Tasha (In Loving Memory)

My cat just had her front leg amputated. I am not sure what to expect? How do cats survive with just 3 legs?

Asked by Tasha (In Loving Memory) on Aug 29th 2008 in Health & Wellness
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Minxy (1987-2008)

Most cats do fine with 3 legs and really quickly learn to run around and balance fine. I've seen cats running around days after surgery - they are much tougher than people and cope much better after losing a limb.

Since Tasha has lost her front leg she'll be able to jump up a lot easier than she'll be able to get down (at least at 1st) so you need to try to set things up to make it easy to get down from her favorite perches. You probably also want to keep her inside only at least until she is used to just having 3 legs and you are happy she will be Ok outside.

As she gets older Tasha may get arthritis in her front leg that would affect her more than if she had 2 front legs. Its probably worth starting to give her Cosequin to help protect her joints from arthritis. Its the same as the glucosamine and chondrotin that people take for their joints but in pet sized doses and you can get it from your vet.

Minxy (1987-2008) answered on Aug 29th.

Other Answers



most cats lose a leg and they are perfectly fine about it. most cats dont even notice it!! but whatever happens, your cat will be a loving angel, free to spread her wings. shes gods angel and she yours even if a leg is lost.

Member 601834 answered on 8/29/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer


If she had been injured for a while, chances are she had already begun to compensate for the bad leg, and will therefore already have an idea of how to manage balancing on three legs already. Even if this was sudden, most cats are inherently adaptable to injuries, and so after an initial adjustment period, she will probably be back to normal, if not better than ever. There are tons of cats who survive and thrive after a limb amputation.

Meowmy does not have any experience with that, but she's told that there are groups on catsters where tripods (that's the nickname that owners give their cats who have lost a limb) can share their experiences with each other. Just run a search for them over on the Groups section of the site.

Boris answered on 8/29/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 2 Report this answer

Izadore (Izzie)

Purrs and headbonks to you and your little "tripod". I have one also, only she's a dog. Let me assure you that animals are MUCH better at compensating for this sort of thing than we humans are. Many people feel sorry for my Jessie, but she recently beat a squirrel to the tree. That was one surprised squirrel! Jessie occasionally loses her balance and it scares Mom a lot more than it affects her. She hauls herself up and goes on about her business. I'm sure your vet has told you what to look for at the amputation site as far as infection and such. Your baby will be FINE and will live a long and happy life.

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 8/30/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer


I recently spentsome time at an animal rescue facility, and My oh My can animals overcome!!! there where dogs in wheelchairs with broken back legs cats with two deformed front legs, evan a collie scooting around on its bottom pulled by its front paws as BOTH its back legs had to be amputated, and let me tell you there was more kisses, tail wagging and purring then I have heard!!! It was beautiful made me cry!!! As long as you cuddle your kitty and love her, she will eventually forget her disability and go right back to being the little spit fire we know they can be!!! just schedule regular checkins with your vet to make sure infection, or other problems dont arise. BEST OF LUCK!!!

Member 720592 answered on 8/30/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


she'll be fine. here is the best thing. she doesn't know that she's handicapped. i've seen once with only 2 legs do fine. since she doesn't know that she's different, it doesn't bother her. she'll be a happy confident kitty. don't feel sorry for her. that would be the only way she'd know something is wrong. just treat her well, and she'll be a happy kitty

harley answered on 8/30/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer

Midnight (Mingy's Brother)

My cat Midnight hurt his leg, but he was lemping around. But he really didn't care. So she/he will get over it. promise!

A loving cat owner

Midnight (Mingy's Brother) answered on 8/31/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer