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Fang's Story

Cat Amputation – Our cat's transition to having three legs instead of four

Fang’s Story

Fang at Four Months Post Amputation

Fang at Four Months Post Amputation

After discovering an unexplained lump on our 11 year old cat’s shoulder, multiple visits to the veterinarian, and a lot of informational and emotional support from the Tripawds community, Fang went from having four legs to only three. Four months have passed since Fang’s amputation, and he has long since returned to his same old outdoor-loving, hunting, cuddly and playful self. His ability to never miss a beat and to rise up to these challenges so quickly shows us how resilient and adaptable animals are, and just how much we can learn from them.

Check out Fang’s story at: http://cldavis.tripawds.com/

9 Comments

9 Comments so far ↓

  • blueeyes

    On Friday we found out our cat had soft tissue sarcoma.We decided to amputate the leg (left front), but I was so torn up about it. He is 12. I found your blog on Saturday, and it made me feel so much better about the decision. We dropped him off at the vet today (Monday) and he should be home tomorrow afternoon as a new tripawd. I just wanted to say thank-you for documenting Fang’s journey.

  • cldavis

    Hello! I am so glad that you found Fang’s blog and that it brought you comfort. I know how you are feeling – this is a really scary time and it almost feels like things wont ever go back to normal. But they really do. Our fur-babies are amazing creatures, and they adapt better than probably even people do. Please let us know how things go! You might want to post on the Tripawds forums if you have any questions on care or what to expect. Also, if you’re dealing with cancer and have questions on that, Jill and her mommy have a blog (see my “TRIPAWD KITTY STORIES” links on the right, and Jill’s mom is a very active member of the community and is always ready to answer questions.

    Let us know what happens! I’m rooting for you and your baby in what I know is a really difficult time!

  • Jenn

    I just want to say thank you for posting your cat’s story for all to see. My fiance and I took our cat to the vet today because we thought he hurt his shoulder, and never in a million years expected to find out he has a tumor and requires amputation. We’re still in shock, very upset, and so on. Reading your blog has made us feel so much better and given us the knowledge we need right now. Thank you!!

    • cldavis

      I am so glad that our story is helping you and your fiance feel a little less scared about this stuff. There is light at the end of it all. 🙂 Let me know if I can help you!

  • Mary

    Hello! I, too, echo the sentiments that Fang’s story is inspirational – thank you!

    I have a 14 yr kitty who was just diagnosed w/ sarcoma in her right front leg. Her situation is a little complicated b/c she also has diabetes and suspicious spots in her lungs. I’m now wrestling w/ my options going forward. Do you and Fang know of any other older kitties in the tripawd community who have lost a limb at such an advanced age?

    Thanks!

  • Dareth

    Hi Mary I just saw your post here and I wanted to let you know I am going through this now with my 12/13 year old kitty Misty. Faang’s story has been inspirational to me too.

    Misty has complications too, an unexplained heart murmur and arrhythmia, and due to that and her age my vets were very negative about the idea of doing an amputation with her. They called off he amputation on the day it was scheduled and urged me to get a second opinion from an oncologist. After consultation with the oncologist, who had some encouraging stories about older cats who survived amputation well, and suggested additional tests to make sure there was not other cancer anywhere else in her body, and that the worst possible explanations for the arrhythmia could be ruled out, I decided to go ahead with the amputation.

    One of my vets had a husband who passed away from the same kind of cancer that Misty has (or hopefully had, if it is gone), so she was still very worried that Misty would be a hopeless case (already metastasized and growing elsewhere) and she didn’t change her opinion despite all our due diligence. The oncologist however said that sarcoma doesn’t behave quite the same way in cats as in humans and gave me some promising statistics for Misty. Of course there are no guarantees but I tried to think what Misty would want, and I decided that she would play the odds as I have decided to do. That girl wants to go about her very important business of occupying sunbeams throughout our house, and scarfing up any and all canned food or meaty people-food left within her reach, and drinking out of the bathroom sink while I pet her and listen to her enthusiastic purrs – she is not ready to give up yet.

    Misty’s amputation was Wednesday, so far she is doing great. We will get the biopsy back next week, I am trying not to be too hopeful but even if it turns out to have spread there is still the possibility of chemo.

    I highly recommend getting a consultation or second opinion, find someone who works with the things your cats is dealing with and they will be able to give you an idea of what your cat’s odds are and help you decide what is best. I am so sorry you have to go through this, it is so heart-rending to have to make these decisions for our furry sweeties.

    I would like to post Misty’s story in Tripawds. Right now it is on Facebook because I am already there pretty regularly. It seems like not a lot of other people were pushed to do all the extra tests that my vets had me do and I think some of that info might be helpful to others. Of course, $$ is an issue too.

    Good luck with your kitty. Whatever you decide, I am sure your kitty knows you love her and will appreciate all you are doing for her.

  • ddmckenna

    Ok so I created the blog for Misty: http://ddmckenna.tripawds.com

    I probably won’t add anything until tomorrow or Monday, right now I am at a friend’s house and they are trying to feed me drinks… First time I’ve left Misty for longer than it takes to check three stores for onesies since her surgery on Wed. I am not a big drinker so they are not having a lot of luck. But writing blog posts still seems a bit rude as a guest so I will wait til later.

  • Helen

    Hi
    I was looking for success stories and found your appeal for information on backyardchickens.com when faced with the agonising decisions to amputate. All the comments gave me hope. I too have a cat with a bone tumour requiring a front amputation.
    I was so pleased that after reading your story, that the next search link brought me to Fang’s 3rd anniversary and a series of happy photos.
    For us, there was no choice. He was already in so much pain and had stopped using his paw. Already getting around using just one. so we are confident he will adapt. His operation is scheduled next week and I’m filled with much hope after reading your story.
    Thank you.

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