Three Legged Dog Club
Cassie's Club Members
Hi there,
I don't know if Cassie's club is still up and running, but I wanted to share the story of Yodi, our now 3-legged, 10-month old, rat terrier puppy.
A month ago in June, my husband and I were visiting my parents at their house in North Florida to help them pack up and move to their new house. We arrived around 11:30 at night. I got out of the car with Yodi on his leash, and turned to grab my purse and cell phone from the car. I shut the car door and turned to head towards the trunk to help my husband unpack and the neighbor's new pitbull burst through the bushes onto my parents' property and just attacked Yodi. It was awful.
He bit Yodi in the chest and legs. At one point, he was standing on Yodi. My husband and I were doing everything we could to get the pit bull off. We were screaming at the top of our lungs. I won't go into details because it was pretty horrifying, and I could get sick just thinking about it. I finally stood behind the pit bull with my legs on either side of him. I reached into his mouth and tried prying his jaws open but it was no use. So I grabbed him by the collar and squeezed, hoping I could move him. No way.
I finally twisted his collar, cut off his air supply, and he literally spit our puppy out.
My husband scooped him up and ran into my parents' house. My mom was already on the phone to the vet. I watched my husband running and saw my puppy's head hanging down.
I thought he was dead.
Yodi was in shock, but was up and walking, although he was hunched over and bloated.
He didn't want anyone to touch him and managed to get himself into the car on his own. We took him to the local 24 hour vet in town but the man there was by himself and because Yodi was so tense, he wasn't sure how he'd be able to examine him on his own. He referred us to an emergency vet in Orange Park, which was 45 minutes away. We got in the car again and off we went.
When we got to the vet in Orange Park, the doctor came and took Yodi into the back to check him out. When he returned 1/2 an hour later, we learned that Yodi was going to have to have extensive surgery to repair several large tears to his chest wall.
We agreed to the surgery and away we went, without our puppy. A few days after the surgery, we picked Yodi up and took him home to Sarasota, where we had to drop him off at our vet for observation. Yodi was still very tired and weak from the surgery, loss of blood, and all the medicines he was on.
He could barely lift his head.
We left him at our vet and came to visit him every day.
Almost a week after he'd been at the vet, we learned that Yodi's red blood cell count was dropping and would need a blood transfusion. He got the transfusion and perked up a bit - although he was still too weak to stand. We noticed that his left front paw that had been traumatized was still swollen and cold, although no bones were broken.
A few days after Yodi's transfusion, we learned that tissue in his shoulder was dying from an injury there and that was possibly what was causing the leg to swell and be cold. The vets were applying heat to it and massaging it, but our vet warned us that he might need an amputation.
Although Yodi was doing better, his leg was not. The toxins in the decaying tissue were making him sick and weak. He had to have surgery to remove the dying tissue but the tissue in his leg still did not get better. We were told to take him to Tampa to see a specialist who dealt with traumas such as Yodi's frequently. After checking him out, the doctor explained that for Yodi to get better, the leg would have to be amputated.
My husband and I were pretty prepared for this because our vet had been very straightforward and told us about it early enough. We were absolutely sure that we wanted to amputate. It came down to - do we want a 3-legged Yodi, or do we want no Yodi at all? The decision was obvious to us, and Yodi was going to have his amputation surgery once he was strong enough for it.
Yodi made it through his amputation surgery just fine.
We saw him two days afterwards and we were surprised to see that he was up and walking around. We were surprised by the change. Here was a dog who, before the surgery, could barely lift his head... and now that his leg was gone, he was up and walking around outside.
A week after his amputation, Yodi had a skin graft procedure to heal up the area where all the dying tissue was removed. The day after that procedure, Yodi came home with us.
He's been home for almost a week now, and he's doing wonderfully!
He follows us around, eats and drinks a lot, plays with his toys, and cuddles - just like he used to do. He loves to give kisses and to rub his side along you, your legs, the wall, the door - anything to scratch his itchy skin under his bandages. Those should come off soon after he gets his stitches out - in about another week or two.
Anyway, that's the brief story of our little Yodi, now 10 months old. He's a real champ. Every vet he's been to, the people have just fallen in love with him. I was crying when we got to bring him home, and the nurses were crying because he was leaving. It's so good to have him back. He might not physically be the same, but my husband and I know that he's still the same sweet puppy he used to be.
If you'd like me to send a picture of Yodi, just let me know and I will e-mail one to you.
