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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

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13 1/2 year old, rear leg bone lesion with metastasis to lung- post amputation and treatment advice needed
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Forum Posts: 12
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5 April 2021
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1 May 2021 - 3:22 pm
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I wanted to update you on Puzzle who had her rear leg amputated 3 weeks ago because of a bone lesion that had fractured.   She had her sutures removed last Monday (hooray)-she is getting around on 3 legs well.  We are going on short walks, eating good food, alert and seems to be in less pain.  We are happy we went forward with the amputation and she is still here with us.   Her birthday is in a couple of weeks and I soooo want her to be here on that day. 

The histopath was inconclusive so we sent it to Michigan State for antigen testing and it came back hemangiosarcoma.  My last dog died of splenic hemangio. So sad.  This is appendicular hemangio. 

Sadly, we had radiographs done last Monday.   There are many more nodules on her lungs. The oncologist is not hopeful that chemo will help her.  I had an echocardiogram done yesterday-no neoplasia on the heart, but she does have mild degenerative valve disease.  Need to speak to the oncologist about this and if chemo is still an option.   

**Has anyone gone forward with chemo with advanced metastatic disease?  Wondering what the outcome was?   I really don’t know what to do. 

**Also- she is licking the suture area.  Not sure what this means?   I have her on gabapentin-1-2 times daily.  I cut it back to that after sutures removed.  Wondering if I should give her more? 

I am having a difficult time accepting that her time is short.  I worry all the time.  I hate hemangio because decline can happen so suddenly and without warning.  She has been such a great buddy. 

The Rainbow Bridge



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1 May 2021 - 5:58 pm
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Dangit I’m sorry! You are the second member this week to get the hemangiosarcoma diagnosis. Rye is the other. You guys are in the same situation. I wish nobody ever had to be in it.

I’m not a vet but I wonder if there is any kind of chance that it’s something other than hemangiosarcoma? I don’t want to give you false hope. It’s just that over the years, we’ve seen members whose dogs received an uncertain diagnosis and they ended up beating the odds of the one vets thought they had. I hope with all my heart that it’s the same for Puzzle.

**Has anyone gone forward with chemo with advanced metastatic disease?  Wondering what the outcome was?   I really don’t know what to do. 

Did you see this post? How close are you to Madison, Wisconsin?

New Treatment for Bone and Lung Tumors in Dogs and Cats at UW

**Also- she is licking the suture area.  Not sure what this means?   I have her on gabapentin-1-2 times daily.  I cut it back to that after sutures removed.  Wondering if I should give her more? 

This is about the time the sutures get really itchy. Ask your vet about a topical to soothe the itch. Or you can try something like Microcyn.

I’m so sorry about this news but don’t give up, there is always something you can to do boost her quality of life. Lean on us all the way, we are here for you.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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2 May 2021 - 3:28 pm
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Thanks for the UW post on new radiation technique.  Puzzle has multiple nodules in her lungs now–  Sounds like they can do large nodules in the lungs.  Wonder about multiple smaller ones.   

Today has not been a good day.   She woke up with her stomach rumbling-she hasn’t eaten much of anything except grass on the walk.   I got her to eat a hotdog-but the usual chicken, burger, cottage cheese-didn’t work.  Not sure what is going on.  Going to pick up a steak-maybe that will appeal to her.  

If this continues into tomorrow- may try get abdominal radiographs to see if something has happened internally.   She does have a sensitive stomach so hoping its just a 24 hour thing.  

Also looked at the stories of other dogs with hemangio.  Thanks for letting me know about those.  We all have made/have to make tough decisions. 

The Rainbow Bridge



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3 May 2021 - 10:10 am
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Awww poor pupperz. I hope she is feeling better now. Did anything help yesterday? I know that mets can rob appetites. When our Jerry didn’t want to eat we tried anything new and exciting, from buffalo to venison and everything inbetween. Also don’t forget to use paper plates when feeding her. You don’t want to mix scents on her bowl from any food she didn’t like before (and yep, dogs can still smell food residue even after their bowl has been washed!). These appetite tips might help give you some other ideas.

My fingers are crossed for you guys. I wish I had some kind of magic juju to get her healthy again. (((hugs)))

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




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3 May 2021 - 2:19 pm
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 Bummer about themnodules, etc..  Vit hopefully Puzzle is just having one of jer “sensitive tummy episodes” and can get back on track eating.  FWIW , my Happy Hannah never did stop eating, even when the lung met was “big as a vaseball”  according  to the Vet.  So every dog responds differently  and hoping this earing will pick up soon for Puzzle.

You can ask the Vet about Prednisone .   It helps diminish any  inflammation the mets may be causing  in the lungs, PLUS it increases  appetite  as a “side effect”….a good side effect in this case!

Can’t  give any insight  on continuing  with chemo,per se, but talk to your Vet about Piroxicam and about Palladia.  They  have been shown to aide in shrinking mets or at least keeping  them at bay.

Let usmjnow how your appt went today.  We’re all cheering for Puzzle and sending  lots of healing  energy💖

(((((((((((((((((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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4 May 2021 - 7:23 am
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Whew- By the end of the day she ate a hotdog and then slowly gained her appetite back.  She even went on a walk so it was a sensitive tummy day.  Yesterday was great-she ate and we went on her longest walk since the amputation.  

I let the oncologist know that I have found more skin nodules.  She is not optimistic and think Puzzle has a few weeks of quality time left.  I still haven’t decided about chemo.  If her prediction is true, then I don’t want Puzzle to feel bad during the time she has left.  However, if her prediction is not true…. aarrggh, this is so hard. 

The Rainbow Bridge



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4 May 2021 - 10:19 am
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YESSSS!!!!! OK the hot dog and eating is a WIN. I’m so glad you had a good day together. These little victories are precious, keep savoring every moment like I know you are doing. 

I’m sorry the oncologist gave such a bad prognosis. I can see why she isn’t feeling good about it, since hemangio can be so mean. But at the same time, all we can do when confronted with it is to know that each dog is different, and how that piece of poopicondisease progresses with one dog doesn’t necessarily mean it will go the exact same way with another. Balancing the potential for that to happen, with hope that Puzzle’s case will be different is such a difficult thing. 

If it would make you feel better to get another opinion from a different vet practice about her situation, that might help you decide about chemo. 

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




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4 May 2021 - 8:24 pm
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Ditto every Jerry said!  I think you’ll find some reassuring  comfort in her very wise post.  Getting a second opinion regarding chemo may bring you more clarity.

And YAAAAAY for eating!!!!   Keep chowing down  sweet Puzzle!!!  And YAAAAY for going on a nice happy walk too!!!!👏👏👏

Puzzle is already showing  a lot of spunk and zest for life!  So embrace the NOW and live in the NOW  just like she is!  

So glad to read how she’s bounced back!   With a sensitive  tummy she may have an off day here and there, at least you now know not to freak out👍

Celebrate  Puzzle being Puzzle…..and get that pup some more hot dogs!  We would love pictures!

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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