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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

Tripawds is the place 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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Pain Management vs Amputation for 10ish year old black lab.
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New York, NY
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17 July 2020 - 10:35 am
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Hi Sandra.  Griffin was originally scheduled for 6 rounds of carboplatin.  On the day he was scheduled for his 4th round, chest x-rays revealed a lung met, so his oncologist recommended switching to doxorubicin in the hope that a different chemo agent will stabilize/reduce the lung met. 

Chance (and Kenya) look so cute in those photos!  I know exactly what you mean about balancing Chance’s need for exercise with making sure that you don’t push him too much, and also attending to Kenya’s needs.  If feasible, I’d highly recommend investing in a stroller.  When Griffin was in the first stages of recovery, I know that I let him do too much and wasn’t mindful enough about protecting his remaining front limb.  Griffin has a wagon that I have to lift him into/out of, but there are strollers that are built lower to the ground with easy access for larger dogs to get into on their own.  We use the wagon every day. A stroller would provide much needed support to Chase while allowing for longer walks for Kenya.  Here’s the link to a recent thread about strollers for big dogs: https://tripawd…..r/#p231845

Chance is doing really well for being only a few weeks out from surgery.  I second Jerry’s recommendation about rehab.  Griffin and I do the exercises at home, but he’s been going to physical therapy monthly for massage and stretching.  I see the benefits immediately in how much more fluidly Griffin moves afterwards.  Griffin tried water therapy, but I’m not sure it was for him as he really likes to swim and the water therapy was more walking on a treadmill and doggy paddling being held in place by a therapist.  But, I know many other dogs love it, so maybe Chance will too! ~ Stacy

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17 July 2020 - 11:21 am
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Great to see the pup up and about.  I’m jealous he actually uses the dog bed.  We have one that looks almost identical, like $200 orthopedic miracle bed, and R refuses to lay in it.  Like, at all.  Ever.

I’ve been trying to keep all our walks close to home so if R suddenly gets tired it’s not too far to walk back.  We do also stop pretty regularly just for like ten or twenty seconds to rest and get adoration pets.

Schertz, TX
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18 July 2020 - 9:47 am
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First real signs of side effects today.  Chance had a little bit of runny poop yesterday but seemed to be fine otherwise.  This morning he wasn’t really interested in eating but finally did and drank lots of water.  Within 30 mins of eating, he threw everything up!  He’s thrown up in the past but nothing like this…it was ALOT!  Mostly water but still…very concerning.

We were just about to go for our morning walk so I debated on whether or not take him out after that.  I decided on a short walk and he did well…stopped several times to rest, but that’s fairly normal.

As I mentioned (I think), they didn’t send any meds home with us after the chemo but said I could call if he does show any signs of side effects and they persist for 24 hrs.  So I guess I’ll wait and see how he does today…of course it’s Saturday.  Why do these things always happen after normal hours and on weekends?! Maybe some boiled chicken and rice if his stomach is upset!

 So keeping my fingers crossed for no more side effects today! 

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18 July 2020 - 10:35 am
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I’m sorry to hear Chance isn’t feeling well.  Fingers crossed for you here too.  

Are your vets not open over the weekend at all?  Also, do you think they’ll refuse to prescribe medicine without 24hrs of effect?  I mean, totally up to you when you call them, but if he starts to have more issues, I wouldn’t hesitate based on an arbitrary hour number.  Especially if I started to have any concern about dehydration.  

I find puree pumpkin helps with the runs.

Hope he feels better soon!

Virginia




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18 July 2020 - 11:50 am
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Yeah, week ends seem to be when everything  happens.

Not sure if you have anyway to co tact a Vet to call in some Cerenia for you.  The off food, throwing up, the runs….all probably  the side effects of chemo that some dogs experience.   Bummer that they didn’t send him ho e with some of the meds for anticipatory  issues like this.

As R said, you can try a little natural pumpkin.  Never understood  how that helps with constipation  and the runs, but it’s prescribed for both.

Let us know jow he’s doing, okay?

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



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18 July 2020 - 5:34 pm
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Oh darn I’m sorry! I wish more vets would just prescribe the meds as a preventive. Call and ask for Cerenia to help with the GI issues. If you live near a health food store, edible clay can also help. With his stomach being so upset you may want to wait on feeding him anything but boiled chicken and rice, maybe nothing at all tonight since he’s so iffy.

I hope he’s feeling better soon, poor guy. 

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Schertz, TX
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18 July 2020 - 7:49 pm
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Couldn’t wait to see if his symptoms continued so called the vet.  The oncologist is not open on the weekend but they have a tech on standby.  I explained what was going on and they prescribed Metronidazole and Ondansetron.  Hoping it works since he still has diarrhea…no more vomiting though today. I tried feeding him tonight but he really wasn’t interested…he ate a few nibbles but that was about it.  Hoping tomorrow is a better day for him!  Lots of cuddles tonight!

The Rainbow Bridge



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18 July 2020 - 8:17 pm
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Good for you, that was smart of you to call. Those two drugs are fantastic, I had forgotten about the Odansetron, it should work well. Don’t worry if he doesn’t eat tonight, as long as you keep him hydrated that’s good. Spike the water with pedialyte or Gatorade, no-sodium chicken broth, anything that will appeal to him to get him to drink.

