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Hobbling Kitten

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hello, I just became a member of this site due to some questions I have regarding our new kitten, Xander. He was born to a sickly mother who was put to sleep when he was not yet fully weaned. His litter mate BO, is happy and healthy. Xander however, is very whiny, sad and has just started purring when snuggled, they are about 12 weeks old. My main concern is that Xander hates to walk anywhere. He hobbles around like an old man with arthritis and cries to be carried all over the house. We refuse to do this for fear of starting bad habits...consequently, the other day he got lost upstairs and was so scared to find and go down the steps, he eventually peed in the corner after crying for a good 15 minutes. We hope that he gets over what seems to be a fear of everything, but are afraid he may actually be sickly. He is gaining weight and will climb the stairs to the litter box and his food, but he hates to do it. He will even shiver when he is done with a long walk. What the heck is wrong with him? My son is so attatched to him already. He met them when they were 3 weeks old and has been visiting them on a weekly basis until they were old enough to be adopted(about 5 weeks ago). Xander seems to be the same as he was when he got here to the house, but just a litttle more paranoid and slow. Please any advice would be helpful! Thanks, Jess
post #2 of 19
There could be problems with the kittens hips that is cousing him pain when he walks. He could have some form of arthritis.. Are the shots all in order? I would place another litter box downstairs to make it easier for him. Food and water also. Most important get the kitten to the vet for a complete exam.
post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
He's up to date on all shots, still needs one booster. He has been to the vet to be neutered about 3 weeks ago. They never said anything was wromg, even the family that raised him never said anything was amiss. He is so sweet and gentle, I'm hoping he's just lazy, but how could a kitten at 12 weeks show signs of arthritis? -Jess
post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 
Another thing, he loves to play with his brother, rolling around and doing the whole bite, back feet kick thing. His legs seem strong enough to carry him and to jump into our little treehouse thingy, but he refuses to attempt heights. Is is possible he has vertigo and gets scared when he walks because he feels unbalanced?
post #5 of 19
That could make him a little wobbly (sp?) Again you would need to see the vet. I hope you can find a solution to this problem. I'm sure others on this site can help!
post #6 of 19
Your kitty needs a vet visit. Kitties do not hobble, they run, jump scamper, climb drapes, etc. Please take him in and get a full work-up on him including bloodwork. Something is very wrong here- whether he fell and has suffered head or back injuries. I would be carrying this kitten around if it seems to make him comfortable and not worry about starting a bad habit. But please take him in to see a vet.
post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
I made an appt. to see the vet this evening. He was an SPCA adopted kitten, so he will go see the vet he has been seeing for weeks now. I just want to know why this was never an issue for the woman that raised him or why the vets never noticed the problem, he has been there enough times. And I can tell you he has NEVER been active, since he was 3 weeks, that is why my son picked him, he was so calm and loving and tolerant. Little did we know. He did have a bunch of bloodwork done when he was 3 weeks old and had nothing wrong then. The woman who raised him said he will probably be put to sleep if it is something real. I'm already sure it will be a horrible result. I have no idea what to tell my son, he waited for 3 years for a kitten to call his own and now the love is going to probably be put to sleep. Why do animals have to evoke such strong human responses and emotions...
post #8 of 19
I think you need to relax a bit and stop worrying about putting the kitten down. Until you have seen a vet and had any problems diagnosed there is no point in winding yourself, you son and the little kitty up by undue worrying. It could be something very straightforward - but as everyone is saying - until the vet does a proper check you can't be sure.

Try do give Xander what he needs for the time being to make him happy and comfortable. Habits that are formed can be broken later - but if the kitty is frightened or nervous you will need to overcome that with lots of love and patience. I know, from experience you can't 'train' anxiety out of a cat.

I'm sure we all wish you the very best with your sweet nervous kitty, and our fingers are crossed that all will be just fine.
post #9 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks for those reassuring words, but you made me cry all over again and it is very hard to type with tears in your eyes. -Xander's Momma
post #10 of 19
Sometimes kitty that are not active are that way because of being exposed to some disease in utero. I have had a few that acted such as you are describing and it turned out that the mom had distemper while the babies were in the womb.

