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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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Day 1 post op - WHAT HAVE I DONE ?!
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17 October 2020 - 1:40 pm
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I didn't think I'd miss going out with my dog ​​so much. I just envy all people whose dogs are four-legged.
The Rainbow Bridge



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17 October 2020 - 2:53 pm
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I’m so glad you talked to your vet about the Gabapentin. Great job!!! Be sure to familiarize yourself with these pain signals so you know what to look for OK?

And when recovery is over, you’ll still be able to get out with her! There are many ways to help her get around, like with dog strollers (prams) and wagons. Before you know it, it’s those four legged dogs that will start to look odd!

I hope she continues feeling better.

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




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17 October 2020 - 8:53 pm
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Oh good!  Glad you are able to get the Gabapentin.   Good job for advocating for Leyla!

And you abso will be able to go on walks with Leyla again. promise!!  Right now she’s focused  on resting and healing.   Generally it takes about two weeks to recover  from the surgery itself and about a month to fully adjust to her new gait and have all her mobil issues worked out effortlessly.   

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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17 October 2020 - 9:54 pm
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I can fully attest to the two week thing! Hang in there!! Lean on all of us here, this community has helped me so much these past two weeks. My Lucy just hit 15 days post-op and is doing so well now! 

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18 October 2020 - 7:58 am
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Thank you all!

I just read about the common side-effects of Gabapentin. So I think, I don’t want to try it. The pain-signs are not as strong as yesterday. But the front-paw seems to be a bit edematous. 

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18 October 2020 - 8:59 am
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For what it’s worth, Gabapentine does not have bad side effects in most of the pets that have used it. Probably the most frequent effect is sleepiness, which usually wears off after several doses. I am not a doctor, I am just sharing what I have seen. When Huck had his first several doses, he slept a lot and was groggy. That did not bother me because as a new amputee they need lots of sleep and rest. After several doses he was much less groggy and it did help him with phantom limb pain. I was able to wean him off after about 3 weeks. 

If Leyla’s remaining front paw has edema (swelling), you should contact her doctor. We have seen mild edema in front leg amputees, it may be from her doing too much but her doctor should see a photo of it so that they can keep on top of what is going on with her. 

I hope this helps some. 

Hugs,

Jackie, David, Bo, Andy, Oscar, Angel Mitchell, and the coolest feral tripawd kitty Huckleberry

Huckleberry's Blog

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18 October 2020 - 9:45 am
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Hi,  

As far as I know, gabapentin is very well tolerated. My tripawd is using it continuously now and it hasn’t caused any side effects. You know best what your Leyla needs, of course, but I just wanted to tell that you should’t worry too much about those possible side effects, because it’s not common to have them.

Also I wanted to say that it will all become easier with time. Dogs are weak right after this surgery, and they may seem depressed. Walking may not be easy at first. But the feeling is priceless when they finally become their old selves again and start to enjoy their lives on three legs.

Best wishes again!

Razbeg the rescue borzoi (born in 11.06.2009) became a tripawd in 20.09.2018.

He and his adopted "brother" Myrsky have their own facebook page:Razbeg & Myrsky

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18 October 2020 - 1:46 pm
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Translation from praxisvita.de: 

“Common side effects are: Viral infection Drowsiness, dizziness, incoordination Fatigue, fever Pneumonia, respiratory tract infections, urinary tract infections, other infections, ear infections Decrease in white blood cells Loss of appetite or increased appetite Aggressive behavior towards others, confusion, mood swings, depression, anxiety, nervousness, thought disorders Cramps, movement disorders, speech disorders, memory loss, tremors, sleep disorders, headaches, sensitive skin, decreased sensation, impaired coordination, unusual eye movements, increased, weakened or absent reflexes Blurred vision, double vision High blood pressure, flushing, or widening of the blood vessels Difficulty breathing, bronchitis, sore throat, cough, dry nose Vomiting, nausea, dental problems, inflammation of the gums, diarrhea, stomach pain, indigestion, constipation, dry mouth or throat, gas Joint pain, muscle pain, back pain, muscle twitching Erectile dysfunction Decrease in white blood cells, weight gain In addition, aggressive behavior and excessive physical activity were often reported in children in clinical studies.”

