (But tell your peple to just be patient.)
2 February 2008
Hi Charlie Brown – congratulations on a successful surgery! I stayed one night in the hospital but to be perfectly honest, I think my Mummy would have been happy for me to stay 2 nights because she was terrified of what it would be like when I came home. If had had spent 2 nights there, I wouldn’t have minded at all because I didn’t do much other than sleep anyway so I don’t think I’d have been worried about being there. I know some people who have visited their dogs and some who haven’t and I think it depends on the dog, the person and the circumstances but whatever your Mummy does, I’m sure it will be the right thing.
With love, Darcy Deerhound
Darcy – tripawd since 16th October 2007.
***Darcy would love to be your friend on Facebook - just search for Darcy Deerhound***
Greetiings all! I am writing to you from my hospital bed. It is my first day post-op and I feel pretty good. I heard the vet tell my mom that I am on a Fentanyl drip. That must be the reason! I was able to get up on my 3 legs pretty easily today. I was able to go outside on a leash and go to the bathroom. (Thank goodness- I was holding it in a long… time!!) They finally fed me too, and I gobbled it up! The vet told my mom that I am "a show off" with my new skillls. He also said that I am wagging my tail alot. This made my mom pretty happy.
My mom told that vet that she was going to take advice from her new friends at Tripawds and skip the visit today. I am glad that she didn’t come because I would have wanted to leave with her really badly. Thet are treating me well here, but it sure isn’t home. (Although this Fentanyl is heaven.)
My mom thinks that this was a good day. She knows that others might not be so easy. For right now, we’ll take it!!
Many wet kisses to all of you,
Hello Charlie, I have been thinking about you since yesterday. I am so happy that your surgery went as well as mine. I only had to stay at the vet 1 day and came home yesterday. Like your mommy my mommy wanted to come visit after the surgery but after explaining to her that it was best if she didn’t as they want to make sure we are relaxed and not get too excited thinking we are going to go home, she felt better about not visiting. I came home yesterday and it feels great. Dr. Rudd and his staff treated me really good but nothing like the stinkiness of my pawrents and my two brothers. Like you, I came home with a fentanyl patch, some tramadol and some rimadyl. So, brother I know what you mean about being in heaven with these drugs. Today was a beautiful day and my pawrents took me outside with the leash and I am actually walking (or should I say hopping) much better than yesterday. I get tired real easy but that is okay, my mommy says we are not in a rat race any more, that each extra step I take is a victory. I am also eating well and using the pottie outside on a regular basis. I am soooo glad to hear you are doing well. We will need to hold paws during this journey. Are you going to go for chemo? I have to go back tomorrow to get the fentanyl patch off and then in 2 wks I go to get my staples off and my first chemo treatment. Make sure that your pawrents check all the great links that Jerry has here for all different health tips and resources. My pawrents started me on a raw food diet and supplements before my surgery. They stop the supplements 2 days b4 surgery just to make sure it would not interfere with the surgery but after checking with the vet, I am back on them and doing great. Make sure to keep us posted….lots of love and licks for a quick recovery….and thanks to Jerry and the gang!!!!
24 January 2008
Good morning everyone! I came home from the hospital yesterday around lunch time. My mom thinks that I am doing well. The first thing that my mom noticed is that I am still so beautiful! She did cry just a bit because of all of stumbling, but I am on a Fentanyl patch and pretty groggy. I do not like anyone to help me. I am up on my legs pretty easily to go outside. (And I have 2 pee about every 2 hours. I must have had alot of IV fluid!) I am not very hungry, but thanks to this website, my mom realizes that this is normal in some dogs. I am also on antibiotics and Deramaxx. The scatter rugs were also a great suggestion. I do not like to walk wothout one under me. I used to slide on the hardwood floors when I had 4 legs!!
Yesterday, I must have forgotten myself for a minute. A strange car came down our driveway. I jumped up barking and tried to run to the door. Wow, that was a mistake! OUCH!! I am also greeting all of my visitors with a hop up, a walk over, and kisses. My mom keeps telling me to go lay down. She is afraid that I am doing too much. I just wish that she would stop staring at me all of the time. It’s just creepy! I have 3 kids that live here with me. The vet did put a pretty green bandage on me to help the kids get used to my new look. My mom is going to take it off in a few days.
