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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

Tripawds is your home 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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Guidelines for Managing Cancer in Dogs and Cats
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On The Road

Member Since:
24 September 2009
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21 April 2017 - 2:01 pm
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If you're coping with a cancer diagnosis, this Speaking For Spot blog post about pet cancer guidelines will educate you about modern protocols for how vets should be diagnosing and treating pet cancer.

Guidelines for Managing Cancer in Dogs and Cats

Given the ever-increasing incidence of cancer in our pets, it was a smart move for the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) to recruit a team of veterinary oncologists to draft the first ever “Oncology Guidelines for Dogs and Cats.” Written this year, the material covers multiple facets of small animal oncology (cancer diagnosis and treatment) and makes recommendations that are consistent with a high standard of care. And, people with pets have a right to know about this high standard of care. I’m a big believer in veterinarians presenting all options, regardless of cost. . . .

 . . . The guidelines include specific recommendations in a table format pertaining to the most commonly diagnosed forms of cancer in small animals including: mammary (breast) cancer, lymphoma, hemangiosarcoma, osteosarcoma, anal sac carcinoma, mast cell tumor, oral melanoma, soft tissue sarcoma, and squamous cell carcinoma.


Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene | | |

Member Since:
27 June 2017
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28 June 2017 - 12:24 am
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My name is Kate. I'm South African and desperately looking for help/advice. Our Rhodesian Ridgeback, Holly, 8 years old, has recently been diagnosed with Bone Cancer in her left fore-leg, in the shoulder, so amputation is not really an option. The vets have said 3-4 months and last night was the first time I saw her in extreme pain. It has shook our family, and I'm desperately trying to find out how I can make her comfortable.

Would and ice/heat pack help?

What homeopathic treatments are there? Are they effective?

Should we get a specialized basket for her? Are there any?

Any help would be very appreciated at this time.

Thank you.

On The Road

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24 September 2009
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28 June 2017 - 8:28 am
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Hi Kate,

Please start a new topic here and reply to my questions there OK? Thanks.

I'm so sorry to hear about Holly. It's a tough road for sure but we hope to help her and you get through this pain-free and with a good quality of life as best we can from a distance.

May I ask why Holly isn't an amputation candidate?

If you're worried about size, we've had members with much larger dogs than Ridgebacks do great on three legs. Does she have another condition that your vet or you are worried may impact her mobility as a Tripawd?

For most dogs, amputation is the best way to get rid of the pain as soon as possible. Some dogs undergo radiation and bisphosphonate treatments to help with the pain, but I'm not sure these treatments are available in SA based on conversations we've had with other SA citizens.

Sadly, the pain she is in will only continue to get worse unless something is done immediately, as in today. Is she on any pain medication at all?

There are no homeopathic or natural remedies that can alleviate the pain of a bone tumor. I'm not a vet, but what I understand from my conversations with vets (and what we have seen here) is that even the strongest pain medication (Tramadol and Fentanyl usually), will only do so much for so long, a few weeks if you're lucky. Other than that, amputation is the most humane and kindest thing to do based on what I know about SA, if she is a candidate for the surgery. Please contact the vet who diagnosed her today and get her on Tramadol and Fentanyl or the strongest pain medication available OK?

And keep us posted. We are here for you despite the huge time difference OK?

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene | | |


Member Since:
22 February 2013
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28 June 2017 - 5:05 pm
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And just to ditto Jerry, Is it because it's more than in the leg the shoulder that the Vets say it's not an option?

Certainly if its financial reasons or lifestyle constraints of some sort, amputation is not always feasible. We all understand it's not an option for everyone.

Let us know how we can help. In the meantime though, talk to the Vet about immediately putting her in Tramadol, Rimadyl and maybe Gabaw too. That should help with the pain.

We're here to support you in amy way we can, okay?

Love and 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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