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Rescued Stray Cat

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone. I hoping that someone can help me with this. I just rescued a stray cat that may have been someones pet at one time. He is a male who is not neutered and apparently was in some sort of fight. He is currently in my holding room. He has a sore between his eye and ear with puss and a sore behind the same ear. I contacted Animal Control because I just used my complete savings to neuter,give shots and stitch a paw for a feral cat and also paid to have one of my cats at the vets for four days with a catheter and care for FUTD. So I am out of funds. Anyway, while this cat was sedated, I decided that I was going to clean him up, get him neutered and tested and his shots in a couple weeks and then find a suitable home for him. I decided that I would trim his claws. When doing so, I noticed that one of his back claws is not retracting and is incredibly swollen and red (and I'm assuming infected). I do not have the money to take him to a vet, but I also realize that if there is an infection, this could be deadly. Please help with suggestions. Thank you. Tracy

Oh yeah - I will contact my vet tomorrow for suggestions, but . . . I guess I'm trying to be prepared for none and what to do next.
post #2 of 11
Are there any orginizations in the area that would be willing to help? Perhaps you can find an owner and they could pay for medicial treatment? How about turning him in as a stray so he can get the care he needs if you are that strapped for cash.. are there any no kill shelters in your area?
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Unfortunately I live in a town that doesn't even have it's own Animal Rescue, animal shelter or even a 24 hour police force. I must contact neighboring Animal Rescues. I have also contacted all the shelters statewide, none of them have room (at least that's what they say). I live in New Jersey so to travel from one end to the other end is all of 3 hours?!! The no kill shelters that do exist also say they have no room. The only way I could find a home for this cat is to do it myself. I pretty much have been doing that for all the cats I've rescued in the past couple years. I'm not sure if there are any organizations. The only one I do deal with is ABC (animal birth control). They give me a number and I take the cat to a specific vet to get it neutered for 35 dollars. He's a very sweet cat and the last thing I would want to happen is that he goes into a shelter and gets euthanized immediately. The majority of shelters do do that here because of lack of room.
post #4 of 11
Hi Harley,

I would venture to say that this cat needs a vet. He could be abscessing which is very painful and he needs to have antibiotics and his wound opened and debreeded. If he got stung by something he could be having a reaction to whatever stung him.

I would call your vet in the morning and ask if you can bring him in for evaluation only- not treatment. I have learned that once you get in there and can talk to the vet or the office manager one-on-one, they are willing to work with you IF you are a good client and you pay your bills on time- or reasonably so-
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hi Hissy. I'm sorry, but I am very naieve. what is debreeded? I did put a warm compress on the paw. It felt like it burst a little and I had a little blood on the washcloth. He is very adgitated and I don't want to make anything worse. However, I am definately in a bit of a panic right now. As far as the vet, I'm already on a payment plan to complete about 400.00 balance of bills from the last couple incidents
post #6 of 11
Ouch, this is a very difficult situation.

I was going to suggest begging for an installment payment plan, but if you already owe $400 and are still taking in strays, the vet might start refusing you as a customer.

Your options are becoming very limited. You can contact the vet school at the closest large university and see if their students can treat it. They might give you a low-cost payment plan but you already sound overextended. This is tough...good luck to you.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yes it is tough and he is just not doing very well. I just went in to check on him and he seems to be in a lot of pain. I am going to try begging with some of the rescue groups - I don't know what else to do. Thank you.
post #8 of 11
Make your phonecalls, but if that doesn't work...

***Controversial statements***

Sometimes you have to go take a long look at the overall health/age/condition and then look them in their eyes for signs of being alert/focused. If other options aren't available, then the difficult decision is up to you to either try to "ride it out" or take them in for euthanasia. I'm not sure of current prices but euthanasia is usually about $25-30 which should be manageable.

If you "ride it out", please be encouraged that cats do have some ability to repair themselves. When I rescued Nano, she was in horrible overall shape and multiple things were wrong with her. But we "rode it out" and once she had survived I took her in for a full check and to initiate treatment records. Why not sooner? There wasn't anything specific to treat -- she was just in overall horrible condition.

Just for one example, Nano had a discolored split (?) claw on her front paw. Once she could move around better, she diligently scratched that specific paw on the post until part of that claw came off and then she stopped. She's a smart girl -- she knew something was wrong and she fixed it. Now her claws are looking almost normal.

Other people might argue differently, but I don't think it is inhumane to let a stray cat try to recover from injuries on its own if it is still alert and focused. Remember that a stray cat isn't any worse off for anything you try to do to help it -- and if it doesn't work out, at least the cat died with someone caring about what happened to it. You are in a difficult position and I don't envy it.
post #9 of 11
I also live in NJ and resuced a cat off the streets. I called S.T.A.R.T. (Save the animals rescue team) and helped me a little. My vet bills came to $180.00 and I gave them a $100.00 donation. If you are still ahveing problems and need help find a rescue group in NJ you can send me a private message and I will try to help you. I hope everything is going well with the cat.
post #10 of 11
This cat is in need of medical attention, but it sounds like his problems are routine and related to years of fighting and probably not of a life-threatening nature, at least not in the short term. Call the area rescues and find out what vets they use for low-cost neutering. Usually, these doctors also treat routine problems like this guy has, at a reduced rate.

When you have him tested, be prepared for him to possibly test positive for FIV. It's far from guaranteed that he will test positive, but the virus is most common in unneutered males who have been in a lot of fights so it's just something to be prepared for. Unless there are other signs of serious illness (abscesses and fight wounds don't count), don't let anyone pressure you into euthanatizing just on the basis of a positive test. Most cats with FIV live normal lifespans and many never have any problems related to their FIV positive status. The virus also cannot spread through normal contact - it only spreads through deep puncture wounds that inject saliva into another cat's bloodstream. The type of hissy-spats that pet cats have among themselves are not nearly enough to spread the virus. Anyhow, hopefully you won't have to deal with this but it's important to go in prepared so you can make the best decision.

If you cannot find a vet in your area, PM me. I have the name of a very good vet who is about 45 minutes away from you. He is very active in stray and feral cat issues and I know he would treat this cat, but I do not know anything about his fee schedule so I can't promise anything about how much it would cost.
post #11 of 11
i just got an injured stray myself, and animal control is NOT the place to go!! they told me they would just euthanise mine, so i called around and found a place in my area called "just strays" ([url]www.juststrays.com[url]) as my family is on a VERY tight budget i couldn't afford all that would have to be done for this guy, but this organization helps cats in need...and they paid all his medical bills for me! i don't know where you are but you should check for other animal shelters and such in your area that don't euthanise their cats
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