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On day 5 of hind leg amputation. | Treatment, Recovery and Oncology

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On day 5 of hind leg amputation.
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Spruce grove alberta Canada
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14 October 2018 - 10:03 pm
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I will try not to write a novel but am so grateful to have found this forum the day before my girl went in for surgery.  I had a better feeling going into this because of what I read here.  My name is Rachelle and my 14 year old girl Mastiff/ Rotti is Maizie.  Her story started when she was 4 years old and had a torn cruciate, the vets did the wire procedure and not a TPLO. It was not a success and when she was around 6 had to have the wires taken out as it was just making holes in her bones and could never really use the leg.  She lived with nothing but scar tissue holding that knee together for the next 8 years. Of course it was full of arthritis, she was on pain killers for a while then did well for a while without. I started her on CBD oil and was doing great.. Then a week ago Friday she started to limp and it got worse(pretty sure my younger dog banged into her in a bad way) so my plan was to take her to the vet on Tuesday. (thanksgiving weekend so vet closed Monday) Monday mid morning she fell down the stairs (4 steps) to the garage as I was taking her out. She broke her femur.  Took her to the emergency vet and basically was told my options .. fix, amputate or euthanize.   Since I knew the knee was already shot fixing I didn’t think was an option. I didn’t like to have strangers do the surgery so opted to take her home and have my vets do the surgery on Tuesday.  That was a very stressful nite. I moved down to the basement (walkout basement) no stairs only a few steps to the grass. My vet agreed with my decision of amputating.. She was not ready to euthanize so was willing to do what ever I could for her. Surgery went well she went home with a fentanyl patch, metacam, gabapentin and novolexin.  Oh and I was suppose to clean the incision with hydrogen Peroxide, which I will stop doing. My biggest concern is how the other hind leg will hold up? I do keep her on the light side because of what her knee was like.  I will be keeping my other dog away from her when I am not watching. I guess I am looking for advice on how to manage her to keep her safe for what ever years she has left.  Sorry I wrote a novel..  Oh I should say her recovery is going well. As well as can be expected I guess.

Livermore, CA
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14 October 2018 - 10:19 pm
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Hello and welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.

So Ms. Maizie is doing OK?  You are about 5 days post op?

As far as her future goes- do you have access to a certified rehab vet facility?  I bet some PT would do her good and they could help you set up an exercise program to keep her as strong and healthy as possible.  We have a program here that might pay for your first visit.

The Required Reading List has lots of good information on amputation and recovery.

The recovery from knee surgery is way longer than the typical recovery from amputation.  You know how she shows pain and how she reacts to pain meds- that is a help during recovery.  We have seen here that the older pups do tend to take a little longer to bounce back than the younger dogs, but it sounds like she is doing pretty well so far.

Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

Spruce grove alberta Canada
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15 October 2018 - 9:22 am
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Thanks Karen,

I have never heard of a rehab facility near me? I will look into that and the readings. 

She has been eating well and doing her business with support. The fentanyl patch came off yesterday and I think that has made a difference. She only slept for about half an hour last night as she was very agitated.  She has some fluid build up in the back area which I think is going down. I almost wonder why they didn’t put a drain? The bruising is quite bad and area is cold sometimes? I try to keep her covered with towels nothing heavy, but that seems to bug her more. 

I still need to give her am meds ..thinking I will give her metacam at night see if that helps her(and me)for sleeping during the night. As during the day she has been sleeping lots. 

Here and Now

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15 October 2018 - 11:55 am
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msmaizie said
I have never heard of a rehab facility near me?

Check the Rehab section of the Tripawds Resources page for links to find a CCRT or CCRP near you, and find complete details about the Maggie Moo Fund for Tripawd Rehab in the Tripawds Foundation blog.

Virginia
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15 October 2018 - 2:35 pm
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Hi Rachelle and your sweet Maizie.  Sorry you had to join is but, as you can already see, you are surrounded  by supportive people who understand  this journey like no others can.   

It’s  good that Maizie is resting …now we need her to do the same at night!  Some of the restlessmess may have been a little side effect from being off the fentynal  patch.  Her pain might jave start3d breaking  through. 

How much does she weigh and what is the dose of Gaba and the frequency?  Often dogs come home with Tramadol as well as Gabapentin.  Maybe ask your Vet about adding that if she continues  to show discomfort . 

It’s  hard to be patient during the recovery.  Seems like it lasts furever, but it doesn’t!   As Karen me mentioned, 

Big  dogs and “mature” dogs really need to take it slow and easy.   Mobility  takes a bit longer.  But the fact that she’s  doing well with support already and eating well is great news!😁

 Sounds like you are seeing a seroma .  Just keep an eye on it.  Many dogs come home without drains.my Happy Hannah didn’t .  She had a fairly big pocket of fluid (seroma ) that finally was reabsorbed.   Her brushing was quite “colorful ” too.  If you have any concerns, email pictures to your Vet and then it can be determined  if a visit is necessary.

