How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Terri Your Own Question
Terri, Feline Healthcare Expert
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 32666
Experience:  Expert in feline health and behavior. 20 years experience with cats.
Type Your Cat Question Here...
Terri is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Feline back injury Treatment

This answer was rated:

Long story short: Local stray that I was trying to tame to be caught & nuetered. He disappeared for about a week, then showed up almost completely unable to use his hindquarters and emaciated. I brought the dish of food to him and he ate ravenously, I was then, due to his injury, able to get him into a carrier. He is now in a very large dog cage in my house and has been for a week. He eats well and is using his litter box, with normal urination and feces. He has put on weight and is grooming and showing interest in life again. He''s favoring one back leg and when I pet him and begin to stroke down his back he meows just past the mid-back. He sounds like me when my sciatica flares up. I think he either wrenched his back somehow or got a glancing blow from a car, there is no sign of trauma or swelling, no heat. If it is a minor back injury, whats the time for repair; anything for pain? As many I''m low on funds for a vet and wanted to fatten him up more anyway to be nuetered


Has there been any improvement in the use of his legs?

How is he able to get in and out of a litterbox?

Are his gums pale?



Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to Terri Riba's Post: Gums seem normal, like a healthy human pink, I'm not sure how that translates to a cat, he's a mostly black cat. He drinks water normally too. He gets in and out of a litter box, stiffly. As one front leg has a permanent injury (he was the three legged stray that I'd see across the street, until he found the food in my backyard), he has a tough time balancing on two. The right front has the permanent injury, the hind left is the painful one now. Since I got him in the house he first mostly slept and ate and moved very little. He mostly dragged himself to the litter box (a foot from him) and more or less collapsed his hindlegs to urinate etc. In the past week he gained weight and now twitches normally (like he's ticklish) when I pet his back and he will pull back his legs when I hold a paw. Both normally which is why I don't think the injury is in the leg, when I first got him inside he was dehydrated too and there was no reaction when I petted his back and legs, though part could have been frozen in fear of me, he's decided since then that this is not all bad. Plus he doesn't react badly when I pet, message and scratch the hind legs, but I know have two punctures in my left hand for trying the same with his back. (the $200 emergency room visit is why we are not at the vet yet, plus $70 in antibiotics). He's moving to and from both food and litter more freely yet still painfully, his sits up more for a few seconds before lying down again to rest. And spends more time watching me work instead of sleeping all the time.

Dear friend,

Please stand by while I type detailed answer.



Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Standing by!

Dear friend,

Oh my, this poor boy has been through the mill.

May God bless you for helping him.

Since his gums are not pale, we can rule out an internal injury. You are probably correct that he got him by a car. He may also have fallen or been hurt by a human creep

He most likely injured a disc or verebra in his neck or spine. Cats are great healers so with cage rest he should improve.

Sprinkle a 16t of a tsp of turmeric (curcumin) on his food every day.That spice sold in health food stores is a natural anti-inflammatory.

I would put off his neuter until he improves or he may not survive the anesthetic.

If you need financial help wih him her are some agencies:

American Animal Hospital Association
" Through the AAHA Helping Pets Fund, veterinary care is possible for sick or injured pets even if they have been abandoned or if their owner is experiencing financial hardship."

Angels 4 Animals
"Our services range from financial aid to complete treatment
to those pets and pet owners in need."

Care Credit
A credit card company for health care, including veterinary care.
"With a comprehensive range of plan options, for
treatment or procedure fees from $1 to over $25,000, we offer a plan
and a low monthly payment to fit comfortably into almost every

Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance (FVEAP)
"Seniors, People with disabilities, People who
have lost their job, Good Samaritans who rescue a cat or kitten - any of these folks may need financial assistance to save a beloved companion."

The Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance Prog ram is a nonprofit 501
(c)(3) organization that provides financial assistance to cat and
kitten guardians who are unable to afford veterinary services to save
their companions when life-threatening illness or injury strikes.

God's Creatures Ministry
"This fund helps pay for veterinarian bills for those who need help."

"Our efforts focus on serving the elderly, the disabled, and the
working poor."

"We are dedicated to insure that no
companion animal has to be euthanized simply because their caretaker
is financially challenged."

The Pet Fund
"The Pet Fund is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit association that
provides financial assistance to owners of domestic animals who need
urgent veterinary care."

Please stay in touch with me and let me know how the boy is doing. I will always be here for you.

I hope you win the lottery for what you have done for him!!

Sincerest best wishes,



Terri and 2 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Thanks for the list of "help". Cage rest was the answer I was hoping for, I know I'm better with rest and anti-inflammatories. Remind me to buy a lottery ticket. :-)

Last question: You state "16t of a tsp of turmeric (curcumin)" Do you mean 1/6th of a teaspoon? I believe I have that in the cabinet, though I'm not sure how old it is, probably should get a new jar.


Its one sixteenth of a teaspoon once a day. One sixth would be too much.

It does not go bad but the one used as a spice may not be the same as what is sold for medicinal purposes so check with the health store.

Pleasse keep me posted.

Best wishes


Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Thank you for clarifying! I have to stop at the health food store anyway, need some beneficial bacteria supplement to replace what the antibiotic is killing. If its not one thing, its another. Sigh. :-) At least the neuter, when he's better, won't be TOO expensive. A tech at my vet has me loosely linked with a local feral cat organization and gives me the dicount rate with a free rabies vaccination, I'm up to at least 20 spay and nueters, and TNR is illegal where I live so its alot off the record. Martin County Florida, in case you are interested.


I'll keep you posted.

Oh I am in West Palm so we are neighbors!!

You can get acidophilis for cats at the heath store.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
LOL the acidolphilis is for ME, cat bite remember?

You're not the Terri at Dr Smiths office are you?