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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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Depression- day 8
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Forum Posts: 6
Member Since:
9 October 2008
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17 October 2008 - 8:49 am
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We are 8 days post amp. 7 days 1st chemo. Polli has desovable stiches and we are are limited amount of pain meds now. Yesterday we started to decrease the tramadol from 2 every 6-8 hours to 1 every  4-6 or so. She is still on Baytil and 50 mg of deramaxx.

Let me preface this with I KNOW we are ONLy on day 8 of MAJOR MAJOR MAJOR surgery and her whole world has been turned upside down. Everything is different. Even our house, her "crate" her safety zone is gone. Yes, we are still all together but here are the concerns….

Polli was the happiest dog I had ever met. Even in pain all this time prior to the discovery of the cancer, she was happy, play bowing and her tail never stopped wagging. She also had THE BIGGEST mouth I could even imagine. So much so that there were times I thought to myself… SHHHHH up already. It was a non stop ROO ROO ROO ROO ROO ROO… screaming and demadning to me to get this, get that, hurry it up… etc.

Now, the fire that made my firecracker seems to have disappreared from her eyes. She doesn’t even want to walk. She will walk to go out and pee/poop but we want to start getting her to go to one or 2 houses and then turn around. She won’t move and we can’t press it. She will just stand there with a blank pathetic look at her face that rips my heart out.

She will get up to go to the door when we make our announcement "WHO WANTS TO GO FOR A WALKIE". But that is as far as it goes.

Her tail which never stopped wagging, hasn’t wagged once.

She is depressed. I speak to her in loving, tones as I always did. Nothing has changed with any of that. I know that humans go through a clinical depression after major surgery so I am aware that a lot of this is "normal" but it’s still very upsetting.

I know I can’t speed up her recovery time and I know it’s ONLY 8 days but all of a sudden I am very concerned that the Polli we know and love won’t be back. It’s scary but more than anything, it’s so sad.

Robin~ Mom to Polli, my Tripod, Beau, Chloe, & Teddy. Yoshi, Belle and Zoobie, the kitties

Michigan
Forum Posts: 289
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17 October 2008 - 9:45 am
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Hi Robin

This seems to be fairly common about this time.  Coming off of the pain meds can be hard for some dogs.  Somewhat of a detox effect.  Radar was bright and happy right after surgery but about day 6 went into a slump.  He wasn’t running a temp, his stools were fine, but was off eating (also pretty common).  I think the best thing you can do for Polli right now is to be positive and upbeat.  I know you are worried but you may be telegraphing that worry to Polli.  It’s hard to keep our worry under wraps around them but we need to try. 

When Radar was down I sooo wanted to go to him and gently tell him "hang in there big guy – you’ll be OK"  What I did instead was use my playfull (smiling) voice and talk to him like I normally would around the house.  I would see the interest and the ear and eyebrow movement and could tell he was getting my happy tone and occasionally there was a "little" tailwag. 

Polli will be over this slump before you know it. 

Hugs

Connie & Radar

 

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17 October 2008 - 10:55 am
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Hi Robin – Zeus didn’t have much depression, though he panted a lot while on the pain medicine. Keep doing what you’re doing and maybe give your Vet a call and see what he/she has to say. Hopefully she will turn the page in a day or 2. We will keep her in our thoughts and prayers….please keep us posted.

Much love,

Heather and Zeus

Heather and Spirit Zeus - Our life changing journey…from the earth to the heavens…one day at a time…always together

Forum Posts: 345
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17 October 2008 - 11:47 am
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Robin,

   I can relate. My Buster took about a good month to bounce back. He wouldn’t eat and weaning him off the meds was hard because he seemed to be in alot of pain. Ask your vet to keep on the pain meds longer if Polli is uncomfortable. It is still early and this was a major surgery. I used a warm compress to help with the nerve endings and deal with the phantom leg pain .   It will take some time but in about a month she should be back to her old self. I would not try to push her to walk until she is fully recovered. Just like any major surgery rest is best…
 Best wishes,

Kim&Buster

Kim & Angel Buster

"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."
–Anatole France

Forum Posts: 170
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17 October 2008 - 12:45 pm
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It does sound like a "normal" detox, and I’m sure the adjustment might have an impact. One thing I did for Lalla while she was recovering from surgery was to make sure her doggy friends came ’round to visit, and I know that made her very, very happy and it gave her a sense of "my world is still the same". That might do the trick.

 

The Rainbow Bridge



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17 October 2008 - 3:05 pm
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RobinM said:

… it’s so sad.


As difficult as it may seem right now, please try to reframe things. You should rejoice now that Polli is free of pain. That fire will return, she just needs time to recuperate. Be strong and she will follow your lead.

Thanks for the update. Can you please do us all a favor and draft your messages right here in this forum? When you copy content from another program or website (i.e.; the greytalk forums), hidden style and formatting code gets pasted in that throws off the layout of this site. This takes time to fix.

If you do want to copy something you’ve written elsewhere, simply paste it into a plain text editor to strip out all hidden code then copy it again and paste it here.

Thanks again, and best wishes for a speedy recovery. Keep that tail wagging!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Forum Posts: 1977
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17 October 2008 - 3:44 pm
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I think that Polli needs more time to adjust to life without her leg.  I have found that Greyhounds tend to get hit harder with some of the meds we use than other breeds, but they do eventually bounce back!  Also, she had chemo at the same time as her amputation, and that alone can make any dog tired and depressed.

Has she had her CBC rechecked yet?  Most vets will check the white cell count 7 days post chemo to look for bone marrow suppression, which could lead to infections.  If she had Adriamycin (doxorubricin) as her chemo drug, the white count is usually at its lowest 7-10 days post-injection.  Carboplatin is less likely to affect the bone marrow, but the count can drop anywhere from 7-21 days post-treatment.  You can take her temperature daily to get an idea of how she is doing.  A non-stressed dog should have a resting temp under 102.5.

Pam and Tazzie

 

 

Manchester, UK
Forum Posts: 210
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2 February 2008
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17 October 2008 - 4:46 pm
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You know, I’d forgotten about the fact that Pollli has already started her chemo!  (I know Robin & Polli from Greytalk you see).

Darcy – tripawd since 16th October 2007.

***Darcy would love to be your friend on Facebook - just search for Darcy Deerhound***

Forum Posts: 345
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17 October 2008 - 5:22 pm
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Me too Bevd, all Buster had was the amputation surgery. Very good information from Tazziedog about the chemo….

Kim & Angel Buster

"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."
–Anatole France

Forum Posts: 84
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17 October 2008 - 11:01 pm
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Robin,

Sophie is 10 days post amputation, and just this morning seemed to pull out of a depression that came on a couple of days after the surgery.  It is great to see her smiling again.  I never would have guessed yesterday that she would be herself suddenly again today (also worth noting that today is a few days off meds).  Give Polli some time, and good luck!

Christine & Sophie 

 

Robinm
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18 October 2008 - 8:40 pm
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Today is day 9 and today I got a ROO and  a waggy tail. My heart soared.

 One day at a time!

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19 October 2008 - 6:12 am
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That’s what I call Dog Power. No prozac needed. Way to go Sophie!

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19 October 2008 - 7:58 pm
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Robin – I can picture it now and I am brimming with tears for you…YEAH!!!!!!!

 Cool

Heather and Spirit Zeus - Our life changing journey…from the earth to the heavens…one day at a time…always together

MI
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6 October 2008
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20 October 2008 - 9:50 am
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Hang tough.  It took Dexter a good 2 wks. before she returned to normal…wanting to go outside, eating better, energy and sparkle in her eyes.  Everyday from now on you’ll start noticing little improvements and before you know it, you’ll have your baby back!!

Sherri & Dex

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20 October 2008 - 9:09 pm
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Hi Robin and Polli..

Although we are not as knowledgeable (yet) of what you are experiencing concerning post operative depression,  I do know that tramadol is a very strong (people) medicine for pain.  Although it is not narcotic it does pack a punch and does take the edge off the pain.  Molly has had the fentynyl (?) patch removed, the tramadol  removed and takes one pain pill in the a.m.  Today was her first day home since having her surgery last Tuesday.  Every day I went to see her for visiting hours she seemed nervous, scared, and was continually panting.  Since I brought her home, she found a very obscure corner of the dining room and laid down.  She has been sleeping peacefully for the past 4 1/2 hours.  I do a constant check to make sure she is still breathing.  I’ve come to the conclusion that their worlds have been turned upside down and back again.  They have no idea why they have been taken from  the comfort of their family and home, experiencing pain like never before, and the after effects of medications.  I believe that once they realize they are home for good, the meds decreased they will bounce back ….I keep my fingers crossed.   We’ve been praying to St. Frances the patron of pets to keep all our ‘tripaws’ in his care.

Molly and Mom

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