Please help - need urgent advice re: greyhound and poss amputation

(39 Posts)
Callisto Thu 31-Jan-13 11:57:26

Hi All,

my greyhound broke her leg this morning and I've just heard back from the vets. Our options are:
1. a vastly long, complicated and expensive operation that she may or may not come out of and may or may not work.
2. amputation
3. euthanasia.

I've never been one for long, distressing operations/treatment when it comes to animals so I'm realistically looking at options 2 or 3.

So my question is do any of you have any experience of greyhounds with only three legs, bearing in mind that she will lose a front leg? I just can't see it working as she is a big, lanky dog. I'm also worried about quality of life - she loves to run, in some ways it is her reason for living.

Any advice will be very gratefully received.

taylorSmith Mon 04-Feb-13 08:32:18

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

mistlethrush Fri 01-Feb-13 13:09:05

They do - but I wouldn't be without one in my life for long. It is one of the downsides to having one, but the upsides more than compensate.

Callisto Fri 01-Feb-13 12:53:41

Thanks Mistle. I lost Tana, my other greyhound last June (nearly a year to the day that my Mum died) to bone cancer. That was a shock but he was an old man, almost 14, so I was expecting it. Plus he died in his bed and in my arms.

My lovely Peach was only 5, I was expecting her to go on for years yet. At least my husband was with her at the end and she is buried in the garden next to her beloved Tana.

They really break your heart don't they. sad

mistlethrush Fri 01-Feb-13 09:26:07

We lost our last dog in October last year because of bone cancer - she went from limp to in too much pain to keep her going in 3 weeks. It does leave such a hole - and yours was such a sudden experience of it.

We got another dog just over two weeks' later. She will never replace our old dog - and I'm still sad about losing her, despite having a new one. She is occupying a different dog shaped space in our lives and we're adapting to make that fit work for us and the dog.

Don't be surprised at the level of your feeling - and don't expect non-dog owners to understand. In time you will be able to think of all of the good things and not the suddenness of her departure from your lives.

SpicyPear Fri 01-Feb-13 09:24:25

So sorry Callisto.

Callisto Fri 01-Feb-13 09:19:28

Thanks so much everyone. There is a huge greyhound shaped hole in my life now.

AwsomeMrsFox Thu 31-Jan-13 20:01:45

I'm so sorry Callisto. You knew your dog and you could make the best judgement as to how he would/wouldn't cope. These things are never clear cut and you have to follow your intuition. You did the right thing.

Goldrill Thu 31-Jan-13 19:37:11

Deepest sympathy Callisto: it's the worst decision you have to make, but you know your dog best and it will be the right one. Very un-mumsnetty hug from here.

CocoNutter Thu 31-Jan-13 17:18:02

So sorry, hadn't read the whole thread sad

CocoNutter Thu 31-Jan-13 17:15:59

DH's old dog lost a front leg a few years ago and you wouldn't know he wasn't born without it. He copes really well. Getting a little unsteady now that he's older but he has done brilliantly.

NotMostPeople Thu 31-Jan-13 16:54:25

Callisto I think I'd do the same, big hugs.

topbannana Thu 31-Jan-13 16:53:44

callisto I have just realised I had not read the whole thread. I am so sorry, my post must seem incredibly crass sad

RedwingWinter Thu 31-Jan-13 16:50:12

Callisto, I'm so sorry sad

topbannana Thu 31-Jan-13 16:00:39

I had a greyhound bitch who lost a rear leg (I know yours is a front leg)
After a week or so of rather ungainly hobbling she was almost 100% sound and apart from a slightly more bouncing gait it was not immediately noticeable.
In your situation I would definitely go for it (I am also not one for long drawn out ops) particularly when faced with euthanasia as the other option. She lived a full and happy life, upto the age of 13 when her kidneys finally caught up with her sad and was able to run and enjoy her walks fine. The only concession was having to be lifted in and out of the car and ensuring she did not get barged while she was running.
Good luck thanks

Colliewollydoodle Thu 31-Jan-13 14:43:55

Oh sorry sorry sorry. Just realised how inappropriate my last post was. Thinking of you.

Colliewollydoodle Thu 31-Jan-13 14:34:48

I used to walk with a woman who had 4 greyhounds, one of which had had its front leg amputated. It was absolutely fine joined in just the same as the other three, very nifty too.

mistlethrush Thu 31-Jan-13 14:29:32

Calisto - I'm sorry for your loss, its a horrible decision to have had to make.

Ah Callisto a tough tough decision for you to have to make, I am sorry. Be kind to yourself.

Callisto Thu 31-Jan-13 13:21:11

Thanks so much for all of your feedback.

My husband and I have made the decision to have my greyhound put down. It is possibly the most difficult decision I have had to make and we based it on her quality of life post op.

Floralnomad Thu 31-Jan-13 12:47:08

Forgot to say that the dog I know had had numerous ops to try and save the leg first , which its owner says in hindsight she wouldn't have bothered with ( and not because of the cost) .

Floralnomad Thu 31-Jan-13 12:45:08

I remember a vet on TV once saying that cats and dogs are really 3 legged animals with one spare ! There is a labradoodle near us who had a front leg amputated and he is fine on his 3 . Good luck .

Mistle, that's a fab thread, and what a gorgeous dog Tip is. So nice to see lots of positive stories from other tripod owners on there.

Goldrill Thu 31-Jan-13 12:41:56

sorry - crossposted with scuttle and mistle.
Meant to add: we live in Cumbria with a lot of hilly walks, up a lot of steps. The only thing that caused a problem was laminate flooring, but a lot of lurchers struggle with that. Luccy would laugh in your face at the idea she's disabled!

Goldrill Thu 31-Jan-13 12:38:54

My mum and dad's dog is a lurcher with three legs after a front amputation about 5 years ago.

She recovered very quickly indeed and the scar has never seemed to trouble her.
Her body reshaped itself over the years and she is now tripod shaped.
She is AS FAST and AS MANOUVERABLE as my four legged lurcher, and if you put the two of them together her enthusiasm for life would make you think mine was the one who had been horribly abused and lost a limb.

You could also look at lurcherlink's forum - a lot of tripods on there and a lot of positive stories. It's a heartbreaking hting to have to do and I really sympathise, but please don't worry - outcomes are generally very good. Lucy has no idea at all that she is anything other than perfect and lives the absolute life of riley.

mistlethrush Thu 31-Jan-13 12:37:59

This is one of the LL dogs:
Tip I've been on a walk with him and he was so happy to be out you wouldn't notice that he didn't have the leg. He was let off the lead though because it was more easy to unbalance him.

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