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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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Emily is doing worse
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Member Since:
20 May 2009
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5 October 2009 - 5:11 pm
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Emily has to go back to the vet tomorrow.  She is doing so much worse.  Her front leg seems okay now but she can barely lift her back end.  My husband or my son has to carry her her outside to go to the bathroom.  She is 4 1/2 months post amp so it is not just the usual recovery.  I am so afraid that the cancer has gone to her spine although with my head I think it is muscle strain from having 2 1/2 good legs for awhile.  Every time I look at her I start crying.  She won't eat her dog food.  Sometimes will eat hamburger and rice.  Always will eat McDonalds.  I have a very loose grip on sanity at this time.


Debra & Emily, a five year old doberman mix, who was diagnosed with an osteosaecoma. She had a right rear leg amputation on May 19, 2009. On November 10, 2009 she earned her wings and regained her fourth leg.

Member Since:
16 February 2008
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5 October 2009 - 5:50 pm
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Debra, let's just hope that Emily just overdid it and hurt some muscles.  Though... what you have described her condition is very familar to me.  Any other unusual symptoms you notice?  How about her tail, can she wag or it is pointing straight down?

Hope that the vet tomorrow can offer her some help.  For the time being, stay positive, be strong!


On The Road

Member Since:
24 September 2009
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5 October 2009 - 6:05 pm
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You have our most sincere thoughts and wishes. Best of luck at the vet, please try to stay strong for Emily.

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene | | |

Member Since:
13 July 2009
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5 October 2009 - 6:30 pm
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I wish you and Emily all the best at the vet. Please try not to worry (easy to say, right?). A few years ago, Tazzie had the symptoms you described when he was 4-legged, just by overdoing it when playing with a crazy young Brittany, which made him throw out his back (well, he did something to his back). He could not even get down two steps to the yard and acted totally depressed so you can imagine how I freaked. But it cleared up just as quickly as it started.

No point in worrying tonight!


p.s. maybe McDonald's should give Emily a commission!

Member Since:
20 May 2009
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5 October 2009 - 7:16 pm
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I don't think that Emily has any other weird symptoms.  Because of your experience I think you are trying not to scare me but forewarned is forearmed to me.  What other symptoms did Genie have?  I am sorry that you had to go through that.  I know how upsetting this is to me and can't imagine how I will make it through it if this is my future.  

Emily has a stubby rather than a tail but she can still tuck it in when being scratched on the hind end and while she is licking herself.


Debra & Emily, a five year old doberman mix, who was diagnosed with an osteosaecoma. She had a right rear leg amputation on May 19, 2009. On November 10, 2009 she earned her wings and regained her fourth leg.

Member Since:
26 November 2008
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5 October 2009 - 8:20 pm
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Debra, Emily, and family,

Having a loose grip on sanity was not an uncommon condition here during Cherry's first two months.  Totally loosing it was also a very regular event.  For Emily's spirit when you feel that this hole is collapsing around you, take a deep breath, put on a good smile, give Emily a great big kiss, calmly walk outside, and then totally loose it.  This process worked wonders for me.  I would make sure that I had regained composure before returning.  In case you cannot tell, this is just my way of providing as much support as we can in your hour of need.

Needless to say, we are all worried about Emily since at 4½ months this is not the normal recovery issues.  However, at nearly 4 months Cherry provided us with a scare where she appeared to have suffered torsion.  We never really did discover what caused her extreme bloating (her stomach was the size of a soccer ball) and it did take more than a month to recover, however, she did recover.  I do understand the panic that the cancer might have spread to the spine, but my understanding is that mets in the lungs is normally the first sign.  Perhaps we can spur someone with real knowledge to comment.

McDonald's has worked wonders for me many times over my series of companions.  My wife's sheltie, Allie, suffered from a condition that she could not process fats.  Thus, she was on a very strict diet of high fiber R/D and any deviation from that diet would result in her vomiting for the next day.  Thus, Cherry has never had the delicacy of a ¼ pounder - a condition that I will correct tomorrow.  If McDonald's it takes, then McDonald's it will be!!!

Paws crossed and nothing but pawsitive thoughts from here.  Please keep us posted about the vet visit.

