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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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Sarcoma diagnosis in 12.5 yo lab with amputation reach - what should I ask
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23 December 2017
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23 December 2017 - 11:59 am
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My 12.5 yo lab, who is still active and spunky, was just diagnosed with a sarcoma in her right front shoulder joint, which is currently causing her pain and to only be able to walk for 5 minutes or so before needing to rest.  going to have her other limbs/joints evaluated this week to determine if she is a good candidate for amputation, or more specifically, for recovery from it.  If she is a candidate, I’m still a bit hesitant to do it as there is a risk all of the cancer won’t be removed – and I don’t want to put her through the month of aggressive radiation that would be required, particularly as we’d have to travel about 3.5 hours away for it.  

Does anyone have advice on what questions I should ask?  

I’m also curious if anyone has experience with palliative radiation?

Thank you for any advice.  As you all likely know, this has been devastating.  

Here and Now

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23 December 2017 - 2:31 pm
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banders said
Does anyone have advice on what questions I should ask? 

Plenty! The Tripawds Brochures have a brief list of general questions to ask your vet. Down the free PDF for details. You will find many FAQs and specific questions to ask your oncologist in the Tripawds News blog . For help finding the many other helpful Tripawds resources and assistance programs, start here .

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!

Welcome, and best wishes for…what was your dog’s name!?

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Minneapolis, MN
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24 December 2017 - 4:43 pm
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I am sorry for your dog’s diagnosis, but glad you have found this place. While a lot of community members’ pets have had osteosarcoma, mine had a soft tissue sarcoma, specifically a nerve sheath tumor in the brachial plexus.  Because his was hidden, the tumor was advanced and there had been some local metastasis when he had his amp and radiation was the best hope for a longer term prognosis post amp.  I was ready to do it, but for various reasons it was put off and part of me is glad I did not put him through those daily treatments for a nearly a full month, which is what would have been recommended for his situation. If we had had stereotactic radiation as an option closer to us, I likely would have pursued that.

Pofi was 11.5 and a large dog.  For what it is worth, and the decision is highly personal and individual, I only regret we did not do it sooner, meaning I wish we’d had earlier diagnosis.  His nerve sheath tumor had to be so painful even though he was very stoic about it. His relief post amp was immediate and clear.

Let me know if I can answer more. I am not sure if your dog’s tumor is STS (and specifically a nerve sheath tumor) or other, but if there is anything you would like to know about our experience, please just ask.  PM me or post here.


Lisa, Minneapolis

On October 27, 2016, nearly 6 months after amputation, and 18 months since his cancer likely started, we lost Pofi to a recurrence of Soft Tissue Sarcoma in his spine quite suddenly.  His Daddy and I miss him terribly along with his canine sister, Mia, and two feline siblings, Lucia and Cliff.

Blog: Pofi, Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor Amputation

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