Mabel's Recovery – Got the Jimmy Legs

Mabel's Recovery

Our cat Mabel came from the street a starving, ailing wreck. Our vets often said of her “I don’t know where to begin!” and “I’ve never seen anything like this before.” But with their help, Mabel’s many ailments are being treated and she’s on her way to being better than ever! Follow her progress here and help us help her!

We can rebuild her


Maybe not ready for Cute Overload, but we like her

It's been one week since Mabel came home from the AMC after her procedures. For such a small cat, she had a ton of issues! But the balloon dilation and stents seem to be doing the job, she no longer struggles to get air into her lungs. Previously, she looked like a fuzzy bullfrog, her neck inflating hugely as she forced air through ever-smaller nasal passages. When I think about it now, it seems pretty horrible to have to live like that, and she lived like that for a long time. And was even playful and affectionate through it all (well, okay, not all the time).


Post-surgical Hammock Therapy

Part of her condition made her vomit with alarming regularity. She threw up all the time, usually just stomach bile. Apparently, from having to struggle for breath so often, she ended up swallowing lots of air. This distended her esophagus (megaesophagus) and caused a hiatal hernia (most of her internal organs were squashed forward in the abdominal cavity from overactivity of the diaphragm muscle). So she had to struggle to breathe AND she barfed a lot.

One week after the procedure, her breathing is silent and her neck no longer bulges. She has vomited a bit, but it's mostly been very small amounts, and only food (I'm not sure why I think that's an improvement over bile but I do). The vets said to expect this but that it should stop soon as her body recovers. We're hoping her esophagus and stomach can heal so these GI issues resolve.

One downside to her getting better is she no longer has a loud, musical purr. This was always one of her most endearing traits, her purr was extremely loud and bubbly, going up and down the scale. See the video from when she was recovering from her ear canal surgery, the purring is like a babbling brook! We now know that this purring was actually due to her condition, the extra tissue (that was also constricting her airway) was vibrating and amplifying her purrs!

As you can hear in the new video, Mabel's purr is now far more pedestrian. We'll miss her big purrs but knowing it was a sign of what was wrong with her makes it easier to say good riddance!

Please help us pay down her ginormous bills by clicking on the widget (below or on the sidebar)!

Mabel in recovery

Mabel is one of our several cats, she came to us as a foster but we decided she gets to spend her life with us. We decided this partially because she has a lot of health problems that need addressing. Here's what she's had done so far:

  • Treatment for giardia
  • Treatment for severe ringworm
  • Multiple tooth extraction
  • Ear polyp removal
  • Total Ear Canal Ablation
  • Megaesophagus treatment
  • Acid reflux treatment
  • Balloon dilation and stenting (to open nasal passages congested with scar tissue)

She's recovering from her latest procedure (balloon dilation) well, but the vets believe she may need further surgery to remove scar tissue from her larynx. The vets also saw that sometime in the past she suffered from several broken ribs; we suspect this trauma may have jumpstarted many of her ailments.

One positive thing to come out of all these vet visits is that the vets now believe she is much younger than we originally thought! Instead of being 15 years old, as we assumed, they say she is only 6 or 7. This is good news, although a little sad, she's been so messed up for so long she seemed like an elderly cat when she should be in the prime of life.


We are asking for help to pay the enormous vet bills she's racked up so far. If we can get this paid off, we can continue to help Mabel get the care she needs, as well as continue to help other street cats in need.

Please consider throwing Mabel a few bucks, and please share this page with anyone you think might be able to pitch in! Click the Like button below to share.


See Mabel's Photo Album as well.