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Cat devolops paralysis in hind legs practically overnight

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
My daughter's 9 month old male cat started walking in a very unsteady manner and seemed to develop extremely weak hind legs overnight. This happened 5 days ago. He is now just dragging his back legs like he is not conscious they are there.
The vet is totally puzzled and thinks it is some kind of nerve problem or virus, but does not know what to make of it. His X-ray shows a normal skeletal structure. The cat does not seem to be in pain, and does exhibit a response if the back extremeties are squeezed. He was kept overnight at the vet's. The vet also emtied the cat's bladder with a cathether.

He is totally an indoor cat, and there is no sign of any physical trauma from hitting anything.

Has any body seen anything like this before?

He is still eating, though less than normal. He cannot control his bowel movements. He seems fairly normal otherwise. He is such a friendly little guy. It breaks my heart to have to put him to sleep, if this does not resolve. Does any body have any ideas or suggestions ?
Thanks.
post #2 of 5
Is he an inside only cat or an inside/outside cat?

It could be a stroke, it could be genetic, it truly could be anything from colliding with a car, or bike, to eating something that was toxic. Were blood tests done?
post #3 of 5
Google/read up on Hypertrohpic Cardiomyopathy. It sounds a lot like this might be the case.

And get a second vet's opinion.
post #4 of 5
I'm so sorry to hear that! Will be keeping my fingers crossed for your kitty. It really sounds like a neurological issue, especially how you described the dragging of the legs and the loss of bowel control...those are definitely symptoms that can be caused by spinal cord compression/damage.

My cat had similar issues last year. In her case she had scar tissue growing around her spinal cord due to irritation from a slipped disc that had happened sometime in the past (we were completely unaware of it...she hid her discomfort SO well). The neurologist told us that aside from scar tissue, tumors and intervertebral disc disease (degeneration of a disc that either through slipping or disc rupture puts pressure on the spinal cord causing paralysis) can also cause paralysis like that. And in all these cases the paralysis can appear very quickly. Cali was fine one evening and couldn't walk the next morning.

We were told the only way to be sure what is going on with the spine, if an xray shows no bone issues, is imaging, either through MRI or CAT scan (CAT scan is a bit cheaper and was very effective in our case). I would ask about this right away.

Hmm...just to cover other bases...has the cats potassium levels been checked? Someone correct me if I'm wrong but hind leg weakness can also becaused by a potassium deficiencies. That was the first thing our vet checked when Cali first started showing symptoms. The loss of bowel function and actual dragging of the feet still seems more like a spinal problem me though.

Best of luck to you! Keep us posted.

-Tara, Cali, Bonk & Kasumi

ps - Cali had surgery on her back and is walking and running around now like nothing ever happened so don't give up on the little guy! And if that isn't possible for you, there are many cats out there with hind leg paralysis still living high quality lives...there are wheeled carts and everything out there to help them get around. Just something to think about!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveller-57
My daughter's 9 month old male cat started walking in a very unsteady manner and seemed to develop extremely weak hind legs overnight. This happened 5 days ago. He is now just dragging his back legs like he is not conscious they are there.
The vet is totally puzzled and thinks it is some kind of nerve problem or virus, but does not know what to make of it. His X-ray shows a normal skeletal structure. The cat does not seem to be in pain, and does exhibit a response if the back extremeties are squeezed. He was kept overnight at the vet's. The vet also emtied the cat's bladder with a cathether.

He is totally an indoor cat, and there is no sign of any physical trauma from hitting anything.

Has any body seen anything like this before?

He is still eating, though less than normal. He cannot control his bowel movements. He seems fairly normal otherwise. He is such a friendly little guy. It breaks my heart to have to put him to sleep, if this does not resolve. Does any body have any ideas or suggestions ?
Thanks.
post #5 of 5
My friend Nanci just lost her beautiful PrettyGirl to the same thing. The vet diagnosed a blood clot on the spine. It literally happened overnight. The vet said that there was no circulation in the hind end, no pulse and neurological damage.

I am so sorry that your baby has had to suffer similiar problems.
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