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I think my cat may have a broken tail...

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone. I am new to this site. I have 4 cats and my daughter noticed today that one of our cats' tail was not up in the air like the other three. Nigh-Time is about 12-13 years old. (I don't know the exact age of any of my cats because they were all strays that we took in at one point) We have had him for 12 years. When he was sitting on my lap, I noticed that there is a slight bump in his back near the base of his tail. Thinking back now, I realized that he has had some bowel excretions on his tail on occasion, but I didn't think much of it. I wonder now if his tail is broken and perhaps causing some problems. He is eating, drinking, and behaving fine. I did see him urinating in the livingroom on the carpet the other day. I feel like a dummy, but all of these little sypmtoms are adding up and I will be making an appointment to take him to the vet. I feel bad because I didn't tie any of these things together. If my daughter didn't point out that his tail seemed to be down, I would'nt have given things another thought. When you have cats for so many years, you take things for granted. I love my babies and this one is particularly dear to me. My sister-in-law discovered him years ago downside of her home with rope marks around his neck and tail and singed whiskers. It was obvious that some horrible person abused him, but Nigh is the sweetest, lovable cat. I hope it is not too late to help him. Has anyone else ever experienced anything like this with your cat?
post #2 of 35
There are either 107 or 112 bones in a cat's tail, and many times cats break their tails. They can't do anything about it usually. If the break is severe they may amputate the tail. But usually they just leave it alone.

If he goes off his food, starts having litter pan accidents or otherwise acts off, I would run him in to the vet for x-rays.
post #3 of 35
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your quick response. I am feeling guilty for not noticing things sooner. However, since Nigh-Time is not acting differently, maybe he will be OK. I'll keep a closer eye on him and take it from there.
post #4 of 35
Scratchy dislocated her tail and had the same kind of symptoms you describe - little lump at the end, she was carrying it down and kind of to the left. She also swiped at you if you touched her anywhere near the base of her tail. At first I thought she had a bite there but it turns out it was dislocated. She went all weird and quiet for about 24 hours and I then she was completely fine. Now the tail is perfect - no problems at all. I would just keep an eye on him and make sure he stays doing all the normal cat things normally!
post #5 of 35
Just something else that no one has mentioned, could it possibly be an abscess? I know when Asha (RIP) had his abscess the only reason I noticed is that his tail was down, and when I felt him over there was a bit of a lump at the base of his tail.

Just another thought.
post #6 of 35
Hopefully your kitties tail aint broken! Vibes on the way that it isn't!
post #7 of 35
Thread Starter 
I know an abscess is a reference to a wound, but what should I be looking for near his tail?
post #8 of 35
If it is an abcess you will feel heat coming up off the lump and when it is pressed it will give a little under your hand because of the fluid building up inside.
post #9 of 35

..


Edited by snobrrdr - 12/19/11 at 10:28pm
post #10 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by snobrrdr
Am I the only person that thinks you should go see your vet...immediately? I just noticed my cat's tail was hanging down today. 10 minutes later, we were in the car on the way to the vet. It was, in fact, dislocated & it needed to be set. It's now bandaged up, she's medicated to manage her pain, and it was a wisely spent $350 in my opinion. She's one of the family & I hate to see her in pain...what would you do if your kid's arm was dislocated? Would you just HOPE it would fix itself automatically?
Oh, also...a simple dislocation in a cat's tail can stretch out the nerves and cause serious damage such as bladder and bowel malfunctions. PLEASE go see the vet!
I'm with you too. The instant I see something wrong I take the kitty to a vet.
post #11 of 35
My thought too. I think only a vet and Xrays can assess the problem, and it could need medical intervention as the nerves at the base of a cat's tail are incredibly important. I would take him in.
post #12 of 35
My cat would be at the vet asap too - but sometimes I think I am overprotective as a meomy! But it cannot hurt!
post #13 of 35
As he is peeing outside the litterbox, I would say it's a serious problem and he needs to go to a vet ASAP.
post #14 of 35
Well, there's the people who wouldn't take a cat to a vet when serious symptoms are plainly visible versus the people who rush their pets to the emergency room at 3 AM because of a single offkey meow or maybe Fluffy twitched her whiskers in a peculiar way. This is something in between, so ask yourself this:

Over the course of its life, if this cat was in major pain or had a problem, has it (or would it) made the situation known in a demonstrative way?

