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Kitten brain damage :( PLEASE HELP

My kitten got a severe head trauma 2 days ago and ive been told she is brain damaged and has swelling on the brain.
The vet has let me bring her home because she does know when you're there and still purs and responds to touch but her head constantly stays to the left and she keeps going round in circles.
She is eating and drinking with the help of me and my partner feeding her by syringe every 2 hours.
I want to know if anyone else has had the same problems with their cat and if there is anything else we can do to help her recover and hopefully help our little Star survive this trauma because she is trying to fight this and we want to help her recover the best way we can, we don't want to have her put to sleep because we love her too much :'o(  Please please, any help would be very much appreciated
51 Responses
242912 tn?1402547092
COMMUNITY LEADER
Oh, I'm so sorry!!  I'm pressed for time right now, but below is the link to another recent thread on head trauma.  The drug Mannitol was used with good success.  Please click on the link below.  So sorry - best of luck!  I don't drag links often - I hope it works.

http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Cats/kitten-with-head-trauma-update/show/1250095



1 Comments
Okay, so my calico cat had 3 baby kittens and once they got about 3 weeks old we took them outside to walk around and explore a little bit, but one of the kittens ran up under my mother in law as she was stepping off the ledge we have on our porch and my mother in law didnt see her and stepped on her, my boyfriend tried to push her enough to keep her from stepping on it but wasnt quick enough and the kitten started squirming and flipping kinda like its neck was broken and she couldnt walk and the first day she wasnt responding to touch or moving or even opening her eyes so we laid her down in her own little bed and propped her head up and started feeding her with a syringe the next day she seemed to be doing better, but I noticed her head on the left side was sunk in and that was the only side she wanted to be on so i was freaking out about that. now tonight she makes noises when you touch her and when you pick her up to feed her she just pees everywhere and her body like bends in half instantly when she isnt on her left side and her left eye is completely closed.. should I get her put to sleep or just continue nursing her? its been about a week since the accident occured and she seems to be making lots of progress some days and then none on others.. Any Help?
874521 tn?1424120397
COMMUNITY LEADER
gosh I'm so sorry to hear of your problems. I hope you have a good Vet to help you all thru this. kitty is trying hard to survive and thats a great sign.
I'm afraid I can't give you any info on neurological damage.
I will tell you a story tho, my daughter and granddaughter got a kitten abt 12 yrs ago, he was run over by a car...head was nearly completely squashed. a neighbour found him and brought him to my daughter, thye rushed him to a Clinic to have put down.
Long story.....due to a mix up at shift change the word did not get thru, the next day my daughter was told to come pick up the cat....she was so upset that this poor kitty was kept alive. but the vets told her it still had a chance to recover and to take him home and see......she was still very upset, the poor kitty could only move one half of his body...and he drug himself around in circles like yours. she had to help him into the little box and help him eat for a few days....she called me every night in tears. I kept saying well if he isn't in pain(didn't appear he was)...than just lets just keep giving it another day....well long story made short this amazing cat...kept getting better and better, he drug his back leg for a long time but eventually even that healed, he lived for years afterwards with no apparent ill effects....would never have belived this could happen..so take heart, keep him calm and fed and hydrated and just see how it goes...as long as theres no pain. Good luck to you!
If I find any websites with info I'll pass it along to you, check with your Vet if that drug mentioned above is avail in the UK
Avatar universal
thank you for putting that it has inspired us to keep trying =D

we took star to the vets yesterday and they said that we have to think about her quality of life, which we are because were doing everything we can to keep her.
i mentioned the drug and they said she had had it in the beginning and i asked to give it to her again, which they did.. we brought her home and let her sleep as thats all she does most of the time. but when she woke we noticed such a positive improvement we were so happy and proud of her..
She is now off syringe feeds and altho her head bends left and sticks to her body she will eat of a plate and the best thing she did was stand on her legs for a short period without falling.. such a positive result...

she still has a very long way to go but were so proud of her and were not going to give up on her.
the vet wanted to put her down and we said why?? shes eating, drinking and making a slow improvement.
her chin faces skywards and she cant walk properly yet but brain injurys take a longtime to heal which is what the vet said, so the vet contradicted herself in my eyes. she deserves a chance, shes only a baby to us and thats what were giving her, she hasn't fitted or cried out in pain so were going to keep going as we are with her..
874521 tn?1424120397
COMMUNITY LEADER
OH good for you Tara, so many give up far to quickly on their pets....don't want to put in the time or in some cases its a financial problem too and that can't be helped.
I agree as long as she isn't in pain is eating and eliminating properly than WHY not keep waiting and seeing??
shes a fighter and she wants to live, sleeping is good...thats natures way of the body recouping.
I'm kinda just getting into homeopathy for other issues with my cats. there is alot written about RESCUE REMEDY for all sorts of shock/trauma and surgery recovery.
Its a flower essence and from what Iread it helps calm and relives the stress and fear and promotes healing.
I'm in Canada so I have to order from the US..at iherb.com
but if you are in a city there are places that carry the brand 'flower essence society' or 'Bach' which are safe for cats and if you'd like to give it a try?
just need a few drops in their drinking water or give by dropper.....there is also one called 'calming essence' . they won't do any harm and perhaps will even help?
at iherb its abt $9 a bottle and at home we still dilute down. if you want more info contact me.

