Black cat was shot in the spine – but now he’s on the road to recovery

Leonidas that cat, the black beauty in the picture above, was shot in the spine with a BB gun in May of this year.

As a result, Leonidas was paralyzed from the waist down, and obviously in a lot of pain.

Thanks to the amazing people at Happy Tailz Cat Rescue he was rushed to a local vet for urgent care.

But before any scans could be done on Leonidas, the BB gun pellet had to be removed and so he was scheduled for surgery in the following days.

Until then the vet wouldn’t know whether he would walk again, at least he got some pain relief for the time being.

Close-up of a black cat.
The sweet-tempered Leonidas waiting to see what his future holds. Pic credit: @happytailzcatrescue/Instagram.


Leonidas’s lower body was paralyzed due to the spinal injury, and this meant that he couldn’t urinate on his own.

He needed regular bladder expressions to make sure that he was keeping healthy.

In the days leading to his surgery, veterinary staff noticed that Leonidas had quite a lot of blood in his urine.

This is incredibly concerning as male cats in particular are at risk of blockages in their urinary tract, which if not treated in time can be fatal.

Thankfully veterinary staff noticed in time and put him on a dose of IV fluids and anti-inflammatory medication in order to avoid this, but Leonidas would need constant monitoring, and a trip to the ER would not have been ideal.

Leonidas was a very lucky cat, and he was able to go ahead with the surgery to remove the BB gun pellet.

Black cat sticks out his tongue after surgery
Leonidas recovering after his surgery. Pic credit: @happytailzcatrescue/Instagram.


While under anesthetic for the surgery to remove the BB gun pellet, Leonidas had his MRI scan and a hemilaminectomy (a type of lower spine surgery that targets the nerves).

In good news, there was no more blood in his urine, so the future looked bright if a little compromised for Leonidas.

Unfortunately, the surgery seemed to confirm that Leonidas would never walk again, as the nerves on his right side were not salvageable.

However, after a few weeks, the staff noticed that Leonidas was starting to use his back legs and even took his first steps! A staff member at Happy Tailz Cat Rescue said:

“They were unsteady, wobbly, and only managed to get a few in before falling over again… But folks…. We have walking!!!”

In this surprising turn of fate, it looks like Leonidas has a great chance of walking again!

It’s just going to take a lot of physical therapy, patience, and care.

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