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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

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Libby's Home!
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Fort Wayne, IN
Forum Posts: 858
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1 February 2013 - 11:54 am
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Yay!  We have her back in our nest, safe and sound.  She was very hungry and ate a little kibble with chicken breast and rice, while standing! She also drank her water. She had some issues with dry heaving at the vet so I'm giving her little amounts, frequently.

 

I really want to post a picture and I tried searching "how to" here and I can't find it.  Can someone post a link, please?

 

It was hard to watch her stumble, but she wagged her tail when we pulled in the driveway.  We used a split, canvas bag with handles (got the tip from here) to support her on their slippery floors and the surgeon thought it was great.  She said she might just steal that idea.  When we go back Monday, I'm going to tell her about this site and how it really should be recommended to other pawrents facing amputation.

 

Libby hasn't left the kitchen.  I think she is still hungry and I'll feed her a bit more when I know this bit is staying down.  She is still unsure about standing.  The vet said she went out to pee this morning and she sat down and peed. Yikes.  She hasn't gone out since being home but we've only been home an hour and a half.

 

Her pain medicine is 75mg 2x's/day Rimadyl and 50mg Tramadol 2x's/day.  I told the surgeon she was on 100mg 3x's/day before the amp.  She kind of raised her eyebrows and thought Libby was doing well with the lower dose.  We'll see if that continues when the super shot of Rimadyl wears off.  We talked about finding the right balance.

 

She is wrapped up pretty well.  You will see it if I can post a picture.  So I guess, so far so good.  She hasn't moved much, so I'm not sure what to expect there.  

 

Thank you all for your continued support and encouragement.  I hope to be able to be here for others facing this situation when I get some more experience under my belt. 

Liberty (Libby) was diagnosed with OSA on 1-22-13.  Right front amputation on 1-31-13. No IV Chemo. Metronomic Therapy started 2-19-13 along with supplements and some home cooking. Lungs clear until 1-06-14.  She's still her happy, hoppy, bossy self.  Living the dog life to the fullest and a proud Winter Warrior. :) RIP my Libby 4-21-03 to 3-19-14

New Haven, CT
Forum Posts: 1193
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1 February 2013 - 1:32 pm
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YEY!  Wonderful news, Amy and Libby!  Just wonderful!  Her drug cocktail is identical to Jackson's, accounting for weight differences.  Her "hunger" may be real or drug induced, so you're right on to go slowly.  I presume your kitchen has a smooth, slippery floor?  If so, you may want to encourage her to a carpeted space.  The carpet will provide the friction she needs.  Plus, the more times she gets up and gets moving without stumbles, she'll gain strength and confidence.  As for sitting while peeing, well, that makes sense to me.  She'll have to relearn how to do it better.  She may not have slept well last night, she's got drugs on board, and is all sorts of achy, confused, and fuzzy.  Give her loads of time and space and she'll learn how to pee like a little lady.

Your update is just great.  I've been thinking of you all day!  So....when you first greeted her, was she all wiggles???

As for posting pics, upload them to some site (I use Picasa web albums).  When your pic has been uploaded, go to it online.  Then, RIGHT click on the photo itself and an option will be to "copy link".  Then you simply paste that link right into the space provided from one of the toolbar options (the icon that has a little tree picture).  You're set.

Can't wait to see the pics!  Welcome home, Libby.  Rest up, little lady.  Take your meds, foods, drinks, and hugs!

~Katy

ACL tear in right hind leg 12/5/12 and scheduled ACL repair surgery 12/21/12. Pre-op xrays revealed osteosarcoma. Amputation 12/28/12.  Chemo (carboplatin) started Jan 10, 2013 and ended on April 5, for a total of 5 doses. He handled carbo like a champ!  No side effects.  We started metronomic therapy at his third chemo and have been also doing some holistic treatments.  He's a lively, playful 10 year old huskie-boarder collie and a very proud member of the Winter Warriors!  Our love. Our funny little guy!

Fort Wayne, IN
Forum Posts: 858
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25 January 2013
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1 February 2013 - 2:30 pm
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 <img src="http://tripawds.....bbys-home/http://i247.photobucket.com/albums/gg140/angelfood_photo/libby.jpgImage Enlarger

" />

Crud. I'm not having any luck putting  pic in.  I use Photobucket and the little tree icon here wants an image URL and my choices in photobucket are HTML, IMG codes, Direct Link or Email & IM. Grrr...  I'll keep playing with it.

 

I must say, she wasn't all wiggles when we saw her.  I think she was a little dopey, maybe even down, wondering WTH just happened!  She DID wag her tail, walking into the house when we got home though.  She was at her perkiest when I was fixing her food, ha.

 

I just realized the surgeon cut her tramadol to 2x's a day at 50mg.  That seems like too little from what she'd been on pre-amp.

