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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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Monkeybutt-Bunny Vampire
16
23 April 2012 - 7:28 pm
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Here's me (the cute one) getting a pill with peanut butter on the handle of a plastic utensil.  But I'm not really getting a pill, it's just that I am such a good actor you think I am getting a pill.  My sister got a pill but not me.  But you'd never know it because I'm so cute and can "act" like I'm getting a pill.

Monkeydogs RULE!

Monkeybutt-Bunny Vampire
17
23 April 2012 - 7:30 pm
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And yes, that's bird poop on our porch! 

Orange County, CA
Member Since:
2 January 2010
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18
23 April 2012 - 9:19 pm
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I second what Jackie (AbbysMom) says.  Sometimes just shoving a pill down her throat is the best option.  We used to disguise them in cheese or some other favorite treat of Max's, but he was no dummy and soon figured out what was going on, at which point he'd stop trusting us and the treats.  The chunky peanut butter suggestion was a good one too - I'd just use the "hide it in treats" approach sparingly so you can have it as an option on days you're not really in the mood to wrestle a pill down her throat.

Glad to hear she's eating.  Just try to think of irresistable foods she won't expect for those times her appetite is sketchy.  And if she just doiesn't feel like eating some days, try not to worry about it.  It'll pass.

Las Vegas, Nevada
Member Since:
14 August 2009
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19
23 April 2012 - 9:54 pm
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The reason I used peanut butter on a plastic handle (as demonstrated by Comet and Monkeybutt in the video) is because I could scrape the peanut butter on the back of their top teeth and they couldn't spit it out. 

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

krun15
20
23 April 2012 - 11:24 pm
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What kind of pain meds is she on? Tramadol is very bitter and bad tasting. Quad pug Tani has taken meds most of her life, I can almost get her to take her pills with a piece of dry kibble. But she WILL NOT take tramadol. I have tried hiding it in all kinds of things, and she is a pug who rarely chews any of her food, she just swallows. But as just as soon as the tram hidden in whatever hits her tounge she spits it out... every time! This is one med that just gets stuffed down, followed by really yummy snacks.
Maggie didn't eat much her last 3 months because of kidney failure, so she got most of her pills stuffed too. I did have luck sometimes with pub cheese- which is whipped cheddar cheese. Mag was one of those who would not eat a certain food for weeks after she found a pill in it. And eventually she didn't trust me much at all- she was really hesitant to take any food by hand from me. Another reason I resorted to pug stuffing!
I'm glad Princess is feeling better. Remember pain meds can cause consipation- might be what is, um, holding things up.

Karen and the pugapalooza

Sydney, Australia
Member Since:
13 September 2011
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21
24 April 2012 - 3:53 pm
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I was on Tramadol but it made me very dopey AND I also hated the smell of it.  When my appetite was strong it was the one tablet that would sniff out and refuse to eat.  I'm only on codeine for the pain at the moment.  I've been taken of piroxicam for now and mum hasn't been trying to give me the amantadine because it is hard enough to give me the panadeine and the 2 tummy pills (Losec).

My mum has also lost my trust.  She has been trying a similar trick, hollowing out a cube of cheese and putting the pills in it and then closing it over.  But I am still being very difficult. I am eating but only with lots and lots of coaxing.  I also haven't drunk much (if any) water in the last 24 hours.

It is now day 4 since I initially refused to eat (although it is actually day 8 since I showed symptoms that were initially put down to eating roast lamb).  We'll see how this morning goes.  If mum isn't happy with me it might be back to the vets to get some IV fluids and a pain killer injection.

The other fear that is getting stronger is that maybe I am losing my will to fight this.  Up until early March I was definitely "living with cancer".  But in the last 6 weeks I've had my back leg getting weaker and more painful and now this GI episode.   Mum has never seen me this sick before so she immediately jumps to the worst conclusions. Hopefully she is being overly pessimistic.  I'll let you know how today goes.  Please send us lots of prayers and pawsitive thoughts.

Magnum: 30th May 2002 to 5th May 2012. Lost her back left leg to osteosarcoma on 5th Sep 2011. Lung mets found on 20th Mar 2012 but it was bone mets in the hip that ended her brave battle. Magnum's motto - "Dream as if you'll live for ever, live as if you'll die today" (James Dean). Loyal, loving, courageous and spirited to the end. My beloved heart dog, see her memoirs from Rainbow Bridge ...... http://princess.....pawds.com/

Las Vegas, Nevada
Member Since:
14 August 2009
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22
24 April 2012 - 8:48 pm
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Oh Princess!  We don't want you to give up...you are just feeling sick.  That's all.   But we are getting worried too!

 

One time my Comet was getting sick from pills (strong antibiotics, tramadol and rimadyl), my vet said to stop it all for a weekend and feed rice and chicken meat.  She got better from cutting out all the meds.  Maybe that is all it is?  Too many drugs?  Maybe?

For water will Princess drink milk or watered down milk?  Or can you mix can dog food with water?  Can food has moisture which helps for dehydration.  Ice cubes?   Frozen treats like can food and water?  If you can get her to drink anything, that will keep her hydrated.  Dehydration isn't good.

Sending lots of pawsitive thoughts.

