approximate birthdate: Sept 1, 1996

    age when diagnosed:  almost 8 yrs old
    date of diagnosis: July 6, 2004

    front leg tripod

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1. When did you notice the lump, what was the size and where was it located, was it low on the leg or higher - closer to your cat's body    We first noticed Kirby's lump on July 6, 2004. It was just above the pads on his right front leg.

2. When was kitty last vaccinated:   Kirby was last vaccinated in 2003, but never on his paw, as far as we know.

3. How long did you wait to have the lump removed:    The lump was removed exactly one week later on July 13, 2004. Within ten days it had grown back to almost the same size, so the decision was made to amputate his leg on July 27, 2004, three weeks to the day from when we first noticed the lump.

4. Was this your cat's first surgery:   Yes.

5. Did you consult with a specialist or oncologist?    My vet consulted with a specialist.

6. Who removed the lump (regular vet or surgeon)    My regular vet removed the lump.  My dog has had several sugeries performed by my regular vet to remove non-cancerous lumps in the past, so I was comfortable with her ability to perform this surgery.

7. How long did your cat stay at the vet's after surgery   Overnight

8. Did you do anything special to prepare for your kitty's homecoming    I set up a cardboard box with one side open and a towel over the top.. We took our bed off the frame and put just the mattress on the floor. I set up a litter box with low sides.

9. Did your cat have any post-operative problems?    Kirby had a pain patch put on the night before surgery that stayed on for three days. We were very lucky, he had no post-op problems. He came home the next morning without a drain tube. He never had any swelling or bruising in the incision area. He didn't bother his staples, so he did not need to wear an E. collar. The staples came out after 10 days, and I think he was happy to be rid of them. I think they were starting to bother him a little, maybe pinching or itching.

10. What was your cat's adjustment period like:    Kirby has adjusted amazingly well. He walked, ate and used his litter box with the first half hour of being home. He spent most of the first week sleeping, and is still sleeping more than usual two weeks after surgery.

11. How is your kitty now?   He is jumping and playing just as much as before the surgery. The only difference is that he is no longer friendly with our rabbit, Dexter, who loves to snuggle up to Kirby.  Kirby has begun to hiss and swat at Dexter, but I am hopeful this is only temporary and things will get back to "normal" within a few months.

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