The best advice that my mom has received from her new friends here is to be patient! Today is only my 3rd day post-op.
Kellie,thanks for your kindness. I am glad that we are going through this together. Friends are important right now. It sounds like you are doing great!
Good morning Everyone!!! Hope you are all doing well and that you are ready to enjoy this beautiful Saturday. It was kind of gloomy this morning here in Atlanta so I didn’t want to go out but my Mom insisted that I go and at least pee, so I made her happy and did.
Charlie my friend tell your Mom not to worry that everything is uphill from now. My mom was getting kind of worried about me as I was looking kind of sad and ate but not much. Thanks to all the advice here, she also had patience and knew that it was part of the journey. Yesterday I went to get my fentanyl patch and bandages off (heck that pretty pink bandage came off). But you know what? It was worth it. Since the patch came off I feel more alert and am walking a lot. Like you sometimes I forget my condition and try to take off but it does not take long to realize that duhhhhhh I only have 3 now. But it has not stopped me a bit. So just look forward to the day you are off the drugs and you will see so much "clearer" and have a ball. My next appt is on the 28th to take my staples off and have my first chemo treatment. Will let all of you know how that goes. Until then, I am going to enjoy all the pampering I can get. Yep means I am going for a ride later on today…YIPEEEEE!!!!!! I love when they say "ridis in the car?" my favorite words. Besides "you hungry"? that is.
Welcome back Jerry, hope everything went well? Let us know how you are doing on your K-9 Immunity trial as my Mom is also giving it to me and we feel like it is giving me energy and helped me recover faster.
Lots of licks to everyone and have a great weekend!
Hey Charlie & Kellie, good to hear that you both are doing great!
Kellie, my mom thought peeing & pooping were very important. She looked like she won the lottery the 1st time I pooped 5 days post-op! Not eating much was a factor of my delayed bowel.
It was may be after 4 weeks post-op that I started showing interests in food. Not long after (2 weeks later), while hopping along with Mom in the neighbourhood, I took off chasing after other dog. I obviously forgot that I only was on three, and a few hops later, I fell and landed hard on asphalt. My almost healed up wound was badly scraped, and I was put on antibiotics again 🙁
It was a 10-day course, but in 7 days I threw up 3 times precisely 2 hours after taking them; and besides, my appetite had gone downhill. Mom was not impressed, and told the vet that we were going to leave it at that. No more meds! A few days later, I started chowing down again.
I learned a lesson, so Charlie, be patient, think before taking off!
Pink and green bandages! I didn’t even get one, let alone colours! 🙁
Charlie Brown said:
I must have forgotten myself for a minute … I jumped up barking and tried to run to the door. Wow, that was a mistake! OUCH!!
Woof! I did the same thing a week or so after I first got home! One of the first times I went out to play, I grabbed Frisbee and tried to shake it wildly, like I like to. I didn’t get far. Instead of wildly thashing my toy about like usual, I yelped and dropped it right away!
It took a while, but I eventually got to shaking stuff like crazy again. Patience is indeed the key. And if you want to compare gruesome scars, just check mine in the Surgery and Treatment Pics on my Gallery page.
Hey Jerrry, good to have you back. You are the one that keeps all of us going. My pawrents are amazed on how good I am doing but still are very cautious of what I do, especially my Mom. As for comparing scars boy I give you the prize on that one. I am not going to even brag about mine as it is not as big as yours (but you are bigger than me too). My scar looks pretty good considering the extent of the surgery and I know that because my Mom looked at it and did not faint. Slurpies to all….
15 February 2008
Congratulations on a successful surgery! I sure hope you continue to do well as I have and most everyone else on this site seems to have. I had a bad reaction to the fentanyl patch, which my mom mistook for pain, but after all of that was out of my system, I was fine. The vet keeps telling my mom, "Barney will set his own pace", as sure enough I do! I rest when I need to and I run like crazy, full blast every chance I get. I’m sure you’ll be doing the same soon.
Love and well wishes,
Barney B (and mom, Linda)
20 March 2008