There is a variety of products that can help disabled pets live full, active lives.
Providing a home for a disabled dog or cat is a kind and generous deed. Whether your pet had a handicap when you adopted him or developed one after he was already a member of your family, you know that disabled animals give just as much love and joy to their human family members as fully functional pets do.
Cats and dogs who are missing limbs or blind or have other health issues can live long, happy lives, but they do need more help in getting around. Fortunately, there are a variety of products designed to help handicapped pets on the market. Here are just a few.
If you have a pet who has lost the use of his hind legs, a wheelchair could be the best way to provide mobility. Wheelchairs are available for small, medium and large dogs, and for cats. Rear wheelchairs are designed for pets who can’t use their hind legs, while quad wheelchairs are for those who have lost use of or are weak in all four legs. Remember, you’ll need to train your pet to use a wheelchair, using a gradual introduction and lots of positive reinforcement. Note: The following websites also offer wheelchairs for cats. • Walkin’ Pets by Handicapped Pets • Eddie’s Wheels • K9 Carts • Best Friend Mobility
Harnesses & Slings
For pets who can still use their legs but suffer from weakness caused by arthritis or other medical conditions, a harness or sling can be a good solution. Harnesses for those who need assistance walking provide front leg support, rear leg support or center body support. Pets who are fitted with a support harness rely on their owners to lift up the weak part of their body. Without having to hold up their own weight, the pets are able to walk. • CareLift Full Body Harness • Walkabout Harnesses • Walkin’ Pets by Handicapped Pets • K9 Carts
Handicapped pets often suffer from incontinence, making it difficult to keep them clean. Diapers made especially for dogs and cats can help in this situation, enabling you to prevent your pet from soiling the floor and lying in his own waste. The diapers are made from absorbent material that help keep pets dry, and are available in both disposable and washable styles. Designed to fit the anatomy of four-legged creatures, they are leak-proof and comfortable for pets to wear. Suspenders made especially for pets can help keep the diapers in place. • Vet’s Best • Barkertime • Walkin’ Pets by Handicapped Pets • K9 Carts
Disabled pets often need a special place to sleep. Some orthopedic beds are made expressly for pets with arthritis and other joint issues. A bed designed to absorb urine can also be beneficial to pets who suffer from incontinence. These beds are made to wick moisture away from pets to help keep them dry through the night. • Casper Dog Bed • Serta Pet Beds • SleePee Time Bed® • PoochPad Ultra Dry Bed • Sealy Dog Bed
Dogs who have lost their sight can be hesitant to move around—especially in new places—because they’re afraid they will run into something. Bumper collars, harnesses and vests are designed to give blind dogs more freedom by creating a safe space in front of them. The bumper surrounds a dog’s head and prevents him from running into an object if he gets too close. Sight-impaired dogs who learn to use bumpers feel safer when exploring their environment. • Halos For Paws • Blind Dog Bumper Collars • Muffin’s Halo • Walkin’ Blind Dog Halo