TRIPAWDS: Home to 16178 Members and 1776 Blogs.
HOME » NEWS » BLOGS » FORUMS » CHAT » YOUR PRIVACY » RANDOM BLOG

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.
JUMP TO FORUMS

Join The Tripawds Community

Learn how to help three legged dogs and cats in the forums below. Browse and search as a guest or register for free and get full member benefits:

  • Instant post approval.
  • Private messages to members.
  • Subscribe to favorite topics.
  • Live Chat and much more!

REGISTER   |   LOG IN

Be More DogNEW! Be More Dog – Learning to Live in The Now

Get the new book by the Tripawds founders for life lessons learned from their Chief Fun Officer Jerry G. Dawg! Download the e-book, and find fun Be More Dog apparel and gifts in the Be More Dog Bookstore.

Please consider registering
Guest
Search
Forum Scope




Match



Forum Options



Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters
Register Lost password?
sp_Feed sp_PrintTopic sp_TopicIcon-c
7 days Post Amputation and home with Bella , 11 year old Golden
sp_NewTopic Add Topic
Forum Posts: 2
Member Since:
3 November 2016
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
1
10 November 2016 - 9:15 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

hello all,,

we are at day 7 post amputation  ( Left Hind Leg)with our Golden Retriever, Bella. she was struck by a car and spent a week in the “hospital” Her surgery was on the 4th . Because of volume loss and subsequent transfusions her recovery was delayed and we just brought her home on tuesday. to say there have been challenges would be an understatement ! Im looking for general and specific input  on matters such as nutrition ( she needs to lose weight as well as have adequate nutrition for healing )  Right now I am feeding her 1/2 cup of premium samon based kibble with alternating  cooked liver or  sweet potato. The later being healthy and esp helpful with constipation ,, she did not go the entire time she was hospitalized and the surgeon said that X-ray showed the need to. The pain meds are also a factor. She is now moving her bowls so that concern is alleged . Activity – what to expect as to length of recovery time ?. at this time she isn’t inclined to do a lot… likely normal as this is her baseline and she did just go through a major surgery and lengthy hospital stay. the vet said to have her up every 6 hours ,, I just hope that is enough to help her regain strength , and supplements? as she does have some arthritis in her spine. we are learning daily and making adjustments as we go. unfortunately we have a house of newly finished hardwood, have tried the non slip socks which are great when they stay in place,, but they need constant adjusting . so we will now be going to throwing down indoor outdoor carpets / yoga mats . also we have stairs out the back door leading to a concrete patio, which with 2 of us assisting she can mange getting down ok but not back up. Last night we built a ramp. given that she is a laid back Golden I’m thinking that once she figures this out as being easier , she will choose the ramp. as many of you are well aware, its a lot! we also have other animals and while i was concerned that our samoyed may unintentionally hurt  her , that has not been an issue. still I will not leave the two of them in a room unsupervised. tomorrow my teenage girls will be home from school so I am planning to go to work( I’ve been home wed and today ). any advice, support welcome and thank you !

Livermore, CA




Forum Posts: 3969
Member Since:
18 October 2009
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
2
10 November 2016 - 10:14 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Hi and welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.

I’m sorry to hear about Bella’s accident- how scary!

First off- she should only be going for short, leashed potty breaks for the first couple weeks after amputation- that helps with a smooth recovery. Those were the directions most here get and follow.  Too much activity slows healing and can lead to seromas.

7 days post amputation is still quite early- she sounds like she is doing very well so far.  I would guess that after she is healed and builds a little strength that going up a few stairs will be no problem.  My little rear amp pug mix Elly flies up and down the stairs in our split level house.  She was also hit by a car when she was 7 months old.  I adopted her at 10 months, about 2.5 months post amp and she could do the stairs just fine then.

You are right that traction is huge for Tripawds!  I tried the traction socks with my quad pug Tani when her mobility became an issue and I didn’t like them.  My house had yoga mat trails on all the slippery floors!  I did have good luck with the Pawz Booties , I used them whenever we had to go to the vet, but they are not good to leave on for long periods of time.

You should also look through the Required Reading List or consider downloading one of the eBooks from this site.  Both have lots of good information on dealing with amputation and recovery.

There are lots of diet and supplement ideas in our Nutrition Blog

Strength and balance are really important for Tripawds. I work with Elly everyday on her core strength and balance using food puzzles, games and obedience training. 

