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Somewhat worried

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

This is my first post to the forum. I found the site as I was looking for some information to help me with a problem I have.

Our cat adopted us about a year and a half ago (she was 6 weeks of age when we found her and her three brothers almost starved to death in a nearby field), and now lives indoors after her brothers were all run over by cars (all within one month ). She's been indoors for about a year now, and seems to enjoy her life. Fortunately there is plenty of room, and I try my best to get keep her entertained.

Now, we have a staircase, on the railings of which kitty loves to walk. I usually can't watch. Today I was washing the floors, including the stairs, and I guess her paws were wet when she jumped on the railings, for at one point I heard a crash, a miaow, and another crash-like sound. I didn't see what happened exactly, but my guess is that she tried to get on the railings, slipped, and fell. If I am correct, she must have fallen about five meters, landing on wet stone floor. It may be that she also hit a railing as she went down. (We have three storeys, connected by that one staircase.)

Obviously, I was really worried that she might have broken something. However, to my great relief she got up and was able to walk, although with a slight limp indicating that her left hind leg hurt a little. I picked her up, and tapped her spine gently from several places, relieved to find out that none of the taps seemed to hurt her, which (I hope) means that her spine is ok. Also her other feet seem to be fine; only the left hind leg, when pressed, produces a "don't do that" kind of a miaow. As far as I can see, it is also not the bone but the muscle that seems to hurt (but I didn't want to stress her more by continually poking the tender leg). In any case, now, about three hours after the accident, the limping is actually more or less gone. Not that she would be running around, either.

So, she seems to be ok. However, ever since the accident she has mainly been lying on the floor, only moving to follow us if we go to another room (she loves company). She is also very quiet, and not at all playful. Usually at this time of the day she will be running around the house, playing with her toys, trying to pick up a fight with you, and generally having fun. On a normal day she is also a very loud cat, constantly talking to you. Now if I throw a ball (she loves fetching those), her head does turn quickly, and her eyes fixate on it, but she doesn't seem to have either the willpower or the energy to go and catch it.

She doesn't eat food, either. Not that it would be her usual feeding time, of course, but she actually missed her breakfast this morning (we have had some workers outside the house, and kitty is a bit scared of them and their noises, and so couldn't eat properly in the morning), so I would imagine that she is hungry. She did accept a few snacks, though.

The only time that I have seen her like this was once after she had been in a fight. She recovered from it within a day or so, so I am hoping that kitty will be her normal energetic self by tomorrow.

So, I think I shouldn't be worried. However, I noticed that as she is lying on the floor (or in her little box -- she loves cardboard boxes), she shakes every now and then. Not much, but a little, every 10-15 seconds or so. A bit like a human shakes when he or she is cold. Kitty also constantly stretches her hind legs. And, as I said, moves only when absolutely necessary.

She isn't really complaining. And she still really likes to be petted, though will try to scratch you if you go anywhere near her hind legs.

The local vet is off for the day, and won't be back until Monday evening. I could take her to an emergency animal hospital in the city, but she hates cars and I really wouldn't like to drive her there and back (that'd be at least an hour) for nothing, as it would only stress her further.

So, I wonder if anyone has any idea whether the shaking and stretching is something I should be very concerned about? I will still try to call the vet today, if only I can get hold of his private phone number, but I thought that maybe you feline experts might have something to say, as well.

Thank you very much in advance.

post #2 of 16
Please take your cat to the vet and ask for x-rays. Contrary to popular belief they do not always land on their feet. Yes, it will be expensive, but if she has injured herself, better to catch it now than later? Later, always means more money.
post #3 of 16
I think that you should be taking your kitty to the vet. Although its an hour car ride i believe it would be the best thing to do. Kittens are pretty resiliant, but it sounds like your kitty needs some xrays done to rule out any broken bones.
post #4 of 16
I also suggest taking her to the vet and make sure she has no broken bones.
post #5 of 16
Your cat needs to be seen by the dr. They can check for bones, internal injuries and other things. Please go.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your quick and unanimous reply. I went to eat dinner, and when I came back I was surprised to see that so many of you had already responded. Thank you.

A further complication in the matter is that I do not have a licence myself, so going to the city on the weekends always requires asking someone. And, of course, right now no one is available.

On the other hand, we are in any case going there tomorrow morning to take care of some other business, and since it is now already evening here, the morning shouldn't be that far away (or am I only trying to convince myself here?). I know that one shouldn't take risks in serious matters like this, but at the same time kitty seems to be recovering...

