Free canine rehab program grant #103 from the Maggie Moo Fund for Tripawd Rehab went to Tripawds Community member mrenzi. The evaluation and at-home exercises will help front leg Tripawd Griffin stay strong. Read his story, and learn how you can get a free veterinary rehab evaluation for your dog or cat.
Griffin is a 7-year-old male neutered Labrador Retriever Rottweiler mix breed dog who has been hopping on three legs since 2018. He was taken to the clinic I work for by his prior family after being hit by a car in which he only suffered minor lacerations. Despite medical advice, his family choose to neglect daily bandage care and resulted in his right thoracic limb becoming necrotic. His family elected to surrender him to our hospital’s care and afterwards we performed a forelimb amputation.
After his successful surgery with my team, I decided to adopt Griffin and promise him no more bad days. Griffin is the most resilient dog I have ever met, and I absolutely love talking about his happy ending with me and my family. As Griffin has gotten older, he continues to be his happy and healthy self, but we would like to strengthen his body to provide him with the best mobility moving forward.
Griffin’s Front Leg Canine Rehab Program
For Griffin’s at-home exercises we were instructed by Susan McIntyre, CCRP at Fit 4 Dog Home to do a standing challenge in which we gently push into his shoulders, ribs, abdominal cavity, and hips to challenge his balance prior to his daily walks. Another exercise is for him to back up 5 feet using his pelvic limbs and build up to 5-10 intervals over the next couple weeks. After 1 week of these exercises, we are instructed to do sit and stand exercises 3-5x and then build up to 10x. Lastly, a “paws up” exercise will be utilized as well which will be performed by placing his front paw on an elevated surface, allowing him to hold still for 30 seconds, 3-5x/day while using a treat as an incentive for focus. Attached is a document for further details.
NOTE: Every dog’s needs are different. Please consult a rehab therapist for a program designed to help your dog or cat.
We were given these specific canine rehab program exercises in the hopes to strengthen his quadriceps and provide more stabilization in his stifle. Griffin was recently diagnosed with a low-grade luxating patella that we are hoping to conservatively manage with PT vs. surgery. With veterinarian recommendations, we are going to try PT for 1-2 months to determine Griffin’s progress in stabilizing his patella and quadriceps.
From this experience, I have learned the importance of consistency in promoting canine fitness. Daily controlled exercise is key. It is going to take a few weeks before we see progress in Griffin’s strength and musculature, and it will only come with patience and consistency in his home program. We are excited to see his progress at his follow up in mid-June!
~ Margo and Griffin (aka: mrenzi)