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Elderly cat and operation

8 replies

Scrumbled · 25/07/2014 20:54

Our 18 year old cat has broken its leg, right by a joint, so it's more complicated than put it in plaster, or operate and put a pin in. The recovery will be long and probably longer due to age. Even then full use of leg isn't guaranteed. Our cat loves cuddles and likes to be around people but is very much an outdoor, independent thing. We've taken her home for the weekend to make a decision, but think we're going to put her to sleep.

Part of me thinks we should see how an operation goes as she's still so bright, active for her age and enjoying life. She has no other health issues. She's an awful patient and still managed to escape out of the house because we left the door open for a few minutes, with a big barrier, whist one leg is fully bandaged from top to bottom.

On the other hand she is showing her age, cautious about jumping, doing the odd random wee in the house and spends most of her time snoozing. I think she's going a bit batty too. If it's not the it'll be something else in 6 months or a year?

Ahhh, tell me we're doing the right thing. Ok, I know that is a completely unreasonable question :(

OP posts:
tabulahrasa · 25/07/2014 20:59

I'd ask about's a surprisingly quick recovery time and they do pretty well on 3 legs.

Lonecatwithkitten · 25/07/2014 21:07

Me I'd also go for amputation too, within 3 weeks full recovered and mobile.

Lovethesea · 25/07/2014 21:15

Given they live in the moment I think quality of life is really important more than quantity.

My Huntercat had a bad break from a car smash and we pinned him and caged him for many many weeks til well. Because the prognosis was good and he was 3.

If he breaks his leg at 18 I doubt I would put him through any ops or recovery, he adores the hunt and I would rather a calm pain free exit in my arms than a painful op, recovery etc.

But I tend to the pragmatic on this and fear leaving PTS too late than too early.

cozietoesie · 25/07/2014 21:45

I'd go for amputation. Has the vet commented on the possibility of that? (Not knowing the precise nature of the injury.) Whatever you do, though, I'd do it quickly. You shouldn't be leaving an animal for long with a bad fracture.

Lonecatwithkitten · 25/07/2014 21:52

I need to tell you a little story about a special cat. He was 18 years old and broke his leg in an awkward fracture, we tossed up all the options with his owners ran routine bloods to make sure there was no inter current disease.
We took his leg off.
Five years later at the age of 23 he eventually left us in a chosen planed exit de to other disease. During his extra 5 years he knocked two cocker spaniel pups into shape as cohabitors.
In an otherwise health 18 year old cat amputation is a really good option.

Scrumbled · 25/07/2014 21:54

Amputation wasn't mentioned at all by the vet, we'll ask. The cat is comfortable, well medicated and leg has been very supported. Vet suggested we wait until Monday to make a decision given her general state. She gave us the option of keeping her there if we werent happy to care for her.

OP posts:
Luvvies · 25/07/2014 21:57

I have a 15 year old amputee, following a break. We've built a couple of "catwalks" to help her get down from windowsills. With 2 back legs and 1 front it's easier to jump up than down.
She's currently on my lap, having spent the day sleeping and pottering outside. Which is the same quality of life she had before.
Is this is an option, do consider it.

Scrumbled · 26/07/2014 00:35

Thanks everyone.

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