the head tilting is normal after brain injury....and IMO that will improve.
she is trying to stand but is weak, be sure to feed her a high quality high protein food while recovering.
what do you feed her now?
she is lucky she is still young and that works in her favor, the young recoup much better and can adjust well too.
I'm glad the drug did help relieve some of the pressure, keep questioning your Vet about other measures....do not allow them to dictate to you the time to put kitty down, you know her and you know if she's in pain, as long as you are willing to keep trying and not give up than don't allow them to get the put down attitude...push them to come up with solutions for her.

my very best to you and kitty, please keep posting and letting us know her condition.
495284 tn?1333897642
I am so happy to read your post.......I wish you all continued success.  What a great "mom" you are~~~~~sara
740516 tn?1360946086
My words are the same, all the best to you and your furry baby :-)
242912 tn?1402547092
COMMUNITY LEADER
I am just thrilled, Star is making progress.  This drug seems to be amazing!  I'm so glad you pushed the vet to give kitty another dose.  Is true, you want to consider quality of life, but you would know if Star were suffering and it sounds like there's nothing but improvement going on.  I'm SO glad you found this forum that just so happened to have a poster recently with the same problem as well as a CL with an encouraging story of her own.  Makes all the difference to read of "hope."

I can guarantee we will all be watching and praying for Star to continue to improve.  Great job, Tara!  I three :) agree, you're a wonderful mom!  For sure, keep up updated...
Avatar universal
Hi Tara,
    My name is Andrea & I live in Newcastle , Australia. I am in a similar situation as yourself  with regards to our precious feline.Last Friday ( 20th August) I accidently hit her ( Pippin ) with the car & initially I thought the worst. Rushing her to the vet  & after talking to him the injury seemed to be confined to her head. She had a broken jaw, facial injuries & brain injury, looked terrible, was in shock  & thrashing about.The vet reassured me that they would do everything possible to help her get better .Initailly the prognosis was not good  but he said to allow her  to get over the shock & trauma  & for the medication to  help her get better. There was no talk of putting her down.She was fortunate ( if I can use that word) in that she really had only suffered  a head injury; no broken limbs,internal damage or spinal injury.But  he said that  it was very serious being a brain injury  & that we would have to allow time for healing to occur. How glad I am that we did.
    In one week she has made a remarkable recovery. She has been on fluids & mannitol to help the swelling on the brain decrease.Each day I saw her  there was some sort of little improvement..Initially her response was to purr her little heart out all the time I was there. She could hardly move initailly, would fall all over the place  even  lying down. But then next time I visited she tried to get up on her back legs which for me was a positive sign.Then the next day she managed to sit on her own  & was meowing now as well as purring.She even tried to chase a lorrikeet that was flying around.I looked into that little face & what I got was the will to live.
   Well yesterday (26th August) they took her off the drip & mannitol to see how she would cope without it.What a marked improvement I saw. She could sit on her own & stand on her own & within the confines of her cage  even took a few tentative steps.Outside the cage she stood but was very hesitant to move. But the fact that she had gotten that far  was such a relief & joy to us.
    Today she is still stable & we are bringing her home for the week end  to see how she copes with her own environment & as also the vet wants to give her a few more days to build up her strength   for the surgery to fix her jaw.
   We know that there is still much progress to be made.She like most brain trauma victims  still seems to hang her head to one side, still has co-ordination problems, still has spacial  problems with feeding & grooming herself  & may be visioned impaired  but her fighting spirirt gives us encouragement  & hope that she will eventually be able to lead some sort of reasonably good life.
   We are fortunate in that we have a very good &  supportive vet whose first confirmation was to save her & then do all he good  to help in her recovery. He reiterated what has been said here that brain injuries take a while to heal ,the brain is very adapt at healing itself  & that animals are remarkably adapt  at adjusting to changes in their lives. He streesed that we should not make any rash decisions  as we ourselves were suffering shock  & were too  emotionally involved  to make decisions. He emphasised that he would advise us what would be done to assist her recovery & that the emphasis was to save her.
   My daughter & I when we noticed the little improvements each day agreed that we wanted to give Pippin every possible chance at recovery & the vet was wholey supportive of our desire. He likened Pippin's situation to someone having a stroke  & as I had been through  that experience with my mum  it equated with us in that we looked past the physical  impairment confronting us  at the time & was  every day greeted with the lovable ,affection cat  that we knew.
    So  after a week we are so blessed & grateful that Pippin, a much loved member of our family is still with us  & her future looks as promising as it can.Initially we went through a grieving process from the fear of losing her & her unfortuante accident & predicament but today we have  a lot more hope for her future  & now being a little calmer are able to make more rational decisions than a week ago.
   My encouragement  to you is to persevere  with little Star.Find a vet in the practice that supports your desires  & let your own instinct be your guide;often it is the most powerful & positive emotion guiding our decisions.Best of luck with little Star's recovery I am sure you will be rewarded with much love & affection from her.
874521 tn?1424120397
COMMUNITY LEADER
what a beautiful story....and what a lucky little Pippin to have you for a family. it will take time but I'm feeling positive that she will recover and lead a normal or near normal life and for years give you back the love you have shown her.
I had a very similar experience, not with a cat but with my husband.....the mind is a powerful thing and has the ability to heal and recoup much more than what medical science always gives it credit for.
bless you all and please keep us updated on little Pippin, its sooo good to hear such a heart warming story as hers.

