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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

Tripawds is your home 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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I think Max's time is drawing near
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Los Angeles, CA
Member Since:
13 June 2013
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26 October 2015 - 6:49 pm
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Susanna, I don't have any grand words of comfort or anything as I am also here with tears down my face ... feeling like a punch in the gut for a beloved family member that I never knew ... Max was indeed a fighter and he fought to go his way and to have you by his side ... partners forever!

Sending you love, peace, prayers and healing energy in the days and weeks to come.

Shelby Lynne; Jack Russell/Shiba Inu mix. Proud member of the April Angels of 2014.

October 15, 2000 to April 8, 2014

Our story: Broke rear leg in June 2013 - non-conclusive results for cancer so leg was plated and pinned. Enlarged spleen in September 2013 and had it removed and was diagnosed with Hemangiosarcoma and started chemotherapy. Became a Tripawd January 8th, 2014 and definitive Hemangiosarcoma diagnosis. Three major surgeries in 7 months and Shelby took them all like a champ only to lose her battle to cancer in her brain. We had 8 amazing extra months together and no regrets. #shelbystrong #loveofmylife

On The Road

Member Since:
24 September 2009
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26 October 2015 - 8:42 pm
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{{{{hugs}}}}} I can't begin to tell you how sorry I am, our hearts ache for you. Many of us have walked in your shoes and understand the feelings of emptiness and sadness you're going through. I wish I could make it easier for you somehow. But I do know that those lessons that Max taught you, well they are going to be what gets you through these next few weeks. I can hear it in your voice, he has taught you important things that will last a lifetime and you get an A. Be More Max indeed!

Max's last few days are similar to what we went through with Jerry. I feel for you. We too backed out of a final vet visit, at a clinic we didn't know, when we thought it was his time. We walked in there and just knew it wasn't the right place or time for him and turned around and left. We're so glad that like you we listened to our instinct.

So remember, you did give Max that ideal goodbye, the mythical good death, because you followed your heart and walked that line perfectly between doing it when you still saw the real Max, versus knowing that you waited too long. That is a very hard line to walk and you did it with grace, just perfectly the way he wanted.

Feisty Max, a fighter to the end, he left this earth with dignity and spunk. Just the way he wanted.

No dog could ask for more.


Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene | | |

Member Since:
28 March 2015
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27 October 2015 - 4:08 am
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I'm so sorry that this day finally had to come for you. It hurts, really hurts. But don't let the idea that it wasn't the way you wanted it to be torment you. You didn't fail Max, you gave him a great gift. He took a bit of you with him when he went over that bridge and that wound will never really heal, but it will hurt less in time.

Denise, Bill and Angel Ellie.

Active 10+ Pyr mix suddenly came up lame with ACL tear in left rear leg. Scheduled for a TPLO but final pre-op x-rays indicated a small suspicious area, possibly OSA, which could have caused the ACL tear. Surgeon opened the knee for TPLO but found soft bone. Biopsy came back positive for OSA. Became a Tripawd 9/18/14. Carbo6 with Cerenia and Fluids. Pain free and living in the moment. Crossed the Bridge on 7/12/15 after probable spread of cancer to her cervical spine. A whole lifetime of memories squeezed into 10 months. Here's her story: Eloise

Member Since:
8 October 2015
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28 October 2015 - 12:58 pm
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Susanna, I can't say anything that will make it better for you in this very difficult time. I just wanted to express my sadness for the loss of your beautiful Max. I am here reading and crying and just can't imagine your pain. I pray for you to find peace in knowing that you gave Max the best life ever! You gave him as much joy as he gave you. Keep faith that you will see him one day at the end of the rainblow wagging his tail and running full force to give you the biggest licks ever! I'm thinking of you and feeling the loss of Max too, its funny how we here in the community forum don't know each other but we still feel the pain and its real.
Jesse and Chloe Sasha

Check out Chloe Sasha's Adventures

Member Since:
8 September 2015
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29 October 2015 - 8:24 am
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I'm so sorry.  I've been thinking about you a lot and I hope you know that you have a whole lot of people who really care about you and about Max.  He's in your heart and he's in ours and you are part of a great family here.  We understand and we support you.  If we could we'd probably be all over you with hugs and love.  We are sending both virtually.  Everyone here knows the struggle intimately.  It SUCKS.  Plain and simple.  We have your  back.

hugs, love,light and peace


Debbie And Patches


Member Since:
22 February 2013
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29 October 2015 - 9:34 am
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Susanna, dear, dear Susanna. We all hold you in our hearts and wish we could take your tears away. Only time will help those subside. The waves of grief will hit you consistently at first, and they will.lessen eventually.

This whole journey is sooo intense. From making the decision to amputate, deciding on the treatment, and then the decision to help them transition....all of this tugs at our hearts over and over.

Please take in the words of comfort and support AND clarity that have been shared here. As Linda said, Max was telling you loud and more "treatment". So often, so very, very often, we see dogs "rally" as they get closer to shedding their earthly body that no longer serves them. They are excited to proceed to the next phase of their journey! Also, it's their way of leaving us with a good memory. I lpve that Max brought the vet a shoe! He knew that would make you smile!

I'm sooo glad you were able to have Max at home. I really applaud the courage it took to take Max out of that horrible ER situation. Talk about devotion and a deep, deep loving bond you have for your Max...sooo selfless. Max has always known he can count in you.

It is such a privilege to get to be kn this journey with you and sweet Max. He really has incredible spunk and determination. It makes me smile to think how strong willed he was when he insisted on taking his walks...Max's way!! He really, really enjoyed himself and crammed in a whole lot of living these past months. Max will inspire others with his zest for life and his fighting Spirit. Max touched us all!

Max's life mattered. His presence here has made a lasting impression. Max will never be forgotten!!!!!!!!!!

When you can, please share more about Magnificent Max...with pictures of course! You may want to check out the link to tribute leash as a way to honor him too.

We are all still with you, okay? We understand like no others can.

Sending you love and surrounding you with Max's eternal grace..

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle too!

PS Max will let you know he is still with you, it just may take awhile though. The Bridge is full of wonderful hiking trails and cool streams and lots of Squirrels to chase! He'll be feeling sooo good! Sooner or later he'll slow down long enough to send you a sign that he is doing just fine and is still with you!

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!

Member Since:
2 August 2015
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29 October 2015 - 4:49 pm
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Just to say how sad I am for you but how much Max Was loved and loved you

Judith and Jack


not forgetting Pepper, Storm, Finn and Solo too

Westminster, MD
Member Since:
31 August 2013
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29 October 2015 - 5:33 pm
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Susanna, endless tears are falling for your heartache, this part of the journey truly sucks........ But reading your beautiful story, I couldn't help but smile from ear-to-ear about the steak and ice cream, and you escaping the sterile atmosphere of that E.R. clinic to have one more joyful night with your sweet, handsome Max. And make no mistake, like the others have said, Max was done, and you followed his lead and your heart....... The greatest gift we can give them, is to release them from their pain at the end.

He will ALWAYS be a part of you, and will always be beside you, and every time your heart is beating really hard, it's Max's tail telling you everything is ok, that he will always love you, and he is watching over you from the Bridge.

{{{Hugs}}} to you.....

Bonnie, Angel Polly, and new girls

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