How to care for and love a handicapped cat

When we welcome a cat into our family we hope and believe that things turn out always fine. But what if serious problems arise? Then the question is how to care for and love a handicapped cat. The handicap will change your relationship, there are things to learn for you as a cat owner and you need more time and awareness than for a “normal” cat which pretty much can care for itself.

 

Challenges are not necessarily bad

So, even if you have to spend more time for your handicapped kitty, probably also more money – it depends on the type of handicap – and you have to learn more and more, you will gain a treasure. The treasure of LOVE which your kitty will show for you, although often not right away and seldom during the time of the treatments if they are impacting the natural ways of behavior of cats.

The story of Adolfo – and why neutering is the better choice

I had a cat, black and white with moustache who was called Adolfo. He was sort of a wild cat, not neutered and very rarely ready to be stroked. He was absent from home

This is NOT Adolfo, I don't have any photos of him because he lived in the time before digital cameras, but imagine a black piece of fur under his nose - that's him

This is NOT Adolfo, I don’t have any photos of him because he lived in the time before digital cameras, but imagine a black piece of fur under his nose – that’s him

often and for days – until one day he came home and behaved in an unusual way, coming near to me, pushing my feed and other moves as if he wanted to tell me something.

 

 

And then I noticed: one of his legs was swollen and liquid came out of a small hole in his fur. What to do? Sure, to the vet! But how to get the half wild cat into the transport basket? Although Adolfo wanted to be helped it took me many drops of Valium to finally get him into the basket and to the vet.

 

At home again, as long as he hurt, he kept staying near to me and even allowed me to give him the medication. Those were beautiful days of a close relationship, I could feel the connection and love he had for me. Then, healthy again, he went back to his usual life as a non-neutered cat.

Every time Adolfo had a problem, he came home and wanted to be healed by me – and every time, afterwards, the call of his Tomcat nature was stronger than the relationship we had. This was a very strong reason for neutering future male cats. Otherwise the relationship is lost, and -after all – the neutered cats can enjoy life in a different way without this overly strong drive which causes them all sorts of problems and dangers.

Temporary and permanent handicaps

Adolf’s story was about a temporary handicap, while blindness, deafness, the loss of limbs or chronic illnesses are permanent and need to be faced with some long term strategy. You will find relative stories and tips in this site, too.

5 comments on “How to care for and love a handicapped cat
  1. Alice says:

    That’s a great story about Adolfo. You can tell that he trusted you to help him feel better. I have a male cat that is neutered and he has no desire to go outside. He sleeps most of the day, but when he gets up, he always comes to see me and wants to be loved on. You must have enjoyed the times when he wanted your help to heal.

  2. Jeff says:

    Hi Heidi, loved all the valuable information on this page. An friend told me about your website, and I’m so glad I checked it out! Will bookmark your website for future references.
    Kind regards,
    Jeff.

  3. Cynthia says:

    Hi Heidi,
    This is a touching story about Adolfo. It is amazing how loving they can be. I know you look back and have some great memories. If he looked like the kitty in the picture he is adorable!
    I know you are having a great time with all your animals especially the cats! They are special.
    I have a 21 year old female who recently got a cold and I thought she was going to die. She bounced back and is doing very well. I keep her inside not though. She has a special place and stays cozy. Her name is Pearl. I hope she lives to 25! That’s the oldest living cat I have heard of.
    Many Blessings!

  4. Ches says:

    I think cats are strange creatures. They seem to be aloof much of the time but when in danger or sick, they know exactly where to go. My auntie found a stray tomcat in her garden. He was very sick and was in need of help but the vet was out of the question as this cat was very wild and it took quite a while for auntie to win him round. Getting up close, she could see he had a serious gash at the back of his head which, after much coaxing he allowed her to tend with warm water and a gentle antiseptic. She could feel he was very thin under his dense coat. She fed him outside most of the time because he didn’t like coming into the house. He did put his head through the catflap once or twice but on seeing movement fled. He is now a picture of health and although does not come around every day, auntie does sees him a few times a week when he is fed the best food. If he had been neutered, I suspect he would be hers now and sleeping on her lap but there, she probably did save him from dying from an infection. Others perhaps would not have been so brave as to approach such a wild cat.

    • Heidi Hornlein says:

      What a story about the stray cat of your auntie! Thanks for sharing it. Yes, cats know when we have helped them and are grateful for that. But they wouldn’t completely change their attitude because of that. If a stray had never been with people it is very unlikely that he would allow them to be too close. His recognition and gratefulness is seen in the fact that he shows up and tells your aunt that he is still alive and feels connected with her!

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