Tigger Investigates... Tripawd Hounds

Having had a minor issue while I was recovering from breaking my toe, I spent a lot of time not using that leg.
Which made me think of how animals that only have three legs handle things.

What is a Tripawd?
A Tripawd is an animal that only has three paws.
They only have three paws due to only having three legs.
This is generally due to having one leg amputated.

Why are animals Tripawd?
An animal can become a Tripawd for a variety of reasons.
The main reasons are:
- Birth defect
- Injury
- Illness

I interviewed Phoebe, who is a Tripawd sighthound, to find out more.

Does being a tripawd involve extra work or training?
Training a Tripawd does not pose any additional work.
However, their ability to climb/descend stairs/steps may need to be assessed to see if they are able or confident to do that.
Also jumping into or onto things require a different way of balancing for the take off and the landing.

So although additional work or training is not required, a bit of time for the animal to adapt and gain confidence may be needed.

How long does it take to recover/adapt?
There are two parts to this answer.
First of all the time to adapt to becoming a Tripawd, as in the ability to stand and move around can be within 24 hours of surgery .
Second. The actual healing of the surgery can take longer as it all depends on the healing process for each animal.

Can a tripawd run/run as fast as a 4 legged animal?
Yes they can in fact I have witnessed a Tripawd outrunning 4 legged dogs, if they ran before and love it they will run again, although for our humans it is occasionally heart stopping because they think we will fall but we don’t.

Does it make a difference if it is the front or back leg?
Depending on breed and subsequent girth of the animal an amputation maybe harder.
Front leg amputations are thought to be harder for animals as more weight is carried on the front legs.

Due to the anatomy of sighthounds there isn’t much difference, even their large chests are deep but narrow which keeps their balance very central.

Can all animals cope with being a tripawd?
Depending on the animal and subsequent girth of the animal an amputation maybe harder on some.
If you were faced with a similar situation your vet would be best placed to advise on the ability to cope and recover.

Do animals still have a good quality of life with 3 legs?
Definitely. In fact many Tripawds have a better quality of life especially if the reason for amputation was due to a birth defect, illness or injury.
I have never looked back.

If there are any animals out there are looking for support or would like to share their experiences, where can they go?
I have set up a Facebook page and would welcome any animal that is or will become a Tripawd.

My Facebook page is:
Tripawd Hounds

Below are some pictures of some Tripawd animals.





Tags: Articles, Health