Kitten Found Paralyzed in Storm Drain Now Up and Walking

PetMD Editorial
Published: March 20, 2017
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At just 2 months old, a black and white kitten named Talleyrand was in a life-or-death situation: the young, abandoned feline had fallen down a storm drain. Even more distressing, she was paralyzed and had no movement in her hindlegs or tail. 

The kitten was brought to the Humane Rescue Alliance in Washington, D.C., with injuries that were left untreated for several days, according to the organization's blog. "X-rays confirmed she had a fracture of her L3 vertebra and shifting of her spinal column," the post stated. Because of her paralysis, Talley had no control of her bladder, either.

The staff at the Humane Alliance quickly got to work on helping Talleyrand begin her recovery by treating her with acupuncture. "Talley started to respond after her first acupuncture treatment," Pam Townsend of the Humane Rescue Alliance told petMD. "She went from zero feeling in her hindlegs to regaining feeling in her toes/hindfeet. She has continued to improve since then." 

Talley's acupuncture treatment (which has also included electroacupuncture) is why she is up and walking today. Well, that and "physical therapy, TLC, and her stubborn, persistent nature," Townsend noted. 

She is currently up for adoption to a loving forever family who is willing to take care of her and her unique set of circumstances. "Talley continues to recover each day and each week," Townsend said.

The organization recommends that Talley be an indoor cat only. "Talley should avoid stairs and be prevented from climbing and jumping down from even minimal heights (as best as possible) to prevent her from exacerbating her spinal cord injury and causing her physical setbacks and even renewed paralysis," Townsend added. She also should not be placed in a household with dogs, children, or combative cats, as she has a more difficult time running or defending herself. 

"Talley should continue to be able to walk," Townsend said. "She may have setbacks through life, which will require possible pain meds, some physical therapy exercises, and continued, lifelong acupuncture treatments."

You can watch some of Talley's incredible recovery here

Image via Humane Rescue Alliance