For, she now walks normally, and even jumped on the sofa and back down. The shaking seems to have gone away as well. She's also very responsive to all the noises around her, and has started her usual conversational style. Still not complaining about anything.

Yet, she is obviously not 100%, as she is still mainly spending her time lying on the floor. (Then again, she hasn't had her afternoon nap today.) And she still keeps stretching the hind legs every now and then. And her paws feel cold (but at this point I may be approaching paranoia, for I have no idea what her paws are usually like).

So, I think I will take her with us tomorrow, just to get the x-rays and see whether everything is ok. I would really prefer to go now, but that seems impossible to do, unless I took a taxi which I'm afraid isn't really within my student's budget...

Again, thank you very much for your help. I'll keep you posted.

Vili (who needs to go to a driving school ASAP)
post #7 of 16
Just keep her warm and probably its best she isn't to active as she might have a broken bone.
post #8 of 16
In all honesty, she is probably bruised, and understandably scared at losing control. I don't know where you are locate, but for now keep her warm, quiet and confined- is she drinking or eating?

I had one kitty climb a tree a few years ago. He was up about 13 feet. I went under the tree (dumb me) stretched out my arms and called him "Gulliver come to mom!" Dang it- he did- one giant leap- landed on my face and neck (claws outstretched) knocked me flat to the ground and as I fell, I dropped him, he went flying. He lay there for a few minutes stunned, then got up and was shaking. We rushed him to the vet and he was pronounced bruised and my story was met with a large measure of first disbelief- but the scratches on my face and neck and the bruise on my chest was my evidence. But I asked for everything, full exam, x-rays and everything. Peace of mind sometimes comes with a price.

Good luck!
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by hissy
In all honesty, she is probably bruised, and understandably scared at losing control.
Thank you for sharing your story, hissy. It does relax me a little bit, thinking that it might just be bruises. But as you said, peace of mind tends to come with a price, so I'll take her with me tomorrow morning.

Originally Posted by hissy
I don't know where you are locate,
I currently live in Hungary, close to Budapest. (Well, about half an hour's drive.) Hospitals for humans are here difficult enough to get to (especially for foreigners like myself); vet's places doubly so.

Originally Posted by hissy
but for now keep her warm, quiet and confined
I offered her a blanket, but she shook it off. The house is warm, though. Thanks also to gardenandcats for suggesting this!

Originally Posted by hissy
is she drinking or eating?
She drank, but hasn't eaten yet. Actually, she's asleep now.

Poor thing.

post #10 of 16
Hi and welcome to TCS. I also agree that a vet visit is best, as soon as you can practically make it. Many years ago I had a cat who jumped for a fly and fell out a window 10 metres onto concrete. He seemed OK but would not eat, and when I got him to a vet we found his jaw was broken by his head hitting the floor. He had to have a wire in it and fluid feeding for awhile. So I would not be secure till a vet examined him and an xray was done.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
After four hours of sleep, kitty woke up with a hunger. She ate her tummy full, did the customary after-the-lunch-licking, and then went back to lie down in the box.

Jennyranson: A fall of 10 meters onto concrete and all you get is a broken jaw if you are a cat? Amazing. But it's a good point about everything seeming to be ok, but in closer examination something actually being wrong. The third cat to die from our litter of four survived his encounter with the car, but his backbone was so badly fractured from a number of places that we didn't have any option but to let her go (the doctors said he would probably not have walked, even if they could have fixed her back). The sad thing was that all the way to the emergency hospital we thought that it was just a broken or dislocated leg, as she could still kind of walk, just without one leg functioning. It was a really big shock to hear that this was not the case.
post #12 of 16
I know - I still remember, thirty years later, how I felt when I went to find my Pippin. He fell two and a half stories, onto a garage drive. And my relief at finding him alive. But I was young and ignorant and as he could walk, if rather dazed, I did not take him to a vet until the next day. He did make a full recovery though.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Apologies for such a late post (had a terribly busy working week), but just to close this thread off, let me say that kitty had no bones broken or fractured, or indeed anything else damaged, and has by now made a full recovery. A lucky escape.

Thanks a lot for everyone who wrote!

post #14 of 16
Thanks for the update, Vili. I'm glad to hear she's okay. When people post with a problem, and then don't let everybody know the outcome, they worry.
post #15 of 16
We are glad your cat is okay.
post #16 of 16
Very happy to hear that kitty came out with no serious injuries!
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