And this are only the side effects which occur OFTEN !!!

“Rarely occurring side effects while taking gabapentin include: Heart pounding Swelling of the face, trunk and limbs Abnormal blood tests that indicate liver problems The following side effects have been reported since launch: Hallucinations (hallucinations) Movement disorders such as jerking, jerking movements and stiffness Ringing in the ears Inflammation of the pancreas Inflammation of the liver, yellowing of the skin and eyes Severe skin reactions that need immediate medical attention, swelling of the lips and face, rash and reddening of the skin, hair loss Acute kidney failure, urinary incontinence The medicine can cause a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction that may affect your skin or other parts of the body such as the liver or blood cells. You may or may not get a rash with this type of reaction. The allergic reaction may lead to your hospitalization or discontinuation of gabapentin treatment.” So I think, one has to be VERY careful with this drug!

The Rainbow Bridge



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18 October 2020 - 2:49 pm
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I know it sounds daunting, but that list of side effects is to cover the manufacturer’s butt just in case. Almost all pets here who have been on Gabapentin short or long term (including our Wyatt Ray ) tolerate it very well. The worst side effect we see is drowsiness but even that can be remedied by timing the dosage differently.

This video from world-famous veterinary pain management guru Dr. Robin Downing should hopefully  put your mind at ease:

How Gabapentin Works in Tripawds for Acute and Chronic Pain

also see

Dr. Downing Explains Phantom Leg Pain in Pets

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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18 October 2020 - 4:20 pm
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“I know it sounds daunting, but that list of side effects is to cover the manufacturer’s butt just in case.” 

No. There is a scheme of what is meant by “often”. And “often” means: At least one case of 10 –> 10 % and more. 

I already have a bad conscience because of the amputation. I don't want to completely ruin my dog.
Virginia




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18 October 2020 - 5:19 pm
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We just offer suggestions based on our experiences  here and what the “norm” is for the most effective pain meds offered by the professionals.   

 How you proceed iis up to you and what feels more comfortable  to you AND, most importantly,  what keeps Leyla free from pain and helps her use her energy to heal.

We know you want the best for Leyla and clearly. love her dearly.    Just know that any suggestions offered from us come from a place of good intentions and focused on Leyla’s well being.  

Glad to hear she is feeling better today.  That’s  good news!!!

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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20 October 2020 - 3:32 pm
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Today I had to leave her alone for an hour and she was so excited that she peed on the carpet. Never did this before. Although she always had problems staying alone and was never really relaxed without me.

Apart from that, she was fine today. That’s why I asked my neighbors to help me carry her down twice. But the second time may have been too much. Now she is lying around exhausted again.

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20 October 2020 - 6:49 pm
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She’s recovering from major surgery. 

This is all to be expected.  Think about what the  physical recovery time would be if it was you.  Major pain meds,  major bed/ rest time. 

Imho she sounds like she’s rocking this recovery.  You might not see it now, but hopefully you’ll see it soon. 

Just keep loving her,  babying her,  and nursing her back to health.  This does not last forever.  You’re really doing a great job.  I feel like you can’t see this right now but you are.  

Did you set appointment for suture removal?

Sending hugs, 

Jackie and Huck❤

Hugs,

Jackie, David, Bo, Andy, Oscar, Angel Mitchell, and the coolest feral tripawd kitty Huckleberry

Huckleberry's Blog

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22 October 2020 - 8:34 am
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No, I don’t know when the stitches come out. Day 15 post op?

She seems to show less pain every day. Today is the last day with antibiotics. She walked very fast to the corner of our street where I put the poop in the garbage can. Walking up the stairs works fine with some help (not so fine for my back and my left knee). But still breathes very fast even after very small walks (from her bed to the kitchen).

Downstairs she still must be carried by my neighbours. Now I am looking for more videos with downstairs-walking threelegged dogs. smiley2 

The Rainbow Bridge



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22 October 2020 - 1:59 pm
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Generally the stitches come out between 10 and 14 days so that’s probably about right.

Yeah the panting is probably from all that hard work of doing the stairs. The harness you have should really help once she’s ready for you to assist her while wearing it.

Have you seen our Tripawds Stairs Video Playlist?

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

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