 

She ate her dinner, so she's eaten twice already...another yay!  She wasn't thrilled to go outside and only dribbled a little.  Bret carried her in.   I think next time we will go out the front door.  It's at least 16 steps to the grass from our back door.  She may be be more comfortable going just a few feet out the front door.  She has stood up a few times on her own so that's good to see :)

 

It really bothered me, watching her outside.  Her front leg that's left was really shaking.  I know she needs to build up the muscle but that was hard to watch.  The ground has lots of ruts from 8 paws trotting through the muddy grass and now it's frozen and bitter cold outside so that was difficult for her too.  I think the front yard may work better for now. 

Liberty (Libby) was diagnosed with OSA on 1-22-13.  Right front amputation on 1-31-13. No IV Chemo. Metronomic Therapy started 2-19-13 along with supplements and some home cooking. Lungs clear until 1-06-14.  She's still her happy, hoppy, bossy self.  Living the dog life to the fullest and a proud Winter Warrior. :) RIP my Libby 4-21-03 to 3-19-14

Fort Wayne, IN
Forum Posts: 858
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1 February 2013 - 2:48 pm
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I didn't answer your question about the rugs.  I bought a bunch this week and they are all over.  I put an area rug in the middle of the kitchen floor and that's where she laid for a long time.  She's now resting comfortably in the living room on an orthopedic dog bed I got for her.  I've noticed she doesn't like to see any tile between the rugs, so I may have to get just a couple more.

Liberty (Libby) was diagnosed with OSA on 1-22-13.  Right front amputation on 1-31-13. No IV Chemo. Metronomic Therapy started 2-19-13 along with supplements and some home cooking. Lungs clear until 1-06-14.  She's still her happy, hoppy, bossy self.  Living the dog life to the fullest and a proud Winter Warrior. :) RIP my Libby 4-21-03 to 3-19-14

New Haven, CT
Forum Posts: 1193
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27 December 2012
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1 February 2013 - 3:06 pm
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I forgot too: Before amp, when Jackson was dealing with the tumor AND a torn ACL, he was on double the tramadol dose he was after amp.  In other words, before amp = 100mg tramadol 2x a day.  After amp = 50mg tramadol 2x a day.  What she's on, mimics Jackson's.  I hope it works for her as much as it worked for him!  Did she get an epidural?  J did and I'm just now finding out it's not that common.  In any case, she sounds comfy right now!  Her shaking leg may also be the signs of super-meds wearing off or side effects there of.  I know it's hard to look at, but she'll gain strength.  Just getting some tasty mommy-cooked meals and a good snooze on her special beds and rugs will help SO much!

Ok, try pics again.  Find your picture online.  Right click and choose "copy image location".  Then, after you've clicked on the little tree-photo icon here, click your right mouse button again, in the Image URL texbox, and choose Paste.  That's all!  I hope it works!

ACL tear in right hind leg 12/5/12 and scheduled ACL repair surgery 12/21/12. Pre-op xrays revealed osteosarcoma. Amputation 12/28/12.  Chemo (carboplatin) started Jan 10, 2013 and ended on April 5, for a total of 5 doses. He handled carbo like a champ!  No side effects.  We started metronomic therapy at his third chemo and have been also doing some holistic treatments.  He's a lively, playful 10 year old huskie-boarder collie and a very proud member of the Winter Warriors!  Our love. Our funny little guy!

Fort Wayne, IN
Forum Posts: 858
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25 January 2013
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1 February 2013 - 3:32 pm
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With help from you and one of my sons I got it figured out! Woo!  I have Google Chrome and it seems everything is just a bit different.  Here she is, snoozing in the kitchen.  I actually called the vet a little bit ago (who doesn't on the first day??) because she was panting so hard.  I'm starting to think it was a combo of all the wrapping she has on (those are pink hearts for Valentines Day) and she was laying on a really warm blanket covering the dog bed in the living room.

 

I think going outside to potty is our biggest challenge at this point.  We'll keep on tryin'!

 

Liberty (Libby) was diagnosed with OSA on 1-22-13.  Right front amputation on 1-31-13. No IV Chemo. Metronomic Therapy started 2-19-13 along with supplements and some home cooking. Lungs clear until 1-06-14.  She's still her happy, hoppy, bossy self.  Living the dog life to the fullest and a proud Winter Warrior. :) RIP my Libby 4-21-03 to 3-19-14

New Haven, CT
Forum Posts: 1193
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1 February 2013 - 3:40 pm
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Hi Libby!  It's nice to meet you.  You look very pretty in pink!  You don't need some cancerous limb to make you look fabulous.  You're fabulous already!!  You rest up and calm down.  Enjoy your supper and belly rubs!

