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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Like so many of you, the diagnosis has been devastating to the family. Cherry is a black Standard Poodle who is full of life, energy, love, and devotion (like so many or your companions). Our companions are our only children and this has been made especially difficult because of our loss of Allie to cancer this spring.
The forums have been very helpful to us in dealing with the entire situation. We are experiencing some difficulties with the recovery from amputation a week ago today. To help me deal with the situations and to keep each days progress or regress in proper perspective, I have started a daily diary. While not a literary classic, it does convey the frustration and joys, but more importantly it lets me know in some detail what really did happen. Please feel free to view this diary at http://home.com…..ryjourney/
and comment back either here or by direct email. Our main difficulty has been appetite and making sure the spirit receives proper attention. To that end, I keep everything she eats on an index card for the day (helps me measure the progress) and we go on daily rides in the truck.
Thanks again to all that have contributed to this site, and I hope that our journey’s diary can help others in the future.
The forums have been very helpful to us in dealing with the entire situation … I hope that our journey’s diary can help others in the future.
Welcome to the discussion Cherry, and thanks for joining! We are so happy you find the forums helpful and thank you for sharing the details of your journey with everyone. That’s what this website is all about.
Best wishes for a speedy full recovery.
30 March 2008
Hello Cherry, thanks for sharing your daily journey with us. It will help to write and to chat about this journey and that is what we are here for. This is the best website you could have ever encounter as not only do you get lots of resources and tips but a lot of friendship and support. Wishes for a speedy recovery and keep us posted….
18 May 2008
I’m sorry to hear of your diagnosis with Cherry and Allie’s crossing over as well. Even those of us who have human children consider our pups as children too. They are like perpetual 3 year olds :o) For me, as hard it’s been at times, it is worth the pain and sadness that grieving brings because of the depth of love we feel for them. We would not feel the sadness if we never experienced the love…Enjoy every day you have with Cherry and try your best to stay in the moment.
You made a good choice for Cherry to amputate so that she can run and play and feel good again for the rest of her life. It won’t be long til she we be back to herself, but the first few weeks seem extra long! I love that you take her for a car ride; what a thoughtful mom you are~ Eventhough it’s hard at times, do your best to present yourself in a cheerful way for Cherry. You know how they pick up on our moods and concerns.
Welcome to Tripawds.com. This site helped me so much during our journey with Abbey, I’m sure you will find it true for you too. She runs free in the heavenly fields now but I still visit frequently. Peace, di (PS Cherry is BEAUTIFUL!!)
I want to thank all those who have read our forum posting, have gone to our daily diary site, and have commented back to us. I cried myself sick on that weekend after the original diagnosis, but have found the strength to hold it together for Cherry.
We knew that it would be tough, but Cherry has always been so resilient that we had not expected so many difficulties. She is now eating, but only the most bland of food and only when hand fed. However, she has never really suffered for nutrition or hydration as described in the diary.
Has anyone else had such problems, and when could I reasonably expect to see improvement in her desire to eat? The next chemotherapy is only ten days away and I would like some time between now and then when it would be easier for Cherry.
22 August 2008
What type of chemo is Cherry getting? If they are doing another dose in 10 days then I am guessing she is on the alternating Carboplatin/Adriamycin protocol. She could still be nauseous from the chemo, especially since she had it the same day as surgery. You could ask your vet for some Carafate (generic is sucralfate). Many dogs don’t actually vomit from chemo but do have a feeling of nausea and Carafate is great for this! My dog Tazzie gets picky for a few days after her Carboplatin but she will eat if I hand feed her. I also find it helps to feed her multiple small meals and warm up the food in the microwave first.
Don’t forget that you can talk to Jerry’s oncologist on 12/2 on the online chat.
Pam and Tazzie
Hi Cherry. I’m sorry to hear that you’re not feeling like eating a whole lot. Although I didn’t have nausea from the chemo treatment I got, when I was nauseaus later on in my cancer, my Mom and Dad tried all sorts of tricks to get me to eat. They gave me some ground buffalo meat, and that was pretty good. But you know what really got my motor running? Cat food! Yeah, wet, stinky, fishy cat food. Not a lot of course, but just enough to get me to eat something. Tell your Mom about this OK?
And oh yeah, here are some appetite stimulation tips people posted a while back too. Hope this helps. Feel better girlfriend.
P.S. Where in Northern California do you live? My Mom and Dad are in the SF Bay Area for a few days and would love to meet you if you’re nearby.
