Instructables

I want to make a peg leg for a kitten


I found a kitten at my in the parking lot at my job and one of her front paws doesn't work. She can use her shoulder but her wrist is like a cooked noodle. I took her to the vet and he said he wrist didn't form correctly and that it's permanent. He said it doesn't hurt her and to just leave it alone.She gets around ok and somewhat uses the bad leg but when i bandaged it up( straws and gauze) she seemed to get around better. But the bandaged leg slips on the tiles so I was thinking I'd like to fashion up a little prosthetic "foot" for her. Maybe something that can strap on just above where it goes all floppy with a slip proof tip on it. It would need to fit around/over/beside her paw. Maybe a removable cast that her leg fits into...I don't know. I don't want to spend alot of money because she may not want to use it but i figured it was worth a try. I added some pictures so you can see her paw, might help with design concepts. Any suggestions?

Picture of I want to make a peg leg for a kitten
Kitten2.jpg
kitten1.jpg
HMice2 years ago
Now, I'm no vet, but if the kitty slid its foot under the strap in to a smooth rounded (piece of wood maybe?) and had rubber on the soles the it could walk normally (maybe) but all these people say to leave it alone so that may be the best option...
Cat peg leg.png
omg thats a cute cat!!

my suggestion is this, don't do it it could cause serious injury to the kitten and would make it harder for to to walk


the poor thing was probably kicked out because of that wrist...

good luck to your little kitten
modaawesome2 years ago
SIMPLE ANSWER DONT PUT A PEG LEG ON A KITTY
craftyv2 years ago
Leave it alone to learn how to get along. It will develop it's own coping skills. Remember it is an animal and as such doesn't feel sorry for itself like we do. Sometimes, less is more.
Diabloscope2 years ago
all i can say is AWWWW :( im not a cat person , I feel sorry for him ! Good Luck With this lil guy !!
Alright if it does not work right cut it of and get a a little piece of pli wood and measure the cats foot and make the width on the peg leg get a siring cout 4 holes the the peg leg stick the peg leg onput th string through the holes and tie it around her uper leg and Ka boom you have a cat with a peg leg (Warning cat may fall ALOT though)
mikimouse11 (author)  Hunting Rapt3r2 years ago
So everyone knows, the kitten would not have any part of the peg leg. Apparently, she had different ideas of what she wanted to be and Pirate Kitten was not part of her plans. I think she could have become the first feline to excel in peg-leg-paw-jousting but she was against it. I know...pirates don't typically joust. But I didn't want her thinking that she couldn't do both just because she has a disabiltiy. Or because she's a cat :)

As far as the attempted construction, I did order Sugru but I don't seem to have much talent with it, lol. She got around fine without anything, though, so what can you do.

But, the good news is, the kitten went to a nice family home that has a dog with a similar leg ailment. She and the dog are best of friends and she is happy with her new family.
So,all ended well, though it would have been really cool to see her use the peg leg. And sport an eye patch.
you should probably try to get some light wood and carve it to the right shape......then you should make and bolt on a leather strap to hold it on...........hope its ok
BTW, I'm pro the splint because as the kitten grows, I think it might help the development of the rest of her body grow properly (not adding abnormal stress on her other legs and her spine) A child I support has had a prosthetic leg for that reason.As she grows, a new one is fitted. I love that so many kind hearted people have tried to help!
Vyger3 years ago
Something to keep in mind is that kittens grow very fast so what ever you try will need to be adjustable to keep up.
Second, cats have this thing about pulling off anything that is attached to them so it will need to be chew proof.

That being said I want to commend you for taking in a orphan. Probably some one else dumped it because they didn't want the hassle of dealing with a defective animal, like we are not all defective in some way ourselves.
There was a cat around here for a while that had gotten injured and his paw was curled under much the same way. He had learned to walk on it sideways as best he could. The problem is that when he used it in the wrong direction of the joint it just rolled rather than giving resistance. The side of his paw was rubbed bare and had developed a callus from where he dragged it. So anything that could stiffen up the joints would probably help, that way it would lie flat and offer some support rather than just curling under. If the kitten gets used to it now as a kitten it might just accept it later on and work with it.

