Basset Hounds Forum banner
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

First post - I have an 11 year old tri-color basset named Penny. She is the runt of the litter so on the smaller size weighing in about 50 pounds.
She had a grade 1 soft tissue sarcoma surgically removed in January 2021 that has unfortunately popped back up. I had a phone consult with a specialist today that said typically if it pops back up once it will continue to do so faster and more aggressive than before, and the best option is both surgery and radiation for an 80%+ success rate but it’s going to cost over $10,000 and just isn’t something we can afford.
I’m bringing her in January 3rd to get her ultrasounds so we make sure this second round hasn’t spread. Assuming it hasn’t we’ll have a surgery consult shortly thereafter and are considering amputation. My fear with this is that when we brought her in Sunday to look at the newest lump the vet pressed on her back and said her spine is soft, advising us to no longer allow her to go up and down our stairs and try to limit her jumping on and off the couches.
The most important thing to me is quality of life for my sweet girl, and I fear rear leg amputation is going to be extremely difficult on her deteriorating back. I‘m not totally confident that her personality would do well with a wheelchair, but maybe I’ll be surprised? I know no one can give me answers, maybe it just feels better to type it out, but if anyone does have advice I would so welcome it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,738 Posts
First of all I'm sorry to read this - heartbreaking. Secondly, only you, with all the information you can gather from the medical team, can really make the decision whether or not she'll cope with whatever treatment you go for. Bearing in mind the weight of the hound is generally born on the front, losing a rear limb might be marginally 'better' than a front leg. Lastly, do you feel it's ok to put an 11 year old through any treatment, amputation or not? For me, it's always been about quality of life in terms of what decisions we made. She may be ok with something like a K-9 Cart, and being lighter in weight than some Bassets, to her advantage. With a young hound, this decision (amputation) would be less of a hard decision but with an oldie, is it fair and what would be the prognosis re cancer spread.

I don't envy you having to make this decision. Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,222 Posts
1. a single leg amputation will not require the use of a wheel chair they can get along fine on 3 legs. It will likely prevent her from jumping op on furniture. and she will require assistance like a rear support harness to negotiate stairs. WHEN my harrier ran into a dump truck an tore ligaments in fornt and rear legs on the same side. He was soft cast and prevented intial; from using either leg. He actual was able to get along quite well on two legs though blancve wise he was better the faster he went.




 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Hi all,

First post - I have an 11 year old tri-color basset named Penny. She is the runt of the litter so on the smaller size weighing in about 50 pounds.
She had a grade 1 soft tissue sarcoma surgically removed in January 2021 that has unfortunately popped back up. I had a phone consult with a specialist today that said typically if it pops back up once it will continue to do so faster and more aggressive than before, and the best option is both surgery and radiation for an 80%+ success rate but it’s going to cost over $10,000 and just isn’t something we can afford.
I’m bringing her in January 3rd to get her ultrasounds so we make sure this second round hasn’t spread. Assuming it hasn’t we’ll have a surgery consult shortly thereafter and are considering amputation. My fear with this is that when we brought her in Sunday to look at the newest lump the vet pressed on her back and said her spine is soft, advising us to no longer allow her to go up and down our stairs and try to limit her jumping on and off the couches.
The most important thing to me is quality of life for my sweet girl, and I fear rear leg amputation is going to be extremely difficult on her deteriorating back. I‘m not totally confident that her personality would do well with a wheelchair, but maybe I’ll be surprised? I know no one can give me answers, maybe it just feels better to type it out, but if anyone does have advice I would so welcome it.
I understand you are between a rock and hard place. As if you do get rid of the leg then the cancer is gone but deterioration is a big factor due to age of your beloved dog.My thoughts would be (as was a fitness instructor before retire) how fit is your pooch now? Mine is very fit but i excericize him a lot still even though he is 10 and has about 10 percent of his 100 percent vision left ie he mostly blind but it seems not to bother him. So if your dog is very fit before the cancer her body will have good memory to recover and I think the prognosis could be good. Also if on a good diet etc. There is water therapy which is good for amptaion all in all a lot of time energy money and most of all love is needed around the clock. I feel that if you have a good reputable quality vet and his advice is sound and you can afford what it entails and are 100% confident in what he say and can go along with the after care he tells you to then I would say go with surgery. What is the character of your baby does she adapt well to changes? has she been ill before and recovered well? It's a bit like with people ie someone very sickly and old who is bed bound will and could deteriorate after surgery but someone of a similar age who has strong constitution etc may do well.Also try not to beat yourself up about whatever choice you make as you will always make the right one because you love her and in your heart of hearts know what the best answer is..if you still struggling to make a choice try sleeping on it after you have made a decision and see if you still feel comfotable with it in the morning. Good luck:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I’m sorry I never followed up! We’ve brought Penny to multiple doctors, most recently making the 6 hour trip to the University of Missouri to meet with their oncology team about a potential clinical trial. The doctor asked if we considered amputation, and I told her the Radiology Oncologist we took her to near our home said she wasn’t a candidate due to her age and being a basset. The doctor asked if she had met with a neurologist or orthopedic surgeon (we had not) and they evaluated her on the spot. They find her to be a fantastic candidate for amputation outside of needing to drop a few pounds. So we’ve got her on a diet of 662 calories a day, and we’ll be bringing her back out on 3/28 for surgery. I’m confident if we didn’t do the surgery she wouldn’t be around much longer given the rate the tumor is growing. The doctor said the amputation will be harder on us than her, and she’ll likely adapt in 2-3 days. The doctor also said the ‘bad back’ would be resolved by dropping some weight, and didn’t think removing her back leg would have a negative impact. Penny is not your normal basset - runt of the litter, pretty active and will chase a squirrel with the best of them. At 11.5 years old she is a ‘young’ basset - we had a basset that died a few years ago at 8 years old and Penny still looks and acts younger than our girl that passed did at 8.
Finding info on basset tripods online has been difficult, so I will certainly do my best to post some photos and share how she’s doing for future basset parents that are debating amputation for their pup.
Thank you everyone that responded!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Hi all,

