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Tripawd Yorkie Champ is a Canine Rehab Champion

Tripawd Yorkie Champ benefits from free canine rehab evaluation and exercises thanks to Tripawds Foundation Rehab Grant #176. The free consultation and at-home rehab exercises help Champ stay strong and love life on three legs. Read his story, and learn how you can get a free veterinary rehab evaluation for your dog or cat.

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Yes! Tri-kitties qualify for free feline rehab too. See all Tripawds who have received free rehab sessions thanks to your support.

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Meet Champ, A True Tripawd Champion

Champ is an adorable Tripawd Yorkie mix, and his story starts in Texas where he was found as a stray with a badly broken leg in August, 2023. A rescue in Texas took Champ in and he had rear leg amputation surgery on October 10. From Texas, Champ was transported to Wagging Tails Rescue in Westchester, New York. I was lucky enough to adopt him on November 4. His age is unknown, but he is suspected to be about eight.

When I brought Champ home he appeared to have recovered remarkably well. He could walk, run, and climb without limitations. However, as I spent more time with Champ, I noticed subtle signs of his remaining back leg giving out when he was in a standing position. It was about the same time that I joined a Tripawd group on Facebook, heard about the Tripawds Foundation, and read about the importance of rehabilitation.

I scheduled a rehab appointment for Champ at Upstate Veterinary Specialists, and our first appointment took place with Dr. Laura Perez DVM, CVA, CCRT. Champ was so excited to go, and Dr. Perez and her team were super at making him feel comfortable and welcomed.

Champ’s Canine Rehab Consultation

They began the appointment with observations and measurements of Champ. Dr. Perez stressed the importance of keeping Tripawd Yorkie Champ at a healthy weight, and she calculated his recommended caloric intake. Dr. Perez then demonstrated a few exercises with Champ that I could work on at home to strengthen his remaining legs.

Tripawd Yorkie
Champ ducking under cavaletti poles.

Our first exercise was called “ducking under.” With this exercise, I have to lure Champ under an object (e.g., pole) so that he has to flex his legs to get under. It is recommended to do 5 repetitions of this exercise twice a day. Our second exercise is called “unstable surface walking .” With this exercise, I can use pillows to create an unstable surface. I then walk Champ across the surface so that he has to balance and think about each step. At the clinic they used a Balance Pad, and recommended he do 5 repetitions of this exercise twice daily.

Tripawd Yorkie
Champ on the Balance Pad

Our third exercise is called “sit to stand.” As its name suggests, it involves asking Champ to sit with his hind limb tucked under his pelvis, and then stand. It is recommended to do 5 repetitions of this exercise/2X’s daily to increase strength. Dr. Perez also suggested I use a warm pack on Champ’s hip area and extend it parallel to the ground 4 times, twice daily.

Champ thoroughly enjoyed his first rehab visit. We are performing his exercises daily and will follow-up with Dr. Perez in six weeks. I learned from the appointment how important it is for Champ to maintain a healthy weight and keep his remaining joints strong and flexible.

I am extremely fortunate to have rescued Tripawd Yorkie Champ, and I look forward to watching Champ prosper by my side in his new life in New York. He may be one leg less, but it’s his heart, soul, and determination that make him a true champion.

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At Home Rear Limb Tripawd Rehab Program

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