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Tripawds Gear Fund Gives Emmett New Harness

Gear Fund Harness #3: Janet and Emmett

The third Ruffwear Web Master harness donated by the Tripawds Gear Fund went to  Janet (aka: emmett143) for her three legged Labrador Emmett in New Hampshire.

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About Emmett

My name is Emmett. I’m a four year old loving, happy-go-lucky Labrador, and I was sadly diagnosed with Osteosarcoma in my lower left front ulna bone on February 26th, 2018. My family was so sad when we got the news, because I’m still so young and full of life! I’d never had any health problems, so this was a shock!

I had started limping a little in the beginning of February, and my mom thought it was because I played too rough with a chunk of ice in our backyard. She wouldn’t let me out unless I was on my leash, and I wasn’t allowed to rough-house because she wanted it to heal. She even did cold compresses on it for me and wrapped it up for support. Then my ankle started to swell a couple of weeks later, and I could barely walk on it, so she took me to my doctor, and that was when we found out the terrible news. My mom cried for a week straight, she was so sad…she tried to hide it from me, but I could tell she was very sad.


I had to have my leg amputated on March 9th because it was hurting so bad, and we didn’t want to give the cancer any longer to have a chance to spread – even though we know it could still spread with my leg gone. They tried to get it done sooner, but there was confusion with whether my doctor could do it or not, so my mom and family took me to a special doctor to do it…not to mention my family wasn’t prepared to have to pay all that money. It’s been three weeks since my leg was amputated, and everyone says I’ve adjusted well. I was used to not walking on that leg anyways, it was just getting in my way of playing before…now that I’m almost healed I can play a little better!

I did try to play a little too soon after my surgery, and I got a Seroma on part of my incision, that I snuck and licked at a few times, which caused it to become infected. But my mom brought me back to my doctor and I’ve been taking medicine for it, so it’s a lot better now. I’m almost completely off my pain medicine now, too! I don’t like that stuff, it makes me feel weird and sleepy.


I go to see another doctor on April 3rd, I hear they are called an Oncologist. That doctor is going to want to give me medicine to hopefully kill any cancer cells that might still be in my body. Something called Carboplatin, and they are saying I may need it four times. Hopefully my family can come up with the money for that, because I know how much they love me and don’t want to lose me at such a young age…I still have a lot of puddles to hop in with my boys!


Oh yeah, and my mom also got in touch with the very nice people at Tripawds and applied for a Ruffwear Harness grant for me, so when we go for walks or hiking or fishing, or car rides or anything really – they can help me if I’m having trouble with my balance…and she actually got it! It feels a little weird at first, I’ve never worn anything like it – but I can’t wait to wear it when we go places so they can help me get around easier!

Thank you Tripawds for my harness and supporting me in this, I feel like a special pup and am looking forward to kicking cancer’s butt!

With Love,

Emmett Mussey Johnston, aka: emmett143

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3 thoughts on “Tripawds Gear Fund Gives Emmett New Harness”

  1. EMMETT, YOU LOOK SOOOO HANDSOME IN YOUR “BEST”!! You really know how to look like a very stylish model! 🙂

    Imkmkw you jate the cone, but you look absoe ADORABLE with yiur stuffy baby! Nothing’s gon a come between you and your stuffy!!

    My Happy Hannah jad four rounds of Carboplatin too. She sailed throuh it with no issues. Sometimes dogs get an upset tummy for a day or two, but yiur Vet will give you Cerenia for tjat if needed.

    A d ya’ know what? It’s still early in recovery and it gets better and better!! 🙂

    Cheering for you Emmett!

    Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

  2. Our 8 year old yellow lab was diagnosed with bone cancer also four years ago. We thought the same thing-he had stepped into a hole in the field while retrieving his ball and developed a limp. We took him to vet and got xray-showed a hairline fracture. Did a series of laser treatments twice a week and he seemed back to normal-no limping. We were advised to keep his jumping and retrieving down due to the fracture. A few months later, he developed the limp again, this time with a knot on his tibia(front leg bone of front right leg). We were referred to an oncology team in Richmond, VA. When the two oncologists looked at him-I asked them for their gut feeling-up front, and they said they both thought it was bone cancer. We had the bone biopsy done, chest Xrays. The chest xrays came back clear-which is misleading, because we don’t have equipment available at this time to spot microscopic cancer cells in the lungs. A few days later, the oncologist called me with the results it was bone cancer. We thought we had prepared ourselves for bad news-but that was the farthest thing from the truth, as we were devastated. We had set a plan up just in case-and he was pampered, fed all of his favorite foods, plenty of treats in between. We even gave him an early birthday party-with vanilla ice cream(just a scoop)-his favorite. Three weeks later, and while he was on 3 pain meds-which he hated to take as they made him loopy, we had to let him cross the rainbow bridge. We knew the tumor was painful-as he had licked it all night and created an ulcer on his leg. That evening, we turned him over to God and relieved his pain. We did this out of love-as bone cancer eats the bone from the inside out-causing it to splenter-and we were afraid if we didn’t let him go, he could step on it at any time and it would snap. Every animal, every family has different circumstances and has to weigh all of their options and do what is right for their pet. I have over 25 years experience in dealing with patience in the emergency medical services field and I tell petowners the same thing I tell family members who call for my advice; When you come to that fork in the road, you have to ask yourself, are you prolonging life or prolonging death? Hope this helps someone who has to make that decision. We know, it is not an easy one-whether you are dealing with a pet or a family member-but then again, aren’t they the same? God Bless.


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