The first two to three weeks after surgery are usually the hardest, some lucky pups seem to bounce back quicker.  Since Bella is dealing with extra trauma she might take a little longer to get her sparkle back.  Don’t get discouraged- she will get there! 

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

Michigan
Forum Posts: 1448
Member Since:
2 April 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
3
11 November 2016 - 2:57 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

It sounds like you’re off to a really great start!  Poor Bella, she must be very achy & sore on top of the pain from the surgery sad  Most dogs recover in 2-3 weeks.   She might need longer since she probably has other injuries from the accident and her age.  It’s always hard to know.  Usually once the staples come out, they perk up some.  Make sure to keep up on her pain meds, and you can apply an ice pack, wrapped in a towel, to the incision a couple of times a day for 10-15 minutes.  It will help with swelling and pain.

Donna

Donna, Glenn & Murphy 

Murphy had his right front leg amputated due to histiocytic sarcoma at 7 years old. He survived 4 years, 2 months & 1 week, only to be taken by hemangiosarcoma at 11 1/2 years 6/12/17  
Read about Murphy's Life on Three Legs

Donna.png

Forum Posts: 106
Member Since:
20 October 2016
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
4
11 November 2016 - 5:55 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_EditHistory sp_QuotePost

Hi. Welcome Bella and family❤️❤️

We are 2 weeks out.  My golden, Rosie had right rear leg TPLO surgery 8/31 and her front leg amputated on 10/26 due to cancer.  

I know that this first bit of home recovery can be stressful and scary.  I want to share what I learned and what worked for us in case it may be helpful for you and your beautiful Bella.  

 The first thing is to keep on top of her pain medication and not to try and do the lower end of the dose range at least the first week.   I’m not exactly sure what Bella’s taking but we did gabapentin and Rimadyl and tramadol in the mornings with breakfast, and then  did tramadol mid day, and then we did gabapentin, Rimadyl and tramadol with dinner. I tried to back off at about day five, and because we did she had a setback.  At first I tried separating the medications so that she would have some type of pain meds every three hours, with small meals. But because her appetite really decreased and eating was hard I found that only feeding her breakfast and dinner, that she would eat full meals.   If you do want to stagger I would suggest if she’ll eat full meals giving her the Rimadyl with breakfast and dinner along with Neurontin. And then you could give her tramadol a few hours later and then again a few hours before dinner, and maybe one before bed.   Of course I’m not a vet and the only experience I have is what I’ve gone through with my dog. Every dog is different and you may have it down with Bella.

 The other thing that I would recommend, is to take it slow and steady no matter how spunky she may seem. My Rosie was so happy to be out of pain that she wanted to go crazy and run all around the backyard. I let her do that on about day three, and she paid for it for several days. 

 She had her staples out on day 10, and that was the difference between day and night. She got her sparkle back. So now we are doing it slow and steady in conjunction with our rehab therapist.  We still are doing potty breaks, on a leash. Then I am taking her on 2-3, 3-5minute walks a day, actually I should say quick jog, because going faster is easier for her.  We are also doing some exercises to build up her strength and her front leg and rear legs. I’m not sure if Bella has arthritis or not, but the one thing that we are doing is to try to manage Rosies. We are having her take Adequan which really seems to help and is supposed to help slow down progression of degeneration.   

 Lastly, I want to talk about food. Normally Rosie is really food motivated and wolfs down her meal in a couple of minutes. Starting at about day three until day eight or nine, she wouldn’t eat or drink hardly at all. I had to try out all  kinds of things to get her to eat. I think she was in pain and with the medication her appetite was totally suppressed. What worked for us, was fried turkey bacon with peanut butter on it and hand feeding it to her.  When she started, I could hand feed her a full meal. It wasn’t until after she got her staples out that she was able to eat her dinner in her regular fashion. 

You guys are doing an awesome job with her and pretty soon this hard recovery phase will be over and you guys will be a rocking three Legged, golden family. 

 Again, my intention is not to tell you what to do or recommend anything, but only to share my story. I poured over all of the forms and found out that it really helped me to ease my anxiety and feel better about her progress. This is a great community full of love and support! 

Reach out any time!

Mom Kellye, Rosie the Wonder Tripawd and her faithful sidekick Braden.  ❤️🐕❤️🐕

Forum Posts: 2010
Member Since:
14 February 2016
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
5
12 November 2016 - 4:52 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

In terms of supplements, my Otis was on Dasaquin and fish oil for arthritis.  He was diagnosed three years before he became a Tripawd, and these supplements truly worked wonders.