There have been a dozen times when I observed Nano with a slight malady. These might be borderline symptoms, such as a limp or a yucky eye, and I simply said "give it another 48 hours" because she wasn't acting too concerned about it. Two days later the situation was either resolved or vastly improved. But one time Nano came up to me and let out about 15-20 loud meows in a row, very clear she was making it known something was wrong. I took a close look at her and spotted the problem. Off to the vet we went and got it treated.

So let your cumulative experiences with this cat guide you how serious it might be. Personally I'd watch the cat for 48 hours and if the situation wasn't showing improvement, then I'd be going to the vet for an evaluation. Cats are good at masking their ailments but once an owner is familiar with a specific cat's behavior then they should be able to sort it out.
post #15 of 35
I am having a problem with my cats tail as well. She has always been an inside cat and lately she has been wanting out. So for the last week she goes out when I go to work and then when I get home she is waiting for me. Last night she wanted to stay out all night I could not get her come in. This morning when I saw her I noticed that her tail was bent down and in between her legs. She came in howling and hissing at me. She has never done that before. I put her up on the counter and slowly tried to lift up her tail. I saw that there was a clump of something right below her tail. I think she is in pain. I cant get close to the object. I am not sure if I need to take her in or if should just wait and see if maybe it will come off by it's self.
post #16 of 35
hello i ws just look up think about cat tail but i cant tell if my cat has a broken tail it a little kitten 4-8 weeks & the last bit of it tail is bent on a 75 - 90 deg angle is that broken or dislowked can u help me plz?




thz
post #17 of 35
Since none of us can see your kitty, it would be very hard to tell. Can you get your parents to take the kitty to a vet?

I hope your kitty is still with the mama cat since 6-8 weeks is much much too young for a kitten to be away from the mama cat. This little one should also be seen by a vet anyway since he/she will need first vaccinations and probably de-worming (most kitties are born with worms).
post #18 of 35
Can anyone help? I accidentally slammed my cat's tail in a swinging wooden door. It's not as serious as the injuries I have read about, because only the last three inches of the tail seem to be drooping a little bit. I am wondering if a cat's tail usually does that, and if I should take the cat to the vet.
post #19 of 35
One of my kittens has a tail break at the very tip. Never caused any problems and happened very young (although I could not pinpoint an actual incident).

But, he never had problems with it and no noticable changes in his behavior (or in the way he held it). I only noticed when petting him. I just figured it was due to roughhousing with his littermates.

IMO, I think you should see your vet. I don't think I would call this an emergency situation (unless there have been more changes since you posted), but I would make an appt.

Good luck, hope your kitten is ok!
post #20 of 35
Yvonne,

If it helps any. Our Dakota(our little not quite right one) broke his tail coming in the cat door one night in a hurry. It was a heavier door then the one we have now(reason we changed it out) and he got scared about dogs being in the yard. We checked the tail for damage, wrapped in up in kleene for a day and today is just fine. He holds his taill up whenever he realized he is seeing and hearing mom and dad.....or the other cats.

So just watch him and see what he does. We did and Dakota is fine now.

post #21 of 35
Just wanted to add that I read your original post wrong (oops). I was thinking with was at the tip of the tail. But, what you describe is a 'bump' at the base of the tail. How big is the bump?

I think it sounds more like an abcess (or something similar) than a tail break. For your cat to break their tail at the base, I think in most cases you would KNOW it happened immediately. They would be in pain.

Btw, I had a cat that had an abcess in the same area (I think it is common for some reason), but don't beat yourself up because they can come on gradually...so it would take a while to notice.

I definitely think your cat needs to be seen by the vet.