Bob & Cherry

Member Since:
19 September 2009
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5 October 2009 - 8:47 pm
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Debra & Emily -

So sorry to hear about your worries for Em. I know I would be stressing too.... I hope that it is just over exersion and nothing more. Our thoughts will be with you!! Also Shi gives Em a big lick to get better soon!!

Alisa & Shilo

Shilo diagnosed with osteosarcoma 9/4/2009, amputation 9/9/2009. ShiloAnne lost her battle 11/23/2009 where she regained her fourth leg and is patiently waiting for her parents to join her. We will always love you baby girl.

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16 February 2008
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5 October 2009 - 9:56 pm
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Debra, I just sent you a PM.

Member Since:
31 August 2009
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6 October 2009 - 4:12 am
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I am wishing Emily well at the vet today. I know this is hard on you and I'm sorry that you and Emily have to go through this.

How is her mood?  Does she act like her back leg is hurting her (when you run your hand along her leg are there are any painful areas), or does it seem to be a problem with her entire back end? Did this come on suddenly?

We're all sending positive thoughts your way,


Member Since:
7 August 2009
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6 October 2009 - 7:57 am
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Dear Debra and Emily: We are so sorry to hear Emily is having a hard time. I completely understand the "loose grip on sanity."

Like Tazzie, Romeo had a freak episode or two of immobility pre-Tripawd. It seemed to just be muscle strain from a long hike or something. Hopefully this is just a strain as well. I know, however, I would be freaking out if this happened to Romeo as a Tripawd.

I agree it's worrisome Emily doesn't want to eat her regular food, but surely it's a good sign she will eat other foods.

We'll be sending you all love and strength today. Hopefully the vet will be able to help. Hang in there, Eve and Romeo 

 p.s. Romeo gets to indulge in McDonalds on road trips (Lucky boy we are going to Vermont this weekend!). He gets so excited and makes quite a ruckus barking his order at the drive thru!   

6 October 2009 - 8:29 am
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I hope your appointment goes well today.  A while back, McGwire had a large mass on his eyelid and I was sure that it somehow was related to the cancer.  Turns out he has dry eyes.  I almost started crying with relief when the vet said that!  I know this doesn't compare to your situation right now, but I hope it's something small and easily overcome.  ((HUGS))


Northern Indiana
Member Since:
15 January 2009
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6 October 2009 - 9:47 am
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So sorry to hear that Emily is struggling. I hope the vet will supply some answers and some help so she will gain strength and be free of pain. We are thinking of you.

Gineej & Paris

Grateful for every moment we had with Paris… regrets!

Honoring her life by opening our hearts & home to Addy!

Member Since:
20 May 2009
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6 October 2009 - 11:32 am
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Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers.  Emily is at the vet right now.  They didn't have an appointment for her bu they said to bring her in and they will see her as they can.  She is sedated because she gets so nervous.

Michelle, her mood is fine but she is still pretty drugged up so she is more mellow than happy.  We have been rubbing her leg and she doesn't to be bothered by it.  I poked her back end last night to see if she could feel it and she looked at me like I was crazy.

She is having problems going to the bathroom because she can't squat and she let loose on the floor of the vet today.  Guess she couldn't hold it any longer!  I don't think it is lose of bladder control though because she has help it in at the house for about a day or so.

As soon as I can I will post.  Again thanks.  I don't know what I would do without you guys. 

Debra & Emily, a five year old doberman mix, who was diagnosed with an osteosaecoma. She had a right rear leg amputation on May 19, 2009. On November 10, 2009 she earned her wings and regained her fourth leg.

Montréal , Canada
Member Since:
31 July 2009
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6 October 2009 - 12:20 pm
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Thank's for sharing these news.  All my best wishes to both of you.  May your vet find good answers. 


My heart lives at Rainbow Bridge
Member Since:
28 November 2008
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6 October 2009 - 2:58 pm
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Sure hope the vet can identify and treat Emily's leg weakness.  She is such a pretty girl.  Healing thoughts to Em and sending lots of strength your way.

Shanna & Spirit Trouble ~ Trouble gained her wings 3/16/2011, a 27 1/2 month cancer survivor, tail wagging. RIP sweetheart, you are my heart and soul.  Run free at Rainbow Bridge.
The November Five - Spirits Max, Cherry, Tika, Trouble & Nova. 11/2008 - 3/2013 An era ends as Queen Nova crossed the Bridge.

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