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Corky Special Needs Kitty: Recovering From Remarkable Leg Surgery

Corky, the kitten from Cats Cradle Shelter born with backwards, crisscrossed hind legs, had orthopedic surgery yesterday with amazing results. He is resting and recovering.

Last month CATS Cradle Shelter of Fargo, ND  took in a sweet and special little cat named Corky, who was born with twisted hind legs; saving his life and getting him help.  Corky is a very sweet kitten who captivated the hearts of his friends at CATS Cradle from the moment they rescued him. Despite his deformity, Corky  was highly mobile, getting around on the floor at top speeds. He could not walk properly, nor could he climb or jump, though. He just didn’t let that slow him down.

We shared Corky’s story in two earlier posts, Special Needs Kitty Corky Finds Caring Friends at CATS Cradle and Corky Update:Special Needs Kitten With Twisted Legs Will Have Surgery. After consulting with specialists, the shelter reported that the 7 month old kitten had “a congenital deformity called Bilateral Anthrogryposis.It is a condition that caused him to have his hind legs backwards and crisscrossed. He is also a Bilateral Cryptorchid.” They let the community know they needed funds, and set about deciding on a plan to help Corky.

Corky had his surgery yesterday, with Dr. Dan Burchill of Casselton Veterinary Service. The five hour procedure took longer than expected, but the xrays taken afterward show a remarkable result. Corky had feeling in his legs, and that was the key component to having his legs straightened and reoriented. He will need a recovery period, and will have to learn how to walk on his new legs.

The remarkable before and after views

Front view

Dr. Burchill did a custom and unprecedented surgery on Corky after consulting with another orthopedic veterinarian in Montana. Neither doctor had seen a case like Corky’s. In addition to the pinning used to reorient Corky’s legs, his achilles tendons were cut so his toes would uncurl. He’s on heavy pain medication and will need to stay in the hospital a couple more days than expected.


Many of Corky’s friends and supporters stopped by the shelter’s Facebook page yesterday to check on his progress. The page was updated as he headed to surgery, and periodically throughout the day. Further updates and photos today show the little patient with shelter staff and his hospital caregivers. CATS Cradle asks that, as a courtesy to the veterinary staff, people please not call the animal hospital, but check in at Facebook instead.

Corky with Dr. Laurie Bauer, his rehabilitation therapist and LaRessa Mattson, rehabilitation assistant.


The latest news video, from today:


The ChipIn set up for the surgery several days ago easily met its goal and covered the costs of yesterday’s procedure, thanks to the generosity of the local community, and supporters from all over, though there will be ongoing costs.Further donations can be made can be made via the the ChipIn widget at the Cats Cradle Shelter Rescue and Adoptions website.

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    April 7, 2012 12:30 amPosted 3 years ago

    Corky get well soon. Great job to all of the great Vets and donors who helped get this kitty his operations. God bless all of you and keep us posted.

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    April 7, 2012 6:37 amPosted 3 years ago
    Nancy Emmons

    Corky has quite a team of angels caring for him and changing his life for the better! I hope the rest of his life is blessed as well!

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    April 7, 2012 9:25 amPosted 3 years ago
    cindy tessmann

    I am so glad that “Corky” made it through surgery successfully. Hopefully, his recovery will be expedient. I would just like to say thank-you to everyone involved in his care and also to those generous people who made his surgery possible. May he live a long, healthy and playful life!!

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    April 8, 2012 9:58 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Donna Lusthoff

    I’m so happy for Corky.His doctors and caregivers were marvelous in what they were able to accomplish for him. Even thinking of his little curled toes! Thank you to all who combined into a great team to give Corky a new chance at a much better life. Also many thanks to all the wonderful people who donated to make this possible!Prayers and healing thoughts to you little one to help you heal quickly but safely!

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    April 20, 2012 12:47 pmPosted 3 years ago

    May Allah bring happiness to all those who helped this noble animal.

  • April 20, 2012 12:58 pmPosted 3 years ago
    Robin Ritchie

    Thank you for all that you are doing for Corky. I wish him a speedy recovery. He is one gorgeous little kitty.

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    April 25, 2012 12:37 amPosted 3 years ago

    Thank you Thank you Thank you to the vet who made this happen!!! Thanks for the wonderful staff to care for and love this little kitten !!! I offer my most sincere appreciation to all those that sent money, love or prayers !!



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