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Cat with damaged rear

uwe
December 10th, 2008, 09:23 AM
Hello, i brought in a cat (about a year old) named ortega, ortega had an accident (we belive she fell from the 3rd floor , but we cant be sure this is what caused the damage), and she could not move her rear legs, and had a very week back (moving the rear part in general) she drags her self on the floor and got some wounds because of that but we cant make her do less moving :( .

Its been around 6-7 weeks now since the accident, and her rear legs can hold her weight, but controlling the rear is not working well, and she keeps falling on one side or another, also when she manages to walk, she keeps a wide distance between her legs, and she keeps slipping, and her legs are shaky and rear going from left to right as if it is being held by sticks and hardly balancing. she also strongly shakes her legs frequently especially when excited (when we come and/or food is there) ... she had/have problems controlling pooping and urination too ...

I cant go to a vet, im in the middle east and where i live there is no access to a vet. and im unable to get someone to do x-ray for her.

I can clearly see there is a problem not only with her legs, but some searious problem with her back, she cant for example turn around without falling, and when falling, its not easy to get up, so she usually ends up dragging her self. if i hold her tail, she can walk a lot !, even climb staris and will become very energetic ! when she tries to walk down a slope, she usually fall down and start to roll over (without real control)!

So what kind of damage does she have? is it a nerve? a broken spinal ? something else ? any tests i can do to help diagnose it better ? and what can i do for her ? any exercises ? she is very sweet , please help!

catlover2
December 10th, 2008, 10:37 AM
So sorry to hear of the problems with sweet Ortega. It definitely sounds as if she has suffered some damage to her spinal cord or nerves, which has resulted in her difficulty walking and elimination. Perhaps with time, there may be some healing. Rather than holding her steady by her tail, you might want to get a harness and leash to hold her up as she walks. Perhaps walks may help with the healing.

AmericanBullMom
December 10th, 2008, 10:53 AM
Holding her by the tail probably isnt the best idea. Maybe take a hand towel and put it around her tummy and use that to help hold up her rear end.

It definitely sounds neurological, I wish you could get her into a vet, but If she doesnt seem to be in any pain, then hopfully she may heal a little and regain some use of her legs!

Just give her time, and try and support her while she walks as much as you can.

NoahGrey
December 10th, 2008, 01:18 PM
I cant go to a vet, im in the middle east and where i live there is no access to a vet. and im unable to get someone to do x-ray for her.

First let me tell you that I love that you took her in. I don't mean offend you, asking you this question. But, is the reason why you have not taken it to a vet is because the expense that it will probably be?

Sorry, I tend to think about things a little differently on here sometimes, then others. Since I work in the animal-welfare field, I have to look at things at every angle.

This animal needs to see a vet. It sounds like it is a broken back or spine, and probably neourlogical (brain) issues. This animal is more so then not in pain.

Leaving it..because "it looks better or it is acting better" does nothing for the animal. By not seeing a vet could pose more issues in your cats health in the future.

ONE problem that your cat could have or turn in to..is not being able to go to the washroom, due to internal injuries. Has the cat been to the washroom.
ACO22

~michelle~
December 10th, 2008, 01:18 PM
Is there no vet you can even get to in a couple of hours?? If she cant walk is weak and shaking her legs especially 6 weeks after a fall she is probably in severe pain. remember animals will not always express when in pain.

It could be a variety of things from nerve damage, slipped discs, broken bones or a combination of them. there is no real way of diagnosing the problem with out xrays or MRIs...

NoahGrey
December 10th, 2008, 01:23 PM
Is there no vet you can even get to in a couple of hours?? If she cant walk is weak and shaking her legs especially 6 weeks after a fall she is probably in severe pain. remember animals will not always express when in pain.

It could be a variety of things from nerve damage, slipped discs, broken bones or a combination of them. there is no real way of diagnosing the problem with out xrays or MRIs...

Looks like we posted at the same time *lol*

Anyhoo, great points.

ACO22

uwe
December 10th, 2008, 07:17 PM
... is the reason why you have not taken it to a vet is because the expense that it will probably be?

I havent reached the "expenses" part yet, so no. and its not a matter of distance.

By going to the washroom i assume you mean urinating and pooping, as i said, she has some trouble controlling that, but not completely without control! she does not urinate randomly, but sometimes she doesnt make it to the sandbox, as if when she realizes she need to go and the time when she has to do it is less than the time she needs to move 15 meters, thus doing it while struggeling to move.

She has got much better from complete state of unable to move her rear legs to actually walking for about 16 steps on her own now! even without holding the tail (which by that i do not mean im releasing the weight off her legs) even just putting my hands on the sides of her tommy or hips without carrying any weight, just not letting her rear fall to the side allows her to walk non-stop :).

also a little help leaning to the front helps her to get up from any position she is in when on floor, and as i said she frequently manages to get up on her own, when she has something which she can hold on with her front legs, she almost always manages to get up and walk a few steps. but for example walking up a non slippery slope is possible but walking down a slope is very difficult for her, because she will fall on one side and then the upper part will follow... i frequently take her for walks in area with grass or earth because its less slippery.

