Completely Frustrated!

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So we went to the orthopedic surgeon today to determine if Alexander would be a candidate for amputation. The doctor basically looked at him and said, “Dogs over 100 lbs do not do well with amputation in the front.” He also told us that if we anticipated what we were getting into and the work we would have to put in, then he might be okay….

So, I asked him about the structural integrity of Xander’s other leg. His front feet turn out like a ballerina, not all the way, but enough to concern me with the integrity of the leg. The doctor said he wouldn’t know until after he amputated. He then told us we could try bandaging up the hurt leg and see how Alex does on three legs. They took him in the back, tied the leg up (completely heartbreaking to see) and let us come back. Alex was scared out of his mind, but upon me calling him, he came to me on the three legs, stood and even backed up a little….

My heart says he has the strength to do this, my head tells me he may suffer. If damage would be done to the remaining leg, I wonder if it would be over a course of years (which he doesn’t have) or months…..

Time for a second opinion, from someone versed in Giant breeds……

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5 thoughts on “Completely Frustrated!”

  1. That nasty head/heart tug-of-war. In my case, my heart (and my gut) typically win.

    There are a number of giant breed amputees on this site so I’ll let those with the expertise speak on that.

    Not sure the surgeon was particularly sensitive, positive or very helpful (just very non-committal, perhaps?). Poor Alex – I can so visualize his confusion and fear when they tied up his leg.

    I do have to say he’s a beauty though.

  2. Hi! PLEASE, don’t let this get you down. I too was told by my regular vet that giant breeds can’t cut it with a front leg amputation. I was also told that Nova’s lean frame and leggyness made it worth taking the risk. I have never heard of taping up the leg to “see” if the dog can be a tripawd. I think ANY dog would be mortified if that was done to them. I don’t mean to get angry, but I would like that vet to take a look at Tripawds and see all of the front leg giant breed dogs that did AWESOME.

    I am here to be your “Danes Can Do It” cheerleader…. please email me anytime at so I can help you through this.

    Nova’s Mom Sue

  3. I would think that taping up the leg would be COMPLETELY different than actually having it amputated…because, well – the leg is still there! It’s throwing Xander off balance, he KNOWS the leg is there, and he’s probably scared out of his mind as to why he can’t use it! Many dogs here are giant breed dogs and do amazingly well…I would listen to Sue – she’s pretty smart 😉 Good luck!!

    <3 Laura and Jackers

  4. You should check out Cemil, too. At 148 lbs and a front amp he does quite well. The ambassador of the dog park.

    Rachel(Major’s mom)

  5. In Cemil’s blog (“Cemil Meets New Folks”–way down on the list because I haven’t posted in awhile), there are lots of pictures and a few videos of him hopping around. He doesn’t seem to have too much trouble at all. He’s not quite as tall as a Dane, but as heavy. I’d say Xander will do fine. He may need to build up some strength in his remaining leg and learn how to turn and lie down and such, but he’ll amaze you with his abilities. Try not to worry…


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