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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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Phantom Limb Pain?
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Forum Posts: 121
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31 December 2017
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4 April 2018 - 3:02 pm
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Casey’s been battling a “hot spot” on his side, roughly in the center of the flap created when his arm was amputated.  We first saw it as a half dollar sized scab, but he licks at it, and it’s now about the size of the palm of your hand.  We keep it covered with a shirt, and he wears an inflatable E-collar so that he can’t mess with it, but his brothers still try to.  It heals up nicely, but still bothers him so given the chance, he tears it up again.

We’ve spoken to three vets now, and no one has any ideas what might be causing this.  I’ve used various ointments that do help it heal, but something is still bothering him.  There’s a little swelling, but the vet today thinks it’s just a small lipoma after aspirating some fat cells.  I suggested phantom limb pain and she said “Maybe.”  I asked about Gabapentin and she’s going to confirm we can give him that while in the vaccine trial.

Anyone have experience with something like this?

Livermore, CA

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4 April 2018 - 4:36 pm
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Based on what I’ve seen here is does not sound like phantom pain .  People report sudden yelping and jumping up like a reaction to a stabbing pain. 

Could there be an internal suture that was missed or did not dissolve?

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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4 April 2018 - 7:27 pm
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Yeah, DITTO Karen’s thought on the stitch/suture possibility.   The location, the fact that it obviously is painful a xgood thst the other dogs are drawn to it….just doesn’t seem like a “normal” hot spot.   And a fatty lipoma wouldn’t necessarily be “angry” looking.  I guess it could somehow become infected ….maybe?

Post a photo and mahbe someone else has ideas.

Hugs to that sweet Casey!

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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5 April 2018 - 8:05 am
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Thanks for those thoughts.  The spot only gets “angry” if Casey’s been licking/biting at it, and once it gets inflamed and oozes a little, the other dogs are attracted by the serum.  I’ll check with his surgeon regarding a stitch, and I’m not sure where they all may have been, but this is two to three inches inside the original L-shaped external suture lines. 

I thought about a metastasis to a rib, and discussed that with the oncologist yesterday, but she was skeptical.  We’ll see on the X-rays.  As an aside, she told about a young patient of hers whose primary osteo was in a rib.  This dog was two years old, and after they removed three ribs, the pup developed a nasty infection at the surgery site.  That was five years ago and the dog is doing great.  Isn’t it interesting how infections can be a good thing in our dogs with osteosarcoma.

Here and Now

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5 April 2018 - 10:45 am
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tlahaye said
Isn’t it interesting how infections can be a good thing in our dogs with osteosarcoma.  

Yes. In our recent video about osteosarcoma vaccine trial candidate Bowie, we hear how her oncologist explained that dogs who experience post-op infections tend do much better battling the disease.

Bowie’s Canine Osteosarcoma Vaccine Experience

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