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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

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Forelimb amputation / Dog has't peed or poop
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Lima, Peru
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1 November 2023
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1 November 2023 - 12:01 pm
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Hello everyone, my name is Liz, and I'm writing from Peru. First and foremost, I want to express my gratitude and relieve for finding this website; it's precisely what I was looking for. The internet is filled with false information and opinions from people who haven't experienced this and at times, I feel so isolated.

Our 10-year-old Iggy was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, and the doctor suggested amputating his forelimb. Two days ago, we went through with the procedure, and to my surprise, he was able to walk a few hours after the procedure and we brought him home.

At home, we've been trying to make sure he rests, but at night, he seems restless and cries. We've been cleaning the wound regularly, as it bleed when he walks. We're following the doctor's instructions, but there's a pressing concern at the moment.

So far, he hasn't peed or poop, even though he's been drinking water and eating normally. The vet recommended giving him something to help him poop, but we're now on the third day with no success. This is incredibly frustrating for me because I don't know how we can help him. Has anyone been through something similar and could share their experience? I would be immensely grateful. Have a great day.

The Rainbow Bridge



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1 November 2023 - 1:22 pm
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Hi Liz and Iggy, welcome! I'm sorry you had to join our club but you are in the right place! Many of us have been through recovery and totally understand how scary this is.

What he is going through is not uncommon. Regarding his behavior: usually, helping a dog feel better is by adjusting the pain medication with your vet's help. He could have too much, or too little right now. Usually dogs come home with too little relief, but sometimes they have too much and that causes dysphoria (whining, anxiety, etc). What medications is he on? How much, and how often? And what does he weigh?

About the peeing or pooping. If he hasn't gone in 12 hours he needs help. Did your vet explain how to express a dog's bladder? It can be done at home but with care. Basically you're just helping him urinate. Also see this article:

How to Help a New Tripawd Urinate After Amputation

 

Pooping happens eventually, some dogs take up to 5 or 6 day so that is not unusual. What did your vet give him to help with poop? You can also give him steamed pumpkin pulp, any steamed squash, or even a tiny bit of bran flakes in his food.

It sounds like his mobility is otherwise OK?

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 November 2023 - 1:47 pm
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As you can see you have come to the right place for support and information and understanding. We know how scary all of this seems but you are doing the right thing for your Iggy

A couple of quick questions. How much does your Iggy weigh? What pain meds is he on, the dose in the frequency? When you mention that the incision is bleeding when he moves can you give us some more specifics? Is it just some like using? No pus, yellowish dark blood or smell? And just double check with the vet about cleaning the wound. If you were just using a light touch warm washcloth every now and then or was the vet asking you to do more extensive cleaning?

yes, it’s normal for the pooping to be delayed because of all of the meds and adjusting to three while recovering from major surgery. As Jerry mentioned though peeing is far more important at this point.  So yeah, do you want to make sure he does P as soon as possible if it has been over two days now. Jerry gave you the video about expressing the bladder. If you were uncomfortable with that, take him to the vet as you can actually do damage if you aren’t doing it correctly. You can also maybe try placing some puppy pee pads around and maybe be more comfortable going in the house.

keep us posted and let us know as any questions may come up. We are here to support you and give you tips on navigating through recovery. The fact that he’s mobile and drinking and eating is wonderful! Just make sure he continues to rest and only gets up for least short potty breaks. Take him to the spots where he usually does P and see if that helps.

Hugs

Sslly 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!

Lima, Peru
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1 November 2023
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1 November 2023 - 1:56 pm
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Hi Jerry, thank you so much for your prompt response. 

I never thought I would be in this situation. This is the first dog I ever got and the thought of losing him scares me deeply. I was never a dog person. In fact, my partner adopted Iggy when I went on a business trip, and when I came home he was just there. And now, I can't imagine life without him, seeing him like this breaks my hearts into pieces.

I'm optimistic thought and I do my best to make sure he is confortable and not to pass my fear and anxiety to him. I spoke to his vet a while ago and he said that if he doesn't pee today I should take him tomorrow.

I saw a a couple of videos on how to help your dog pee, and I'm also reading the article you send. Thank you!

The first day of the surgery, which was Monday he only had 3 table spoons of water at night as per doctor's recommendation. Then yesterday he drank around 2 cups only. Today he actually had a lot as soon as he woke up. Hewas thirsty from the medicine I suppose.

He is taking an antibiotic and tramadol for the pain. Both in the morning (8.30 AM) and then again at night (8:30 PM) after his meals. I started putting ice on the wound today because I read that could help ease the pain at night. Because he is very agitated at night and does this winning sound that just drives me crazy, because I don't know if he is in pain or just said.

