Pet Insurance policies are underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company.

Three-legged pets

Three-legged pets

Q: My dog, Jake, was hit by a car today. I had to make an immediate decision about whether to have the veterinarian amputate one of his legs or euthanize him. I chose amputation, but now I feel guilty that I am forcing him to live with only three legs. Can you offer any insight?

A: Much research has been done on this subject, and I can assure you that Jake will be fine.

Studies in dogs and cats have examined activity, attitude and quality of life before and after amputation. Researchers found that almost all pets adapt well to amputation, are as active and apparently happy after amputation as they were before, and enjoy a normal life with the same recreational activities as before the amputation.

Most families that participated in the research said they would make the same decision about amputation if the issue arose again.

The only factor associated with a less favorable outcome was excess weight. So, if Jake needs to lose weight, work with your veterinarian to accomplish that. Then keep Jake on the slim side of the normal range.


Lee Pickett, V.M.D. practices companion animal medicine in Pennsylvania. Contact her at askdrlee@insurefigo.com.

  • Instagram logo
  • facebook
  • tiktok
  • Twitter

No one is permitted to sell, solicit or negotiate an insurance policy without a producer license in the state in which the plan is sold, and all prospects should be directed to Figo Pet Insurance. The information contained in this website is for illustrative purposes only and coverage under any pet insurance policy is expressly subject to the conditions, restrictions, limitations, exclusions (including pre-existing conditions), and terms of the policy documentation issued by the insurer. Availability of this program is subject to each state’s approval and coverage may vary by state. Coverage underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (IAIC), a Delaware Insurance Company, 485 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10022. Live Vet and the Figo Pet Cloud are separate non-insurance services unaffiliated with IAIC.

Copyright © 2015-2022 Figo Pet Insurance LLC. All rights reserved