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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15 June 2018
Hi all, new here and just wanted to share my story and gather some opinions/info before meeting with a surgeon next week.
ive been doing some preliminary research about next steps for my 12 year old hound mix Sasha (75 pounds ) who has a tumor on her left hind leg.
We adopted her at age 9, poor lady spent her life in a shelter. At that age she had an identified peripheral nerve sheath tumor on that leg, underwent surgery , incomplete margins, subsequent radiation.
She developed another lump proximal to that on her upper leg about a year later that was very slow growing so we just kept an eye on it (vet questioned lipoma , this one now wondering if it’s cancer since she couldn’t feel the bottom portion. It grew super slow and she never seemed bothered by it.
About 1 month ago she developed another mass that was fast growing below that on her knee area. needle aspirate showed spindle cell. fast growing, now ulcerated with necrotic central portion over the past week.
Met with vet again today to review options and have preliminary blood work done. Meeting with surgeon next week.
She has mild arthritis in her spine as of 2 years ago when we adopted her and her oncologist at that point didn’t recommend amputation for the first tumor then because of the mild arthritis. However , I think she’s a lot stronger and maybe healthier now as she’s had a couple years of exercise and good food. She weighs 75 pounds. In the house she’s very low energy at baseline but pops up and walks vigorously around the block as of up to a week ago but now seems in pain and not taking long walks.
Wondering if she could handle amputation given her age , weight, baseline laziness , and history of arthritis. I question Removal of the mass alone because it’s a tricky location per the vet and probably would be incomplete again, she has the second slow growing lump, she already had surgery and radiation and it came back.
This seems like a great resource and I’d love to hear from other people. We’ve only had her a couple short years but she’s just the sweetest dog I’ve ever met.
25 April 2007
Welcome! And kudos to you for doing your homework. Thank you for sharing your story and best wishes for Sasha. You will find many examples of senior pups Loving Life On Three Legs
here in the forums, and the Tripawds Blogs
– as young as
17 19+ years old!
While you wait for comments from others, use the Advanced Search above to refine your forum search results with specific phrases, and you’re sure to find lots of helpful feedback. You can also search all blogs here . Or, consider downloading the Tripawds e-books for fast answers to common concerns and feel free to call the toll-free Tripawds Helpline anytime!
1 October 2017
Wondering if she could handle amputation given her age , weight, baseline laziness , and history of arthritis.
I had exactly these questions before Fallon’s amputation 8+ months ago. She is a greyhound, age 11, tall, front leg amputation. Slowest greyhound you’ve ever seen–I’d have trouble walking as slowly as she would want to go–that was just her style. Our vet was opposed to amputation, and I am so happy I just didn’t blindly follow their advice. Time has shown Fallon’s rockin this, I spent a lot of time worrying and questioning issues that didn’t matter to her.
She has impressed me with how well she’s done on 3 legs. She adapted really quickly and is happy and healthy. We give her supplements to address the arthritis (glucosamine/MSM/chondroitin/vitamin C/yucca) and it hasn’t seemed to be an issue. we make sure she has a healthy diet (I started cooking for her) and that her weight stays perfect.
Channeling Sally, who I am sure will chime in, Age is just a number and there’s no expiration date stamped on Sasha’s butt. She sounds wonderful and I’m so happy she’s with you as not only did you give her a life and family, you’re giving her a chance to get rid of the nasty pain.
Fallon 8/28/06--9/6/18. My Heart.
Fallon's left front leg was amputated due to osteosarcoma on 10/11/17.
Nothing But Love in Her Heart - dawn3g.tripawds.com
22 February 2013
It just warms my heart to know Sasha has found such a loving furever home with you!!! She finally knows what it feels like to be loved and to experience joy and happiness and security !!❤❤
As you can see from Dawn’s post, Fallon is doing extremely well, even though she was told not to amputate. We love second opinions around here!
Yoir Orthipedic Surgeon will evaluate Sasha, but I really doibt the arthritis will be an issue . We’ve seen dogs with severe arthritis, and even hip dysplasia, do just fine on three.
Actually the fact that Sasha is a couch potato is probably a good thing. She won’t have to feel like she should be running a marsthon for miles every day!!
The thing avout amputation, it gives EXTENDED QUALITY TIME FRRE FROM PAIN!!!! If Sasha is limping, her leg hurts. Is she on any pain meds right now? That should help while you process yoir next step.
Recovery is no picnic for a couple of weeks. We’ll be right by your side the whole way to help you navigate through it. We’ve had dogs ,thirteen, fourteen yrs young plus go thru amputation and do just fine!
Exaxctly as Dawn said, age is just a number arpund here and Sasha jas no timeframe stamped on her fluffy butt!! Take a look! Do you see an expiration date?? Nope, didn’t think so!
Let us know as questions arise, okay? As yoi can already see, you are not alone! Stay connected and update as you can!
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!