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Need Advice about Polydactyl Cat & Surgery

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
To those of you who have polydactyl cats or know someone who does...have you heard of any having to get toes removed? The vet said that when Blue goes in to get spayed (which will be within the next few weeks) he is going to also take off two of her toes. She has six toes on each front paw and 5 on each back paw... Her front paws are fine--it is the toes on her back paw that he said should be removed. The reason is because they are not normal toes... she can not move them at all,they just hang limp on the side... almost weightless. That means they have the potential to get caught or torn on things at any time. So right now I'm not sure what to do because I'm scared of her getting caused any pain or stress by having them removed (although he said it won't) It just reminds me of declawing so that's what is leaving me undecided.... But then again I definitely don't want her getting injured because of me deciding not to go through with it. I do really trust the vet but I'd still like to know everyone's advice/opinions on it first. Thanks..
post #2 of 10
Ooooo....tough call on that one! I'd get a second opinion. Elwood, my friend's poly, has toes on his front paws that don't have movement and her vet never suggested anything like this. He is a cat specialist (the inventor of Cat Attrack kitty litter), and I would think that he would be tuned in on what to do in these circumstances.

Good luck, and please keep us posted on your decision!!
post #3 of 10
My gut reaction is no way! your cat was born this way , and learned to use her body this way . I had a 6 toed kitty (named Big Toe lol ) I dont agree with your vet about it may get caught in things, just because they dont function doesnt mean they cant feel .

Unless something is wrong with them I would leave your kitty as intact as you can , you have the right to tell your vet no , and if your posting here I think you know what your gut is telling you
post #4 of 10
I know that with our poly he had to have a digit removed a few year ago BUT this was an extra dew claw, he had no bearing of weight on it, and the claw itself was growing in a curved fashion and into his skin. It was hard to trim it and was causing him pain- so we opted to remove it instead. But had it been where he would be bearing weight on it, I don't believe we would have had the surgery done. The dead limb is quite normal and doesn't seem to bother the cat, Bartee had 16 toes total, you just want to be sure to keep the claws clipped down. We also had a Border Collie BlackJack who had 21 toes- he didn't seem to ever be bothered by his extra toes either, many of them just hanging there not much life in them. He is now a famous herding and trial dog in Eastern Washington, so we must have been right, they didn't bother him much at all. I would get a second opinion if I were you before I would remove a toe on this kitty.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Actually they are kind of like dew claws... except they are on the back feet. And it's not just that she can't move them... They literally hang at the side of her paw. You can spin the toe in a circle.. bend it all the way back till where it touches the top of her paw or bend it all the way inward to where it touches the inside of the pad... I do think it's possible that they could get caught on something or maybe bend inwards into the paw... So I'm kind of for the surgery.. I'm just worried that it would be something like a declaw... even though it's almost like a piece of skin hanging off. Here are some pictures.. sorry there are so many and the quality is bad.. I had to hurry and take them so I didn't stress her out.

It's the toes on the side of her paw on the insides of her back feet.

post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
In these pics you can kind of see how limp and flexible the extra toes are

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

That's one of her front paws.. Which is completely healthy.

And that's my baby...
post #8 of 10
Wow. Hmm this is tough indeed. Her front toes are SO cute though, they look just like Zoey's. Zoey has one claw on one back foot that kind of just sits there, but it doesnt stick out like yours does so it doesnt get caught on anything. Her 'thumbs' can bend all the way around like you said (opposable heh) but I have never seen her have any problems with them. Does your cat seem to have a problem with hers? I think I would at least get a second opinion if you can. I dont think it would be like declawing because they remove the whole toe right?
post #9 of 10
Any news or decisions yet?
post #10 of 10
For me the question is: "Does the extra toes cause the cat any problems?"

If not, I would leave them, if they do, have the procedure done. Polydactyli rarely causes cats any problems.
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