You can also try GENTLY  massaging AROUND the incision TO HELP with the fluid pocket .   Can’t  remember  if it felt cool arpund Happy Hannah’s  incision  or not.  Others can chime in on  that.

STAY CONNECTED!  AS YOU CAN SEE, YOU ARE NOT ALONE😚

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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15 October 2018 - 4:44 pm
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The first few days can be rough and it can take some time to get tge meds just right. My nights were tough for a couple days till I got the timing of the meds right. It does get better so while you’re taking care of maizie don’t forget to try and take care of yourself.

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15 October 2018 - 6:08 pm
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Hi rachelle and welcome to the site. I’m a newbie too, just 4 days post-op. The people on here are wonderful! My vet said there would be lots of colorful bruising and not to worry about it. My pup didn’t get a drain either and the vet said the incision may ooze for a few days. No worries. It seeemd like a lot but sent a pic and was told it was okay. Hope y’all are still progressing….one day at a time. Hang in there! 

Spruce grove alberta Canada
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15 October 2018 - 9:51 pm
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Thank you so much for the support, the more information I get the better I feel. 

The seroma seems to be getting smaller and no drainage thru the incision. The bruising also is getting less. I actually took pictures of it so I can compare and for sure it is going away right at the incision.

She is a little over 34kg and is on Gabapentin 400 mg(she has only one day left), I guess the metacam is instead of tramadol? I read that tramadol is safer than the metacam so I will have to find out how long she should be on it as directions are just once a day..  Tonight I am spacing out the pain meds and gave her the metacam at 9pm and will give the gabapentin just before bed. I am very thankful my mom is living with me so she can take over for me when I tend to the other animals.I don’t know what I would have done without her. She also helped me pay for this surgery as I could have never been able to afford it. I would do anything for my animals but wow sometimes it gets a little much.

Another concern I have is her tail? Is it normal for her not to be moving her tail? Also today while I was supporting her as she was eating I heard and felt that sound of arthritis in her good leg.. I hope I didn’t put her thru this for no reason. 

ChipandCharm how is your pup doing? How are you functioning, I can barely think.. Maizie is very restless tonight. I might have to phone vet tomorrow and see if I can change or add pain killers? 

 

Livermore, CA
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15 October 2018 - 10:13 pm
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Most pups here are on pain meds for two to three weeks so definitely talk with your vet about how she is doing, she sounds like she might be showing some pain signs.

Metacam is an anti inflammatory like rimadyl, Tramadol is a pain med.  Anti-inflammatories help but are not enough alone in my opinion and experience, although the do tend to help gabapentin be more effective.

There are lots of things you can try to help with her arthritis- supplements, meds, acupuncture, chiropractic, keeping her slim.  But for now focus on getting her healed up from the amp.

And yay Mom!  My parents were so helpful when Maggie went through her amp and chemo treatments- I can’t imagine getting through all of it without them.

Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

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16 October 2018 - 6:45 am
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Hi Rachelle,

My pup is doing great. I’m amazed at the improvements in a 24 hour period. My parents live with me and are a great emotional support. They help with feeding but can’t provide much physical support for Belvidere so I need to be here to get him up and out for potty breaks. He came home with a fetanyl parch which is done now. He is taking Rimadyl and does not appear to be having any pain. Most on here are recommending Gabapentin and Tramadol in addition to the Rimadyl. I have not seen a need for it yet but I am not seeing the symptoms that you are. My pup sleeps through the night and doesn’t seem restless or uncomfortable. When he does start panting it’s because he needs to go out to potty. Surgery was last Thursday. He started eating on Sunday evening…chicken and rice. This morning he ate his regular food. Last night was our first 💩. I think all is good. I agree with the others on here…get whatever pain meds you need to make Maizie comfortable.

Spruce grove alberta Canada
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16 October 2018 - 9:36 pm
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I really do not know how I would have been able to do this without my mother helping me. It is like a tag team so Maizie is rarely alone. She can’t help either with the physical stuff but she keeps her company when I have to leave.

I wonder if because she had a bad leg for 10 years of her life if she was quick to adapt as she has been doing pretty good mobility wise other then I support her to do her business. Mind you today I let her go to do her  poopicon_png on her own and she did not bad at it.  My biggest issue has been the restlessness, last night I was up about 6 times.  She peed maybe once, so that was not the issue, so first thing this morning I phoned the vet and told them I need more pain meds as what she has is not enough. So I got Tramadol 100mg twice a day and another 10 days of Gabapentin. Gave her first dose of Tramadol at around noon. I can’t really say I noticed a big difference.  Will give her second dose with the Gabapentin just before bed, I really hope that will help because I need sleep.

Virginia
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17 October 2018 - 9:35 am
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Hope you got some good sleep.  This initial part of recovery is exhausring!

Maizie really is doing so very well.  Absolutely  amazing!  And you are a powerful advocate for her!  Glad you got some more pain meds.

And YAY for pooping on her own!!

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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