ACL tear in right hind leg 12/5/12 and scheduled ACL repair surgery 12/21/12. Pre-op xrays revealed osteosarcoma. Amputation 12/28/12.  Chemo (carboplatin) started Jan 10, 2013 and ended on April 5, for a total of 5 doses. He handled carbo like a champ!  No side effects.  We started metronomic therapy at his third chemo and have been also doing some holistic treatments.  He's a lively, playful 10 year old huskie-boarder collie and a very proud member of the Winter Warriors!  Our love. Our funny little guy!



Forum Posts: 3617
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1 February 2013 - 4:14 pm
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That is so great she is home.  She will learn how to go potty as she gets more used to balancing herself.  I noticed if i put a sheet and wrapped it around the dog bed Sassy stayed a little cooler than if I had a heavy blanket on there.  Some of that could also be the drugs she has on board.

 

She is a beautiful dog :)

sassymichelle-sm.jpg

Sassy is a proud member of the Winter Warriors. Live long, & strong Winter Warriors.
sassysugarbear.tripawds.com
07/26/2006 - Sassy earned her wings 08/20/2013

05/04/2006 -  Bosch, Sassy's pal, earned his wings 03/29/19  fought cancer for 4 months.

"You aren't doing it TO her, you are doing it FOR her. Give her a chance at life."

In your heart, where I belong.
Forum Posts: 1153
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1 February 2013 - 4:26 pm
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Hi Amy,

Good to see that Libby has found a spot she likes. I'm glad she's resting and interested in food. Just to let you know what a big deal peeing and pooping are around here...well, we celebrate them and write special posts about them and sometimes even poetry! So that should tell you that potty business is now like a diamond for you: a beautiful and valuable thing.

Panting can be a sign of heat, for sure, but it can also be a sign of drug side effects. Too much and too little look very similar. If you give a dog too much Tramadol, they'll lay there and pant. Too little and they're in pain and they'll lay there and pant. Pain usually has other indicators, though, and if Libby isn't struggling to find a spot to get comfortable in and isn't whining (that little high-pitched thing that's hard to hear), then she is likely not hurting.

I don't know where you live and if you have snow, but my dog self-medicated with snow. He was a front amputee and his surgery was in February, and he spent times each day laying in the snow on that side. I shoveled a potty spot for him and then I would take him out to pee and he would appear to collapse, but I soon learned it was deliberate. He wanted the ice pack. And a new tripawd laying down on purpose is not a terribly graceful thing. So it looked like an uncontrolled flop into snow, but it was his choice. I only tell you this in case Libby discovers this (if you have snow) and alarms you. It's a good solution.

As she recovers, she'll get more confident about the rugs and you can use them to keep her away from places you don't want her. Dakota would stare at me till I made sure his front door rug was just so, and only then would he go outside. Funny guy. Libby will likely have her own ways to communicate with you in time.

Oh, below I'm showing you Dakota exactly one week after his amputation, doing his snow snarfle (that's what we call it anyway). See? He was happpy!

Shari

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From abandoned puppy to Tripawd Warrior Dude, Dakota became one of the 2011 February Furballs due to STS. Our incredibly sweet friend lived with grace and dignity till he impulsively raced over the Bridge on 12-15-12.

Dakota's thoughtful and erudite blog is at http://shari.tr.....pawds.com/

Fort Wayne, IN
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1 February 2013 - 4:38 pm
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Michelle, the sheet is a good idea.  I'll change out the blanket for the sheet, thanks.

 

I'm in Indiana and we have a ground covering of snow.  Your Dakota is very clever with the self made ice pack! Love that pic.  At this point I can't imagine Libby acting like that in 1 week. She does love to roll in the snow though, so I hope she gets right back to it when she's feeling like it. Right now, I have to keep her bandages dry.  She will get them off on Monday, but for now I have to limit her contact with anything wet.  

 

She seems to be wondering WTH happened to her, but it's still early in the journey.  Patience is not one of my virtues but I'm trying to change that.  

Liberty (Libby) was diagnosed with OSA on 1-22-13.  Right front amputation on 1-31-13. No IV Chemo. Metronomic Therapy started 2-19-13 along with supplements and some home cooking. Lungs clear until 1-06-14.  She's still her happy, hoppy, bossy self.  Living the dog life to the fullest and a proud Winter Warrior. :) RIP my Libby 4-21-03 to 3-19-14

San Diego, CA
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1 February 2013 - 4:44 pm
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Oh sweet baby! She looks pretty in pink! Hooray for being home and for eating.

Hope she has a relatively easy recovery. Try to rest when she does! It's hard to sleep the first night or two when they are home.

She might seem down for a while - that's normal. Try to not second guess yourself. Sometimes folks do during the recovery period, but most everyone comes around and realizes it was the best choice. (Really, I've only ever seen one person say they regretted it after).