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

Orange County, CA
Member Since:
28 November 2008
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23
24 April 2012 - 9:43 pm
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In regards to Princess not drinking enough, maybe you could add something stinky to her water, like juice from a tuna can, or the juice from steamed vegetables, like broccoli?  I never had to use any of these tricks with Max, he always loved water; but I know others on these forums have used them in the past.  I hope whatever is ailing Princess is not serious, and that she will be feeling a lot better very soon. Sending many many positive thoughts your way.

San Diego, CA
Member Since:
29 October 2010
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24
24 April 2012 - 10:35 pm
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Also sending pawsitive thoughts out to you, Princess! Hang in there, and try to not make your mom worry so much!

Have a nice big drink of water and hopefully you'll feel lots better soon.
Jacke, 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!

Member Since:
17 March 2012
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25
25 April 2012 - 7:52 am
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I am so sorry to hear that Princess hasn't been feeling so well. I hope that things change direction soon.

 

Our K has refused to drink enough a number of times in her life (she has never liked to drink, and illness makes that tendency worse). Our vet suggested non-fat chicken broth (no spices in it). We mix it with water, in whatever amount is needed to coax her to drink. When she was very sick, it was 100% chicken broth and, at other times, it was just a dash of chicken broth added to a half cup of water.

 

We'd do this through out the day (once every 1-2 hours or so in small quantity of 1/2-1 cup or so at a time) to keep K hydrated.

 

I just thought that I'd add our experience in case it helps. We are thinking of you.

K, an 8 year old chocolate lab, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma of the radius and ulna on 12/23/11. She had stereotactic radiation to kill the bone tumors, and 3 rounds of carboplatin. On 3/16/12, lung mets were found. We tried several different kinds of chemotherapy to slow the lung mets but none worked. Finally, mets appeared at other sites, including her spine. She earned her angel wings on July 15, 2012. K changed my life, and I'll never forget her. Our/my journey is chronicled at romp-roll-rockies.blogspot.com.

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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26
25 April 2012 - 10:10 am
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Princess, I don't think you've lost your will. You are receiving such great care, if your health was at that point, your oncologist would have told you by now.

A loss of appetite can mean any number of things but it doesn't have to mean the worst. Take Rusty, for example. This little guy had similar symptoms and after tests and medical help it turns out that his condition is completely treatable. Read his story for details:

Rusty's Cancer and Fanconi Syndrome Update

We also have lots of great ideas for taking pills, here's one discussion: Giving Pills to Your Dog: How Do You Do It?

I hope this helps!

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Sydney, Australia
Member Since:
13 September 2011
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27
25 April 2012 - 4:15 pm
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Hi Everyone,

Thank you for all your support. It certainly helps mum feel less alone.  The chicken broth or other ideas to make water tasty are excellent and mum will try them.

The good news is I am eating again! (and drinking a tiny bit). I'm back to ravenously scoffing down the yummy meat.  I still haven't pooped but hopefully that will happen today. I also went out to the park yesterday and enjoyed surveying my territory on a beautiful sunny day.  It still felt wonderful to be alive so I guess I haven't given up yet.

The not so good news is my back leg is causing me a lot of trouble. I'm OK if I don't move but trying to walk and put weight on it is very difficult and painful. Mum is helping me as much as she can by using a towel and supporting my back end.  It has gotten worse since I spent my night in hospital. Mum will be having a serious chat with the oncologist.

Magnum: 30th May 2002 to 5th May 2012. Lost her back left leg to osteosarcoma on 5th Sep 2011. Lung mets found on 20th Mar 2012 but it was bone mets in the hip that ended her brave battle. Magnum's motto - "Dream as if you'll live for ever, live as if you'll die today" (James Dean). Loyal, loving, courageous and spirited to the end. My beloved heart dog, see her memoirs from Rainbow Bridge ...... http://princess.....pawds.com/

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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28
25 April 2012 - 4:54 pm
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Well good news and not so good news then. I'm glad you got to go outside though.

Mum, you might want to try the shopping bag trick (cut a canvas bag open, down the sides, place under her belly and use the handles to lift and support her). I also have a harness in the angel exchange that may help...I'm going to the post office tomorrow so if you want it I can send it to you.

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Sydney, Australia
Member Since:
13 September 2011
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29
25 April 2012 - 5:15 pm
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Jerry,

That's a great idea with the canvas bag.  Mum will try that.

A harness would be aweseome.  I generally fit into "large" sizes.  I am not aware of the Angel exchange so please tell me what you need me to do.

Magnum: 30th May 2002 to 5th May 2012. Lost her back left leg to osteosarcoma on 5th Sep 2011. Lung mets found on 20th Mar 2012 but it was bone mets in the hip that ended her brave battle. Magnum's motto - "Dream as if you'll live for ever, live as if you'll die today" (James Dean). Loyal, loving, courageous and spirited to the end. My beloved heart dog, see her memoirs from Rainbow Bridge ...... http://princess.....pawds.com/

Las Vegas, Nevada
Member Since:
14 August 2009
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30
25 April 2012 - 8:26 pm
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See Princess!  We knew you wanted to eat but your tummy is just feeling rotten right now!  Glad you are getting your appetite back.

 

Maybe Princess' back leg is a knee or stifle problem???  I know how our minds always go to cancer but it's common for dog to have knee problems as they age and being three legged can make it worse.  Maybe have the vet check the stifle?  Comet blew both her back knees. (she didn't have cancer, she was three legged from a birth defect)

 

I dunno.  I'm just throwing out ideas. A vet can check to see.

 

Good wishes to Princess.

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

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