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Tripawd Cat – Life After amputation (Soft Tissue Sarcoma)


Purrkins going up his steps to his window seat

August 7th, 2016 · 12 Comments · Post Amputation


12 Comments so far ↓

  • Linda Ayers

    I have my own tripod, Sheba. She has adjusted well.

  • JohnnyC

    That is good to know and thank you for the little video. I must admit that I am terrified as my 10 year old cat, Mr Joshua (yes, that’s his name) goes in for surgery tomorrow to have his back left leg removed due to bone cancer.

    Like any pet owner that gets told this, I was in shock, took him for a second opinion and it seems that this is the only choice left for him.

    The poor boy was in pain and it was horrible to watch, but the pain meds that they have given him are amazing and he seems almost normal, making it so much worse for me to take him in.

    I am going to read through your other posts as I am one of those many owners struggling to deal with putting their pet through such an operation.

    Thanks again for the video.

    • Purrkins

      Hello and Welcome,
      Sorry, you have to join us but glad you found us and doing some research! That was our hope doing Purrkins blog to help other owners who have to join & go thru amputation.

      It is very shocking to hear those words & terrifying to make that decision! Look at it as a Mr.Joshua’s life or a limb.
      It comes down to that, and you are doing this to help Mr. Joshua, not to him!

      I think you would be surprised to know how well a cat hides pain, even if it appears the pain meds are cutting it bone cancer is excruciatingly painful. The bones can break easily you are doing what is best for Mr. Joshua. Please make sure to have at least the same pain management to come home with after surgery. Purrkins was on Buprenorphine 12 days and Gabapentin 14 days,

      Please do not hesitate to ask questions here or on the 3-legged cats forums

      We have a section broke down for Rear Leg Amputee Kitty Blogs if you want to check those out.

      Bone cancer in cats is different than in dogs we have a forum on Osteosarcoma in Cats have hope cancer goes with that leg, and you can resume a new normal. Either way, know you are giving Mr. Joshua a pain-free extended quality of life ok?

      I cant tell you enough how well Purrkins gets about If only I could give you my mind to ease your concerns. Mr. Joshua will hop on! Recovery doesn’t last furever and hold onto this is FOR Mr. Joshua ok.

      We wish you the best, and you know how to reach us ok?

      You have a community to help you guys get thru this.
      Hugs & scratches to Mr. Joshua!
      Holly & Purrkins❤️

      • JohnnyC

        Thank you for your quick reply, Holly, and of course, Purrkins.

        Mr Joshua is on Metacam, Buprenorphine, Gabapentin so I imagine the pain must be bad.

        Thank you also for the links as that just makes finding certain areas so much easier. I will spend some time researching on your site and on the forum.

        Mr Joshua is an outdoor cat that adopted me about 6 years ago and I have never seen him use a litter tray.

        I do have a rather big cage (meant for dogs) and I will keep him in there for a little while with a litter tray and obviously water, and let him go around the house when I can monitor him.

        I am sure most pet owners worry about this, but my big thing here is making sure that he does not fall into depression (though he probably won’t for a while due to the pain meds)

        Thanks again for your kind response and information. It does help ease things a little.

        Big hugs to you all for putting this out there for people like me.


        • Purrkins

          Trust me we understand where you are. Mr. Joshua has different cancer but all the same, we have to remove a limb! Not a light decision to make. We want Mr. Joshua hopping on, and he will be!

          Great you have the best pain meds already! I believe this is going to be a relief for Mr. Joshua!

          A lot of members use dog cages. We just closed ourselves in a spare room. Purrkins chose the closest to recover in. I would put a blanket over the cage to make him feel secure. As for the litter box ask your vet what they suggest my first instinct is to tell you to add a little soil to the box BUT he will be a rear leg, and in the box further, we don’t want soil on the incision. See what they suggest, and we will hope he adapts quickly to the litter. Clay would be my next suggestion. I would bring him in today and keep him inside & have a litter pan out for him get him used to the idea asap.

          I think we all have the same fears as far as depression. I can honestly say Purrkins was never depressed once he got home. We would have sailed thru recovery if we had the proper amount of the meds sent home. Purrkins is the same kitty on three if not happier! His life only changed by adding steps to his favorite places. Rear leg kitties will have a harder time jumping up then down where the front leggers are the opposite. Rest assured they figure it out!

          You are very welcome we are happy to help! Don’t hesitate to reach out that is what we are here for! You are never alone in this journey we have all been thru it and on the other side and so will you!

          Let us know when Mr. Joshua is thru surgery and home, please.
          You guys will get thru this, and Mr. Joshua will get rid of that painful leg!

