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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i have recently meet a Great Pyrenees with a front leg amputation. He was abused and starved and is very weak. He had the amputation while he was in a good home and doctors said it healed nicely. At some point he ended up in an abusive home and was beaten regularly and starved. He is very sweet and can get up but is still weak and needs to put on weight. I realize this can take months for him to get to a healthy weight and regain muscle tone. My concern is that its a front leg amputation and will he have difficulty moving around, jumping etc because he is so large.can large breed front leg amputees go up and down stairs, jump in the car or will I need ramps forever? I’m considering adopting him and its important I learn as much as possible. my commitment Must be 100% . Any information you can provide will be helpful. Thank you.
Hi Vetjul, thanks for joining us here, your future posts won’t require approval.
It’s so smart of you to inquire about these things before you decide to proceed with adoption.
Poor pup, I hope that you or someone who can give him a good, loving forever home will come along. It’s so not right when a dog goes through that awful situation. Has he been evaluated by a good vet recently? That’s where I would begin. Do you have a vet you already work with?
Some things to keep in mind when it comes to giant breed dogs and front leg amputees:
Front leg amputee dogs generally have less stamina than their rear-leg counterparts. Not all of them do, but for a dog like a great pyrenees, it’s entirely possible that he will not be able to go on long walks of more than a 1/2 mile round trip. Remember, that dogs carry 60 percent of their weight up front. He’s got a lot of weight to propel forward. What does he weigh? In general, keep your expectations realistic when it comes to doing things like going on long walks or hikes. He will try to do them just to keep up with the pack, but it’s not good for him to do it. If you’re a couch potato, he is probably the perfect dog for you!
No dog should be allowed excessive jumping from tall places, much less a Tripawd. Canine rehab vets recommend that all dogs’ jumping in and out of vehicles, off furniture, etc., is kept to a bare minimum if not eliminated altogether. We recommend using the Ruff Wear Webmaster harness for travel to help Tripawds get in and out of vehicles. This is a lifesaver if you are able to lift him and can’t carry a ramp.
Now, just because a Tripawd shouldn’t go on long walks, that doesn’t mean they dont’ need exercise. On the contrary, they need to develop strong core muscles to help them stay balanced and strong. Our Tripawds Gear Blog has lots of tips, as do these videos and interviews with California Animal Rehab. If you adopt him, you should make a serious commitment to helping him get and stay strong for his entire life. Do you have the time to do so? Something to think about.
I hope this helps. I know others with giant breed Tripawds will chime in, and be sure to check out our Dog Blogs for more insight.
Good luck, let us know what you decide to do.
9 November 2012
I’m glad you are considering adopting a great pyrenees and a tripawds to boot. I’m the guardian of a recently amputated great pyrenees. He lost his front right leg. He’s going around just fine. And believe me when he goes to fast he can knock me! Hank can get in and out of the car, can do the stairs (about 5) around the house on the outside, he can jump on the couch and get down as well as the bed.
I bet that your adoptive prospect will do just the same with time and care. He will also need to gain trust. I’ve learn that once a pyrenees earn your trust you are friends forever. My boy had been abused before I adopted him. He was always willing but needed to be reassured.
Welcome to the forum and I command you for researching to before committing to something you can’t.
Dogs: Friends for life, faithful and true.
Courage is being scared to death... but saddling up anyways.- John Wayne
bikeintime.wordpress.com (will soon have Hank story)
He has been treated by a vet. He has a bad ear infection, only 63 pounds when he was rescued but has put on some weight (2-3 years) and some sores and mats because he wasn’t groomed and was on a short chain. Although most of his sores have healed. as for long walks,well, he found the right family… We are not outdoors adventures but we understand that daily walks are important. We have two other dogs and one of them can not walk long distances due to health issues. Thanks for the comments and links .. I found it all very useful.
24 January 2009
My Cemil is an Anatolian Shepherd, 150 lb, and has had his left front leg amputated because of bone cancer. He gets around just fine–5 stairs is about his limit, 1/4 mile for a walk (imagine how far you’d like to hop on one leg) in and out of car easily, on and off bed and couch easily…they can do it. Don’t worry. Long flights of stairs might be a problem, long walks would also be, but for everything else large breed amputees are just like any other dog.
Mary and Cemil
Cemil and mom Mary, Mujde and Radzi….appreciating and enjoying Today
10 June 2012
Hi! Your post caught my eye – we have an almost 7 year old Great Pyrenees who had a front leg amputation in June. He continues to surprise is with how strong he is but it took quite a while to get to this point. We have a large back yard and he can easily run to the far corners of it to chase off squirrels. We only take him for short walks, he tires quickly. He has no trouble jumping into our truck but is hesitant to jump down so we usually help him down (we don’t want him to injure his remaining front leg). We recently got a new truck which is a bit higher so we’re shopping around for a ramp just to make it easier on him. We have shallow stairs up to our front door and he has no trouble going up or down. We have blocked off our stairs to our second floor, we just don’t want to take a chance that he’ll injure himself coming down. We didn’t used to encourage him up on our family room couch, but since the cancer diagnosis and surgery we let him up and he has no trouble with that either. Hope this has helped – this forum has been a great resource for us. Take care.
15 December 2012
Ooh – it sounds like that pup could use a family like yours. Clearly you’re willing to go to the mat for him. Our 7 yr. old giant mix (lab, great pyr, bernese mountain and rotty) had his front right removed due to OS in September. The very worst of it was the first few weeks, and you’re already past that. Now, he is happyhappyhappy. Stairs? no siree bob, I do not want him to risk that charge down 12 stairs to get to the dreaded mailman, so we block off the 2nd floor and basement stairs. It has reduced the size of his world, but I just cannot take that chance. I tried walking him, but he just wanted to go too far and it was more disappointing than delightful. We used to take very long walks. We do take him to the dog park and are able to stretch out the time a little bit each trip. I’m also a fan of the ramp – not a lot of trouble, but it makes a world of difference to him and the stress on that other front leg. All in all, he is a lover of life and still gives us multiple smiles all day. I hope this pup finds a home w/you and you’// both be happy.