Keep us posted OK? We are sending love your way!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Virginia




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18 July 2020 - 10:05 pm
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Good for you!  Hopefully  this will get ChAnce vack to feeling better.  Glad the vomit appears to have stopped.

Cheering  for ya’ Chance!

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!

Schertz, TX
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24 July 2020 - 9:18 am
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First round of post-chemo blood work…only concern is a bit low white blood cell count but they aren’t overly concerned.  He’s got another CBC scheduled for next week so they’ll make a determination on adjusting the carboplatin at that time.  He’s doing well overall although still a little loose stool and only interested in boiled chicken and rice…and of course a treat or two!  

He’s pepped up a bit and playing with some of his toys, although Kenya keeps stealing the toys from him…well, that’s pretty normal for them though!  We’re experimenting with longer walks and using a kids wagon until I can decide on a wagon/stroller.  He’ll walk longer now but still gets tired pretty quickly, but up in the wagon for a bit then he’s ready to walk a little more.  And he gets to visit some other areas of the neighborhood instead of the same 5-6 houses!

I also scheduled a consult with a local physical therapist but oncologists wants me to wait until after the 2nd chemo, probably due to some of the effects he’s shown with round 1.  In the meantime, he (and Kenya) are enjoying some massages from mom! They both really love them but I can tell they both have some sensitive spots so hopefully the PT will help.  

Looking forward to the weekend and maybe taking the pups to another area out of the neighborhood for new smells and trails!  Well, short trails anyway!

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New York, NY
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24 July 2020 - 9:48 am
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Yay for Chance!  Griffin knows that wagons are a really cool way to explore without overdoing it, and I’m glad Chance has his own chariot.  It’s a bummer that he seems to be experiencing some side effects from the chemo, but it seems like his blood test was pretty solid overall.  Here’s to more fun adventures ahead! ~ Stacy

Virginia




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24 July 2020 - 11:39 am
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OMD!!! CUTENESS ALERT!!  Chance looks adorable in his little red wagon!  And then to see Kenya and Chance snuggling….just precious!!.😎

Sounds like your Onco is on top of things.  It may be that the dose needs to to be lowered or that the time inbetween doses needs to be increased a little.  We see voth scenarios on here sometimes to decrease the side effects. 

Still having  the poops a little, not eating much, maybe being a little lethargic from the chemo. plus still adjusting the three….all this can make him not feeling f like running a marathon yet!!   He’s a smart boy to use his wagon as a way to enjoy being outdoors on his “walks”.  He looks so happy in it!  And a great way to take him to new areas.

Thanks for the update and great pictures!

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



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24 July 2020 - 2:57 pm
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How DARLING! That is so cute to see him getting around the neighborhood. Yep, new scenery is good for the soul and really works some magic into the day. He’s such a good boy to stay in the wagon.

Glad everything else is going well and his runny poo has firmed up mostly. I can see why the oncos wanted to wait on PT, it would make sense to do it when his strength is 100%. I’m so glad you made the appointment!

Hope you guys have a great weekend. Enjoy the sunshine and feeling good again Chance! And you too Kenya, hoppy trails!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Schertz, TX
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28 July 2020 - 9:21 am
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We’re having a horrible morning!  Started yesterday when Chance wouldn’t eat dinner.  I took his temp and it was high…like 104.  I called the vet and oncology dept and they recommended using rubbing alcohol on his paws to help bring down the temp (I’m familiar with that having seen that with a dog I had with heat stroke) and keep an eye on his temp.  So all night I was putting cotton balls with rubbing alcohol (thankfully my neighbor had some…try finding rubbing alcohol anywhere today!), putting cool towels on him, and his temp was slowly going down…still high, but improving.  But this morning it was up to 105 so ran him to the ER!

He has sepsis…his white blood count which was low last week but not too concerning dropped from 2.09 to 0.01!  His platelets are almost non-existent!  They’ve got him on an IV and antibiotics.  We also talked about Neupogen to help boost his immune system.  She said it’s kind of expensive so not all patient’s humans approve it.  They don’t use it a lot but she said they’ve seen good results when used.  Of course, she couldn’t promise anything but how can I NOT try it?!  

She confirmed that this is from the chemo and he’s just one of the rare cases that has this severe reaction.  Of course now I’m second guessing having gone ahead with the chemo, were the walks too long, did he eat something on one of the walks?!  I just want to be there with him and hold him but with COVID I just had to leave him!  This is going to be the longest day! 

The Rainbow Bridge



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28 July 2020 - 12:19 pm
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Oh Chance, get well soon my friend! I’m so sorry you are having these awful side effects. The vet is right, they happen so, so rarely. We are sending our love, healing thoughts an pawsitivity for a speedy recovery.

Sandra, you did nothing wrong and you did everything right. Do not beat yourself up! You acted quickly and got him into the care he needs. Be proud of yourself for not hesitating. AND for teaching us that tip about rubbing alcohol to bring down a dog’s fever. I did not know about that and I’m guessing others here didn’t either. So THANK YOU for sharing that with us.

Yes it will be a long day but you can get through this. Chance is a strong boy and he’s getting great care. He will rebound from this! Stay strong and keep us posted OK?  The Tripawds Nation is standing behind you.

P.S. you may want to start a new topic in Treatment and Recovery. Since this is a rare side-effect situation, this particular subject may help someone some day in the future. 

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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Read my story here.

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