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Rebecca, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 13024
Experience:  Veterinarian for more than 30 years
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I believe that my kitten has a dislocated joint on one of her

Resolved Question:

I believe that my kitten has a dislocated joint on one of her back legs just above the knee joint, She can't move her leg at all it just hangs loosely. It does not seem to be broken and she does not seem to be in any pain, because when I was checking for brakes and such she was still quite content and purring. I can't afford to take her to a vet and was wondering if I could somehow put it back into place for her.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Rebecca replied 8 years ago.
I am sorry about your kitten. How did this injury happen?

There is no joint between the knee and the hip in a cat's leg, so there is nothing there anatomically to dislocate. If her leg hangs loosely, I am concerned that there is something broken. I absolutely recommend that you not try to put it back in place. Just because she is purring does not mean that she is not in pain. I have seen desparately ill, dying cats that are still purring, and as I tell the owners, people that are dying still may smile at their loved ones. Cats have learned that giving away that they are in pain makes them vulnerable to predators, and so they will act relatively normal, even with a broken leg.

I think your kitten needs medical care. See if there are any community groups in your area that help people pay veterinary bills, as there are where I live. Good luck, Rebecca
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I just looked at a skeletal image of a cat it is indeed not connected at the knee, I misunderstood where the knee actually was. I believe it is dislocated there according to what I felt on her leg.
Expert:  Rebecca replied 8 years ago.
Hi Jung,
It is very hard to dislocate a knee. 6 ligaments hold that joint together, and at least half of them would have to be torn for the joint to dislocate. It isn't a joint like the shoulder or hip, that can pop out and in. I still think it is more likely that she has a tear, or fracture, or break, through the ends of one of the bones right above the joint. Young animals have growth plates at the ends of their bones, which are made of cartilage, and can tear relatively easily. It would look exactly like the joint being dislocated. What you describe sounds to me like it needs medical attention. Good luck, Rebecca
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