Do you have a harness?  We loved the Ruffwear Webmaster Plus harness (you can find it in the gear blog).  It will help with the stairs.

Otherwise, you are still really early, especially with the trauma she went through.   Rest and short leashed potty breaks are best.  Many dogs perk up when the staples come out, about day 10 – 14, and then you will start to see her returning to her normal self.

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

London, UK


Forum Posts: 1610
Member Since:
15 December 2015
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
6
13 November 2016 - 5:29 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_EditHistory sp_QuotePost

Hi Bella and family!

Ditto everyone else. My two are also on Dasuquin and Fish Oil for arthritis (make sure it is high in EPA and has been tested for mercury contamination). Keeping weight low is crucial both for tripawds and dogs with arthritis. My Meg, who also has arthritis, eats a new combined joint support/satiety kibble from Royal Canin (it’s a special order and needs to be prescribed by a vet), which has been tremendously effective for her (she lost 9 lbs). She has it with a small amount of homemade stew. Building core stability will also be key, all the more so because of the arthritis in Bella’s spine. If you have a rehab vet anywhere near you, I would strongly recommend a visit if you possibly can, even just as a one off, so they can show you some exercises to do at home and perhaps also give Bella some laser/acupuncture to help with the healing and adjustment process.

All best,

Meg and Clare (and Elsie Pie) xxx

Meg, Mutt, aged around 12, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Pie and Angel Billie
My life as a MEG-A-STAR 


Forum Posts: 2
Member Since:
3 November 2016
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
7
20 November 2016 - 5:08 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

hello and thank you all for your response!

It s taken me a bit to get back to the site as it s been a busy time here all around. we saw the vet on wednesday for removal of her staples. She was amazing , bright and excited to see all of her new ” friends” at the hospital . He did take his time looking at the incision area,, she had a lot of fluid buildup which he felt would be reabsorbed. Last night we noticed that the bruising is darkened in color and seems larger.. I do know that bruising is normal. today is day 14 post surgery . Im questioning whether this is something to be concerned about ( bleeding ?) or if part of the healing process along with reabsorption of accumulated fluid. ( the area around the bruising appears less swollen – last week her belly appeared quite large when standing & the surgeon did comment about the fluid . ) the area of bruising , while firmer  and more swollen, is not rock hard.

Getting in and out continues to be somewhat of a challenge, well back in, anyway.. she bounds down the ramp and manages the next set of 3 stairs fine, its getting back up the ramp in particular that is a challenge. Now we have snow to contend with as well . she hesitates before going back up the ramp and needs encouragement to do so ,she appears to want to take the stairs but so far I have guided her to the ramp. 

we are encouraging her to get up and outside every four hours now, yesterday she really enjoyed lounging in the yard for a while ,, something she always did. I am hoping to get an appointment with a Vet Rehab therapist nearby now that the staples are out, even if to provide specific guidance on home therapy techniques. 

I am going to get a prescription for Dasuquin from our regular Vet this week , the surgeon recommended this when I questioned him about it. as to diet I have been substituting a portion of her kibble with liver or chicken with a bit of pumpkin . the surgeon recommends a senior wt loss food for her which I am about to research and order. I know that as with Human Medicine, theres not a lot in their training regarding nutrition. the surgeon felt that with prepared dog food she will get all the nutrients.right now I have the 2 dogs on a grain free salmon based food. ( she has a 7 year old Samoyed sister )

Ha.. he also said that I was spoiling her! Yeah, well…. 

Honestly my thinking was to increase her protein intake to aid in healing , as well as the fact that liver is rich in vitamins 

she is taking rimadyl  and tramadol in the morning and the evening. we started out with 2 tabs of the tramadol but backed off to 1 as she seems brighter with 1. its hard to judge by activity level as her base line is being a  pretty mellow golden who prefers to lie around the house 

Also today I am looking on line for an area rug for the sitting area between the living room and kitchen..the rest will be paved with yoga mats , which I have scattered throughout now. we are also going to try the Ruffwear  boots today, after I see how she does inside with them. 

Again,, thank you all for your responses.. this has been some journey ! seeing her improve has alleviated a lot of the anxiety but we still have a road ahead 

Leslie

Forum Posts: 2010
Member Since:
14 February 2016
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
8
20 November 2016 - 5:44 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Great news!  Sounds like she is doing wonderfully.  If you don’t already have one, you might consider getting a harness.  We loved the Ruffwear Webmaster Plus harness.  You can see more in the gear blog. It might help you to more easily assist her up the ramp.

