Six Legged Dog Date with Paris

Wyatt meets Paris aka Tripawds member GineejThat Wyatt dawg had the pleasure of meeting another inspawrational canine cancer suvivor when Paris visited Colorado with her pack. Better known as gineej in the discussion forums, her people met up with Jim and René a few weeks back. Of course, everyone had there cameras. Gineej posted her movies from the fun visit in the forums, and my pack has finally gotten around to posting this video.

Better late than never, eh? 🙂

Even though her cancer has returned to her Lungs, Paris shows no sign of slowing down at the high altitude dog park in Fort Collins, CO.  This video interview  shares the story of her osteosarcoma diagnosis, amputation surgery, treatment. It also shows her amazing spirit and that hoppy Tripawd smile we love to see so much.

Tripawds Take Over Colorado Dog Park

First Tripawds Pawty Longmont, CO Group PhotoToday is a day that will go down in the history books as the largest Tripawd gathering ever!

What an amazing day it was at our first ever Tripawds gathering in Longmont, Colorado. When we planned this party, we figured we’d be really fortunate if a dozen Tripawds showed up. What an incredible sight it was to see Tripawd after Tripawd coming through the dog park gates!

Wyatt and Jim Meet the Press at Longmont Tripawd PartyWe believe we had 30 Tripawds attend, but my silly pawrents forgot to bring a guest book so we’ll never know for sure. There were so many incredible pawrents and Tripawds of all sizes stopping by all day, we wish that we had more time to get to know each and every one better.20090816w_lily-clayjodi05

We should have some great local newspaper coverage out of this, thanks to Tripawd Lily and her pawrents Clay and Jody, who handled public relations for the event. And our hero Tika gets the award for traveling the farthest for the pawty, all the way from eastern Kansas, an eight hour drive!

Tika and Her Pack at Longmont Tripawds PartyWe can’t thank everyone enough for taking time out to gather with us today. We hope that more of you can come out for our next one sometime in the future.

Better yet, how about planning a Tripawd Pawty in your town?

BiTripawds Big and Small Athena and PivotMore pictures are posted on our Tripawds Facebook Page.

Tripawds Pawty in Longmont, Colorado, on 8/16

Three Legged Agility Dog SerenaOn Sunday, August 16, our inspirational Tripawds and their humans are gathering at Longmont’s Dog Park #2 to show the world that “It’s Better to Hop on Three Legs Than Limp on Four.”

This is our first official Tripawds get-together, and we hope to make it an annual thing. Friends and family are invited, including those of the four legged variety. Festivities start at 11 am. Nothing formal, just a group of dogs getting together to have a great time at the park. Beverages will be provided and if you can make it, be sure to bring a snack to share.

To chat with others about it and stay current on updates, please visit our Tripawds Pawty Forum Thread.

Longmont Dog Park #2:

Located at Airport Road and St.Vrain Roads. Parking is provided at the site (behind the Public Works facility at 375 Airport Road). This fenced-in park includes a water spigot and shade shelters. Dog bags are provided

PBS Viewers’ Stories: Life with Stormy, by Greg Hess

Greg Hess and StormyHere’s another touching story we learned about, after we were featured in the PBS show, Why We Love Cats and Dogs.

Greg Hess, a viewer from Colorado, wrote to us and shared his story about a deep  commitment he made to his senior dog Stormy, whose health was in rapid decline at the same time that Greg lost his job. Greg and Stormy’s story is so beautiful, we had to share it with you. He writes:

“Rene and Jim,

I am truly sorry for your loss. What great Being Jerry was for everyone he came in contact with. I feel that your story has a very significant message too. That is, your commitment to Jerry in his time of need. Your willingness to do what it took to give him a life that many animals will never know.

I concluded in much the same way, that my own dog needed that kind of commitment. About a year and half ago, I lost my job. While thinking about the next move, I wondered how the next job would impact my our 14 ½ year old Beagle, Stormy. It dawned on me that since both my spouse and me would be gone all day, his life would mostly be just laying around being board. And in Colorado, it’s dark and cold for many months so trying to get out for a walk at night wasn’t very promising.

It wasn’t easy to commit to that. Even with the support of my spouse, losing income and one’s place in the work world presents some difficult hurdles to overcome. But the life we were able to provide Stormy for those 18 months was incredible. He went ‘everywhere’ with me. People new him from one end of the city to the other. He ate with us, walked with us, slept with us, there seemed to be no reason to exclude him from anything in our lives.

