Paper Litter Questions

sivyaleah

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Luna will be scheduled for surgical removal of a malformed dewclaw in the next few weeks. It's killing us that this has to be done but there is no other remedy for her problem as the claw has grown under and into her leg and had gotten infected also. It's now kind of swollen looking and for certain, she must be in discomfort because of it. The vet is kicking herself for not removing it during her spay, which we discussed, but she felt at that time we could keep it under control by regular professional trimming (it's too awkward for us to get to) but then Covid came along and we weren't able to get Luna there in time to prevent this from happening. At least, they are giving me a discount on the surgery since she feels it's partially her fault.

Anyway, her vet said we should use a paper litter as she's healing but all of the ones I see look like the pine litter pellets we used when she first came to us, and which she decided she wasn't into once she discovered the other litter boxes in the house.

Being as we'd need to be sure the bandaging is kept as clean and dry as possible I asked if it was ok to just make sure we scoop the regular litter several times a day so that she's never stepping into something already there. Vet said yes, as long as we really made sure to do that which I'm sure we will, however, I still wonder if it's just that I'm not looking at the right litter?

Is there one someone can recommend which would be good for this purpose? I also keep reading that for long haired cats (Luna is a Maine Coon) the paper litter tends to stick to their britches and tails and that, certainly won't be good from a hygiene perspective.

I know not many here have had to deal with removing a dewclaw (I've already done a thread on that) - while the procedure is the same as a declaw, the dewclaw is as you know, further up on the foot and not needed to walk on so it's not that I need the litter because it's soft, it's just to keep the wrapping clean.

Thanks!
 

BlackCatOp

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Back when my mother didn’t know better and had her cats declawed, we used shredded paper (like from a paper shredder.) However, I agree that probably increasing scooping frequency with your normal litter sounds like a better idea. From what I remember, the shredded paper made a huge mess and did not absorb all that well.

Does your vet by chance have a CO2 laser to remove the dewclaw? (Less bleeding, decreased inflammation and less frequency of claw regrowth than with traditional scalpel or guillotine methods) Since it’s just one claw it’s probably not a big deal but there are definitely different “declaw” methods.


Wishing your kitty best of luck!
 
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sivyaleah

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Back when my mother didn’t know better and had her cats declawed, we used shredded paper (like from a paper shredder.) However, I agree that probably increasing scooping frequency with your normal litter sounds like a better idea. From what I remember, the shredded paper made a huge mess and did not absorb all that well.

Does your vet by chance have a CO2 laser to remove the dewclaw? (Less bleeding, decreased inflammation and less frequency of claw regrowth than with traditional scalpel or guillotine methods) Since it’s just one claw it’s probably not a big deal but there are definitely different “declaw” methods.


Wishing your kitty best of luck!
Yea, that's what I'm concerned about - to me it seems it would make everything messier. I probably am going to stick with what she's happy with - don't want to add one more thing for her to cope with as she's healing. As it is I'm going to have to kind of keep her in a separate room for a while, if at all possible. I'm mostly concerned about our stairs - she's still only a year and has plenty of energy. I can't even imagine her coping with the ECollar she'll have to wear.

I haven't gotten to the point of knowing exactly how surgery will be performed. My vet, isn't doing it; while she has experience in this kind of procedure, she recommended that the main vet handle it since he's performed a lot more of them over the years. We go back tomorrow for a weight check (she'd been having some problem gaining weight recently, but that seems to have resolved) to make sure she's at a good one for surgery and will schedule the procedure then. I'm sure our vet will take time to explain everything to me, she always does and I trust her completely. I suspect, however, it will be traditional because they already did an x-ray and she told me the dewclaw is completely attached to bone. Laser probably will not work will be her condition.

Ugh I hate even thinking about this :( but it is what it is. There's a lot of other much worse things that could be wrong.
 
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sivyaleah

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Update: Well we just had an interesting vet visit.

First she still has not reached 10lbs, just shy of it but we're going ahead with surgery in 2 weeks because when she got to the vet, a small piece of *something* fell off of her from the dewclaw :(.

I actually noticed that it appeared that there was a small ball of fur right at the claw yesterday, but figured it was just some swelling? Wasn't sure. The dewclaw is infected and oozing some pus so maybe fur got caught around it since it was moist and formed a small ball. Whatever the case she clearly needs to get it removed sooner than later and even though she isn't quite at the weight the vet would prefer her to be, it's being scheduled.

Also found out she has an ear infection. I had a feeling about that, she's been pawing at them for a couple of weeks and even though the vet cleaned them about a month ago, they looked pretty grimy to me and I knew it was not mites (she's on Revolution). They applied an ointment in her ears which she's not happy about (off-label, it actually meant for dogs but is used on cats too - Osurmia)
So an eventful hour we just had. She is ANGRY lol. She even hissed at me while we waited outside in the car and she has NEVER done that and now she's walking around the house with her tail down so I know she's good an annoyed.

I have to bring her back in a week to have them recheck her ears and then the following Tuesday looks like it will be her surgery. They are booked solid for a while but I think they squeezed me in because of the back history of this. Should be an interesting few weeks.
 

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Yesterday’s News is what I used when I had a cat with sores on a couple paw pads from cancer. It didn’t stick to her sores and did well with odor.
 
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sivyaleah

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Yesterday’s News is what I used when I had a cat with sores on a couple paw pads from cancer. It didn’t stick to her sores and did well with odor.
Thanks!

I think I'm going to buy a small bag of paper litter to have on hand, along with a couple of disposable litter boxes for her. I figure, I can try giving her the paper option and see if she'll use i. I'm probably going to keep her in a separate room for at least the first 24-48 hours just to make sure she isn't running amok around the house. Hopefully, she'll decide it's not so bad. If not, I guess I'll be scooping their regular litter several times a day to make sure nothing is ever laying in it for her to step in.
 
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