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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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English Mastiff Bone Cancer
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Livermore, CA




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2 June 2019 - 2:52 pm
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Finally yesterday she pooped! (Sorry, TMI), but again, it’s the little progress.

First poop is a big deal and not TMI, we even have this: poopiconto help celebrate!

It is normal for her to struggle a bit getting around right now- it is a huge effort to hop on three at the beginning.  Once she is healed up and can be more active you can start working on her core strength and endurance.  She will get stronger.

It’s actually great that she just wants to sleep!  Rest at this point is still very important.  I was told at the two week mark that we could start back to our normal activities.  She is also still on pain meds, right? They can be sedating and affect her appetite. She is also exhausted from hopping- but again she will get stronger.

I think I told you before that my Pug Maggie spent six weeks in bed after her amp- she took waaaaay longer than most pups here to get used to her new normal.  She was a stubborn Pug who hated any change to her routine so in hindsight it was totally in her character to be a slug for so long. Of course while I was dealing with that period I was sure I had made a big mistake by choosing amputation and I was sure I had the only dog in the world who wasn’t going to adapt!

Be patient, positive and keep celebrating those little milestones!

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

The Rainbow Bridge



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2 June 2019 - 3:55 pm
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That’s HUGE progress! Seriously, what you are describing is night and day from just a week ago. And like Karen said, there is never TMI here! 

Yes, she’s doing a ton of work getting around and the heavy breathing is probably part of it. It could also be because of the pain meds but if it only happens when she is moving around, it’s likely just from exertion. Try not to worry, she is mobile and doing pretty darn great. Don’t forget, you can have a canine rehab therapist evaluate her and the Tripawds Foundation may pay for your first rehab visit

Meanwhile, I say feed her whatever she wants. Pain meds can dull an appetite and heck after all she’s been through what’s a little steak and filet mignon eh? 😉

This made my day. Nialla is doing great! 

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




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2 June 2019 - 7:25 pm
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Add my voice to the loud shouts of YAAAAAAY FORpoopiconpoopiconAnd after seven days too!  Impressivepoopicon

Ditto Karen and Jerry!  Nailla is doing exactly  what we would expect for one week into recovery.  It took me three weeks before I felt like I could say I did this FOR my Happy  Hannah and not TO her!

Some Vets say it takes a good two weeks to recover from the surgery itself, and a month to adjust to mobility with  three legs, get the hair worked out, properly use of new muscles,  etc.

And we need to give you a big YAAAAAY too!  It’s  not easy to stay pawsitive and focused on the milestones  as they happen, especially  when they seem to be coming in slow motion!  You’re  going z grear job of staying  the course and navigating  through  recovery…………and so is Nailla😎

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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3 June 2019 - 9:03 am
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Tazzie also experienced heavy breathing the first few weeks after surgery.  I even delayed her chemo by one week (3 weeks post-op) just to let her build up some strength.  I think your dog is doing great just one week out!

Pam

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22 August 2019 - 10:22 am
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Hi Everyone!

This Saturday will be 3 months since Nialla’s amputation.  I am so sorry I haven’t bee on the site since June – it’s been crazy adjusting but I wanted to post a quick update.  I cannot thank you all for all  the support and encouragement – it really helped me make the decision to amputate and also to get through the recovery.  Nialla is doing GREAT!  She is back to eating like her normal self, her personality is back (she loves to talk for a long time and barking when she wakes up in the AM and when I get home from work). She loves to sun herself on the deck.  She goes outside by herself now to do her potty.  As a Mastiff it’s still alot of work for her to get around but she is confident and gets around!  She doesn’t yet really want to play much or go too far, it’s alot and wears her out to move that big body.  This past week she and one of my other dogs tried to play together a little!!! FIRST TIME since the surgery!  She began eating like her normal old self and by herself two weeks ago!  No longer do I need to try everything possible and hand feed her 🙂  She is handling chemo so much better than the first treatment.  This Wednesday she will have her 4th chemo treatment.  The vet is very happy with her progress. The one thing we do have to decide on and I’m just not sure what to do – is to decide if we want to do a scan next week and see if her lungs are clear or if anything shows.  I’m petrified to find out.  He said some people want to know and some people don’t and just have to feel confident they did everything to fight it.  If you had to make this decision, I’d love any of your feedback – did you do the scan or not?  It doesn’t sound like the outcome would effect any further treatment from what he said but… I’m beyond grateful to have her with us each and every day.  I love her beyond words.   Keep her in your prayers and THANK YOU for all the support.  This forum is fabulous and it helped me more than you all will ever know.  XO

~ Nialla’s Mommy and Biggest Fan

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22 August 2019 - 1:32 pm
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YIPEEEE! That is such a great pupdate, thank you for taking time to share her wonderful news. You don’t need to apologize at all, you’ve had your hands full and are now enjoying life with your amazing girl. That is so good to know!