♥Opus
Avatar universal
Hi Tara,

Im Sara, i work for an animal shelter in manchester and 3 years ago my sweet baby NouNou was born and at 2 days old contracted cat flu, for 2 months she was hand fed and pumped full of drugs. she even had a temp of 107 but our regular vet made sure it didnt stay there for long. i ran from the locum vets office at one point as he wanted to put her down... due to the infecton and fever she is very severely brain damaged, i know its not quite the same as an accident, but even thou she is so badly brain damaged she hasnt let it stop her doing as much as she can. NouNou has limited sight, she is deaf, and a distorted sense of smell, has little coordination and depth perseption, and constantly shakes, and she has the most unique walk (looks like a lipizzans dancing horse). Yet even with all her proplems she learnt how to eat and drink from a bowl and how to use a litter tray, she learnt how to walk and run and jump (yes she can jump on the sofa and on my bed) she loves playing with the cat tree (floor is padded with crash matts) she sits in the window and watches the world go by, she plays in the snow, she chases my other 4 cats and runs after them, NouNou is 3 years old and she is strong and healthy and my vet says apart from the brain damage there is nothing wrong with the rest of her and she should live a long happy life.

as long as we as owners as willing to continue to love and make a few small adaptations if a full recovery isnt possible (and with a fair few accident related head traumas a full recovery is possible) our animal friends will live a long and happy life :)
(oh they may be a little smaller than you expect because 80% of brain damage in animals results in stunted growth)

Keep your Chin Up, Best Wishes Sara xx
874521 tn?1424120397
COMMUNITY LEADER
hi Sara....aren't you ever a loving caring mommy who refused to give up on this little unfortunate critter.....far too many owners do give up far to quickly!
just goes to prove how far some love and patience can really go, your story is an inspiration to us all.
We do hear of some amazing stories here on the forum and its always wonderful to learn that there are times when near normal even normal recoveries are possible.
thanks so much for posting. I welcome you to our forum and hope you will continue to stay with us, we are here to ask questions, give replys, share stories or just give comfort at times when its needed.
feel welcome to post anytime.
♥Opus
Avatar universal
Hi my name is Jade. I live in Bismarck, North Dakota. Yesterday late morning my dogs push my bedroom door open & my 11month old Nikita got out.  The night before our dining room table broke.  It has three section on it.  The end section which is the heaviest and weighs about 65pounds was not put down by my boyfriend.  Nikita jump on it to jump to the kitchen counter tops and I heard it fall and rush over there. The table was on her back leg a bit I took it off right away and she started crying and freaking out. She couldn't stand, her eyes were moving back and forth so fast and she was breathing hard.  I was in such a panic.  My mom came & pick me up we got her to the vet 15mins after it happen.  She had head trauma to the right side of her brain so she couldn't control her left side body.  She is still at the vet its been 24hours. Her eyes stop moving and she can sit herself up, but she tilts her head to the left side and can't stand, but she trys. She will not eat or drink.  The vet wants me to come in this after noon to talk about what I want to do, but I don't want to put her down. She is best friends with my three legged cat I rescue Charlie has been looking for her since yesterday.  I feel so bad, because it was such an odd thing to happen. She a very tiny cat like her mother she is only about 6pounds.  I wish my other vet was in, but he wasn't & I really don't like the one I'm at, because they seem to fake and rude they don't thhink she will recover.  I just want to know with your kitten did she ever recover or what are the chance. She sitting there at the vet just purring and such a sweetheart and I feel like these vets are trying to do everything that they could.  Please if you could help me that would be great. You can even email me at jay_kinss***@****. anybody that has information to help me with her she too sweet and doesn't deserve this.
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