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Old 02-08-2018, 03:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
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Unhappy What is the quality of life after leg amputation

So it looks like my little girl has two options left as her leg doesn't seem to be healing. Euthanize or amputation.. before deciding I need to know what kind of quality of life will she have if she under goes surgery for amputation of her front left leg. I have two concerns about it one is the recovery process and time, and since its a front leg will she have a harder time adjusting to the change. I don't want her to cause any further damage elsewhere like her chin, teeth or face.

Does anyone have experience with this? I have two weeks to determine if the current treatment is making a difference before making a decision. Please help, an info is good info.
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm sorry to hear you guys are facing this.

How old is your hedgie? Age can play a lot into how their quality of life may be afterwards - older hedgehogs may have a harder time healing after major surgery.

Other than that, if she seems in pretty good health otherwise, I'd say it's probably worth trying the amputation. Most hedgehogs seem to adjust fairly well to being three-legged once they heal up. Depending on if the vet is able to leave a bit of a stump, that can help as well, with balancing. But that obviously depends on the location of the issue.

My only personal experience with this is with hedgehogs from my boyfriend's rescue. He's had one 3-legger come in, but it was one of her back legs. Still, it didn't slow her down at all & she liked to bulldoze all over her cage.

He also had one girl who ended up with likely cancer on one of her feet. We chose to euthanize her, because she was an older hedgehog (4-4.5 years) and she already had a lot of health issues & a poor immune system. With her, we were worried that she would have a lot of difficulty healing after a major surgery & that it may just exacerbate her other issues.

I can't recall, do you know whether the spot is cancerous or not? That can also play into the decision - if the vet thinks amputation will get all of it & give her a fair amount of time afterwards, another plus in favor of that. If it's cancer & may be fast spreading or in other locations, might not be worth the stress & everything of surgery.

Good luck, I know this is a tough decision to be facing. I hope things will go well with the treatment.
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Old 02-15-2018, 03:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
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STELLAAA! is 2.5 years old. Over the last two weeks the wound seems to be improving, very slowly but there is new healthy pink skin and fur starting to regrow. I think we're almost out of the woods. As for the cancerous question we weren't able to do any tests on the skin as there was too much damage done at the beginning so we couldn't collect any sample. I don't think it was cancerous though and the vet felt the same based on the condition of the leg and the healing it has been doing.

I think the reason it had gotten so bad is she was trying to remove the bandage all the time. She is currently on amoxicillin and metacam. With regular applications of flamazine to help heal the remaining wound. She uses it no problem and is letting my apply the creams easily now with no fighting so I think it has just come down to a waiting game.

These kinds of wounds can take months to heal, but there seems to be no reason to amputate anymore. Luckily the vet was wrong about the leg tissue having become necrotic and Im super glad I decided to actually not listen to the vet and make a decision that could've changed her life or mine drastically.
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