Hi Cynthia, It's Jessica, Yodi's mommy again. I've updated his website and was wondering if I could use your graphics (the Cassie's Dog Club logo) to link to your website from his.
Just let me know! Whenever you get a chance... Click HERE, to see Yodi's website! Thanks!

By the way - I read the newspaper article on the website about how you started the website - I love that you started this club all on your own because I haven't been able to find anything like it! Thank you!
Jessica Strassner's little dog, Yodi - (two pictures are .gif, two pictures are .jpg)

Hi Cynthia... Attached (hopefully) is a picture of Yodi. This one was taken two days after his amputation surgery. It was a miracle to me that he was up and walking two days after the surgery, when for weeks after the attack, he could hardly sit up or lift his head up.
He's doing really good - the vet changed his bandages today and we got to see some of the stitches from his skin graft procedure - I'm surprised at how flat they are. Once his hair grows back in I doubt you'll be able to see them! And he's getting along just great!
Hi again - here's a few more Yodi pictures. The one of him in the pink was also taken 2 days after his surgery. So was the close up. And then the picture of him in the blue (yodiyawn.gif) was on his first day back at home. He was really tired from all the excitement. : )
Megan was born in September 1993. She was one of a litter of 8 and was the youngest daughter (by a few seconds!) She was born with a so called silver spoon in her mouth as both Mum and Dad were of aristocratic stock and were.....well.... what we English call "posh" - all that means really is that there were an awful lot of letters after their names and that the entire family trotted around with their noses high in the air, which sometimes was rather dangerous, as it meant they couldn't really see where they were going and they would often bump into the lower classes, which at least gave the family a sense of decency !
Megan started off life being trained to be a hunting dog for the shoots at Stratfield Saye, and for a while was extremely successful (so she says) but was unfortunately soon sacked from her post for some misdemeanour which she has never really discussed with me.
I am afraid it probably had something to do with theft and food, both of which she has always been extremely fond!!
From then on, life became one slide downhill. Megan fell pregnant and in 1995 gave birth to another 8 pups all of which have made successful careers as family pets. Megan however had suddenly met a most unsuitable suitor in the form of a "human".
Rosie, her then owner introduced Megan to a friend of hers called Peter, and after some rather grubby financial negotiations, Megan was forced from her comfortable home in the English countryside, and took up with Peter.
A terrible accident befell Megan shortly afterwards - for which Peter was entirely responsible, and for which he has never forgiven himself - when Megan was hit by a car.
She sustained rather serious injuries, of which the severing of the nerve in her right front leg was the worst. After some time it was decided to amputate the leg, and so started a new chapter in Megan's life.
The day after her operation Megan was already hopping around gleefully and having a great time showing off her stitches to anyone who cared to look. She was even smiling (yes, dogs smile a lot!!) being the centre of so much attention. Attention however would soon become the bane of her life !
But she never complains, though occasionally feigns depression when addressed in a foreign language. Megan's life progressed happily and uneventfully until in 1999, the British Government, in one of their most enlightened moves - some would say their only enlightened move - decided to allow British dogs to travel abroad under a scheme called "Passport for Pets". Megan got her passport and Peter had by then become the owner of a small flat in Italy on Lago Maggiore - and so started a life of travel for Megan and Peter.
They travelled all around Europe together, and Megan visited such scintillating places as Paris (where she is photographed at the foot of the Eifel tower) Milan (where she developed a taste for Prada) and Venice (chasing the Pigeons in St Mark's square). Recently, she went to the rather smart resort of St Moritz to try her hand (oops, her 3 legs, that should be!) at skiing.
Megan is now 11.5 years old and is becoming a grand old dame - with a wicked sense of humour.
She tells filthy jokes, and has a few flecks of grey fur around her muzzle and snout.
She is learning Italian and has become a well-loved feature on the lakefront in the beautiful town of Cannobio where she is affectionately known as "Il Cagniolino" (The little dog, not to be confused with "Il Cognilio" which means "rabbit") and spends a great deal of time by the water's edge, "rescuing" sticks and other items of flotsam from a fate probably worse than death !!
In the summer she swims a lot, and no - she doesn't swim around in circles due to her three-leggedness, but uses her tail as a rudder !! Her ambition for 2003 ?
She says she wants to learn water-skiing ! Not Mono ski-ing, not normal water ski-ing, but.... Skiing on three skis ! Now there's a novelty !
I am sure she will manage it - She has her own email address, and promises to reply to any email she is sent.
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