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

London, UK


Forum Posts: 1610
Member Since:
15 December 2015
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
9
20 November 2016 - 8:15 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

This sounds great! I’m so pleased. As you say, there is a road ahead, but now she is improving, I think you will be truly amazed by how she bounces back and how fully she enjoys life on three.

I am going to get a prescription for Dasuquin from our regular Vet this week

Just to say, you don’t need a prescription for Dasuquin. You can buy it from Amazon and elsewhere (use the Amazon link from this website), at least you can in the UK. Someone from the US please jump in and correct me if I’m wrong.

Meg, Clare and Elsie Pie xxx

Meg, Mutt, aged around 12, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Pie and Angel Billie
My life as a MEG-A-STAR 


The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 28041
Member Since:
25 April 2007
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
10
20 November 2016 - 10:48 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

I’m thrilled to hear things are on the right track, yay! Sounds like you’re doing everything right and on an excellent path for a full recovery. I really like how you’re going to see a rehab therapist. Yes, they will definitely show you how to do home exercises properly for her needs. And don’t forget, the Tripawds Foundation will pay for that first visit! See:

http://tripawds…..bursement/

That’s super impressive she will use the ramp. Many dogs won’t no matter how hard the human tries. When she hesitates on the ramp, are you guiding her by holding her harness handle and gently assisting her up?

As for Dasuquin, yep, Meg’s correct, no prescription needed. Here’s a link to a post about it (and thanks for asking folks to shop through the Tripawds Amazon blog , Meg!):

http://nutritio…..-cosequin/

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Forum Posts: 106
Member Since:
20 October 2016
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
11
30 November 2016 - 10:31 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

I am so happy to hear how well everyone is adjusting.  

My golden Rosie was 82 pounds in May and was placed on a diet.  My vet said to give her 850 calories a day.  

When I checked how many Calories she was eating it was 1300.  I was shocked because I thought I was under feeding her.  

She is now 67 pounds, lost 15 including her leg in six months.  

I feed her 1/2 cup kibble (Canidae Pure) and 1/2 cup honest kitchen dehydrated 2 x day.  It’s 800 calories total which gives us 50 for treats.  The honest kitchen is full of good stuff including pumpkin and sweet potatoes.   It’s supposed to be human grade and smells like chicken dinner. 😀

I am now a food Nazi and have limited most treats.   I did find a great dehydrated beef treat.  Just meat.  That’s it.  She loves it. 

After chemo is done we will probably try to reduce a few more pounds.  I am hoping that as her activity increases her weight will decrease but am not worried right now.  

I gave her low sodium green beans 1/4 cup each meal to help fill the void the first couple of weeks.  Now she is fine with the above.  

Again-not a vet, just sharing what worked for me and my pack.  Best wishes for continued recovery and healing.  

Kellye

Idaho
Forum Posts: 1601
Member Since:
12 March 2013
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
12
1 December 2016 - 7:50 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_EditHistory sp_QuotePost

I agree with the others about using a harness now to get her used to going up the ramp. Our Murphy absolutely refused to go up the ramp

Unless…he had his harness on.

We used a Ruffwear Webmaster for him. It was invaluable, particularly for loading into the car. I also agree about checking into doing some rehab work with her. A certified rehab vet can work wonders.

Kathi and the Turbotail April Angel…and the Labradork

Murphy is a five year old Lab/Chessie cross. He was hit by a car on 10/29/12 and became a Tripawd on 11/24/12. On 2/5/13, he had a total hip replacement on his remaining back leg. He has absolutely no idea that he has only three legs!

UPDATE: Murphy lived his life to the fullest, right up until an aggressive bone lesion took him across the Rainbow Bridge on April 9, 2015 and he gained his membership in the April Angels. Run free, my love. You deserve it!

Forum Timezone: America/Denver
Most Users Ever Online: 946
Currently Online: leylasmom
Guest(s) 87
Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)
Member Stats:
Guest Posters: 1103
Members: 11497
Moderators: 2
Admins: 3
Forum Stats:
Groups: 4
Forums: 23
Topics: 16519
Posts: 232278
Administrators: admin, jerry, jim
Moderators: betaman, krun15
Tripawds is brought to you by Tripawds.
HOME » NEWS » BLOGS » FORUMS » CHAT » YOUR PRIVACY » RANDOM BLOG