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Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

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Newbie here! Cat recovery
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Member Since:
28 February 2024
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1 March 2024 - 10:09 am
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My 12 year old cat, Toni just had her front leg amputated Wednesday. She had a rough start after surgery but today she is eating and drinking. She has only had one bowel movement since coming home.  Her appetite today is great but she doesn't use the litter box much.  A few times since surgery she has peed and has had one bowel movement.  My vet wants me to bring her in again late today if she doesn't defecate soon.  I am trying to avoid the cost of another office call since I was also there yesterday for bloodwork.  She was anemic after surgery.   I was wondering how your cats potty habits were after surgery?

The Rainbow Bridge

Member Since:
25 April 2007
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1 March 2024 - 11:22 am
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Hi Donna, welcome. I'm sorry about Toni's amputation. What was the cause?

I'm going to bet that your clinic won't charge you for that post-op visit, most usually do not when it's to follow up after a major surgery like this.

Most cats do have some difficulty with bowel movements after surgery. Dogs too! Pain control medications cause constipation and that can really delay things. As long as urination is happening, #2 usually follows not long after surgery. But it's good your vet wants to see her to check in. Does she have any kind of history of GI issues?


Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 March 2024 - 11:23 am
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Hi Donna.

Looks like jerry is on here your post is getting double whammy approval!!!

We have lots of suggestions to get the bowels moving.

Just gonna let Jerry do her magic with suggestions and I can come back and say Ditto


Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!


Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 March 2024 - 11:36 am
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Donna, here are a couple of links you can check out


Cool Tips for Tripawd Cats

Tripawd Cat Tips


As Jerry said, it's not unusual for poop to ve delayed a bit when this early out of recovery.   The fact that you cat has pooped once and is peeing okay is reallh good news!!

We have a kitty expert (Holly/Pureki s) who will chime in later.  I k ow she would probably  suggest some wet cat food to help keep things flowing.  

Rem, this is VERY EARLY in recovery and it does get better!!!


Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Member Since:
28 February 2024
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1 March 2024 - 1:26 pm
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Thank you for the quick responses.  

I had taken her to two different vets to determine what the cause was.  She had a small lump growing at the top of her right leg under the skin. It was growing very fast and when i took her to the first vet they took a couple samples of her lump and found out it was a solid mass and had pockets of liquid.  The liquid was an over production of joint fluid.  The samples came back as inconclusive.  Her white blood cells were slightly elevated but the real problem became the liquid pockets of joint fluid in the lump.  Once it was extracted for biopsy it began to leak and become larger.  Within 10 days it had doubled its size and became inflamed.  It was really gnarly and ugly.  They suggested amputation since it was growing so fast and draining it or removing it wouldn't work.  It would just return.  She was miserable. I took her for a second opinion and they also agreed that amputation was the best solution.  We are awaiting a diagnosis from the limb sent off to Michigan State University.  She has a rare condition and both vets had only heard of a few similar cases like hers.  She also was born with backwards knee caps and believe it or not shes doing pretty good post op.

Jerry, your probably right that they wont charge me.  I'm going to call them.  Everything just keeps adding up so quickly.  Thank you for all the responses.  I have been trolling here for a week prior to her surgery.  All the stories on here are so heartwarming.  Thank you so much!


Member Since:
11 July 2016
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1 March 2024 - 2:55 pm
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Hi Donna, welcome to you and Toni. I'm sorry you had to find us. 

Excellent on eating and drinking, and glad to hear overall, Toni is doing well!!! Yes, pooping can take some time on pain meds and after surgery. She went since she has been home thats excellent. Has she had pooping issues before? If so that explains why the vet would want to see her. 

You can safely use Miralax. It is OTC, odorless, and tasteless. Depending on her size, 1/8 - 1/4 tsp twice daily, a.m. and p.m., will get things moving again. Wet food is best in recovery for many reasons. I would add a little water to dissolve the miralax and then add it to Toni's food.

Not sure what her regular poop habits are  but if she has NOT had issues in the past, it is completely normal to not poop for days to a week. We can help things along with the Miralax. It may take a few days to work. All cats are different, but it will indeed get Toni back to pooping. 

The pathology can take up to 10 days to come back. Hopefully, sooner, but our experience with MSU takes a bit. 

We are glad you decided to post and not "troll";)  keep us posted please!

Hugs & scratches to Toni please

Holly, Purrkins, and Saxton in the sky 💫


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