Cats: spinal nerve damage

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Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby LeAnn » Mon Aug 29, 2005 6:52 pm

About 5 weeks ago my cat came home limping and the next day she was kind of dragging her left hind leg. The next day she had 3 kittens one of which was dead. I took her to the vet and thought that she had spinal nerve damage and that one of the kittens had been in the birth canal too long. He gave her a 24 hour steroid and calcium because of the kittens. It worked two days later and she was walking again. They she prceeded to get worse. I took her back to the vet and he gave her a 4 week shot and calcium shot and I also took her kittens from her and I am feeding them. She is getting stronger and I was wondering if anyone knew if hind leg splints would work on her to get her back legs working again, she wants to walk so badly. How long does it take for nerve damage to heal?
LeAnn
 

Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage *LINK*

Postby critters » Tue Aug 30, 2005 6:37 am

Are you crating her? I would, along with the steroids. Chances are she'll be fine, but it'll take time. After crate rest, if she still needs a splint, you can try one of these. http://www.handicappedpets.com/splints/ They usually get rave reviews.


http://www.handicappedpets.com/splints/
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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby LeAnn » Tue Aug 30, 2005 7:46 am

I do have her crated, not like she is going to go anywhere. Anyone know how many weeks it takes to recooperate? The two days after she had her last steroid injection she slept for two days. After that I had to force feed her with a syringe and she was terribly cold. I put her on a heating pad for four days with a towel over her, that is how cold and stiff she was. Finally, she warmed up and started to eat on her on after about one week from the 4 week injection. She has a great appetite. Eyes look great, front legs are strong just does not have the strength on her back legs to stand. I have been exercising her back legs every day and many massages down her spine. She has been like this for five weeks now ..... the biggest impovement has been over the past four days.
LeAnn
 

Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby critters » Tue Aug 30, 2005 8:01 am

This all sounds very promising. Just curious, though--any reason why they're using shots instead of oral pred?
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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby CarolC » Tue Aug 30, 2005 11:10 am

Hi LeAnn,

Do you think she had a reaction to the steroid shot? Or did she go into shock over the whole vet visit? I think I'd be scared to try another injection after that.

There is considerable variation in recovery times from nerve injury, so that is pretty difficult to even guess. However, it sounds like you are giving her good care, and if she has bladder control (you didn't say?) that is a very good sign. I would keep her crated and one of these days I expect you will see her standing in her crate. How are you handling pottying?
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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby LeAnn » Tue Aug 30, 2005 2:32 pm

She does have bladder control and bowel control. I have her laying on a towel with a newspaper underneath her and when she pees or poops I just "change" the newspaper.

They used shots becauase they said that it is not easy to give a cat a pill. I have her on mulivitamins which I crush and put in her food.

What it I were to add Glucosamine/Chondrotin to her diet would that help?
LeAnn
 

Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage *LINK*

Postby CarolC » Tue Aug 30, 2005 11:55 pm

I don't suppose it would hurt anything to give her glucosamine, but I imagine what she really just needs is time. If you're going to give her something, steroids would be appropriate. Some cats are easy to pill, and most put up less of a fuss than you expect. Please see this message about using a pet piller, which makes it easy on the kitty and on you.

I'm trying to picture doing this with a cat who is lying down and I don't know. I always do it with the cat in a crouching or sitting position. If you've never given her a pill before, maybe this isn't the best time to start. You don't want her straining her back if she tries to get away while being pilled. Then it would be doing more harm than good. It's a judgment call.



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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby critters » Wed Aug 31, 2005 5:46 am

I'd put it in food. If necessary, it's easy to crush them by wrapping in a small piece of plastic wrap and smacking with a knife handle. Pred doesn't seem to taste bad. It could even be compounded into a liquid to put in food, which would probably be cheaper than repeated trips to the vet.
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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby LeAnn » Wed Aug 31, 2005 2:44 pm

I have heard a couple of you talk about pred, I know that has to be predisone. Can I only get this from the vet. I stopped into the vets office yesterday and talked about her and he said that he has given her enough cortisone and calcium and now she has to heal. She has been doing some really good stretching. I just wish that she would pick up her feet, and also not be wobbly and hold herself up when I set her on the floor. Again, does anyone know if the splints will work for balancing or will they just keeping the legs from wanting to sit. I hate to spend the $$ to order rear splints and have them not work. At least she is putting some weight on.
LeAnn
 

Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby critters » Wed Aug 31, 2005 3:04 pm

Yep, pred is prednisone. As far as I know, even given what I know about "back door" meds, it has to come from a vet. :(

The splints would give her legs some stiffness, and, therefore might help with balance, but I think I'd probably wait and see what happens. Kitties are notorious to object to having "stuff" in, on, or around them unless it's of their own choosing, regardless of whether or not it's for their own good. She'll probably heal on her own.
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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby LeAnn » Wed Aug 31, 2005 3:22 pm

Thanks for all of the encouragement that i have gotten. She is getting very frisky acting. I will continue to exercise her legs and hopefully everything will be alright. Would you believe that this is my husband's cat and I spend hours taking care of her.
LeAnn
 

LOL--I believe it!! *NoMsg*

Postby critters » Wed Aug 31, 2005 4:51 pm

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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby Lori Lee » Thu Sep 01, 2005 12:11 pm

Is your vet absolutely sure of his diagnosis. My cat threw an aortic clot two weeks ago because of cardiomyopathy. He is recovering nicely, but still dragging the left leg behind him due to nerve damage. My vet put him on baby aspirin and plavix (a human blood thinner). Its a miracle he survived. It runs in his family, 2 of his nephews threw clots, but were never diagnosed properly, they just couldn't walk or use their back legs for some months. My vet graduated from Cornell University and he is my new hero! I hope your baby gets better soon. Lori Lee
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Re: Cats: spinal nerve damage

Postby LeAnn » Thu Sep 01, 2005 2:48 pm

When I took her in he really was not sure as he had never seen anything like it in a cat. He said that he had seen it in cows. For the past week she has been getting MUCH stronger, told her that she will have a big bill for all of the therapy and care that I have given her. It has been alot of work!
LeAnn
 


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