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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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Almost-14-year-old husky Keira
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Forum Posts: 14
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14 July 2020
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16 July 2020 - 11:09 am
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Keira had her front left leg removed Monday evening July 13 due to osteosarcoma. She came home two days go, has eaten well, pooped  several times, smiles, kisses and sleeps ok. Last night she took her first unassisted steps, very haltingly, admittedly, but we were clapping and cheering her on with ecstatic joy. My question is this: she can’t figure out how to hoist herself up. We’ve had to help her every time so far. Is that to be expected in an older dog?

The Rainbow Bridge



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16 July 2020 - 11:22 am
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Hi Keira and family, welcome. Your future posts won’t need approval so post away. We are sorry about the cancer diagnosis, it’s a tough one but we have a feeling that your girl will inspire you even more than ever before. It’s amazing how strong and resilient animals are in a situation like this.

To answer your question: yes this is totally normal, especially for a mature gal. Try to picture how you would be if you were in her paws. Most humans would still be in bed and unable or unwilling to get out and move around. Give it time, she will get there! You can do things to make it easier, like making sure your floors have traction , her nails are short and paw fur clipped, and giving her a firm, non-bunchy dog bed to sleep in.

Meanwhile how is her pain being managed? We always like to check on that because too many pets come home with bare minimum pain management and that makes recovery much harder than it needs to be. 

It sounds like otherwise she is doing pretty darn well! I moved your post here to this Forum topic so that you can see there are many dogs her age and older who rock life on three legs. Huskies are especially resilient! 

I hope this helps. Stay tuned for feedback from others! 

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Forum Posts: 14
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16 July 2020 - 11:34 am
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Thank you, Jerry. She’s on Gabapentin, 300 mg every 8 hrs, and two 75 mg tablets of Rimadyl daily, plus an antibiotic. The surgeon told me we could increase it to 600 every 8 hrs if we feel she’s uncomfortable, but she hasn’t seemed uncomfortable. We did give her the 600 mg at night to help her sleep. And, yes, my beautiful hardwood floors are now covered with an assortment of area rugs and runners…anything for Keira! Thank you for the reassurance. As you can imagine, it’s been a harrowing, tear-filled time, seeing her in pain with a leg that snapped and struggling to make the right decision. Seeing her this happy affirms that decision. 

The Rainbow Bridge



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16 July 2020 - 11:46 am
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Oh good pain meds, I love the way your vet thinks!

Sounds like you are doing everything right for her recovery, good job on that. Not an easy thing to do when things happen so quickly. I’m sooooo sorry you found out about her cancer the way you did, it’s the worst way imaginable. I do sense that your attitude and outlook as is rock-solid as Keira’s, keep it up!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Virginia




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16 July 2020 - 12:07 pm
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Yes, ditto Jerry!  You have a realky good handle on her care.

She is actually ahead of the curve.  Eating, drin,ing, pooping (yay poop), peeing AND mobiles AND doing stairs!!!!  WOW!!!

Needing help getting up this early on or he,p with stairs or help with walking, perfectly  normal at this poi t!!!  And as Jerry said, espec for a mature gal!!

So yes, help as she needs it.  No need to Trish recovery.   She needs rest, short leashed potty breaks and more res

Igh!  You found had she had osteo woth a bone fracturing??  So scary!!!  It does happen that way sometimes  though.  Good job for doing  what needed to be done!

We are here for you so update when you can.

Hugs

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!

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16 July 2020 - 6:33 pm
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Hi, Brownie was right at 12 at time of amputation. He was getting up on his own around day 4. He would push back with his front leg to hoist his way up. He had left front leg amputation. It took about three weeks for him to get back to his normal self, and to actually get around well. He did everything he did before just found a different way to do it.

As already said Huskies  are so strong. There is another Huskie named Arktik who is a bit younger but doing fantastic with front leg amputation.

Jerry and Sally also told me to be patient with Brownie cause he was a mature guy.  And they were right Brownie did get there just took a little longer.

She will get there! 

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"

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17 July 2020 - 5:35 am
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I want to thank all of you for your helpful information. We adopted Keira at seven years old, a frightened angel who had been brought to a high-kill shelter after having been with the same family for seven years. We determined at that time that she would never feel anything but loved and cherished. She has gone with us to Cape Cod twice every year, enjoyed winter getaways, daily outings and is loved by everyone. I’ve never seen as much as a snarl from her. When I was struggling with this decision, her regular doctor advised us to go see her in the hospital. He said, “Just look into her eyes. She’ll tell you she wants to live.” And she did. 

Virginia




Forum Posts: 19514
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17 July 2020 - 9:00 am
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Such a beautiful story of how Keira picked you.❤  

Clearly she’s a Saint of a dog and has found her Earth Angels. She knows what love feels like, what Joy feels like, and knows  the serenity of being safe.

It just touched my heart reading this story of love😂

Hugs 

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!

Forum Posts: 1014
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17 July 2020 - 4:34 pm
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I love a happy rescue story. Thanking for saving her. Your story is so beautiful I got tears in my eyes.

There is a saying the best breed is a Rescue!

Brownie was also a Rescue, but he rescued me.

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"

Forum Posts: 1014
Member Since:
4 April 2019
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17 July 2020 - 4:35 pm
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Would love to see pics..

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"

Forum Posts: 14
Member Since:
14 July 2020
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11
18 July 2020 - 8:49 am
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