3 Legged Dog Stories
Amputation is never a decision that any dog owner wants to make.
When I was faced with that decision I was very confused, afraid, disappointed, and saddened. I seriously considered returning my second dog. I wasn't sure if she would be able to play with my other dog, I wasn't sure if she would be happy, I wasn't sure if *I* would be happy, and on and on it went.
I did not want a dog that was "different" and that others may think was weird looking.
Ultimately, I just could not part with Shania; so now, she is the favorite of everyone in the family.
Shania is a bouncy, energetic, Siberian Husky that is full of life and full of verve. She delights everyone, and is always ready to pounce on people and give them lots of licks.
She is also a three legged dog, but most people do not even notice that until much later. Although there are certain things to consider when caring for a three legged dog, many tripod dog owners agree that they are just awesome to be with!
Below are some three legged dog stories that illustrate why.
** All the stories are from comments in the article Three Legged Dog Care and Tripod Dog Care. Many thanks to all the people who shared their three legged dog stories and experiences.
3 Legged Dogs Are an Inspiration
"[Three legged dogs] are a great role model for us humans who can let little things get us down." ~~ [Carolyn]
"Alex lost her left foreleg for reasons unknown to us. She was reportedly a 3 year old American Rottweiler, with a fresh surgical wound when we adopted her from a shelter. She has touched many with her jaunty little walk. Often people would assume at first that she was limping, but would then stop when they noted a missing limb.
After hearing her story, many would then continue on with their day with a little more "can-doedness." ~~ [Nicole]
I think Shania not only inspired me, but she inspired many people at the hospital she was in.
When she was going through surgeries to try and straighten her leg, she was extremely brave, upbeat, and still loved all the people around her.
The hospital staff gave her this little squeaky toy that played James Brown's "I Feel Good" song. They told me that she spent her days there going to visit everyone, both human and canine, while singing the "I Feel Good" song.
It put a smile on everyone's face and made them feel a lot better.
3 Legged Dogs Are Active and Can Do Just About Anything
"[Three legged dogs] are really a treasure to have and such lively dogs. I was expecting him to be limited to do many things but he quickly showed me he was able to do everything without a sweat. His name is Blaze and he's all white with a few brown spots on his back and ears." ~~ [Chel]
"By the way my Bella is a real dynamo too, even though she is a tripod, [she] still loves to play and run with my other dog Sadie." ~~ [Linda]
It is natural for us to worry and be over-protective of a three legged dog. However, your three legged dog will amaze you with her ability to quickly bounce back, and relearn how to do, all of the things that she used to do.
Shania is a go,go,go girl, who frequently tires out my other dog (Shiba Inu Sephyis only a year older than Shania). She also manages to steal his toys and food!
Sometimes, I worry about Shania when she is running around at top speed while playing with my Shiba Inu. However, doing a not-too-controlled slide and roll on the grass doesn't seem to faze her. She can actually go faster than my Shiba, when in a full run, and has no problems with balance.
There are some things that are a bit more difficult for a three legged dog, but Shania always approaches everything with a very positive, yes we can, attitude.
3 Legged Dogs Are Great Role Models
"My name is Mac. I have a three-legged dog, Reggie, that we got three months ago. He is three years old, and lost his leg from a car accident. I am in second grade. I want to learn about three legged dogs like Reggie, and am making my science fair report about him." ~~[Mac]
"For those of you just beginning with a "tripod wonder" and wondering how it will impact your family. Both of our daughters were young when Alex came and both learned about tolerance and acceptance in the process. One is finishing her doctorate in physical therapy and the other is in her first year of premed, as tribute to what they have learned." ~~ [Nicole]
Many people always stop me on the road and ask me questions about Shania and how she gets along on three legs. I tell them that she is a dynamo and she constantly tires everyone out. They are usually surprised that she likes going for walks so much and how she requires a lot of exercise.
Shania loves meeting people and she is always ready to receive tummy rubs and give licks as payment. Most people are very happy to meet her and will usually walk away with a smile on their face.
Three legged dogs help us see that disability is not something that we should pity or try to ignore.
Tripod dogs may look a bit different, but they are happy, loving, and full of doggy goodness. Through their example, we can perhaps learn to appreciate people who may be different from us, who may not look like us, but who share the same needs for compassion, acceptance, success, and happiness, as we do.
3 Legged Dogs Are BRAVE
"I have a 4 Y.O. Weimaraner named 'Dieter' aka 'Der Blau Hund'. Dieter's female companion , 'Gabi' likes to chase the garbage truck up the driveway. Dieter was injured by the garbage truck while he was herding Gabi out of the way. As a result, his right rear leg had to be amputated and he's now a 'tripod' in the recovery stage." ~~[Dave Potter]
"Our dog's leg was amputated after he was attacked by a pit bull.
In 2003, our 9-month old rat terrier puppy, Yodi, (like Odie from Garfield, not Yoda from Star Wars) was attacked by my parents' neighbor's pit bull. The pit bull was not restrained in any way - no leash, no fence, no pen - and was just roaming around on the loose that night." ~~ [excerpt from My Dog Has Three Legs]
Three legged dogs have to go through much adversity; and yet they are able to maintain a very positive attitude, and a very happy outlook on life.
Whenever I have to journey through a dark patch, I think about Shania, and borrow some of her courage and grace. Somehow, my burden gets a bit lighter, and I begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
She is sitting there, with her tongue hanging out, waiting for me.
3 Legged Dogs Are Casanovas
"I have recently "inherited" a tripod named Grim. He is especially challenging because he is an 180lb mastiff. Unfortunately, his last owners kept him in the house all day, and did not exercise him. He is 5 years old and such a sweet boy." ~~[Lila]
"I have a tripod puppy that is 4 weeks old (I have her mother and siblings too!) I have decided to keep the tripod as I feel I can give her the home and love that she deserves. She was born with very little of the fourth leg, but it is a nub and useless to her. ... She is the sweetest and most loving puppy I have ever seen and I want her to be happy." ~~[Amy]
"Arthritis has taken the grace from her step and cataracts have clouded her vision, but her nubby tail always greets us with a rapid wag and makes us feel loved. The shelter staff still keep in touch with us and often remark at how lucky Alex was to find a home with us.
However, it is clear that it is us that should be giving thanks for the blessings that she has brought to us." ~~[Nicole]
Is a Three Legged Dog the Right Choice?
"Sorry for the windedness, but just wanted to share what we have gotten in exchange for our little bit of effort. We will certainly miss our Alex when her years are done. God Bless to all of you just taking up this uncertain and sometimes painful path...it is worth it!" ~~ [Nicole]
Is a three legged dog right for you? That is a difficult question to answer and is a decision that you must make on your own.
I can only say that I am very happy and privileged to share my life with Shania. She is sweet, loving, perky, happy, zesty, and an absolute joy to be with.
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