Kittens are fragile and although they are good on a two week vet visit, something can happen to them in the interim and that is why they need to have loving, caring owners such as yourself looking out for their welfare.

I wish you luck with your kitten and your vet visit.
post #11 of 19

Xanderdoo, all you can do now is relax a little, (hard to do but do try). And give both kitties lotsa love and attention while the results come back. More worrying won't help the situation. You can only do things to make it better. Your kittens might be young but the can pick up on you worrying just as you can pick up on their mood changes.

post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well, the vet visit yielded no results. The SPCA said bring him Sat or Mon to be put to sleep. Well, I had a hard time with that. I decided with the help of my husband to go ahead and have a few X-Rays done to see if there at least was an obvious reason for putting him down. So, today, we saw a diagnostic vet who was ever so gentle and loving. She even took a few photos of my son and Xander together. She asked to keep him overnight so he could be seen by a specialist in the field tomorrow morning (by some odd luck he will be there tomorrow consulting with a dog). She said she would share the X-rays with him and they would discuss alternatives. We are hoping whatever it is it may be treatable. They really seemd to have no idea what the prob was. His joints are very swollen in his front feet but everything else looked good, so she was very confused. She was so nice, I feel like she really wants to help him, the first vet had such a "Well, we all may die any second, so just get it over with now for him". Any, whoo, Xander is there tonight and we'll find out tomorrow the results. Meanwhile, Bo is very happy to have my lap all to himself. Thanks Guys for your helpful thoughts. -Jess
post #13 of 19
Hope you can get some answers tomorrow. Not all vets are the best, especially some who have "no" bedside manner. Glad you found a good one. Let us know how it goes.
post #14 of 19
I do hope this new vet manages to get to the bottom of the problem. It would be too sad if the kitty was destroyed without you knowing exactly what the trouble is.
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well, the nice vet has had the Xrays, bloodwork and joint fluid tap all looked at by two or three other vets, she is fairly certain one of them will know what the problem is. She decided to put him on Clindamycin drops (antibiotic) to cover any possibility of infection from the joint tap done last week, much to our surprise, Xander is doing pretty well. He seems so much more comfortable when he walks to his food, has even started playing very rough with Bo, and is eating like a madman. He barely cries anymore! It may have been in internal infection of his joints, never before seen in a feline, only in dogs. Leave it to us to have an abnormal cat. He's still so very snuggly and loves to be held on your chest with his head tucked under your chin. We are so glad to have made the emotional and monetary decision to keep him. Thanks for your help, I'll keep you all updated as to the final anaysis due in later this week. -Jess
post #16 of 19
I'm so glad your kitten is doing better! One of my cats was infested with a type of mites that is common with puppies but quite rare in cats. Because cats just don't get this kind of mite, it took a year and several different vets to finally diagnose the problem. Once they figured it out, the treatment went smoothly and he is as healthy as can be now. I hope your kitten is just as lucky as my old cat!!
post #17 of 19
I was just wondering how the kitten is doing now.
post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
To all who have been a part of the saga so far...Xander is better than he has ever been. He plays with his brother like a madman, he runs around the Christmas tree, rips ornaments off too, he uses the litter box with lots of gusto in digging, he jumps in and out of his bed, he jogs up the stairs to get treats (never did this before), he runs to the kitchen to get food, he even traversed the bar which leads from the upper floor of our house to the lower floor, and jumped onto the back of the couch! We have never seen him so athletic and happy. He rarely cries anymore, just to be held when he sees you are giving his brother attention and when you are fixing his food. He still is very snuggly and loves to have kisses all over his belly and head. He even has started purring when you come home and pick him up into your arms. My son is thrilled. It was well worth the $350 to see him happy again. He still is very skittish (but not of the vacuum!) and will need alot of time to get used to the idea that every movement will not cause him pain. He is already getting braver every few days he tries a new room out or a new trick. As it turns out the Clindrops really worked, although the vet said technically they found a different kind of micro-organism which should not have responded to the Clindamycin, so when he is finished with the drops on Wed, we may add another 2 weeks of a new medicine just to be sure all the bacteria is gone. Thanks to all for your supportive comments and advice. -Jess
post #19 of 19
I'm so glad Xander is doing so well! Bravo to you for being so persistent in getting this little guy the help he needed!

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