Orthopaedic team ensures Genghis can go marauding again

An 11-year-old Bengal cat who was seriously injured in a vicious fight over territory is back marauding again after specialist reconstructive surgery at Cave.

The cat, called Genghis, was at risk of having his right leg amputated after a bite to his shoulder turned septic and the virulent infection began eating through the joint.

genghis the bengal cat - cave vet specialists
Genghis the Bengal cat, who had specialist reconstructive surgery.

Genghis was referred us, where the orthopaedic team took charge of the challenging case.

Simon Hayes, medical director at Linnaeus, said: “It seems Genghis had one fight too many defending his moggie empire and was left with an extremely serious problem.

“He’d been bitten deep into his shoulder and the joint had gone septic, infected by a nasty bacteria that lives in the mouths of cats.

“The infection had eaten away the joint leaving the shoulder wobbly and badly arthritic. This was a seriously painful condition for Genghis, who could no longer walk on the leg.

Pre-operative and post-operative scans of Genghis’s right leg.
Pre-operative and post-operative scans of Genghis’s right leg.

“A long course of carefully chosen antibiotics was going to be needed, followed by reconstructive surgery to salvage the joint and save Genghis’ leg.”

Cave discussed the case with experts at Vet3D, a specialist firm which creates accurate 3D models of joints to ensure precise surgery in intricate operations.

Simon added: “Vet3D created a series of aiming devices which were computer-designed to allow the diseased joint surfaces to be cut away at just the right places and allow placement of a ‘reduction guide’ to hold the bone ends together at the correct angle.

“We then applied two custom-designed titanium plates to hold the bone ends together and fuse the shoulder.

Images of the aiming devices created by Vet3D for Genghis’s operation.
Images of the aiming devices created by Vet3D for Genghis’s operation.

“Eight weeks on and Genghis had made an excellent recovery. His shoulder had healed and everything had fused together very well.”

Owner Bev Geeson, from Feniton, East Devon, said: “It was clear that a vicious cat fight had most likely caused the problem and the worst-case scenario would have been amputation or the possibility of euthanasia.

“Anyone who has a Bengal cat knows how elegantly and powerfully they climb and run. They are the Olympic feline equivalents of gymnasts and athletes and they are a joy to behold.

“I shuddered at the very thought of an amputation. Genghis is a real character, very human, dog-friendly and hyper-intelligent. I wanted to maintain the best quality of life for him.

“I was kept very well informed and once I knew the issues and knew there was a good chance of success, I was quite confident and not too worried.

“Happily, Genghis is back to his old self, back to chasing his sister around the garden, chasing the dog and chasing butterflies and dragon flies

“He does the rounds of his territory but is keeping out of fights. In short, he is one very happy, healthy cat again!

“I am truly grateful to Cave and would not hesitate to recommend them. For me it is the blue riband of veterinary expertise and veterinary care.”