Cat blog about my life with many, many cats.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Teddy the Cat No Longer Has Much of a Tail

Poor Teddy, the latest adoptee in our feline family, had a run in with either a neighboring farm dog or a coyote Sunday afternoon. His tail was badly mangled and mostly unsalvagable. So he had to undergo a partial tail amputation (recommended in cases where the tail is already going necrotic, like his was.) This stems the tide of potential infection and gives him the highest chance of returning to a normal, albeit tail-less, life.

To us, this was a terrible choice to make, but it was basically either that or watching him die from infection over the next few days. We prayed about it and got that Teddy still wanted to be a part of our household, because he's made a real place for himself here over the past year since he first arrived last winter as a displaced homeless cat. We love him dearly. He's an affectionate lap cat whose only desire is to be rubbed and cuddled. Actually, all of our cats are like that, which makes us very busy throughout the day! There are always a couple of cats competing for lap time in any given moment.

The good news is that Teddy is doing GREAT. He's eating normally, doesn't seem to be in any discomfort, and has adjusted easily to wearing this funky oversized color he has to have on to keep him from licking his tail area. He receives medicine twice a day and doesn't even mind when I give him that (which is great. Some of our other cats really resist when you try to administer oral antibiotics.)

Right now, we have him in the spare bedroom, isolated. After he gets a check up from the vet we'll probably allow him to wander freely around the house again, but he can't go outside until he's fully recovered. Teddy is an indoor/outdoor cat, as are most of our cats, and the challenge with cats who like to go outdoors is that they really get rammy and intense if they can't go out! So since we live on a 100 acre isolated farm property, we let them come and go through cat doors we have installed in the basement.

There's always a risk with letting cats go outside, but with eight cats, most of whom demand to go outside, it's not practical to force them all to stay in. I wish we could just keep them all inside, though. In the winter months, most of them are inside 80% of the time, snuggling and staying warm. So that's good.

Thanks for sending any prayers or positive thoughts Teddy's way. It looks like he'll be fine. He'll just have to get used to not having a tail to help him counter-balance when he jumps up and down on counters and so forth.

Poor guy!


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