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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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Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
17 August 2019
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17 August 2019 - 10:47 pm
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Hello Community,

I am the lucky mom to a precious little 14 year old Chihuahua mix named Ruby. My dogs are my children. I know people say that, but they really are. I never want either of them to feel an ounce of pain, sadness or unhappiness. I’ve had Ruby since a friend found her on the side of the road 13 years ago. I brought her home for a trial night and never let her leave. She is easily the sweetest, most caring and loving dog ever created. Not one person who has met her doesn’t instantly fall in love with her. 

I took Ruby in for her 6 month check-up on 7/24. That’s when this nightmare began. They found a mass on her ankle that had sprung up out of nowhere. Because of the feel of it, the doctor recommended a biopsy to see if we should be concerned. Two days later, we found out that it was Mast Cell Cancer. Since 7/24, Ruby has undergone countless visits to the doctor, oncologist and surgeon. Biopsies, bloodwork, ultrasounds and x-rays have all confirmed that the tumor is aggressive and the only way to save her is to amputate her leg. We have surgery scheduled for 8/21. In less than one month, my healthy and happy little girl’s life has changed. 

The closer we get to her surgery date, the more guilt I have begun to feel. I feel guilty that I am making a decision to take her leg from her. I feel guilty that she is going to endure terrible pain and confusion. I feel guilty that she isn’t going to understand what is happening to her. 

Is this normal? 

The Rainbow Bridge



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17 August 2019 - 11:27 pm
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Hi Ruby and family, welcome. I apologize for the brief response but I’m on my phone and wanted to get your post approved so others can see it.

Yes! Your feelings are totally normal. We get it. For now keep in mind that Ruby just wants to feel better. Once she does, she will get on with living and move on. She won’t hold it against you or feel sad about the past. She will amaze you!

I encourage you to check out Jerry’s Required Reading List and the Tripawds e-books for some reassurance. Stay tuned for more feedback from others, I’ll be back tomorrow. Hang in there!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Forum Posts: 954
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18 August 2019 - 7:50 am
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Hi Ruby,

I know exactly what you mean by the guilt. I thought Brownie was too old, I thought what is he going to think I’ve done to him. Because of the guilt I was feeling I almost didn’t do the amputation. Then I realized this was not about me, but about him.  His pain was getting  worse so we did the amputation and so happy we did.  He is now living pain free.

Ruby too will surprise you on how well she will adjust!

My Beautiful Beloved Brownie was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma on February 26, 2019.  With all odds against him he lived an additional one year and eight days with amputation, love, and prayer.  I was honored to be his mom, and I have never been so proud!  He will live forever in my Heart!

Brownie Bubba Bell

04/01/2007 - 03/05/2020

"March Saint"

The Rainbow Bridge



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18 August 2019 - 12:31 pm
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I feel guilty that I am making a decision to take her leg from her. I feel guilty that she is going to endure terrible pain and confusion. I feel guilty that she isn’t going to understand what is happening to her. 

Try your best to look at it like this: You are not taking her leg, you are taking the pain away. That is such a gift! She may not endure terrible pain and confusion as long as your vet practices modern pain management (click on the link for details and be sure to read up on what kinds of medications she should be given to have a pain-free recovery).

Animals live in the Now so much better than we do. Cancer sucks but when you open your heart to the life-changing lessons it has in store, it can bring you closer to Ruby than you ever thought possible.

Keep us posted.

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




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18 August 2019 - 2:05 pm
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Hi Lora,

I responded to the PM you sent me.  Please let me know if you have any other questions or if I can help in any way.

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

Livermore, CA




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21 August 2019 - 11:43 pm
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Hey, surgery was scheduled for today- did it go OK or did you postpone?

Update when you have a chance, I’ve been thinking about you guys.

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

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