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Peter Bennett, DVM
Peter Bennett, DVM, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 1306
Experience:  20 years experience as a Small Animal veterinarian
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my kitten has a dislocated hip hop can i pop it back into ...

Customer Question

my kitten has a dislocated hip hop can i pop it back into its socket myself, she is not experienceint too much pain so i dont believe that it is broke. can i do this myself
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Peter Bennett, DVM replied 6 years ago.
Reducing a dislocated hip is not difficult...if you have done it before. If you don't know whether it's dislocated or not, I wouldn't want you to try and reduce it. It doesn't just 'pop' back into place.

And it is much more difficult, and extremely painful if the animal isn't under anesthesia. Anesthesia isn't just for pain control, especially in these cases.

If she doesn't seem to have much pain, I seriously doubt it's dislocated. Your vet can tell in a moment if it's dislocated, or not. Give him a try.

I hope this is of help, and best wishes
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Reply to XXXXX XXXXX, DVM's Post: I have done it on larger animals i just need to know if the kitten should be lying on her back or should i let the legs hang down while holding her in the air. Do i want to slowly roll the leg in small circular motions or is it more of a sharp tug. The hip is definately dislocated . It extends quite far from her side and her foot crosses the other leg and it is much shorter., Unfortuneately my friends do not have the money to take her to a vet. I was a vet aide for large animals in Deer Park WA for about 5 years so i do have experience with animal care just not one so small.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I am willing to pay more if necessary for a more detailed answer, mybe my question was not worded correctly so that is why i replied back tell me what i need to do so that i can get an answer that can explain how to reduce this dislocated hip. thank you for your time , this is the first time i have used this service
Expert:  Peter Bennett, DVM replied 6 years ago.
It's not a money matter. The principle is the same on dogs and cats. Technique depends on what sort of luxation you have. With a dislocation, you can put a fingertip into the empty hip socket without any trouble. Failing to be able to suggests there is something still in there.

Most dislocations happen by pulling the joint apart out the bottom of the socket. The head of the femur then slides up the ileum to just anterior and slightly above the center-line of the socket of the acetabulum, thus the leg is shorter. But that isn't the way it came out... it was pulled out the lower part of the socket, where the rim is nearly absent.

Finding somewhere to hold the kitten is facilitated by using something as a strap. I use a rolled up cloth, like a towel for medium and larger dogs....something lighter weight for smaller animals

Start with the kitten on it's side, injured leg up. Loop your 'strap' from under the body, to ahead of, then up and over the inner surface of the lower leg. Continue to over the tail (trying to stay in the groove between the tail and the point of the upper hipbone) then down, crossing back under the body. The point of traction will be on the upper hip bone. Think of having a loop already made. From underneath, with the cat lying on it, put both the lower leg and the tail through it and then pull it up against the body.

To finish and maybe make it easier to hold, cross the ends then over the kitten, maybe over the neck. Adjust this as needed to make it work for this wiggly kitten. Just use the lower leg to anchor to, not the injured one. I'm not sure holding the front legs, or even the neck, is a good idea. (well, I know it isn't)

Traction is applied to get the head below the acetabulum a bit. You can gently rotate the head upward as you pull. It may slip into the socket before it reaches the lowest part of the rim of the socket. After it goes in, rotate it through it's range of motion with a little pressure on the head. Putting a sling on it is optional...if it's not going to stay in without it, it won't stay later when it comes off.

You will have muscles of the hip (to say nothing of the kitten) resisting your moving of the leg...they have contracted and pulled the head upward toward the rump.. This is the purpose of the anesthesia...to relax the muscles. It's not hard to overpower a kitten's glutes, just don't make it worse by tearing them. Plus, the head of the femur (the ball part of the joint) has a growth plate on the top...

Here's the interesting part...you say there isn't much pain...why? Possibly this is an avulsion fracture of the epiphysis of the proximal femur...the growth plate is still attached to the socket. Or the femoral neck is fractured and the shaft of the femur has displaced upwards? If you get little resistance, and little fight, and even less stability after it is 'reduced', this may be the reason.

It may not be proper to tell you how to do this, but I figure you are going to try anyway, and I'd rather you have a better idea of how you're trying to get it done.

Best wishes.
Peter Bennett, DVM, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 1306
Experience: 20 years experience as a Small Animal veterinarian
Peter Bennett, DVM and 5 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
thank you for the information i believe you are correct in thinking that the bone may be broken, all of the things you state in the last segment are true. They are going to take her to get xray tomorrow. much apprecieated
Expert:  Peter Bennett, DVM replied 6 years ago.
Glad to have helped, and continued best wishes.

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