German Shepherd Dog > Tail Amputation (12 replies)
by aceofspades on 09 April 2012 - 19:39
|This question isn't for my German Shepherd, but a small mutt that adopted us about a year ago. We had an accident a couple of weeks ago that resulted in the need to amputate her tail. I took the dressings off today and well, I don't know what I was expecting to see, but holy hannah it looks ouchie. I put her buster collar back on her and she is in her crate. The stitches are not supposed to come out for another week. She has a week of antibiotics left and one syringe of pain medication. The vet didn't give us any special instructions. Just wondering if anyone has advice on making her more comfortable. She has about 3" of her tail left, she weighs ten pounds and is one year old. Will it look better after the air dries out the tip of the tail where it is stitched? Should I ask the vet for another few days of pain meds? She only just started to perk up yesterday...up until then she was keeping a pretty low profile, but yesterday she was out running around. I can tell now that i've removed the dressing that she is in pain again. I gave her one syringe of medicine and put her i her crate for now.|
I feel like this is such an amateur question. i have dealt with my fair share of injuries on a dog, but never a tail which i understand can be particularty tough to heal.
thanks in advance, and I hope no one minds me posting in the GSD forum....it just gets the most knowledgeable traffic.
by Sunsilver on 09 April 2012 - 20:02
|I would wrap it again to protect it from banging into things and causing her pain.|
I would also ask the vet to take a quick look at it. It could be infected. Is it oozing still, or does it look clean and dry? If it's oozing, the vet definitely should have a look-see!
by aceofspades on 09 April 2012 - 20:41
|it is not dry, but not oozing. I figured that was from being wrapped and was going to give it the day and see if it dried up. It doesn't appear to be infected.....I've had a lot of experience dealing with infections.....but not amputated tails. If it doesn't dry up today then I will take her in. She is resting comfortably right now and aside from the pain of removing the bandages and the pain immediately after she seems comfortable now. I was going to re wrap it before bed tonight, i have gauze and vet wrap on hand all the time. If it doesn't look any better by morning I will pop back in to the vet. They are closed today for easter monday.|
by dragonfry on 09 April 2012 - 22:38
|I have a dog that lost nearly all her tail to an accident (American Bulldog) It took a while to heal up because a lot of the skin was damaged. But that was 6 or 7 years ago and she's never had a problem with it since. Just keep it clean and dry. A few light bandage changes may help it dry out faster. And if you have any Novasans soulation that will help keep it bacteria free.|
Mainly keep her from messing with it. The vet i use to work for had a police K-9 shepherd destroy his tail and the resulting amputation took months to heal cause the idiot would not leave it alone.
He destroyed more e-collars, muzzles, bandages, and even being cramped in a tiny kennel he could barely turn around in he still mamaged to make a mess of his tail. I think they started using valium on his crazy ass.
Best of luck with you little dogs recovery.
by aceofspades on 09 April 2012 - 23:03
|Yeah she isn't fighting the buster collar, I a keeping her crated so it doesn't get dirty. I do not have novasans solution. Where can I buy that? I generally just use Bactine or Betadine for cleaning, but a tail amputation is just so much different than i have ever dealt with. i feel like I am dealing with an alien, and I have never been so grossed out either. LOL. I've nursed some pretty major wounds back to healing and never been grossed out, but I early fainted trying to remove the dressing, my husband had to do it and I couldn't look. LOL.|
Thanks for the help. Between the stitched skin at the tip and the shaved tail i am skeeved right out.
by srbarabs on 09 April 2012 - 23:24
If you want air to it, but also want to protect it, why not a finger protector for people. Years ago, I had a pretty nasty cut on my pointer finger. It probably shoud have been stitched, but I would not go. A friend of mine told me to use the finger protector. It was rigid plastic tip, with 4 wings that came down from the tip and fit over the finger. You could leave space at the tip, and you taped the wings to your finger to keep it in place.
by Jenni78 on 09 April 2012 - 23:47
|Yep, finger splints are what I use for my Pit Bull's recurring "happy tail" episodes where he paints my house in blood, lol. I also use Vetericyn and that definitely seems to speed the healing.|
by Blitzen on 10 April 2012 - 00:09
An empty syringe case will work too. It's lighter and most dogs don't seem to notice it.
by aceofspades on 10 April 2012 - 00:13
|Brilliant. Never in a gazillion years would I have come up with that on my own. That is exactly what I will use. I probably even have a finger splint in my human first aid kit.|
by Jenni78 on 10 April 2012 - 01:24
|Empty syringe is a good idea, too; it does let some air in but protects it 360 degrees. I may try that one as well. I can't get Simon to leave the splint intact if I'm at work. Not that he'll leave the syringe alone, but it offers more protection at least while he does wear it. Been trying for a few years to avoid amputation. He opens it up every 6mos. or so. My walls look like an episode of Dexter.|
by Blitzen on 10 April 2012 - 03:03
|Use just the syringe case, Jen.|
by Jenni78 on 10 April 2012 - 03:10
|Yes. I was thinking of cutting the tip off of one so it could breathe. I'm excited to try it now. LOL How sad is that? That's exciting to me these days!|
by Jinxy on 10 April 2012 - 14:42
|When my boy had his toe amputated we changed his bandage daily, starting two days after surgery and let it air any time we were able to supervise him. I work from home though so was able to monitor him. But even an hour a day of airing is better than none. The vet also a week after surgery had us cleaning off any crusty bits around the stitches, not getting the stitches wet, but with a guaze pad with their antiseptic soap gently wiping around the area. Sounds like it is really soft and yuck looking from being bandaged and once it airs a bit will not look as bad. Also make sure that if you smell an off odor to let the vet know asap and any discharge yellow or green.. You may need to take her in and have the techs give it a good cleaning. The vet was impressed with how his foot looked with this protocol and he healed in record time.|