Is tramadol okay? should I perhaps consider something different? Thank you so much, I feel so relieved to have found this site, as I was feeling so isolated, there is barely any information on spanish forums. This is a lifesaver. Thank you again!

Lima, Peru
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1 November 2023
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1 November 2023 - 2:06 pm
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Thank you so so much for your response. He weights 45 kilos, around 99 pounds I think.

I'm cleaning his wound every time after he gets up, because that's when it bleed. I use hydrogen peroxide with a cotton. That's about it. And I'm also putting some ice to reduce the pain.

It's just drops, but I still make sure to disinfect and apply a bit of pressure until is stops. The wound itself seems fine otherwise, no bad smell, pus or anything along those lines.

He is currently taking ciprofloxacin 500mg and tramadol 50 mg twice a day after his meals (8:30 AM and 8:30 PM). He doctor prescribed them for 7 days. And he's also taking a soft laxative.

Yesterday he suggested we added arcoxia 60 mg. 

Again, any information or tips would be so welcomed. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 November 2023 - 3:04 pm
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Thanks for your quick feedback. I know you have your hands full but you’ve shared some good information that maybe we can help fine-tune it.

First of all we are not Vets and not giving Vet  advice.

I can tell you however, from the most recent research that we’ve seen posted here,  tramadol is not a particularly effective pain medicine for surgery like this.  Gabapentin Is what we see used almost all the time  for amputation surgery pain. 

talk to your vet as soon as possible about maybe skipping the tramadol and adding Gabapentin as his main pain management medicine. Also, you can discuss giving the gabapentin maybe every eight hours as opposed to 12 hours. I think you’ll see him being more comfortable and less anxious as soon as you can make the switch. Also, and again we are not vets, but hydrogen peroxide should not be used for a wound like this. it can actually interfere with the healing process and be more of an irritant. So double check with your vet on that also. Was it your regular vet who did the surgery or did you have an orthopedic surgeon do it?

IfOggy is receptive to icing for short periods that’s a very good doggy.  Just make sure you put wash clause or the new town in between the skin in the ice pack

And welcome to the world of being a dog person! It’s more rewarding than you can ever imagine!

Take care and be sure and get some rest !   Let us know what the vet says about switching out to gabapentin, eliminating this hydrogenperoxide etc.

Also you’ll want at least two weeks of pain meds, not seven days.  
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!

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 November 2023 - 3:09 pm
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  Just looked up arcoxia  and it’s an anti-inflammatory, so that’s good. Seeing that you are in Spain maybe they have different approaches to pain medicine etc. It definitely sounds like she has pain signals going on so do try and advocate for the gabapentin.

You’re doing a really good job! Give yourself a pat on the back! Recovery is no picnic for a week or two, that’s for sure. But it doesn’t last forever!

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!

Lima, Peru
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1 November 2023
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1 November 2023 - 4:04 pm
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Thank you for the recommendations. I also read about gabapentin being a better option than tramadol, I will ask his vet tomorrow. He is a veterinary oncologist and he performed the surgery. I will also ask about the hydrogen peroxide. But I can start cleaning the wound today with a cloth, warm water and see if that helps.

The only thing that gives me confort is that he is eating, and yesterday I went to open the door cuz my father had brought some meds and when I turned around he was behind me trying to greet him. I got so scared and took him back to the room, but the fact that he got up by himself makes me think he will be okay. However, when we try to get him to walk in the garden to pee, he starts shaking. We got a type of harness to help him be more stable and he walked for 5 minutes, still no pee. I tried the bladder expression but I didn't work, or I didn't do it right. He started getting anxious and cried a bit, so I stopped trying.

Thank you!

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 November 2023 - 4:32 pm
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Spectacular that heis eating and drinking AND showed off his new Tripawd gait greeting your Dad!  Yes,Iggy was a naughty boy andshhh….shhh.don’t tell him but we were glad to see him try and reclaim his routine 😉

Maybe once you get him outside, take the harness off and step away and see if he will pee then.  A lot of dogs don’t like the harness and they like to have their privacy to pee.

Expressing the bladder iis not as easy at it looks sometimes.  Glad  you stopped because doing  incorrectly it can cause issues.  

 Okay, try this.   Have  your boyfriend (?) or a neighbor’s dog, pee in Iggy’s pee spot.  😱Take him over to it and walk away.  You would be surprised how often and this little tidbit works.😎   Once you get his pain managerd that should help too.   Otherwise you do need to get him to a Vet……It’s been more than 48 hrs, right!

Iggy, go pee!!!

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!

Lima, Peru
Member Since:
1 November 2023
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1 November 2023 - 9:08 pm
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Good night everyone. I would like to thank you for your quick responses. It is such a relief to finally get some first hand information! And thank you all for caring so much for my boy even thought you don't know him. It means the world to me!