First post - I have an 11 year old tri-color basset named Penny. She is the runt of the litter so on the smaller size weighing in about 50 pounds.
She had a grade 1 soft tissue sarcoma surgically removed in January 2021 that has unfortunately popped back up. I had a phone consult with a specialist today that said typically if it pops back up once it will continue to do so faster and more aggressive than before, and the best option is both surgery and radiation for an 80%+ success rate but it’s going to cost over $10,000 and just isn’t something we can afford.
I’m bringing her in January 3rd to get her ultrasounds so we make sure this second round hasn’t spread. Assuming it hasn’t we’ll have a surgery consult shortly thereafter and are considering amputation. My fear with this is that when we brought her in Sunday to look at the newest lump the vet pressed on her back and said her spine is soft, advising us to no longer allow her to go up and down our stairs and try to limit her jumping on and off the couches.
The most important thing to me is quality of life for my sweet girl, and I fear rear leg amputation is going to be extremely difficult on her deteriorating back. I‘m not totally confident that her personality would do well with a wheelchair, but maybe I’ll be surprised? I know no one can give me answers, maybe it just feels better to type it out, but if anyone does have advice I would so welcome it.
I was previously fitness instructor like another said here and I feel the same way..one size does not fit all. So how fit was your dog before these issues ? If your dog was walked a lot etc as some of them like mine are very fit he is male and can go long way for a 10 yr old as he was walked a lot in his youth etc if this is the case with your dog I would say go ahead with amputation and also if you have round the clock special one to one care available for her recovery ie people you trust if you can not be there and you can afford the best treatment for her ie not skipping out on what vet recomends not saying you would do this but I have known of people doing this and the result is not good. From what I here you say you sound like loving and responsible pet owners able to give her the best and 11 is not that old is she is already before that as I say reasonably fit she may do ok. I think it is worth an shot for sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
On our way home with our new Tripawd Penny! She had surgery yesterday - as of this morning they weren’t totally sure she’d be discharged by this afternoon as she wasn’t eating, but they eased her off some medication and by the afternoon she was moving around with sling assistance and eating/drinking. The vet said she she expects Penny to be walking without the sling in 3-5 days, and she doesn’t see any reason why Penny won’t make a total recovery like most dogs do in 3-6 weeks getting up and down stairs and furniture - will just be a bit different of a style than she’s used to.

We are SO happy we made this decision - it’s hard to find three legged bassets, I think because most vets (like the first ones we went to) told us they’re not candidates due to their body composition. I’m thankful we fought for her care and thought outside the box, bringing her to the University of Missouri to inquire about some clinical trials and walking out being told not only can her leg be amputated, but after meeting with a neurologist and orthopedic surgeon she was a GREAT candidate for it!

For other Basset owners if your vet is telling you your dog isn’t a candidate, go see a specialist (ideally an orthopedic surgeon) to asses your pup. If you’re within driving distance of University of Missouri we can’t recommend them enough - the 6 hour drive was WORTH it! We’ll do our best to post updates about Penny on here so that when other people google three legged basset hounds or wonder if they can have quality of life after amputation, hopefully Penny’s story will give them some hope. 😊
Dog Dog breed Comfort Carnivore Companion dog
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
My four year Basset was diagnosed with metastatic carcinoma in February. The carcinoma appears to be in his lymph system. The vets say it is inoperable. Every day Harlan lives is a blessing.
Wheel Tire Dog Vertebrate Dog breed
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top