Please keep us updated.
post #22 of 35
WOW this is an OLD thread!! hehe, I hope everyone figured out the problems with their cats tails and they are all okay now since it has been a year and a half. To the newer posters, good luck and I hope your cats all turn out okay! If in doubt, take the cat to a vet! You can also start a new thread too instead of bringing up such an old one.
post #23 of 35
LOL, I didn't notice the date of the thread when I read it. I wonder what ended up being the problem?
post #24 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by catpersonguy View Post
Can anyone help? I accidentally slammed my cat's tail in a swinging wooden door. It's not as serious as the injuries I have read about, because only the last three inches of the tail seem to be drooping a little bit. I am wondering if a cat's tail usually does that, and if I should take the cat to the vet.
IMO, you should absolutely take your cat to the vet. I'm sure it's quite painful, and maybe the vet can help him with that His tail should definitely not be drooping!
post #25 of 35
I realise that this is an old thread, but I would like to add that anyone who thinks their cat may have broken anything, however minor the injury appears to the untrained eye, should take it to the vet.

With any broken or fractured bone, however small the break, there is a risk of infection in the bone, and also a risk that blood circulation could be compromised in the affected limb due to tissue swelling. This can lead to gangrene, septicaemia, and death if untreated.

This may sound alarmist, but only the vet can determine which course of treatment is appropriate, and if there is a break or fracture, even if the bone cannot be set, antibiotics will probably be prescribed to prevent infection, and if there is swelling, a steroid or other anti-inflammatory to reduce the swelling so that blood can continue to deliver oxygen to the affected limb.
post #26 of 35
Mistletoe is now 10 yrs old but as a kitten he injured his tail. We did end up having to have part of the tail amputated. To this day he does not like his tail to be touched. My husband says he's just embarassed because his tail is so short.
post #27 of 35
hey everyone! hopefully their cat is better!!

BUT this just recently happened to one of my cats as well....

i noticed her tail was dragging behind her.. which is NOT a good sign to begin with, so you should take your cat to the vet soon after noticing that... and thennnn i noticed her urnating without control... she didnt even notice she was doing it...poor thing... i noticed her private area, and it was swolen.. i first thought maybe she couldve been raped by some larger animal (bc shes a tiny lil thing) and i thought thats how she messed up her tail, and bc the other animal was bigger than her, he rearranged her organs...

BUT the vet said that either she got caught under a garage door (her tail) and pulled it out which dislocated her tail outa socket or been hit/abused by someone else or by getting her tail caught in the fence.. (from jumping over) and bc of any of the reasons above, she pulled it so hard, it pulled her bladder outa its place too... so basically shes paralized.. but everything seems normal and the cat seems perfect

this is bc she does not feel a thing.. she doesnot know when she has to urinate, so when her bladder fillls up, it just empties on its own.. ANYWHERE...

you can get the vet to squeeze it out.. but ONLY a TRAINED PERSON should do it bc if not, the bladder will explode.. and if none of this is checked right away, her insides/organs are being destroyed by the acids from the urine...

there is no surgical procedure that can be done... i am heart broken about my cat for going through this right now. and i am suggesting to just put diapers on her...

i would rather put that on her than put her to sleep for something that is uncontrollable.. esp bc she is still young..

good luck to all of you with your precious ones

and hopefully my love will do fine
post #28 of 35
ohhh and another thing... just bc the tail is limp/dislocated.. GO TO THE VET so they can place it back in before anything worse happens
post #29 of 35
I hope Nigh-Time shows improvement soon. I agree with hissy though, that if things deteriorate in a couple days he should go in and have an xray.
post #30 of 35
My cat is having the same problem. She has a bump about 2 inches up from the base of her tail that is very sensitive to touch. She will meow and run away if you try to feel it. It hasn't grown in size, but is about half the size of a golf ball. She doesn't have any bathroom troubles, but she has been laying low for a few days. Definatel not running around with her tail up in the air!! Seems like all she really does is eat, sleep,or just lay somewhere. I feel so bad, cause she looks like she hurts.
I am kinda avoiding the vet, cause last time I took her, cause she was acting like she had distemper, just being crazy for about three days. He looked at her, did nothing, sent her home with me, and gave me over a hundred dollar bill, just to do nothing to her and say she was fine.
I am thinking either she got it caught in a door or its an absess, which I am putting antibiotic ointment on for. But I can't seem to keep a bandage on it. My mom works at the vets office out in oregon, so she kinda helps tell me what I should do.
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