approximate birthdate: 6/94 

    age when diagnosed: 9.5 years
    date of diagnosis: 12/03

    rear 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: I noticed the lump in mid november, called my vet and they said to watch it, I waited a week and took him in. it was low on his leg, on the outside. it was about the size of 2 peas stuck together. it was hard and subcutaneous, it moved with his skin.

2. When was kitty last vaccinated: 8/03-rabies only

3. How long did you wait to have the lump removed: it was about 2 weeks between when I noticed it and the biopsy, then the amputation was a week later, the day after the biopsy results came back

4. Was this your cat's first surgery for VAS: yes

5. Did you consult with a specialist or oncologist: yes, we went directly to a board certified surgeon for the biopsy, after getting comments from the VAS group. my regular vet did not even do the biopsy.

6. Who removed the lump (regular vet or surgeon): board certified surgeon removed the lump for the biopsy, and then went back in and removed the whole leg.

7. How long did your cat stay at the vet's after surgery: surgery done on friday, he came home sunday evening

8. Did you do anything special to prepare for your kitty's homecoming: I had a small cage set up for him in our bedroom, and kept him there for a week, letting him out in supervised times.

9. Did your cat have any post-operative problems? he didn't handle the pain meds (torbutol) well at all and we had to play around with meds dosages, as well as give him sub-q fluids a few times. but the probs were all minor.

10. What was your cat's adjustment period like: really, I think it was harder for me then it was for him. the vet let him out of the carrier when I picked him up to show me he could hop around fine. I was freaking out and yelling about NONONONONONONO he is going to HURT HIMSELF! he was FINE. :) he had to learn to do things differently but it didn't take long and didn't really even appear stressful to him.

11. How is your kitty now: he's GREAT! doesn't seem to notice he is missing a leg, and gets around just fine. the only thing he can't do is jump onto high surfaces, like the kitchen counter.

12. Please add any other information that you think would be helpful to future tripod owners or anything else that you'd like to tell people about your kitty: I would do it again in a heartbeat! I don't regret it a bit. I do get sad at times that he had to go through such a horrible ordeal, but for the most part, it's not a big deal. I worry way more about the VAS coming back then I do about his life as a tripod. he just doesn't seem bothered at all!

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