I understand that i wont be able to recognize that she is in pain, but im hoping she is not, but she very much enjoys walking and whenever she walks for a while with my help she starts playing with anything you can think of, leafs, my hand, anything on the floor, and whilst balancing her self on her legs it takes only touching her nose to start making the "im happy" sound :) i hope those are signs of "not in pain".

Now what i assume is that she has nerve damage or very weak muscles which are paralel to her spinal or holding to her Vertebral column, and the towel idea is great, but she doesn't need that amount of support to walk, and i perfectly understand that we need a vet and xray to really identify the problem, but what im trying to do is help her get arond the problem of not holding her rear especially on a slope downwards because i do not want her to get hurt while she is moving, she couldnt move that much in the past weeks, and now she is doing well but cant and don't want to lock her, thus all what i can really do is help her to get better faster to reduce the risk of twisting her Vertebral column or something like that!

Im sorry for talking a lot, but i really do wish i know what kind of exersize i could do with her other than supporting her hips or anything that can help diagnose within the current circumstances.

edit: we had cats around all my life, and ortega acts as a perfectly healthy cat, and is one of the most energetic cats i have ever seen, very playful too, i knew her before the accident and now she acts just like before, but with much less ability to move, im saying that if it indicates not being in pain, she is just as fast responsive as she used to be and everything ! also she does not hesitate to try to move when i come to her , again, i hope this all indicates she is not in pain!! :(

luckypenny
December 10th, 2008, 07:33 PM
For what it's worth, I found this:

Nerves that have been bruised, torn, or stretched (rather than cut completely) will usually start to heal within a month. It is very important to keep your pet quiet so that he doesn't do further damage to the nerve, says Grant Nisson, D.V.M., a veterinarian in private practice in West River, Maryland. Encourage him to lie comfortably in a crate or in small room and don't give him any vigorous exercise without checking with your vet.

Your vet may also recommend giving your pet some physical therapy by gently moving the leg through its full range of motion. Do this for five minutes at least four times a day to stimulate the nerve and help it recover more quickly, says Dr. Nisson. Every nerve injury is different, however, so it is important to do range-of-motion exercises only when your vet says it is safe to begin.

For cats with aortic thromboembolism, vets sometimes recommend massaging the lower leg for two to five minutes every two hours, which will help restore circulation, says Dr. Hibbs.

http://home.ivillage.com/pets/symsolve/0,,ljl6,00.html

:fingerscr your kitty gets better really soon.

catlover2
December 11th, 2008, 12:01 AM
A cat is in pain if it: stops eating, crouches down; is not interested in playing or anything else; not very responsive to you. By what you say, I think you can assure yourself Ortega is not in pain. If she were she would not be lively and wanting to play with leaves, etc. You could test for some nerve damage in her back by pricking her back in several places and legs with a pin, and see if there is a response from her. It may give you an indication of where the damage is. If she wants to walk, I would let her and assist her. Ortega will let you know when walking is too much or she's in pain; she'll stop and want to be picked up. In the absence of a vet in your area of the Middle East, you will know in a few weeks or months, if walking is helping any healing or not. I'm not a vet, but have been involved with cats for many years. Good luck! :fingerscr :pray:

chico2
December 11th, 2008, 08:11 AM
I don't condone not taking an animal to a vet,but in some instances in the world,it's just not possible and you have to do what you can to help the animal.
I don't know what your circumstances are,but a big thank you for caring for her:cat:

catlover2
December 11th, 2008, 08:44 AM
uwe, Did you should pose your questions re Ortega's condition on "Ask the Vet". For a small fee, you may get some answers and advice.

http://pet.justanswer.com/Pet?r=ga%7C3%7CPets%7CPet+Health&JCRN=Vets+and+Pet+Experts&JCLT=&JRA=&CC=&JPSE=ga&JPAC=3&JPCM=Pets&JPAG=Pet+Health&JPCT=gapet&JPKW=pet%20symptoms&JPDC=C&JPST=www.pets.ca&JPAD=2638999128&JPAF=txt&JPCD=20081106-1&JCTY=none&JPLN=none&JPOP=none&gclid=CLiG9tvWuJcCFQw9GgodYk1zSg

If this link doesn't work, go to www.pets.ca home page and on left column near top, click on Ask the Vet.

Jim Hall
December 11th, 2008, 09:43 AM
wow it sounds like she has come quite a ways thank you so much for your loving attentions cats have an amazing ability to recuoerate if given good nutriton and some stress free time

you are an angel :angel: