If you care for an elderly, injured or special needs pet, you've come to the right place!
I am so excited to find this site. I just adopted a kitten with missing vertebrae causing fecal incontinence. The shelter was told to euthanize him but they did not. I have only had him home for 2 days now and am struggling with keeping diapers on the little guy. I have searched the web for some help but it seems all the diapers I can find are for dogs, except something called "piddle pants" with suspenders to keep them on. Has anyone used these with their incontinent cats and if so how did they work out?
Tara and Darwin
I haven't used Piddle Pants but here is an article with ideas for keeping diapers on kittens. If this is not enough, there are people here with experience keeping diapers on a kitten and they do not necessarily read the board everyday, but we could email one of them for you, to come and share some tips.
http://www.handicappedpets.com/mediawik ... male_wraps
Here is an article with videos on expressing the bowel.
http://www.handicappedpets.com/mediawik ... inent_pets
I have had two with Manx Syndrome. I also have a tailless cat right now with so few vertebra that it amazes me she can function at all but she is "normal." She is past the four-month old mark so I am pretty confident that she will not develop symptoms. The four-month old mark is critical because Manx Syndrome can show up anytime UP TO four months. So when a stupid person who actually backyard breeds for taillness tried to sell a "healthy" kitten at 7 weeks, it does not mean the kitten is free from the Syndrome but is only asymptomatic at that time. Usually, though, once the symptoms present themselves fully, they do not worsen over time, but remain at a plateau.
Without giving false hope, I must note the opposite. I had two kittens come to me who were "born with" Manx Syndrome in that they exhibited all the symptoms as neonates. In both cases, by the time they were one, I no longer needed to diaper either of them. The Maine Coon mix, Harry, was able to use the box consistently. This is the kitten who went through ####: surgeries, hospital stays, enemas, stomach pumpings, etc. The other cat, Egg, never did have an anus that closed properly but with lactulose and then just diet, she did not leak feces at all.
In order to pass on advice, I will use what I did with Harry as an example. Harry was a Houdini (haha, I know). At one point, Harry the Maine Coon mix was actually so small (he died at about 20 lbs at age 4 from cardiomyopathy) that I used to buy the cotton mittens that protect babies from scratching themselves and snip two tiny holes for the legs. They had to be tiny because the cotton would stretch a bit and then the holes would be too big. I would line them with maxipads. I held them on to his body but vet wrapping the top, comfortably but firmly, around his waist. It worked well enough and I could wash the mittens as they were soiled. I did not like anything like that around his waist so I looked into another product. I highly recommend the following: http://www.joybies.com/pagecat.html
These diapers have straps. I used to pin the back straps together in the middle of his back so that there was a "X". This took up the slack and made the whole outfit stay on better. Lastly and most importantly, I left Harry in a large cage overnight for his skin to air out. It is critical because any cat who is diapered 24/7 runs a very high risk of urine scald or fungal/yeast infections in damp skin areas. I think that now I would use Bag Balm (for livestock use but I put it on myself and my son all the time). I would make sure the skin is dry and then rub it around the anus and genitalia in order to provide a barrier from the urine that could accumulate in the diaper.
As for meds and trying to control the stool to some extent, lactulose or pumpkin will help to keep the stool firm. As well, a natural way to get firmer stool, I have found, is to feed raw.
Hope all this helps. I love tailless cats.
Nothing but the following product could keep diapers on him.
Thank you all! I appreciate the advice and will look in to the products you suggested.
Darwin only leaks feces and the vet has him on Cisapride to keep them loose so he does not need to be expressed. He has control over urinating, but with the diapers on him it's not an issue.
I have found a pretty good temporary solution until I find something better: I bought a cat harness and am using shoelace pieces to attach the diaper to the harness along his stomach and back. I stitched up the tail hole in several reusable diapers with washcloth pieces and am using pantyliners to help him from soiling the diapers too much. He is actually doing very well with this system for now.
He wasn't too fond of the diapers, but now that they aren't slipping down his legs he is moving around well and seems to be not bothered at all by the "pants". He is even running around and wrestling with the other kitties in the house. He is such a good kitten. He stays still enough while I put the diapers and harness on him, but makes it known that he hates it. He vocalizes the entire time and I think he's cussing me out.
This little boy is such a pleasure to have in my home! I am so glad the shelter gave him a chance. If more people had patience and just thought through the issue, more cats like our tailless friends would have homes.
Hi, I'm new here. My 3 year old kitty, Moggie was recently diagnosed with Manx Syndrome. She is the 'rumpy' type. She has an odd little body type for a cat. She is stocky and from the front really resembles a Bulldog in form. When she runs it isn't a trot like cats do but she scoots along very quickly like a little bunny rabbit. As she is tortie in color, she really resembles a rabbit. We call her our little "cabbit".
When she was a kitten she was almost constantly matted with feces in her anal area. She had been taken from her mother at only 3 weeks of age, so perhaps she hadn't learned how to care for herself yet. I don't know if it was my bathing her or our adult neuter male cleaning her, but she eventually started caring for herself.
I do have to keep fur in her anal area clipped short but she does much better now. I learned about the pumpkin and adding fiber to help the stool from a vet surgeon we go to. Moggie loves it and it helps a whole lot. Far better than trying to give her an enema. Been there, done that, (hopefully) never again! She went through a long period of incontinence whenever she was in a deep sleep. It was difficult because even though we've bought cat beds, she insists on sleeping on the furniture. In the end we bought a handheld upholstery cleaner and deal with it as needed. We took her to the vet to see if anything could be done, that's when she was diagnosed with Manx Syndrome. The vet felt it could just be bladder muscle damage from recurrent infections (she tends to get crystals too), so she went on antibiotics. Two rounds but she is now doing much better and I haven't found any spots anywhere in a few weeks.
I know it could get worse as she gets older but she has so much personality we just can't imagine her not being here. I trained as a Vet tech but didn't finish my clinicals. Dropped out to move cross country and marry my husband. At this point I am 50 and just can't imagine going back to do it all again. I have done volunteer work at shelters and had cats my whole life, so I think we're up to the challenge. At this point, there are 4 cats in our household. Most of the time they get along fine but Moggie is definitely the cranky old lady of the group and a mean drunk. When she's had catnip she will stalk up to Orlie, the baby of the group and slap him for just being there. Orlie is such a sweetie although, I think maybe a bit slow in thinking, he just blinks and stares after her like he's wondering what that was all about.
Anyway, so glad to have found this place and feel sure it will be a great resource in the future.
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