Terminator the Two Legged Cat that Can
Terminator showed up on Courtney Pilgrom’s porch severely injured and in need of help and a home. She found both. Courtney tells her cat’s story here.
In June 2009 two little brown and black striped cats showed up on my back porch. Both of these two little cats were twins except the smaller of the two had a bob tail and her back legs didn’t look quite normal. I figured these were just a neighborhood cats and would be gone home by nightfall. The big brother didn’t stay the night and seemed to roam a lot more than the small little girl.
The little girl cat was extremely loving, and just wanted to be around you and purred all the time. While petting her I got a better look of her bottom half. Her back Right leg looked a little bowed out, and the left leg had a large swollen bulb right around the knee joint. When I looked at her tail closer I realized it was not bobbed but had been broken off, you could still see some of the bone from the tail where it had been broken off. There was a deep cut right at the top of her butt, on top of the tuft of tail that had been trying to heal, but had a thick crusty scab on it. This poor cat should have been in massive pain, and dead, but all she wanted was to be loved on and showed attention.
That first night I got her and her brother a little bit of food and milk. The brother ran off during the night but the little brown cat slept right next to the door. She would meow in the morning when the kitchen light came on to say “good morning”, be waiting at the back door when I got home from work, and slept under our green egg smoker during the night. After a day or two of her living on my back porch I started to ask around the neighborhood to see where she belonged, but all I found out was that the family people think she lived with or around had moved on and left the two cats behind. I figured she would move on or leave my house but she kept coming back, so I nicknamed her Terminator from the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie and the line “I’ll be back.” Her brother would come around a few more times, but we did not see him very much after the initial meeting of the two cats. I think he just wanted to make sure his sister got a good home before he moved on.
So Terminator found a new home. She was in pretty sad shape and most animals in her position would have been acting like they were in pain. Terminator just wanted to be loved on and show her appreciation of affection. Even though she had two bad legs and two broken hips, she still managed to bring us a dead mouse and baby mole. Don’t ask me how she caught them.. but she left them on our door step for thanks.
A few days went by and Term’s leg started to look really bad. I called several vets and explained the situation to them. Almost everyone of them told me to put Term down and that she was not worth messing with. I didn’t have the heart to put this happy, loving, little cat down. That is when I called the Heart of Georgia Animal Hospital, located in Milledgeville, Georgia. They told me to come in and they would see what they can do.
That was the start of our adventure. We tried and tried procedure after procedure to see what could save this little cat. We tried shaving the bones back to see if they would heal back together. We tried several attempts of putting pins into her legs, different sizes and lengths. We found that Terminator was allergic to metal and all of the pins worked their way out of her legs. I know this cat had to be in so much pain, but you would never know it. She would want to play, eat, and be loved on through the entire ordeal.
After going through every procedure known to try and save her legs we ended up having to amputate them. I felt for sure that this would be the end of Terminator. That she would get depressed and stop wanting to live. The Doctor, nurses, and my family had put so much time and love into this cat… that to finally lose her legs we all felt helpless.
Here is a list of the procedures:
1st Wired the bones together—- did not work would not heal
2nd Cut back bones and tried to cast together for 2months
3rd Used a splint and got gangrene almost lost her
4th 1st pin in back left leg
5th 2nd pin in back left leg
5th 2nd pin in pack right leg (both left and right were done at same time and pin was put in through the knee ….Kept term for about a month to make sure we didn’t lose her
6th 2nd pin in back right leg (cast made it fall over give out
7th first amputation of back left leg… still had cast on back right
8th second amputation of other back right leg…. Still has a slight nub.
This cat has been on her death bed at least 5 times………… All pins pushed their way out due to cat being allergic to metal
Walked out of the cage… right after her 2nd amputation……….
After the first amputation the other leg looked like it would hold… but that hope was soon struck down when the leg gave out. We realized that the only thing left to do was the amputate the other leg. After a lot of tears, prayers, and snuggles, I took Term for her final amputation surgery. When she was done I brought her home. When I put her carrying case on the floor and she walked out on her front two paws…. I just sat there and cried! She was walking like there was nothing wrong. All of her pain was gone! It was amazing to see such a sight, and to see what all this cat has gone trough to reach this point.
I made my special kitty a Facebook page, Terminator the Two Legged Cat that Can, not to be a woman obsessed with her cat….. but to share an inspirational story. Every day we have obstacles, barriers, and negativity that can be hard to overcome. It is hard to remember the small miracles sometimes. Through Term I would love to share the positivity to get through life’s curve balls. This cat has definitely impacted the way that I think about things and helps me to remember to look for the silver lining. I just hope she can do the same for anyone who would like to know her story.
Term going upstairs in 2011.