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Lessons Learned

Hemingway the newly christened Tripawd

Post #11

I’ve only had 3 dogs share my journey in life. I have learned so much from each of them. My first dog was a Boston Terrier. I had NO idea what I was doing. He was a sweet boy who taught me that we should play tug o war with our best friend every single day, that we should set goals and jump them and then set higher goals, and to always snuggle with those you love, especially when they don’t feel well. Below is Spanky. He was part of my life for 16 years.

Spanky, my first fur baby.

It took me YEARS to get a dog again. I was blessed to be able to get my beagle brothers, Hemingway and Ziggy. Ziggy has taught me how to take care of myself when I have anxiety, and how to persevere when I’m not feeling confident. He’s shown me how to find the good in life when I’m afraid. He taught me how to love unconditionally.

Ziggy, my anxiety dog!

And Hemingway. He taught me how to enjoy life every day, to love myself for who I am, to stick to things even when they are hard and n er give up. I am amazed by him every single day. An amputation isn’t keeping him from trying, and he’s not giving up. It’s been 2 1/2 weeks since surgery. He’s already figured out how to manage the low stairs with wide runs, use the bathroom without falling over, “chase” after his brother to barroooo during the twilight bark, and make a blanket nest with 3 legs.

I was so sad and so scared of the surgery, and he came out wagging his tail. I’ve been scared to let him try things, yet he’s met obstacles with confidence. I feel like I’m holding him back from being a happy beagle when I help him get on the couch, or the bed, or keep him on a leash at night so I can help him if he wakes. I hope I can take the lessons learned from all my boys into this next stage of this journey we call life.

Hemingway receiving his first post op card.

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Stitches Out!

Post #10

December 13,2033

Hemingway had his stitches out today! The vet said he has the best looking amputation scar this week so far! Clean, no problems, no irritations, no seroma. Pajamas worked!

Another week of some short walks and learning how to use the stairs. I’m worried about the steeper steps that go down downstairs and the steps to the bed. Everyone says they figure it out…

I’m grateful to have him with me to continue the journey through this life. No more gifts are needed this season. 🐾❤️

We took a picture at the Vet’s office by the Christmas tree before we waved goodbye.

Today, Hemingway got a letter from our family friend. I don’t think any of my furnabies have received cards before!

The boys are happy to be doing some things together again.

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Good News!!


December 7,2023

I received a message from Hemingway’s oncologist today. Margins are clear and free of any cancer! The tumor was intermediate grade so very low risk of spread. My heart is lightened. Now to get this boy healed up and rehabbed and ready to be a happy go lucky dog again! Three legged beagle 🐾+1 paw mark.


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Post #7

December 3, 2023

Just a beagle in his jammies recovering. Ziggy, his brother, has been very good about giving space. He knows he isn’t feeling well.

Hemingway slept all night, some wiggles here and there. We got up at 5 to give him a dose of gabapentin. A bit of ham helped the medicine go down! I hope the recovery is quick and easy as it can be when amputation happens.

His tail never stops wagging.

Post #8

December 4, 2023

Hemingway is resting comfortably this evening. We took the fentanyl patch off. So now it’s just gabapentin and meloxidyl.

When I came home from work he made his crying sounds, wagged his tail, and when I sat down he smothered my face with his. He missed me during the day and I missed him.

Feeling guilty hasn’t left me yet. I’m guessing that takes time. In the meantime, I looking at ways to home rehabilitate so that he has an excellent quality of life. He is worth a luxury car… at least. ♥️His worth is actually immeasurable.

Amputation surgery

Post #4 Nov 30, 2023

Things are moving fast. Tomorrow morning Hemingway will have his amputation surgery.

I have this intense sadness because he doesn’t understand why or what is happening. He is my baby. So absolutely loving, snuggly, and happy. I have solace in knowing that what we are doing will save him from a painful experience that would eventually (within weeks to a few months) take his life. I go from intense sobbing to acceptance and relief like a yo-yo.

I don’t know what to expect, what I need to do, or how to do this.

Thank you for everyone who has shared their stories about their tripawed friends. I’m going to be reading a lot. It’s what I do to try and cope. The more I know and understand the more it helps give me some me peace.

Right rear Leg will be amputated. The cancer grew so quickly. I didn’t have time to process anything.

The lump at the first aspiration

Post #5 December 1, 2023

Hemingway is out of surgery and recovering. They removed his leg to the hip. There is testing being done to make sure all the cancer was removed. If so, then we just need to heal. This should heal up in 2-3 weeks.

He spit out his breathing tube, looked around and layed his head back down.

He has lots of pain medications to ensure he doesn’t have pain. Nerve blockers that will last several days. A pain patch, gabapentin… I ordered some post surgery body suits and a new extended body harness with a handle in the middle so we can pick him up. We’ll get an underbelly strap that we can use to help him get around until he gets his bearings from the vet. We cannot get him until tomorrow. They’ll transition him from intravenous pain meds to the patch tonight and before he goes home, and tryto get him walking.

He’s officially become a tripawd dog. Now I need the patch.

Thank you, SAGE Veterinary Centers – Concord

Hemingway came out of surgery and wagged his tail when he saw me. I was filming him and I ended up dropping my phone and hugging him.

as an alternative to the dreaded cone, we went with body suits and puppy PJs. It did the trick! His brother, Ziggy, can’t bother the stitches either.

Post #6 December 2, 2023

Hemingway is now home, snoring. We came home, drank a lot of water, went outside to pee and 💩 and that took all his energy.

He is such a sweet sweet boy. Every day should improve as he regains his mobility and builds strength in the back leg.

Everyone here is happy and exhausted. I will be taking lots of naps with my boys.

Now to work on getting a couple of pounds off of him to ensure we don’t wear out the other joints prematurely.

I bought him some body-suits to keep him from picking on stitches and to keep his brother from licking him. They had Christmas ones!

Thank you again, SAGE Veterinary Centers – Concord for taking care of my sweet baby.

Ziggy is just glad it wasn’t him…

Hope for Hemingway the Hound! is brought to you by Tripawds.