Tale of Brick’s Tail

In early September, the SAFE Haven team took in an adorable 7 week old orange tabby tux with a ton of personality and spunk. We named him “Brick.”

While examining the kitten, our veterinarian Dr. Jennifer noticed he was very thin and that he had no control over his tail’s movement. In fact, he had no pain sensation to his tail at all.

Brick had a very severe tail pull injury. This type of injury can happen to any cat or kitten if their tail is pulled with excessive force. The injury can be mild like a dislocation or very severe and result in permanent nerve damage. Tail pull injuries are a common injury in cats.  Occasionally, people try to slow or stop a cat from getting away by grabbing the tail. Unfortunately, people often forget that tails are part of the spinal column and damage to tail vertebrae can result in permanent nerve damage.

Brick’s injury was severe enough that it resulted in him having no feeling or control over his tail, groin, or rectum. The lack of feeling resulted in him have no control over bowel movements or urination.

With proper care and nutrition, he gained weight but the nerve damage did not improve.  The nerve damage was permanent but nothing slowed the little kitten down. He was feisty but tolerated all our treatments and frequent baths.  Over time, our Cat Caretaker Danielle fitted him with preemie baby diapers with a tiny tail hole to help keep him clean. Brick was a great sport and loved to run and play wearing his diaper.

Due to his fecal and urinary incontinence, we knew he would need a very special home.  Through a Facebook group for people with special cats, our Shelter Director Sherri was able to connect with a woman in Ohio named Heidi who had cats just like Brick along with one cat with a neurological disorder and two cats with diabetes. Heidi was very excited about helping Brick!  She wanted to be his forever home.

In mid-November, Brick made his journey to Ohio. One of our wonderful volunteers met Heidi halfway and said goodbye to tiny Brick. He’s now in Ohio where Brick will get to meet the rest of his forever family!!

The staff and volunteers at SAFE Haven do whatever it takes to save the lives of cats in the Triangle. To support our work to give all cats the best life possible, please make a donation here.