The one thing we do have to decide on and I’m just not sure what to do – is to decide if we want to do a scan next week and see if her lungs are clear or if anything shows.  I’m petrified to find out.  He said some people want to know and some people don’t and just have to feel confident they did everything to fight it.  If you had to make this decision, I’d love any of your feedback – did you do the scan or not?  

Your oncologist is correct. I’d say the majority of folks here will do regular lung scans, and a few like myself, will not or did not. We opted out and it was a good decision for us at the time. We opted out of chemotherapy for him so it made sense. It wasn’t until 17 months later during a routine exam that we scanned and found out he had mets. It did change everything, and was like getting another diagnosis all over again. We did metronomics for him at that point.

The general rule is, if you are not going to pursue any treatment (other than palliative care) if the scans show mets, then there really is no point in doing them. But, if it will make you crazy not knowing what those lungs look like, and if Nialla tolerates vet visits pretty well, then do the scans, even if you aren’t pursuing treatment, or you will be sick with worry and Nialla will pick up on that. Make sense?

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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22 August 2019 - 2:29 pm
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I’ve been opting into both chemo and scans for my boy with osteosarcoma. He’s 12 1/2, and a GSD/Mamalmute mix, so he’s definitely a senior. He had his first half way through treatment scans, about 2 months post op. They were all clear. He’ll get more in 5-6 weeks, before what may be his last chemo. The oncologist isn’t sure if we’re doing 5 or 6 rounds yet. It’s totally a personal decision, and there are no wrong answers as long as the dog is happy. I know that I would likely stop the more stressful treatments if there was significant spread detected, and focus solely on comfort.

Virginia




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22 August 2019 - 3:37 pm
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ABSOLUTELY  THRILLED TO JEAR HOW WELL NIALLA IS DOING!!!   WE LOOOOVE UPDATES LIKE THIS!!!  Nialla is auch an important  example of big dogs mastering the art of three!!!  And she’s showing everyone she can enjoy  her smoochable self without having to run a marathon or  hike six miles a day!!

Has me grinning ear to ear knowing she’s back in her routine of “talking and barking” about the things that make her all happy inside!😁

Ditto Jerry and ditto your Vet!  Absolutely  no right or wrong about dojng scans or not!!!  It is TRULY an individual  decision  based on you knowing you and you knowing Nialla!

You will here from some who did scans and the reasons why.  You will hear from some who did not do scans and the reasons why.  All reasons are valid and important to them and were decisions  that  each individual  felt was “right” for them.

I did NOT pursue scans.  Happy Hannah’s Onco’s plan was four rounds of chemo.  She was doing very well going into  her fourth session and showing  no signs of anything internal going on inside.  I had pretty much decided  I would complete  that treatment plan and then free her up to cont to,live lofe yo rhe fullest with no more Bet trips, no more poking, no more prodding.   For me,….and this was just me…..I felt like I had done all I could do within my own personal circumstances and was comfortable  with that.  There was another aspect that factored into it for me.  I didn’t  have any overriding  “need to know”. In fact, for me, I’m  one of those who felt like I could Be More Dog and live fully in the moment without “knowing”!    I was determined  NOTHING would interfere  with our time together.  For me, this was how I maintained staying fully prese t savoring  every blissful  moment we had.   

I had decided  that, if she ever did show oitwa4d sogns thst ahe might be having issues, I would,  at that time, do xrays becaice I knew there woild ve rhings thst I could do to continue  to give her quality, even if she had mets.  

For me, I was comfortable  with my decisions and had no second guessing  and no regrets.  Whatecer path uou take, that’s  the outcome you want for yourself.😎

You know you can’t  post these great updates with pictures!!!  We’re  waiting!!!

Higs

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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23 August 2019 - 7:37 am
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I am glad to know your big dog is doing well!  I did do the xrays on Tazzie but she was used to going to work with me and did not require sedation.  If there had been lung mets I wouldn’t have done the last two rounds of carboplatin.

Pam

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