Today we meet the incredible Tanya and her beautiful boy Joey. Joey is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever who was found at 6 weeks of age with his rear legs intentionally cut off. Tanya tells us about her experience adopting a special needs pup and shares some great advice for others with an amputee dog.
Tanya has been so inspired by her experience adopting a special needs dog that she has started a non-profit called Joey's P.A.W. (P.A.W. stands for Prosthetic and Wheelchairs). They provide partial or full funds for dogs that are in need of a prosthetic or a wheelchair. More about Joey’s P.A.W and how you can support their cause later.
What is a regular day like with a double amputee dog?
Our weekday mornings start super early. We let all of our six fur kids out to go to the bathroom and then they head back in for their breakfast. Once they're done eating they head back out to make sure everyone has had a chance go to the bathroom.
Can you say playtime? They usually play till everyone is exhausted then they sleep for a while. During the day we take them on errand runs and sometimes they even get puppachinos! If its nice out in the summer they will spend the day outside playing, running and sunbathing in the sun. During the winter Joey loves to be in the snow, run in the snow and eat the snow! We can't get him inside most days.
Weekday afternoons and evenings are loud and crazy in our house. Dad comes home from work. Bark Bark Bark!!! I feed them at around the time that Dad comes home so he gets to take them out to go to the bathroom and play for a while. They usually just relax in the evenings either by the fire in the winter or outside in the summer.
Weekends the "dog" alarm clock goes off same time on the weekend as it does during the week. We usually try and get our stuff done as quickly as we can in the morning so we can spend as much time with Joey and the other fur kids as possible. We are house hunting right now. We are looking for a flat back yard for Joey and his siblings. Joey likes to go to the bottom of our hill in the back and has a hard time getting back up some days.
What kind of mobility aids have you tried with Joey?
When we adopted Joey he wore two prosthetic legs. Unfortunately, he got a severe infection that lasted for 2.5 months which ended up with a femoral amputation for the one nub. He now wears one rear prosthetic daily.
He has a dog wheelchair from Handicappedpets.com that he likes and is getting used to just in case he ever needs it. We got Joey a new prosthetic last year from Derrick at Animal Ortho Care in Sterling Virginia. He created an AMAZING prosthetic for him that he just loves and does not cause any sores on his nub.
What other advice would you offer someone with an amputee dog?
Having a prosthetic can lead to a lot of rubbing wounds. We found that Colloidal Silver Soap and Colloidal Silver Spray really helps the healing process. When it's raining or snowing outside we use a waterproof cover called Medipaw. It is a great cover to keep Joeys prosthetic dry.
My advice to anyone would be if you are going to have a special needs dog allow your self time to adjust to a new normal that will be in your life. It will take you longer to do things so adjust your schedule ahead of time. Your life will be different but the absolute joy, happiness and love you get from that dog is PRICELESS!!
Tanya started the non-profit called Joey's P.A.W to provide partial or full funding for dogs that are in need of a prosthetic or a wheelchair. They promote the adoption of special needs dog and even have a section on their website listing special needs dogs that are currently looking for their forever home. If you would like to help this great cause head to their website to donate or find other ways to help dogs in need.