Last fall one of my cats turned up with what looked like a bite on the upper front leg. It hurt her for a while and was pretty swollen. As she started to recover from it she found a way to walk easier that I was amazed by. On the bare floor whee there was no rug she would flip her foot forward and put it out straight and then just scoot it along without picking it up. It was pretty efficient and she got pretty good speed out of it. She did that for about 2 weeks before the swelling went down. So they can be inventive in dealing with problems. With a little help who knows, yours might turn out just fine.
mikimouse11 (author)  Vyger3 years ago
Yes, that's exactly what happens with her paw, the vet said she would eventually develop a callous there. It just curls under, no resistance at all.
She did the scoot thing with her paw when I bandaged it up. She seem to think it was something to chase, lol.
She does get around fine, I guess I just feel bad that she can't use her paw. I did some online research and it seems cats do not think much of prostheses. It slows them down and gets in the way.
Although I'm still tempted to try it, I won't carry alot of hope that she'll accept it.
Which is a bit of a shame, because the she would look like a pirate kitten,lol. I could tell visitors a crazy tale about how she lost her leg at sea. :)
Perhaps this is a nutty idea, but would it fool her if the splint was wrapped in fake fur? We had a rescued golden retriever. He needed lots of extra care, but he lived to a ripe old age in a family that loved him. I understand that you want to help her. God bless you!
You can still tell them a crazy tale about how she keeps that paw curled because she's carrying her invisible friend., or something of that sort.

Yeah, burying will be a bit more difficult. If she doesn't find a good solution, you might want to be extra scrupulous about cleaning the box. (BTW, I've been quite pleased with the Omega Paw semi-self-cleaning litterbox. Nothing fancy, just a clever arrangement of screen and scoop.)

I'll second the thanks others have voiced for your giving her a home. (I think my own two would agree, but they're busy with their early-mid-afternoon nap right now.)
iceng Vyger3 years ago
+1
Like
littl3d00d2 years ago
i think i have a solution let me build a prop and something that u can put on the bottom so it doesnt slip. im sad for this kitty and im going to get right on it.
achris43213 years ago
Thats sad i hope you find a soulution :'(
I worked at an animal shelter a few years back. We had a kitten with the same problem.
What I did was get a wooden tongue depressor (the the doctors have) and steamed it till it was bendable.
I bent it till is was about the shape the kittens ankle to paw would be while standing. I then strapped it to the kittens lower leg with a small velcro strap. (mine came from our tv cables).

It worked pretty good. for the week we had it. It was later adopted.
that sounds like a realy good solution. :)
builderkidj3 years ago
Thats soooooo sad

:(
lemonie3 years ago

Quadrapeds usually learn to manage well enough on three legs, "tripod" being a not-uncommon name for such pets.

L
zack247 lemonie3 years ago
its true, theres a cat in my neighborhood named tripod because one of his back legs didnt grow properly
lemonie zack2473 years ago

There you go then, thanks.

L
Yeah, we have a dog with only 3 legs. She gets around fine! Its rather funny watching her try to dig a hole though.... It doesnt really work with only one front leg..
Glad your tripod is doing well so far. Sometimes a dog will start having trouble with the remaining limb that has to do double-duty. Larger and heavier animals tend to develop problems more often than lighter, smaller animals. Cats tend to cope well. My dog wears an OrthoPets brace on his worst front leg which gives his not-as-bad front leg a rest. It wasn't cheap, but it was worth it. His stroller & bike trailer were more affordable DIY innovations to help him cope.
mikimouse11 (author)  astroboy9073 years ago
I know, she's not very good at trying to cover her business in the litter box :)
Angelfelina3 years ago
For ideas, you can check out this video: http://vimeo.com/18641884
and visit their site http://www.orthopets.com/ - search Google (or whatever) for dog orthopedic braces etc.
Mauigerbil3 years ago
I agree with the vet. although I think if you make a peg out of wood, and fasten it with duct tape, so that it is paralell to the paw, maybe it would walk straight.


I am a genius!!!
Goodhart3 years ago
Someone I know had a kitten they called Stumpkitty, because the former owners had Mutilated the poor thing by declawing it at home.


The one foot was badly mangled, but she got around on it almost as if she had four good working paws.  They sometimes do better if we don't mess with them.  
kevinhannan3 years ago
all these years I've had cats and never have I seen anything like it and then my good neighbour friend shows me her cat with a similar affliction! I asked her what she intends to do, and she said that she'd had a few like it and just left them alone to deal with it, with no problems as far as she could tell. Good luck to you and your beautiful kitty!
I'm with orksecurity. plus, if you make a peg leg, one day somethings going to happen to it and that kitten will be a cripple until you get a new one.
You might want to check out this process which was used to make a prosthesis for an elephant who had been injured by a landmine blast.
jumpingcat3 years ago
i say its...SURGO!!! trust me u need it
Sugru for the grippy bits, Polymorph for structure.

wooo polymers
mikimouse11 (author)  steveastrouk3 years ago
lol, thanks. I've ever heard of the stuff. I just ordered it, we'll see if it works...
+2! Love that stuff!
+1
exactly !
Just a thought. How about useing the grip type drawer/shelf liner on the bottom of your "cast". I think if you could get it to accept anything tied on the leg would be amazing, but you never know.
orksecurity3 years ago
I tend to agree with the vet that, if it doesn't hurt, you should leave it alone and let her deal.

Animals don't stress over what doesn't work. They just focus on leaning how to work with what they've got.