Posted By: Sarah - Vet

Vets Diary - Wellie is August's joint winner of Pet of the Month

Towards the end of a busy Monday, we never know what’s going to happen next when the phone rings. Recently, a concerned member of the public called to report finding a kitten with its leg caught in a trap – a horrible ordeal that no animal should have to endure. We told him to bring her straight in so we could assess her.

When she came in we could see that she was only about 9 weeks old and had a severe injury to a front leg. She was angry and defensive when we tried to handle her, unsurprisingly, so we weren’t sure if she was feral as no-one had reported her missing. She was hospitalised with pain relief and antibiotics.

The next day, we talked to the wonderful volunteers who run our local branch of the Cats Protection League. They agreed to take her on with the aim of finding her a home when recovered. She was anaesthetised, and at that point, we thought that the leg would probably need to be amputated. Much to our surprise, there was no fracture, just severe infection, muscle/skin trauma and swelling. After talking to the CPL, we decided to give her a chance to keep her leg.

Her wound was flushed, cleaned and dressed and she started on intravenous fluids, antibiotics and pain killers. Once she came round and was much more comfortable, it was clear that she was tame and very sweet natured and loving. One of our student veterinary nurses named her ‘Wellie’ – it was Glastonbury week, need I say more!

Wellie the kitten

Over the next few days, we changed her dressings under sedation and could see how quickly her leg was improving. She also became a magnet for every member of the practice, and was rarely left on her own. The main worry at this stage was that when we removed her intravenous line and changed her bandage while she was conscious, she had no movement in that leg. We had to consider the possibility that she had nerve damage which could be permanent and may have to lose her leg after all, but we all thought that as she was pain-free, Wellie deserved some time to see if feeling and movement would return.

She’s been at her foster home for several weeks now and has grown very well, as her pictures show. I’m delighted to say that with time and considerable TLC, Wellie is now starting to use her leg very well, attacking her scratching post and toys with normal kitten enthusiasm and is perky and mischevious. 

In time, the CPL will start to look for a very special home for her. In the meantime, they have plenty of other lovely cats and kittens needing loving homes…


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