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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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Diagnosed today
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Forum Posts: 31
Member Since:
11 September 2008
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11 September 2008 - 5:51 pm
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Hello all, I’m Alfie a beautiful nearly nineteen month old black labrador. I’ve been diagnosed with Osteosarcoma in my right fore leg today as a result of a bone biopsy, no sign of any mets on the x-rays.

I’ve been with my family for seven months, I was re-homed from a loving home where they couldln’t give me the time and exercise that I needed. I have settled in so well and have been so happy with my new family. My family had lost Sam, a much loved 8 year old chocolate lab (road accident) two weeks before they were lucky enough to get me. This makes my diagnosis all the more painful – they haven’t recovered from losing Sam yet!!

I’ve been limping since early August. Intial lameness appeared to be on my left, problems on the right only appeared last week. Xrays show some signs of displaysia in the left elbow and obviousy the tumour on the right, just above the wrist. It’s decision time now.

Chemo isn’t really an option, we live in England and treatment isn’t available in our area. Amputation is looking like the best option to give me the best quality of life for as long as possible. Main worry is that my two lovely human playmates are only 4 and 6. The grown-ups are worried about how the children will cope and whether I’ll be able to make a good recovery, especially given the problems with my left elbow?

Need to speak to the Vet again tomorrow, what a nightmare. I know so many of you have been through all this. Thank you for taking the time to put so much information on the site to help inform others.

Alfie ( & Linda )

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 27267
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11 September 2008 - 10:44 pm
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Alfie, first of all, thank you for registering and joining the Tripawds community. We are so sorry to hear of your diagnosis and the circumstances around it, just when you found such a loving home. We know your pawrents will make the decision that is right for you and your family, and we hope that we can be of some help and support as you make decisions over the next few days.

Let’s see, where to begin. Well, first off, know that there are no "right" answers or decisions. Everyone’s situation is different, and whatever you decide to do, we will support you 100 percent.

I wouldn’t worry about your playmates. As long as your pawrents prepare them ahead of time, maybe by showing them some of the neat things we Tripawds can do, like on my Videos page! They may be surprised and possibly a little scared when they see your surgery incision, but after that wears off, most kids just don’t even notice that we are Tripawds! Some are a little hesitant at first, but after they see were are still dogs, they’re pretty cool with our uniqueness and love us just the same.

About your other elbow. Well, your vet can give you the best opinion on that situation. In my case, I have bad hips, but that issue hasn’t really slowed me down all that much. I take glucosamine supplements and that helps me maintain my strength. There are also orthopedic support braces that you can have made for you to help that elbow stay strong.

I hope this helps somewhat. Please let us know how your vet visit goes tomorrow OK? Thank you again for coming here, good luck.

Your friend,

Jerry

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Michigan
Forum Posts: 289
Member Since:
26 July 2008
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12 September 2008 - 6:39 am
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Welcome Alfie,

We are sorry to hear about your diagnosis and about your parent’s loss of Sam.  It sounds like you have a wonderful and loveing family.  Children are so much more open minded and adaptable than many adults.  As Jerry said, prepare them in advance and you will see that they will continue to love Alfie they way they always have.  You may need to caution them about playing too roughly with Alfie at first but before long both Alfie and the kids will work it out. 

Please keep us posted on Alfie’s progress and if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

Hugs

Connie & Radar

Forum Posts: 31
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11 September 2008
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12 September 2008 - 4:44 pm
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Thank you so much for such helpful replies. My amputation is booked for Friday 19 Sept, we’re all a little apprehensive, but remarkably I’ve been brighter today than I have all week! I’ve been taking the children’s toys today so they’ll chase me and even chased one of the cats (who was a bit shocked after such a lethargic week)…the power of positive thought!!! Will let you know how things go.

Thank you for all the resources that there are here on this site to help us all, especially the children, prepare for this journey.

Special positive thoughts to Jerry for Monday.

Alfie (& Linda) x

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 27267
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13 September 2008 - 12:30 am
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Alfie said:

remarkably I’ve been brighter today than I have all week!


That’s funny Alfie, I’m the same way right now. I was pretty active today!. Maybe our tactics will work and get us out of those doctor appointments! 😉

Just kidding, we gotta do what we gotta do.

Pawsitive thoughts right back at ya buddy.

Your friend,

Jerry 

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

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Manchester, UK
Forum Posts: 210
Member Since:
2 February 2008
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18 September 2008 - 3:20 am
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Hi Alfie and family (and thank you Jerry for pointing me towards this thread).  I’m really sorry to hear about your diagnosis and also sorry to hear about the recent loss of Sam.

I’m sure that your surgery will go just fine tomorrow!  I’m sure that your pawrents must be feeling a bit worried about it all (I know my pawrents were worried and they only had a few minutes to worry, never mind days!).

But listen.  Regarding chemo.  You’re not that far from me (maybe a couple of hours max) and I can – if your pawrents wish me to – give you details of at least two places where chemo could be done.  One of them is at my own vets in Oldham and one of them is in Yorkshire.  Plus, I’m sure I know of some other places but we’d need to look them up. I would be happy to do that.

I know this will be OK with Jerry because I’ve had to do it before so here is the link to my pawrents website http://www.dogsndubs.com

If you go there and then go to the CONTACT US form and send my pawrents an email with your telephone number, my Mummy will call your pawrents later today if you would like her to.  She will be out till lunchtime but can call at any time after that.

Lots of love

Darcy

x

Darcy – tripawd since 16th October 2007.

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

Forum Posts: 387
Member Since:
27 July 2008
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18 September 2008 - 2:21 pm
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Hi Alfie, we too are very sorry to hear about your diagnosis and we also send our condolences to your pawrents who lost Sam to the Bridge.  I will be keeping my paws crossed in prayer for your 100% recovery.  Good luck with your surgery tomorrow; you are young and you should bounce back pretty quickly, one would think.  Good luck to you all.

Love, Blazer, Kimber & Mom Vicki

Portland (Lake Oswego), OR
Forum Posts: 97
Member Since:
19 July 2008
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20 September 2008 - 12:30 am
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Hi Alfie – Smokey and I are wishing all the best and hoping that everything went very well for you today!

I’m just so amazed by so many things lately… I have never had so much support before then when needing to go through with Smokey’s amputation.  Even non-animal lovers (which it’s so hard to imagine those exist!) have been fabulous.  It amazingly took me 30 years to even see a tripawd and I always wonder if it would have been easier on me if I would have been exposed at a much younger age.  I’m sure the kids will be fabulous with you and give you more love than ever before!

Forum Posts: 14
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18 September 2008
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21 September 2008 - 9:18 am
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Hi Alfie, how are you doing today? Are you home with your family? I became a tripawd the same day you did – Friday Sept 19. I guess you and I will both always remember that day.

Good luck to you, I hope you’re feeling ok today. I know it’s hard on your pawrents after losing Sam so recently. But from all the stories here, you know you will soon feel great again and be playing and romping with your people!

Forum Posts: 387
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27 July 2008
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22 September 2008 - 4:58 pm
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I hope Alfie posts something soon.  We are wishing you the very best, big fella.  Love, Blazer, Kimber & Vicki T

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 27267
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22 September 2008 - 11:56 pm
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Hi all,

Just wanted to make sure everyone sees that Alfie did post an update here

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: 387
Member Since:
27 July 2008
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12
23 September 2008 - 6:51 pm
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Thanks so much, Jerry!  I probably would have missed it.  You’re a great dog!  Woof!  Blazer

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