We had to have Stormy euthanized in January 2009. Like you, as his health declined, it became clear from our vet visits, that there were too many unknowns about his condition, which was probably a brain tumor or, the beginning of kidney failure. So we decided to just do everything possible to make his life good until it was time. I simply couldn’t put him through massive testing, prodding and poking to gain a couple of days or weeks.

So a grateful thanks for sharing your story. It’s really felt like I’ve been out on the fringe of society by taking off so much time to be with Stormy. His passing (as I’m sure Jerry’s did) has left such a large hole in our lives. I guess the more time one spends, the more threads we interweave between our pet’s lives and us. Perhaps it’s an unfortunate byproduct of losing Stormy, but it’s created a profound sadness in me for all the other Beings on our planet that will not come close to experiencing what dogs like Jerry and Stormy had.”

Here is a beautiful essay Greg wrote about Stormy:

Continue reading PBS Viewers’ Stories: Life with Stormy, by Greg Hess

Big Woofs Up for New Mutts Treasury!

Mutts Comic Strip Featured On PBS NatureViewers of Nature’s Why We Love Cats and Dogs should remember the scene where Jim and René mention a comic strip taped to the back of their medicine cabinet door. It shows Ozzie wondering what time it is, and Earl the dog answering with a resounding Now! Now! Now! Now! Now!

Being huge Mutts fans, they were excited to hear about the new Mutts Treasury from Patrick McDonnell featuring all our favorite furry friends from the funnies. Hoping it might include this strip, they requested a review copy  from Andrews McMeel publishing who kindly obliged. And guess what? Check out page 40!

Needless to say, my people were excited to review Stop and Smell the Roses. And they loved it! Here is what they had to say… Continue reading Big Woofs Up for New Mutts Treasury!

2 Tripawds Pals Meet 2 Dogs Heroes

We sure love Twitter! Last week our pal Luke, of 2Dogs2000 Miles.org, Tweeted that he would be attending the “Everything Pets Expo” in Cincinnati, Ohio.Tripawds Friends Meet 2 Dogs Pals

We immediately thought of our Cinci friends Karen and Scott Weiland, and dropped them a line to let them know about Luke’s appearance.

Karen and Scott are pawrents of Maruk, a beloved Spirit Tripawd pal who lives on in our hearts here. Karen took her copy of the custom “Tripawd Heroes and Tributes” book we designed for her, which featured Maruk on the cover. Luke’s own Spirit Tripawd, Malcolm, is also in it.

2 Dogs 2000 Miles Luke Robinson

“I had tears creeping into my eyes as I pulled out the book to show him Malcom’s page. It really is a wonderful keepsake,” she said in her email to us.

Luke told Karen he has completed 1,100 miles. “He’s on the down hill side of the adventure!” she was happy to hear.

Karen was so happy to meet Murphy and Hudson in person, and said “Those two boys were so special.  Very mellow.  They had a huuuuge amount of greeters.”

This week, Luke and the boys continue their journey to Boston.

Please Help Tripawds Grow!

Poor Hot JerryWhen I had my leg amputated, Mom and Dad were terrified. They had never seen a three legged dog before, and thought that life as we knew it was over.

The day I went into surgery, Dad started my three legged dog blog, and began sharing our journey with the world. It didn’t take long before other pawrents wrote to tell about their experiences. Suddenly, Mom and Dad didn’t feel so alone anymore.

That’s when they knew they wanted to pay it forward, by helping others and creating the world’s greatest place for three legged dogs! Since 2006, Tripawds has been a true labor of love for them.

A Labor of Love

Tripawds might look “big” but did you know my Mom and Dad are the only ones who take care of everything here? As volunteers, they do it all from the 24′ foot trailer they call home. And until now, they’ve covered all of the costs of keeping this site going.

The hours they spend on it each day are so worthwhile! To them, there’s nothing more gratifying than witnessing the generosity of people like you who are always willing to offer a shoulder to lean on for new Tripawd pawrents looking for help and advice.

Time for a Bigger Dog House

There’s only one downside to making more friends here: Tripawds has outgrown our current web hosting plan. That’s why you may have noticed performance issues in the discussion forums and chat room. Our time has come to move to a bigger dog house, so Dad can make major upgrades that will improve your experience here.