Hang in there,

Jackie, Angel Abby's mom

Abby: Aug 1, 2009 – Jan 10, 2012. Our beautiful rescue pup lived LARGE with osteosarcoma for 15 months – half her way-too-short life. I think our "halflistic" approach (mixing traditional meds + supplements) helped her thrive. (PM me for details. I'm happy to help.) She had lung mets for over a year. They took her from us in the end, but they cannot take her spirit! She will live forever in our hearts. She loved the beach and giving kisses and going to In-N-Out for a Flying Dutchman. Tripawds blog, and a more detailed blog here. Please also check out my novel, What the Dog Ate. Now also in paperback! Purchase it at Amazon via Tripawds and help support Tripawds!

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1 February 2013 - 4:52 pm
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Pawesome news! Wooohooo! I'm so hoppy you figured out how to share the pics, we look forward to seeing more.

Dont' be worried if she pants. That is typically a sign of the pain medication, most all dogs will react this way. She will probably be restless tonight and not sleep a whole lot (as a result you probably wont either!) but at least she's home and with you again. This is terrific.

Her pain medications sound like what most Tripawds get. Some get more, some get less, the dosages you mention are right in the middle.

As for the potty thing...that is a big challenge, and she will go eventually but don't be surprised if she doesn't want to for a day or so. If she doesn't urinate within 12 hours call your vet, that is a concern, but otherwise, encourage her but don't be too shocked if she is too dopey to get up and go.

Yay! She's on the road to recovery!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Southwestern Ontario, Canada
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1 February 2013 - 5:44 pm
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That is awesome news!  It makes my heart swell when I hear of how good all those pups and kitties do after their surgery! It's amazing how soon your house can become wall to wall carpet in throw rugs!! lol

It gets easier and easier as each day goes by...   good luck!!

 

Christine & Franklin

Franklin, he was the Happiest Dog on Three Legs! Diagnosed 09/26/2012 with Osteosarcoma, amputated 12/4/2012.  Had a wonderful 5 1/2 months painfree until he ran for the Bridge on 5/15/2013.  Always in my heart, and always a guardian angel of my pack...   You can follow his Tripawd Adventures, before and after, in my blog, Frank'n'Farter!

Fort Wayne, IN
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1 February 2013 - 6:01 pm
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Now that I have the hang of it.. here's the first one I took when we got home.  She is patiently waiting for mommy's homemade toppings for her kibble.  Daddy is her soul mate and he is always by her side.  That's Sammie, with her nose always at the counter's edge.  She is very stealth and if you don't watch her closely she will steal whatever is on the counter!  

Sammie has been sniffing around Libby and isn't sure what to think.  

 

Thanks for the reassuring words about the panting, pottying and meds.  They are all concerns but she has conquered the first major hurdle...getting rid of that gawd awful pain in her leg!  I also think she has a lot of bandages wrapped around her body and that can also be warming her up and adding to the panting.

Someone here (I'll eventually remember names) said their pup was used to sleeping in their bed so they put their mattress on the floor so she wouldn't have so far to go.  We don't have room to move our mattress to the floor but it gave me the idea to buy a blow up, queen sized mattress and Bret is going to sleep on the living room floor with her tonight.  Thanks for the idea!

 

Shari, you mentioned Libby having her own way of communicating.  That's one thing she has gotten right back into the swing of doing.  While we were cleaning up dinner dishes, she looked at me then looked at the stove where the pans are.  That's her way of telling me she wants to lick the pan.  I laid it in front of her and she enjoyed the bits of good food in there. I call Libby and Sammie my pre-wash cycle for the dishwasher!

 

You're right Christine. It's almost wall to wall.  I thought I bought too many and I can see I need a few more!

She finally went pee.  It worked better taking her out front.  She didn't have so far to go.  She's still trying to get the hang of squatting.

Thanks again for all your feedback and suggestions.  Onward Libby......!

 

Liberty (Libby) was diagnosed with OSA on 1-22-13.  Right front amputation on 1-31-13. No IV Chemo. Metronomic Therapy started 2-19-13 along with supplements and some home cooking. Lungs clear until 1-06-14.  She's still her happy, hoppy, bossy self.  Living the dog life to the fullest and a proud Winter Warrior. :) RIP my Libby 4-21-03 to 3-19-14

In your heart, where I belong.
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1 February 2013 - 6:06 pm
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About the rugs, Amy...Angel Zeus's mama, Lisa, wrote on here after outfitting her house with rugs that it looked like a clown threw up in her house. I still laugh thinking of the visual image. Oh so accurate! clown

Shari

From abandoned puppy to Tripawd Warrior Dude, Dakota became one of the 2011 February Furballs due to STS. Our incredibly sweet friend lived with grace and dignity till he impulsively raced over the Bridge on 12-15-12.

Dakota's thoughtful and erudite blog is at http://shari.tr.....pawds.com/

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