To Pam and Tazzie from Cherry’s dad.
You are right on regarding the chemo treatment. We all really appreciate the heads up on the Carafate. Tomorrow we go the the doctor to take out the staples and we will bring this up with her. Presently Cherry is on Metoclopramide which we were told was for nausea. We no longer take the daily trip in the truck because she started to show signs of car sickness and we do not need that.
Her spirit is improving as is her ability to get around. While we realize that she has a lot more healing to do, we hope that removing the staples will help her comfort level.
Thank You so very much for the help and support.
28 May 2008
Hi Cherry – Zeus here, nice to meet you pretty girl! Welcome to our special family…a family with instant love and support – it’s pretty incredible!
The first two weeks after surgery for me were pretty uneventful, but I did have a LOT of panting seemingly because of the pain meds that I was on. The day I went to get the staples out, I came out a new dawg (or back to my pre-amputation self)…literally! My mom was so amazed at the change…I was prancing around and playful as ever…it was night and day. The panting stopped when the pain meds stopped. Hopefully you’ll have the same response as I did. Those darn things are uncomfortable and annoying!
Keep us posted ok?
Much love to you ~
Zeus and Mom (Heather)
Heather and Spirit Zeus - Our life changing journey…from the earth to the heavens…one day at a time…always together
Cherry’s dad here.
Slowly the appetite has improved. Actually, I should say that her willingness to take food from me has improved. Prior to today, I only had to stuff her once daily during her six rather small meals. The rest of the time, a great deal of coaxing and hand feeding was sufficient and today that was all that was necessary. Tomorrow, she will get the second of the planned four chemo treatments. I do not look forward to her eating doing another down turn. Last time, even I could taste the chemicals!
She is getting around better and has been an absolute angle throughout this process. But then again, we all know how much they want to please us. Her spirits are generally good and at times one can see the old sparkle in the eye (or should I say devilish imp). I continue to keep my daily diary for anyone who would like to know what was involved for at least one going through this process. I will also post any new developments here as the come.
Love to all our four, three, or two legged friends.
I will also post any new developments here as the come…
Thanks that’s great! We look forward to hearing more about Cherry and are very happy to hear she is recuperating well.
11 November 2008
So glad to hear that Cherry is starting to eat more. I too am facing the second round of Chemo with my Great Dane Nova next week. Nova is a left front leg Tripawd too! Nova had more issues after surgery with drinking than with eating. I hand fed her ice cubes to keep her hydrated. Although she will usually only accept canned food and special things that I cook for her. Dry food is out of the question. I am wondering if perhaps Cherry has had such a rough time eating because she had the trauma of the surgery and the chemo at the same time. We started the chemo 10 days after the surgery. We are doing 4 rounds of Carbo, and are skipping the Adriamycin. I am told that the Adria seems to cause more nausea than other forms of Chemo, so I decided to go this route.
I look forward to following your journal on Cherry. The timing on our journeys is pretty much the same. I have a similar blog for Nova, and it has been very helpful to write it all down as the story unfolds.
Sending healing thoughts your way….
Sue and Nova
Dane Mom Sue at nova.tripawds.com and Mom to Beautiful Great Dane Queen Nova, a Blind Tripawd, who kicked cancer's butt from 11/08-03/13. The Queen is Spirit Nova now, but her legacy lives on here at Tripawds!
Cherry’s dad here.
Unfortunately Cherry has not taken the second chemotherapy too well. We seem to be running into the same lack of appetite problems as with the first treatment. Also, she has developed a severe rash on the lower portion of her incision scar. While the rash is worse than the first time, the loss of appetite has not progressed as far downward. Yes, I have to place food into her mouth for most meals, but she has not totally shutdown like the first time.
Also, I have posted some photos taken during her second chemotherapy treatment on Cherry’s TriPawd Journey web site. One can use the following link to get to the photos:
Hopefully she will turn the corner soon.
Bob and Cherry
22 October 2008
Poor Cherry. Nasty, nasty chemo.
I read that she likes vanilla soy milk, have you tried a vanilla flavored Ensure? Lots more calories in it than the soy milk. You can get the generic brand petty reasonable at Wal-Mart.
Janie & Calamity
Janie & Calamity http://www.trix.....gspot.com/
Bob, we send our love and well wishes to Cherry. What an amazing, strong girl she is. We hope she feels better soon.
That sweater she is wearing is ADORABLE. Where did you get the pattern? Can you tell us more about it? Maybe post the pattern if you care to share it, in Tips and Resources? We love it!