  • Judi

    I’m going to be fostering a kitten who just had a front amputation. I rescued Bobert, special needs (neurological disorder) just over a year ago, Paislee, just now 1, and a foster Tiger, special needs Sr. (thyroid). “River” is only about 10 weeks old and will stay with us through his recovery and until the shelter finds this special boy his furever home. Any suggestions to help me make this recovering baby happy, safe, and comfortable will be sincerely appreciated xoxo

    • Purrkins

      Hello and welcome,
      Thanks for fostering all these sweet kitties!

      Pain medication is the key to smooth recovery all vets are different on what they send home. Two weeks of pain meds should be sent home Purrkins was on Buprenorphine and Gabapentin. Cats are masters at disguising pain I always say think about this like it were us having a limb amputated. We are not ok on three days worth of pain meds! Appetite can sometimes be an issue in recovery wet kitten food would be great for River. River being a front leg amp she could wear a baby onesie here is a link for what we did. DIY Baby Onesie/T-shirts Cone of Shame Alternative Rather than a cone that made a huge difference for us. Purrkins did not bother his incision or get out of his onesie.

      Litter box I cut the front of our box out for Purrkins to get in easier. The first couple of days I helped him in the litter box. Once we cut the box out Purrkins was able to go in on his own without face planting. You can check out what we did here this was our recovery box. Day 4

      This link is where you can see what we use now the recovery box ended up being too small, so we cut out our regular litter box what we still us.
      Purrkins 4 months update
      I suspect River being a kitty he will adjust rather quickly. Low sided is key for them to be able to get in and out no problem.

      We had restrictions for two weeks we stayed in a spare room. If you don’t have carpet rug runners or yoga mats are great for traction. We had exercise mats down in the room Purrkins recovered in. Cats want to come home and hide after these surgeries that is natural kitty instinct. Provide a safe place for River to recover in. Some people use dog cages some use tents we just used a gutted spare room no furniture in there and the bed mattress was on the floor nowhere for Purrkins to hide. Purrkins chose the closest to recover in I just rigged up a bed in there for him,

      I would suggest steps for River and when he goes to his furever home. They can jump up no issues but the going down we want to protect that remaining limb from any injury they can do all things on three legs, but we want to provide safer, more accessible ways down for them for the long-term health of that remaining front leg.

      If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to ask or when you get River home and have questions just as ok. I will get back to you.

      Chin scratches to all those kitties, please!

      Hugs Holly & Purrkins

      • Judi

        Thank you Holly and Purrkins! I did a preemie onesie for Paislee when she was spayed so I absolutely love the idea for River! As far as stairs, do you recommend foam or any particular style? With all my heart … thank you for sharing your experience! Lots of love to Purrkins!

        • Purrkins

          Your welcome that is what we are here for happy to help out in any way we can!

          Great I would use the onesie on River it will make both of your lives much more comfortable! Cones are bad enough on four legs there was no way I was putting one on Purrkins on three! Glad it worked for the spay too!

          I think whatever you can afford to buy stepwise is excellent and if your handy and can make them even better. We have foam stairs, wood stairs and some made out of particle board. My least favorite is the foam stairs because each step is not deep like the other sets we have. They work Purrkins uses them, and they do the job, but I would not repurchase those. We got the foam ones at Dr. Foster and Smith. I’m giving you a link so you can look and understand more what I mean. For a kitty or a small cat, they would be great! Purrkins uses them, but he goes down sideways, tough to explain in words. lol

          Lightweight Indoor Pet Stairs by Drs. Foster & Smith

          I’m sure they are not all the same depth. I don’t want to bash all foam steps because I can only tell you about these.
          The beautiful thing about the foam is you can move them easily. Amazon sells some nice steps I can vouch for that are decently priced. Examples are

          New Cat Condos 110223 Wood Constructed Large Pet Stairs for Cats and Dogs, Large

          Armarkat Pet Steps Stairs Ramp for Cats and Dogs

          We can tell you these work and are a great depth we have two sets of the Armarkat steps and one set of the New Cat Condo both I would repurchase and recommend.

          Please let us know how River does and if you have other questions post or shoot me an email ok.

          I will give Purrkins extra love from you as soon as I post this reply!

          Thank you for fostering and giving these kitties life & furever homes!

          • Judi

            I saw a rabbit castle with a ramp on Etsy. I’m trying to figure out if that would be good for River. Is there a way I can send you a picture so you could tell me if you think? You are so kind to help others going through this! Lots of love to Purrkins xoxo

            • Purrkins

              Hi Judi, Yes you can email me the picture on the email your going to get from this comment my email address is on there actually. I will email you that will be easier how is that;) I’ll look forward to the picture or link whichever you want to email I will see you later.

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