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Harness or Not?
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Forum Posts: 8
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27 December 2008
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28 December 2008 - 10:17 pm
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I’m a new member and very happy to have found this wonderful site.  I have a very dear friend who will be going through a front leg amputation with her greyhound Sadie on Jan. 8.  The amputation is being done because of a very persistant hemangiopericytoma.

My friend and her husband are quite overwhelmed, so I’m trying to help out where I can.  I have greyhounds myself, but I’ve not gone through an amputation with any of them, so I’m learning a lot here in hopes of passing it on as it’s needed.

They have a lot of stairs going into their house, and  I’ve read here that a ruffwear webmaster harness can be used to help, but only after the stitches are out. I’m also not sure it would be right for a greyhound with a front leg amp. I’m wondering how many of you actually use a harness for your tripod, and if you find it usefull or not. My friend is also recovering herself from a bad break to her wrist, so I really think she’s going to need a harness rather than not, but I am concerned about those first 2 weeks, and I’m not sure how she’s going to manage.

Sadie is 8 years old, and has a littermate, Storm, who lives with her too. She weighs about 55 lb., small for a hound, which is working out to be a good thing.

 Any thoughts or suggestions are quite welcome.  I’ve already learned quite a bit from your posts, and I’m grateful to have found such an informative and warm site.

Thanks for reading.

Karen 

Edmonton
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28 December 2008 - 11:34 pm
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Hi Karen, a bath towel can be used as a sling… wrap around Sadie’s chest to help her balanace and also with stairs work.  Also, your friend can cut up a canvas bag both sides edges … wrap around the chest, and lift off the handles; or even tie up the handles at Sadie’s back so it is ready to help at all times.

Most of the tripawds here use harness or similar sort especially for situations like getting in/out of vehicles; on icy sidewalk; or even for daily stroll just in case the tripawd gets tired, then the harness comes in handy to share some weight.

Good luck to Sadie on her surgery and a speedy recovery!

Hugs.

The Rainbow Bridge

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29 December 2008 - 12:36 am
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Thanks for asking Karen, and bless you for helping your friends out.

My people swore by my Ruff Wear harness, that’s the only reason they offer it here. I provided amazing support on stairs and when getting in/out of vehicles.If you haven’t already, be sure to check out our harness demo video.

We have never actually heard of any instances when the harness has interfered with a healing incision, but prefer to be safe rather than sorry, hence the warning. A towel slung under the belly can provide support if needed during recuperation.

I was a front leg amputee and the harness worked fine. It will have a tendency to slip around the chest without the second leg there to hold it in place, but this is merely aesthetic. It is easily adjusted and remains fully fuctional.

One member did return the harness after their greyhound refused to budge when it was put on here. Apparently greysget rather stubborn and can freeze up like a statue.

Hope this helps. thanks for the kind comments.

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29 December 2008 - 8:28 am
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Hi Karen,  How nice of you to help out and do the research for your friends.

We have a harness (not a ruffwear though) and have found it usefull on stairs.  Radar (95 lb borzoi – front left amputee) has no problems at all going up stairs but has a lot of problems going down stairs.  We have a baby gate blocking the stairs to the second floor but a couple of times it has been left open.  The first time Radar raced up the stairs and the fell trying to get back down.  The second time he raced up the stairs and then froze and wouldn’t come back down.  Without the harness we would have had to carry him. 

We have also used the harness recently on the back stoop because of ice.  I definitely find it very useful and a good thing to have around even if you don’t use it every day.  You never know when you are going to need it.

Hugs to you

Connie & Radar

 

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29 December 2008 - 11:32 am
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Thank you so much for all the posts – I think it’s clear that a harness will be a good thing to have around – I was not sure it could be used during the more early days of Sadie’s recovery, while she still has her staples.

Here’s a picture of Sadie

 

Here and Now

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29 December 2008 - 8:27 pm
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kjw said:

I was not sure it could be used during the more early days of Sadie’s recovery, while she still has her staples.


We believe the harness straps are more likely to catch on staples than on stitches, so we receommend waiting until they are removed. But it will definitely come in handy!

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29 December 2008 - 10:43 pm
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Well, in that case maybe Sadie’s mom could request stitches – I don’t know at this point which the surgeon prefers, but maybe she’ll have a choice.  Thanks for the tip!

Here and Now

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29 December 2008 - 11:55 pm
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Sadly, many surgeons prefer staples over stitches because they are quicker. But in our experience and from what we heard, stitches are much better.

Here’s a good discussion about stitches vs. staples to consider. It can’t hurt to ask, and if they do have a choice, i’d vote for stitches!

Innisfil, ON
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22 January 2009 - 4:00 pm
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Hello folks,

This is my 1st official post as a the pawrent of a brand new tripawd!

My warmest thanks to KJW for starting this thread and posting updates on my behalf. Peekabo Sadie – the 3-Legged Lady is 2 weeks post-amp (left front leg) and doing remarkably well! Her staples and stitches are out and she is moving around very capably inside the house. We have hardwood and ceramics covered over with rugs and rubber-backed runners and she has mastered all the terrain!

We certainly had challenges in the first few days. Turns out Sadie couldn't handle opiates of any kind. With a fentanyl patch and a tramadol “chaser”, Sadie turned into a “speed freak”. I will post my observations regarding this in the appropriate forum, and also discuss the medical reasons for her amputation.

Sadie is both resilient and determined and those characteristics have accelerated her healing. In fact, it's difficult to keep her back. Already she has mastered going up stairs. However, as I've been reading, down is another matter!

Because this thread is about harnesses, I'd like to bring it back to our earlier question. As you have read,   part of the many gifts we received from our wonderful greyhound friends, community and supporters was a Ruffwear harness . I'd like to hear more about how soon I should consider using it, and also if anyone has had to make modifications to the design to ensure a more comfortable fit over the still-tender surgical site.

I promise to post a new picture soon…

GirlyGirls

Here and Now

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22 January 2009 - 4:43 pm
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GirlyGirls said:

I'd like to hear more about how soon I should consider using it, and also if anyone has had to make modifications…


Thanks for joining the discussion GirlyGirls! Kiss

Once the surgery wound has healed and stitches/staples are removed you should have no problem using the harness. If the site is still tender on Sadie, try putting it on for short periods at a time to get her used to it. We know how stupport those greys can get and wouldn't want her to reject the harness use – it will definitely help going downstairs!

We offer the harness here directly from Ruff Wear with no modification. Jerry didn't seem to mind! We think adding any sort of padding that causes additional pressure where the straps fit would actually be a bad thing.

Thnaks again for asking, and best wishes to you and Peekabo!

Metro Kansas City
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22 January 2009 - 11:05 pm
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GirlyGirls said:

Because this thread is about harnesses, I'd like to bring it back to our earlier question. As you have read,   part of the many gifts we received from our wonderful greyhound friends, community and supporters was a Ruffwear harness . I'd like to hear more about how soon I should consider using it, and also if anyone has had to make modifications to the design to ensure a more comfortable fit over the still-tender surgical site.

I promise to post a new picture soon…

GirlyGirls


Isn't the greyhound community GREYT? We have a very strong community all across the US & Canada!

Janie & Calamity

Janie & Calamity http://www.trix.....gspot.com/

Here and Now

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22 January 2009 - 11:23 pm
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kcgrey said:

Isn't the greyhound community GREYT?


Do any of you Grey Forum fans know Rene the grey who's racing name was 'The Lovely Irene'? Coincidentally her people include the developer of the Simple:Press forum plug-in we're using here.

Lovely Irene passed away two weeks ago to cancer. Small world this internet makes.

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