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my cat walks funny

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Cierron can't walk in a straight line! When he runs, his back legs seem to overtake him, twisting him to the side, so he runs a little crab-like. Sometimes (but not often) he trips over himself when he's running really fast. However this doesn't seem to disadvantage him - he's fast, a really brilliant jumper and very agile, always clambering about in trees. He's had this ever since I got him as a kitten. He's 1 now. I think he might have something wrong with his lower spine...
Does anyone know if this might become a problem for him later? Vet's bills are sooooo expensive, but I don't want him to have like, a progressive disorder or something!!!!
post #2 of 9
There might be a brain/spine coordination problem. Not sure if anything can be done if he's like this at a year. If he's healthy otherwise and can do normal things with little problems, I think I'd not worry. If he gets worse, then decide what you want to do for him.

Seems weird - my first thought was "how old is the kitten"?
post #3 of 9
Go to this link and read about a couple of the cats they have
You may see some similarities
post #4 of 9
Please take him to the vet - they are expensive, yes, but this is the kind of thing that you should really get checked out.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Okay, thanks - I'll try to pursuade mum to take him to the vet.
post #6 of 9
Just a thought- in dogs this type of movement is called (appropriately enough) crabbing, and it is caused by a mismatch in the amount of angulation is the front end and the rear end. If the angulation in the front is less, the front legs will have less reach- i.e. length of stride. The overangulated rear legs will have much more drive (covering ground), and so take larger steps.
So when you say "his back legs seem to overtake him", this sounds like what you are describing.

If it is this type situation, it is in no way a medical issue- just a point of conformation. Less than ideal conformation, but mostly aesthetic nonetheless.
I'm not saying this is what it is, just relating what came to mind when I read your post.

In dogs it can possibly be a feature of age- one end has matured faster than the other, and sometimes it does resolve. Sometimes the dog just gets into the habit of moving this way and it can occasionally be trained out of them- clearly not an option with cats.

I know cats aren't judged on their movement, and their conformation regarding angulation, reach, and drive. isn't as scrutinized as it is in dogs, but theoretically the same situation is possible.

Again- I m not saying your cat may not have a medical issue- just thinking out loud, and (whether correctly or not) extrapolating dog info to a cat situation.
post #7 of 9
You really do need to take him to the vet. If he's now 1 has he ever seen a vet and if so what did they think of his problem then? Our kitten has a condition called cerebellar hypoplasia. It affects her motor control and she runs much in the way you described. However,she is not a good jumper,definately not graceful, and her head sometimes bobs. Here is some info on this condition http://www.saveacat.org/acr_articles/motion.htm
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the information Clara. I'm a little worried because I just remembered that a couple of weeks after I got him, he got quite sick and wouldn't move much for a few days, I don't know if that's a sympton of feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), which the information says that the cats might get progressively worse. I can't remember if he had this crabbing thing after that, since he was a kitten and unstable anyway. But I think he would probably have gotten worse by now, if he had FIP.

Cearbhaill, yours sounds more likely (and less scary!!). I got a mail today saying Cierron is due for his 1-year booster vaccines, so I'll get the vet to check his legs out while he does his shots.
post #9 of 9
any news on your baby?? What did the Vet say??
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