Three legged cat Petunia benefits from Tripawd cat rehab therapy thanks to Tripawds Foundation Rehab Grant #175. The free consultation and at-home rehab exercises help Tuni stay strong and love life on three legs. Read her story, and learn how you can get a free veterinary rehab evaluation for your dog or cat.
Meet Three Legged Cat Petunia
My sweet Petunia is a 16 year old domestic short haired kitty that had her back leg amputated on October 5th, 2023 due to osteosarcoma of the right femur. We noticed it when I saw a bump in the area of where the bone cancer was. I adopted her in 2007 when she was 5 months old from Tails Humane Society in DeKalb, IL.
I made a an appointment with Companion Animal Rehab and Athletics in Westmont, IL. The Tripawd cat rehab consultation started with giving Dr. Annie Ubatuba (CVA, CVSMT, CCRT) a run-down of her medical history and the goals I would like Petunia to achieve during Tripawd cat rehab sessions. Petunia has always been healthy, with the exception of her right hind leg has been a little bit of an issue for her in the last 9 years. She had a luxating patella on that leg that caused her to limp on that leg that was discovered in 2014.
How Tripawd Cat Rehab Helps Petunia
My desired therapy goals and outcomes I mentioned is Petunia’s freedom back. I was afraid of her jumping and it causing pain. I’ was’m also hoping she can use the pet stairs again. And, I’d like to be able to allow her to roam freely in the home when her and her sister, Possum, are by themselves. By the end of our first Tripawd Cat Rehab session, Dr. Ubatuba established the following goals and appointments:
Tripawd Cat Rehab Goals:
- To increase core strength for stability and better ability to stand independently
- To reduce muscle triggers and discomfort in the lumbar spine
- To maintain comfort of the L pelvic limb as it is compensating for the RH
- To increase flexibility of the LH hip extension 5. To reduce muscle triggers and discomfort of the L pelvic limb- quadriceps, hamstrings, gastrocnemius, and biceps femoris.
Therapeutic Principle: To achieve the highest level of pain free activity and independent function possible.
1st Week: Laser/Massage Laser/Therapeutic Exercise
2nd Week: Laser/Therapeutic Exercise Acupuncture
3rd Week: Laser/Massage
4th Week: Laser and Massage Acupuncture Recheck exam
Tuni’s Tripawd Cat Rehab Tests
The rehab specialist performed some tests and measurements during this consult that we will recheck on 12/14/23. These included: Spinal Reflex Grades, Cranial Tibial, Perineal Reflex, Biceps Reflex, Musculoskeletal, Stance, Gait on the straight line, Posture (Standing, Sit, Down), Transitions (Standing to Sit, Sit to Stand, Sit to Down, Down to Stand), Lateral Bending, Palpation, Spine Dorsal to ventral glide, Biceps Stretch, Gluteals (at greater trochanter) measurement, Coxofemoral Extension/Flexion measurement, Stifle Extension/Flexion.
She finished by giving Petunia acupuncture FREE OF COST during the consult! I appreciated that so much!
I have learned one exercise during the therapeutic exercise appointment that I have been able to do at home. The Tripawd cat rehab specialist mentioned that it is important for her to work on her core.
She had Petunia sit on the edge of balance pad, make sure her back foot was straight, and tap on her core to get her to engage it as she stood up. Another exercise she did was place two balance pads side-by-side with a gap in between. The goal was for Petunia to stand up from a sitting position and walk across and make sure she cleared the gap.
I am looking forward to this retest as it is sometimes difficult to know the progress she has made. However, in the last month, she has walked more. She may have to take breaks, and her walking may be low to the ground, but it definitely has been an improvement.
I also have a ramp positioned on the last sept of a 3-step pet stair, and she has climbed up it on her own many times since. Just this week she went down them twice for the first time. She also now sits up very well, where early in the rehab days, she would just lay on her side. Her strength and confidence has increased since day 1 and she is slowly getting her freedom back, as well as I am feeling more confident leaving the house with her having full access to the home.
Continuing with the Tripawd cat rehab appointments past the consult had to be the best decision for Petunia. And, in a way, good for me as I feel like I am getting my freedom back as the road to recovery for Petunia has not been easy. Thank you Tripawds for EVERYTHING you have done! I don’t know if Tuni or myself would be where we are today if it wasn’t for the guidance and support!
~ Samantha & Petunia