Hi all!
A friend of mine has a cat with a broken front leg. Cookies has been in a cast for a few weeks, but the vet just checked her out again and the leg isn't getting better. The vet says the problem is that Cookies is still running and jumping around and putting weight on the foot. The vet recommended surgury, but my friend can't afford it.

The vet's new advice is to keep Cookies in a cage 24 hours a day, so she can't move around and damage her foot. All my friends and I think this is cruel and very bad for the cat overall. I've been wondering if there's some way to put the leg up in some sort of sling, so the cat can't step on it or put weight on it. I'm sure she could get along fine on three legs for a few weeks, and it would give the one leg time to heal. At least her other legs would still be working and getting exercise! Does anyone have advice on this? Has anyone done anything like this before?
I'm thinking we could just pull her leg up to her side and maybe wrap a bandage around her to keep the leg there. We can see how she does while there are people around to watch her, and depending on how that goes decide whether she should be confined when she's at home alone or not. Even if she's in the cage part of the day, she's better off if she can have some time running around enjoying herself.

Any advice? Thanks in advance for your help!
Siobhan Emotion: stick out tongue
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The vet's new advice is to keep Cookies in a cage 24 hours a day, so she can't move around and damage her foot

I do squirrel rescue. I have to do the same thing for my injured squirrels. I put them in a cat carrier so they can't climb or run around because their bones must heal. Having her in a small cage for a few weeks is better than having to amputate the leg if it doesn't heal. You can take her out and hold her and play with her lying on her back. She can still be taken out for pets and lap sitting. I'd follow the vet's advice.
The vet's new advice is to keep Cookies in a cage 24 hours a day, so she can't move around and damage her foot

I do squirrel rescue. I have to do the same thing for my injured squirrels. I put them in a ... lying on her back. She can still be taken out for pets and lap sitting. I'd follow the vet's advice.

I agree.
I had my cats declawed when I was younger and didn't know any better. One of them was so put out by it, he began pulling and eating at the stitches or glue or whatever. The vet tried to bandage his legs, but he just kept worrying at it until they came off. He wouldn't have his legs bandanged. Just wouldn't stand for it.
Anyway, the point is, I don't think the cat would stand for her leg all in a sling. It would probably stress her out and she would just find a way to get her leg out. In the process, she might injure it more. If you've ever tried to restrain a *** off cat, you know they can squirm to the point of hurting themselves. She could easily re-break it or pull out her shoulder twisting around. Also, keeping the shoulder and elbow in one position like that might injure it in and of itself and would probably be uncomfortable.
I would take the vet's advice or the cat might end up with 3 legs permanently. Better a few weeks of confinement than a lifetime of handicap.

~kaeli~
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Hi all! A friend of mine has a cat with a broken front leg. Cookies has been in a cast ... if she can have some time running around enjoying herself. Any advice? Thanks in advance for your help! Siobhan Emotion: stick out tongue

I would follow the vet's advice and keep her in a cage. This may sound cruel, but it is the way feral cats are socialized it's a short-term action to bring long-term comfort. I certainly would not try to fashion a sling for the leg. You could cause the leg to heal in a completely unnatural position, and in the long run could cause eveb more extensive damage. Incidentally, you said that your friend cannot afford surgery. Has she looked into the possibility of making payments over a period of time or even using a credit card?
MaryL
(take out the litter to reply)
Photos of Duffy and Holly: >'o'<
(Introducing Duffy to Holly) (Duffy and Holly "settle in")
By all means, go for the cage rest. It is hardly cruel, to avoid surgery or worse for the cat.
The only alternative I can think of (if it is a rear leg) is to buy a veterinary "cart," a contraption meant for an animal with paralysis. Expensive as all get-out and possibly not even a good orthopedic option.

We've save two cats this year who were hit by cars and needed 6 weeks of cage rest to recover. They are both doing well.
Borrow a large dog crate to house the cat in. Visit the Campus Cats website and read the bit on socialization; we have some tips on caging in that article ("Taming the Tiger").
Sharon Talbert
Friends of Campus Cats
www.campuscats.org
Hi all! A friend of mine has a cat with a broken front leg. Cookies has been in a cast ... running and jumping around and putting weight on the foot. The vet recommended surgury, but my friend can't afford it.

Well her choice may end up being amputation or euthanasia if she doesn't get the cat treated properly.
The vet's new advice is to keep Cookies in a cage 24 hours a day, so she can't move around ... just pull her leg up to her side and maybe wrap a bandage around her to keep the leg there

I wouldn't. Putting undue stress on the leg will most likely make it worse or cause the cat to throw a clot.
Call around for help in paying for the surgery. Extensive fractures can cause blood clots which may cause devastating problems like blindness or death. Don't screw around with a broken leg.

-L.
Hi all!. The vet's new advice is to keep Cookies in a cage 24 hours a day, so she can't move around and damage her foot. All my friends and Ithink this is cruel and very bad for the cat overall.

Do what the vet says to do. It won't be for long, and the cat will not be crippled for life this way, and your friend can avoid expensive surgery.
The vet's new advice is to keep Cookies in a cage 24 hours a day, so she can't move around and damage her foot. All my friends and I think this is cruel and very bad for the cat overall.

Cage the cat. The animal will tolerate being caged better than being trussed up in some sling. You can cuddle the cat as much as you want. It is crueler to allow the animal to reinjure its leg.

When the fog came in on little cat feet last night, it left these little muddy paw prints on the hood of my car.
Thanks for the great advice, everyone! It means a lot to hear so many of you saying that caging the cat is the best answer. I can tell that my friend doesn't really get a good vibe from the vet she's being going to, so it was hard to know about this advice. I'm hoping she'll start going to my vet, who is fantastic, and then we'll all be more confident about getting answers we're comfortable with.

Thanks again! And cuddles from Cookies to all of you! (My 3 cats send cuddles too - just because they're friendly sorts. Emotion: smile

Thanks! Happy & healthy kitties to all!
Siobhan
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