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I have a little black cat named Roscoe. She was born December 18th, 2017 and I got her February 2018. So she’s a little over a year old. Personality wise Roscoe is not an aggressive cat at all. Nothing you do ever gets her to be bite or swipe or hiss. Just not her style. She prefers to purr her way out of discomfort or just leave. She’s never been food motivated, but she does eat when she’s hungry. Honestly her motivator is she’s always looking to play. She loves to chase things.


So that’s the back story.


I’ve noticed on 2 separate occasions that Roscoe has limped or changed her gate as she walks. It’s in the back legs and not the front. She’s also started flopping on the floor and just lying there like my older cat does which Roscoe previously didn’t really do.


As far as I can tell, Roscoe isn’t in pain. I can touch her feet, her legs, her back hip, and seem to have no problem. She doesn’t flinch, cry, swipe, cringe, or anything that seems to notify me that she’s bothered by what I’m doing. Honestly I’ve only seen it twice and I’ve checked her twice. The first time she seemed unbothered and simply purred. I put her from her perch to the floor and she just stood there purring looking to play. The second time I became suspicious it was her hip. So when I checked her I made sure to touch and squeeze her hip a little. All she did was let me touch her and then purred and curled up looking to play.


So I’m stuck. On the one hand, Roscoe isn’t making any sign to me she’s seriously hurt. She doesn’t do the limp/change in gate all the time. And it hasn’t impeded her ability to climb her perch or desire to play. If anything she just flops and gives up on a play session a little sooner. On the other hand, she HAS had a limp/change in gate at least twice. Which is unusual and concerning….


Any thoughts?
 

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That's a good idea. When Cali broke two toes, she didn't make a sound when the emergency vet manipulated her paw. Nothing. So the vet didn't think it was serious, but I insisted on x-rays because she was limping.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The issue has escalated in a weird way.



Yesterday when I got home from work I picked her up several times and softly put her on my bed on all 4 paws. In doing so it was clear something with her rear left leg was bothering her as she'd immediately remove weight from that leg. Even shivered it once. When i finally let her go she did a limp step or two forward and flopped.



This morning before work she was walking around fine bringing me toys looking to play. Worried she'd be hurt i refused hoping she'd relax. But she followed me around anyways. Finally she hopped up on my bed on her own, took three steps and flopped. Only when she did she 1) hopped, not limped, on 3 paws refusing to put weight on 1 paw. and 2) the leg she refused to put weight on was now her rear right leg. so the leg has changed.



We've got a 7am appointment tomorrow to have her looked at. She's an indoor only cat. no kids. just one other cat. they've known he other for a year now. So i don't know what's wrong.
 

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Vet called. She's doing X-Rays to confirm. She thinks Roscoe has Remedial Luxating Patella. Essentially her knee cap is moving. Depending on severity a surgery may be needed. If so it won't solve the issue, just help it from getting worse faster. From what I read online it is genetic. It can lead to arthritis, consistent joint pain, and over time eventually lead to a lack of mobility in both her back legs. Roscoe is just over a year old born 12/18/17. So this is her new normal. It's all down hill from here.
 

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I had a dog with this. It showed up when he was quite young (like maybe a year old) and it bothered him off and on. He'd run on 3 legs or 4 legs, but the back two legs seemed to take turns which one was the bothersome one at the time. Yes, genetic.

He lived quite a long time and we only gave him some baby aspirin when he seemed to be having a run of trouble. I've heard that aspirin is not good for cats, so I'd ask the vet about some alternative.

It may be Roscoe's new normal, but it's not necessarily catastrophic or terminal so please don't freak out. My little dog never slowed down, and he spent a lot of time running around outdoors in the fenced yard.
 

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Eldercat,

Thank you for replying. Right now I'm looking at a cat that suddenly can't walk right who's jumping up and down off things, at the costs of vet visits and surgeries, and I'm freaking out a little bit. I've never had a special needs animal before. It sounds like your dog wasn't overly hampered by it. How long did your dog survive? Did you have to make certain concessions? like build little stairs or anything?
 

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I never did anything, once I found out what the problem was, other than the occasional baby aspirin. This dog lived into old age, and I put him down when he went blind and it was plain he was miserable. And I'm NOT talking about his knees, he had just gotten old and frail and was at the end of his road. The vet agreed; she said, "He's tired, he's just worn out", he'd gone gray on his muzzle. Old dog, like 15 or so. :)

Roscoe will adjust, will figure out what really can or can't be done well any longer. They don't have the same reaction that we do, they just accept it and go on. (I had a kitten who was partly paralyzed, and he never slowed down either, but he could not jump & he figured that out pretty quickly after a few tries. He scrambled up and down everywhere, even a tree.) You might consider a ramp like chickens have, with "frets" so it's not just some smooth slope.

Personally, if surgery isn't going to *fix* something, it's just a huge expense and trauma, IMHO. I'd watch and wait and just see how things settle. You have the diagnosis and you can always change your mind about treatments. But that's just me. And I've not seen Roscoe, you have. :) Squirrel away $1000 in a Surgery Fund and go from there. :)

I hope things will work out well for you both, it is upsetting when they're not 100%.
 
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