This bigger dog house costs money, and we can’t pay for it alone. We’ve never asked for donations outright before, but we need everyone’s help to make this improvement possible.

Today we are announcing our first fundraising campaign to help pay for this much needed upgrade and ongoing maintenance. We are seeking to raise $4,250 to cover the costs of migrating Tripawds.com to it’s own dedicated website server, and cover the first year of monthly hosting fees and maintenance.

Let’s Keep Hopping Along

In technical terms, the low budget shared hosting account we currently have just can’t handle the traffic we get at tripawds.com any more. The number of daily visitors has tripled since we launched the discussion forums just over a year ago. And more members are joining every day! As our community continues to grow, we want everyone to enjoy their stay here, without degraded performance. So, we will be moving to the new managed server shortly.

Three Legged Dogs Jerry and Eisen play at Williams Creek ReservoirThis upgrade is sure to keep Tripawds up and running at peak performance, for a long time to come. But it means we need your contributions now. Won’t you please take a moment to make a secure contribution by clicking the ChipIn! button? This way everyone will know when we’ve reached our goal.

Your support will also help pay for things like informative cards and posters we send to vet’s offices, covering the shipping fees for harnesses returned by those whose dogs have passed away, and donations we make to canine cancer organizations. These are things Mom and Dad have always paid for out of their own pockets, and would love to get help with. Here’s some expense details if you’re interested.

Every Litte Bit Helps

We know you have a lot to think about right now with your own Tripawd experience. And we know these times are ruff. But seriously, no amount is too small! Every little bit will help keep this community offering awesome resources, information, and moral support. And once we’re on our new server, we’ll be able to offer some exciting new features too.

Won’t you please consider helping to support Tripawds? It’s easy and quick, and once you do it, we won’t bug you again for another year!

From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for anything you can give today.

– René, Jim & Spirit Jerry

The three legged world is small.

With the growing number of dogs out there who require amputation and/or canine cancer care, it’s no wonder we run into one and another once in a while. But we’re always especially proud when this website is responsible for tripawds and their people meeting others all around the world.

Three Legged Dog Pola from IsraelAside from Star, I thought my darling girlfriend Lalla was the only tripawd in Israel. But now I doubt it. Though she’s gone now, her good person Sasha and Troy ran into three legged Pola and her people in Tel Aviv.

Next thing you know, we processed a Ruff Wear harness order for Pola’s people and received this great photo. Lookin’ good there Pola!

When faced with amputation for your dog you may feel alone in a really big world. Through this blog, the discussion forums, and our live chat, tripawds.com hopes to provide a small place where no one ever feels lonely. No matter where you live.

2009 Tripawds Reader Survey

Jerry and his pack explore the mining ghost town of Eureka COWell, it’s been over two years since we started this little website to keep friends and family informed about my progress. And it has grown into quite a community of support for tripawds and their people everywhere – primarily because of you, or faithful readers and discussion forum members.

But we really don’t know who you are, and what you really think of this site, or how we might be able to make it better for you. So its high time we asked!

Please take a moment to complete this brief survey and you will be entered in a drawing to win a free bottle of Synflex glucosamine supplement for dogs. And better yet, you might just help us make this an even better place for those facing amputation for their furry friend.

Deadline for entry in Synflex drawing is March 15, 2009 but please complete the survey anyway if you read this after that. We appreciate your feedback anytime. Read this post for complete information about Synflex glucosamine supplement for dogs, or visit the Synflex website.

What is a Gravatar?

Among the many new features of our recent blog and forums upgrade is the use of profile avatars, Gravatars and Wavatars … oh my!

Tripawd Forum members can upload their own profile avatar that can appear next to each post from that user. We were excited to hear that we could patch our theme to make those avatars appear next to blog comments posted here by known forum members. Alas, the code didn’t work with new WordPress comment system.

So you ask, what are these Wavatars, and how do I get one? Well, reply below and you’ll have one – the same one if you reply again. They are randomly generated. Unless, that is, you have a Gravatar.

Anyone can get a Globally Recognized Avatar at gravatar.com. This unique profile avatar will be displayed next to posts and comments you make on any blog or social networking site that supports Gravatars. Otherwise you end up with the Mystery Man or some MonsterID.

So get your Gravatar, and keep leaving comments! And don’t forget to update your forum profile with an Avatar too because Gravatrs won’t work there.