Ella, the Three Legged Dog

Ella is a rat terrier, chihuaua mix. She lost a leg following a run in with a car (no word on how the car made out). My daughter has fallen in love with this dog, and dearly wants to get it.

Anyone have experience with a similar situation?

My parents have a 3-legged dog (Peanut), who they also found on Petfinder.

As far as the missing leg goes, he’s not much different from any other dog. He runs quite fast, and hops around easily. He keeps up with their other (larger) dog, and they love to wrestle and play. He also goes for walks with my dad & the other dog pretty much every day.

If your daughter loves her, and you’re willing to get a dog, she sounds like a very nice one to have!

We had a dog who lost a leg to cancer. He did great - much better than a human would do under the same circumstances. A little dog like that probably gets around beautifully, and since she lost the leg in an accident, she should have every bit as long and full a life as any other dog.

Three-legged dogs have no real problems except if it’s a rear leg, they can’t scratch behind the ear on that side. :smiley: So give extra scritches on that side and make sure there’s no fleas. I gotta say, though, that dog is not a beauty queen, so major kudos to your daughter for falling for her. Also–rat terror mix? You don’t have cats or other small pets, do you? Could be a problem if you do. If not, then I say go for it.

I have a Rat Terrier and he’s a great little guy. He’s a dedicated companion and loves people.

The vet surgeon that did the hip surgery on my puppy (TPO, and she’s doing great 2 years later) said they routinely only do the surgery for one hip, even if both are bad. His explanation is that dogs come with three legs and a spare. Many tripod dogs do just fine – especially little ones. You may, however, have to keep a close eye on her diet, so she doesn’t get overweight and put strain on her remaining legs.

My last dog lost one of his back legs to sinovial cell sarcoma. The operation cost a couple thousand dollars. Some of the best money I have ever spent.

Front legs are harder for them, since they bear the weight, but they get around just fine. And they don’t even realize they are missing them half the time. Presley used to go to pee and try to lift the good leg, and only then realize that he had to turn around, get the perfect aim again, and lift the invisible leg. Honestly, it was comedy gold.

If the dog was an asshole with four legs, it still will be with three. So don’t let sympathy dictate the decision, make sure you and the dog are a good fit. There weren’t any real special needs worth considering once the stump is healed, except for maybe lifting into the car instead of him jumping.

The three-legged dogs I’ve encountered all seemed to have no problems at all except for the few already mentioned.

I really only posted to share this YouTube video. If a dog can get around on two legs, three should be no problem. :eek:

I feel that this thread cannot be without a reference to Halvsie.

I agree. My mum’s collie/lab has been fine for years with only one front leg. Just keep an eye on the weight, check paws/legs regularly for cuts/bruises/scrapes (no spares left!) and bear in mind that smooth slippery floors, loose gravel, steep slopes etc. can cause problems for a dog with -25% traction.

I had a three-legged cat for many years, he had absolutely no trouble getting around and was frequently seen up and down trees chasing birds. He did have the occasional mishap trying to take a corner too fast on a tiled floor, but most of the time he seemed as quick, if not quicker, than his four-legged companions.

I’m guessing a dog wouldn’t have any problems at all.

We “adopted” Ella on Sunday, which cost about 4 times the normal adoption to cover some of her medical expenses. She is very sweet natured, gets around well enough (at least 75% efficiency), and as a bonus, does not bark or howl. Her only vocalizations are very quiet, which was my one concern, as I’m not much for “yappy” dogs.

Thanks for all of your input!

My Rat Terrier isn’t yappy, but will bark when somebody knocks on the door or something like that (he alerted me once in the middle of the night when my pickup was being broken into), or if he’s wound up for a play. He’s 12 and still likes to get down and roughhouse.

Good on ya for adopting little Ella, I hope everybody gets along for many years to come.

Good on you, shib. Need I say pics???

Might still be a pic in the link, if they haven’t disabled it. Otherwise it will be a while. Right now Ella and The Boy are curled up asleep. She looked up when I went in to check on them, but then put her head down and back to sleep.

They must have changed out the photo, because that dog has four legs.

I knew a three-legged border collie that worked as a goose chaser. He was a hellava dog.

No, they tried to save the leg at first, and had it in a cast. The front right leg is the one she lost. You can see in the photo she doesn’t have any weight on it. It’s the same dog.

I see. Poor thing. Kudos for taking her in.