zig (we) needs your help

My beloved cat, “Zig” has a fractured femur & needs surgery immediately. It is incredibly costly & the only solution. We need your help.

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Sigmund, or “Zig” is my first cat. I got him when I moved into my own place 2 years ago as a sort of fuzzy therapist. I found him at a shelter on the outskirts of LA County. He was almost 3 months old and had already been neutered and healed from that surgery. He was a scruffy guy with expressive eyes and I instantly knew that we needed each other. We became incredibly attached to each other and he’s been a huge help to me in a time in my life when I needed to heal my heart. This last week, Zig has been limping and occasionally hollering when I would pick him up or when my other cat Frida would come near him. He had been hiding under our bed for a whole day which is very unlike him. I got a hold of him and laid him on his back (this cat will pretty much let you do anything to him) and gently stretched his back legs out, one at a time. He hollered again and hissed at me. I thought that maybe he just pulled a muscle or may have a kidney stone. His fur looked a little oily, also. Nick and I kept watch over him that night and the next day he seemed better. No limp, eating and drinking fine, and jumping on and off things with no problem. The next day I came home from teaching and he was sitting on my piano bench at the door and he looked up at me and let out a few heart-wrenching meows with is eyes locked on mine. Frida, my sweet, 1 year-old snowshoe, jumped up to see what was wrong. He hissed at her and smacked her with his paw. He never does that. Nick and I looked at each other and decided he needed to go to the vet immediately. I pulled down his carrier from the closet and upon opening it he immediately walked in, turned around and sat in it. He was ready to go. The vet and I tried to observe his limp and felt around his abdomen for anything irregular. When he stretched his leg as I had done, there was that holler again. The vet took him back to xray and do some blood tests. He called me into the viewing room and showed me a fracture on the head of his right femur. He asked me where I found Zig and how old he was when he was neutered. I told him and he explained that early neutering can cause this condition because the hormones that are needed during puberty are not present to help growth. It is something that is, unfortunately, done very often in over-populated shelters. So, the procedure for healing this fracture is called a “Femural Head Ostectomy” or FHO. It is a salvage procedure, reserved for condition where pain can not be alleviated in any other way. The procedure exposes the head section of the femur bone (the ball of the ball and socket joint), and then the head is removed using a small saw or a bone hammer and chisel. Unlike most other hip surgeries, the head of the femur is not replaced, but is allowed to heal and develop its own fibrous scar tissue so that the joint is no longer bone−to-bone, a pseudoarthrosis (also called a “false joint”). The neck of the femur is usually removed at the same time as the head. This prevents the post operative complication of bone rubbing on bone and continued pain. This has led to the procedure often also called “Femoral head and neck ostectomy”. The procedure costs close to $3000. I’ve shopped around for better prices but, I feel most comfortable with a doctor I’ve found in Glendale. The extra money I’d like to raise is for any post-op costs that may occur. In this case, any amount would help. He is in incredible pain and is not moving much. He is only 2 years old and is nearly immobile because of the pain. If it goes untreated it can lead to arthritis and other complications, not to mention unceasing pain. The procedure is quite successful and common and he can most likely recover fully with little to no problems, with normal function, because he is so young. This cat means the world to me. He is the first cat I’ve ever raised and is symbolic of a very important chapter of my life. He is my little shadow and is an absolute sweetheart. Please, anything you can do to help would be so greatly appreciated.
photo by Mike Hulett when Zig was just 4 1/2 months old.

imagethe first photo I saw of him on the shelter’s website. I fell in love at first sight.

A big softie

imagewith his little sister and best friend, Frida.