I'm very happy to report that about an hour ago we took Iggy to the garden with his vest and after 10 minutes of wanting to get back to the room, he finally started smelling the grass. We have two other dogs who also pee there, so yes, it does help! I think that he always wanted to pee but was to afraid to it. After he was done, and I was done crying (of happiness), we gave him a treat and brought him back in.

He rested for about half an hour and suddenly tried to get up (he still needs help), and he went straight to the garden, and he peed for the second time! Not sure if he's jus showing off now or just wanted his treat again, but thank God!

We're still taking him to the vet to check the stitches, since of one them bleed the minute gets up, but I'm relieved to know that there are no other issues that are bladder related. Now he just needs to poop (fingers crossed). 

Thank you so, so much! And I apologize in advance because this might not be my only post. However, I hope soon I can participate helping someone who is going trough this and be able to tell them it will be okay.

You are the best!

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 November 2023 - 9:48 pm
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HAPPY  PEE  DANCE       YAAY  IGGY👏👍😁

 

that silly boy was just determined to do things his own way, at his own pace and when he decided he was ready!

Thank you so much for sharing this great news with us! I’m sure he feels relieved, literally and we do too!

And you post as many times as you want that’s why we are here. We love being able to followIggy’s Journey and celebrate all his milestones. Whoever thought Peeing would be such a celebration?

Let us know what the vet says about the incision and about giving you some gabapentin. You get a good night sleep now, OK ?
everything is looking really good for a good recovery😎

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!

The Rainbow Bridge



Member Since:
25 April 2007
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2 November 2023 - 1:14 pm
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WHEEE to PEEEEEEE! smiley_clapicon_lol

That's awesome, I'm so happy he's making some progress there. Let us know what the vet says about the seepage. I forgot to address that in my reply to you, it's possible it's a seroma (harmless body fluid leakage). But it would be good to know what your vet says so do update. And no need to apologize, we are here to help you every step of the way!

Lima, Peru
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1 November 2023
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2 November 2023 - 8:59 pm
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Yes! Thank you. We took him to the vet this morning and he said it's sereoma and not to worry. He put a lose band around it so it wouldn't get swollen. Last nite he slept better but he insisted on sleeping on that side so I guess that caused it. 🙁

About 2 hours ago I changed it and it wall filled with that fluid (kinda looks like blood but now I know it's not). He assured us the stitches were okay and gave him his antibiotics. He's eating well, but still no poop. 🙁

Any tips? Thank you!

 

jerry said

WHEEE to PEEEEEEE! smiley_clapicon_lol

That's awesome, I'm so happy he's making some progress there. Let us know what the vet says about the seepage. I forgot to address that in my reply to you, it's possible it's a seroma (harmless body fluid leakage). But it would be good to know what your vet says so do update. And no need to apologize, we are here to help you every step of the way!

Lima, Peru
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1 November 2023
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2 November 2023 - 9:02 pm
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benny55 said

HAPPY  PEE  DANCE       YAAY  IGGY👏👍😁

 

that silly boy was just determined to do things his own way, at his own pace and when he decided he was ready!

Thank you so much for sharing this great news with us! I’m sure he feels relieved, literally and we do too!

And you post as many times as you want that’s why we are here. We love being able to followIggy’s Journey and celebrate all his milestones. Whoever thought Peeing would be such a celebration?

Let us know what the vet says about the incision and about giving you some gabapentin. You get a good night sleep now, OK ?

everything is looking really good for a good recovery😎

Hugs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too !

  

I asked his vet again about the gabapentin and he said to stick to the tramadol, which I'm not trilled about. 🙁

We finally were able to sleep around 4 hours, and thank God because today was the longest day. But everyday I see a bit of improvement and that, and this groups, give me hope!

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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2 November 2023 - 10:24 pm
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Glad you got reassurance from the Vet.Yeah,seromas are not unusual.  The fluid will re-absorb  Actually the fact that Iggy is laying on his incision side indicates that the site itself is not too horribly painful.  Some dogs take a couple of weeks before they are comfortable enough to do that.

really bummed the vet isn’t up-to-date on pain management and wouldn’t prescribe the gabapentin. do you think it would be worth the effort to go to a second vet? If I recall, it seems the vet only gave you seven days worth of tramadol anyway. So maybe a second vet would not only give you the gabapentin but he would give you enough for two weeks. Anyway, just throwing that out there.

As far as poop, you might try some steamed squash with some chicken broth or some natural pumpkin (not the pie filling kind,  but the natural kind without additives)    I know it’s worrisome thinking he hasn’t had a poop in a couple of days.   He can only hold it but so long And he will let loose soon,will, promise!

Glad you’re getting some sleep and, hopefully, soon you’ll be back to your normal routine and so will Iggy.   You are doing such a good job of staying on top of things.

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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