Home » My Jeep-Kitten Has Broken Its Axle And It’s Going To Cost Me More Than An Actual Jeep To Fix

My Jeep-Kitten Has Broken Its Axle And It’s Going To Cost Me More Than An Actual Jeep To Fix

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I’m completely overwhelmed by the kittens born in my 1994 Jeep Grand Cherokee five-speed “Holy Grail.” While one, named Jaws, is pretty much self-sufficient at this point, he did bite my friend and require her to spend $2,000 on rabies vaccines. Jay, the most recent kitten that I captured and whom I haven’t written about yet, will not stop meowing; she cries all night. I’m so tired. And then the third kitten, the rare orange female named Mango — a sweet cat who’s very easy to take care of (or so I thought) — has been limping for a few days. I took her to the mechanic — err, doctor — because that limp wasn’t getting better, and I received some bad news: Mango broke her axle! And man, paying for the technician — err, medical professional — to diagnose the issue has officially cost me more than the Jeep in which Mango was born! And the costs just keep climbing! Here, check out these X-Rays; they ain’t great.

OK, the big update is that, in addition to Jaws and Mango, my friend and I are now fostering a third cat named Jay (later to be up for adoption, so let me know if you’re looking for a Jeep-kitten!).

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I’m fairly sure that this little cat — whose fur is a muted brown, almost the color of a dusty dirt road — is the same one that once lived inside a brake rotor in my Jeep:

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Anyway, Jay has been meowing nonstop, and I’m basically writing this article in zombie mode. If there are typos, I’m not surprised.

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Anyway, despite her still needing quite a bit of socialization (she’s currently quite scared, though as you can see above, we have been getting along), Jay is the least of my problems right now. It turns out that my orange long-haired cat, Mango, has a broken axle. Here’s the top photo of the article I wrote on Mango last week:

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The headline mentions fleas and nothing else because, though Mango was limping, I attributed that limp to the bandage on her leg, which the vet had put there after drawing blood to check for illnesses. Sometimes animals walk weirdly when there’s something on their leg. But upon removing the bandage, the limp remained for days.

I decided last night to take Mango to the emergency room; I was worried the issue was more than just a sore spot from a needle. My biggest fear was a blood clot.

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Upon arrival, a nurse took us straight back to have the kitten checked out by a doctor; the doc and nurses could not deal with how cute Mango is. “Woh, an orange female! That’s so rare,” the doctor told us. “One in ten!”

The doctor began manipulating Mango’s rear passenger’s side leg, testing its range of motion, placing it in positions that would normally yield some kind of reaction from the kitten. But Mango refused to move that leg. It was as if the leg were completely limp, save for some very, very light movement on her part (but very little force). Even her claws in that leg weren’t ejecting properly.

Everyone was confused, so the doc decided we should do an X-Ray. The team took Mango into a back room, put a little lead coat on her to block the radiation, and ran some scans.

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I love this photo of Mango watching the results with the nurse/lab tech:

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The results weren’t good.

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As you can see fairly clearly in two of the images, Mango’s femur (that upper leg bone) has been cracked in two places. I’m not even entirely sure what’s holding that middle piece in place.

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Amazingly, Mango hasn’t meowed at all. She’s totally calm; a classy lady-cat. The doctor wondered what had happened. We’d never noticed any kind of fall or incident that might have hurt Mango. “This would have been a traumatic event,” the doctor assured us when we wondered if we had somehow hurt Mango while pulling her out from behind a toilet. “Trust me, she’d have cried.” We concluded that Mango had been injured when we’d trapped her in the Galpin Media parking lot.

The doctor suggested we go to another animal hospital to get a second opinion. For now, she prescribed opioids to relieve any pain Mango may be feeling (and presumably to calm her down and keep her from hurting herself); the doctor’s professional opinion is that Mango’s leg will probably heal so long the kitten doesn’t re-aggravate the issue. As such, my friend and I have been instructed to keep the kitten in  a small play-pen so she doesn’t try to run or do anything else that might place stress on that leg. So that’s where things sit right now; Mango is in this little pen:

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And my wallet is in a proverbial pen of its own. Look at this:

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ELEVEN HUNDRED SMACKERS.

As a certified Cheap Bastard, this is pretty painful. The Jeep in which Mango was born had only cost me $450! Hell, I’ve bought at least five cars for less money than this X-Ray, and this is just round one! We’re going to an orthopedic surgeon tomorrow for a consultation.

Obviously, a living being is not the same as a Jeep, a cat’s life is totally worth it, and I’m mostly just playing around, here. Plus, I plan to teach Mango to wrench, so she’ll help me earn those $1,100 back.

Hand me the 10mm, Mango!

 

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Strangek
Strangek
9 months ago

Yikes! Emergency Vets certainly know how to hit you in the wallet! I hope you’ve found a good “normal” vet as well, still expensive but not as bad usually.

Toobs-N-Stuff
Toobs-N-Stuff
9 months ago

as awful as it sounds, with a pet you need to set a firm “not to exceed” cost up front, lest you spend your golden years working at walmart to pay off your companion animal’s medical bills.

it also helps to not live in one of the 5 most expensive cities in the USA…

Ranwhenparked
Ranwhenparked
9 months ago

Welcome to the broken American veterinary system, the fact that it’s 2023 and we still don’t have free universal pet healthcare is one of the reasons the world hates us

Bizness Comma Nunya
Bizness Comma Nunya
9 months ago

If you get pet insurance, I’ve heard good things about Trupanion.

I just got back from the vet today and we have to decide if we make a very costly decision… didn’t have insurance on this cat and found out that it would have been completely covered. Lets just say that the amount is probably close to the value of all the DT Jeeps combined…

Cats can cost almost nothing for 18 years (like our first one did) or they can cost a slightly used Versa’s amount within 5…

KDS
KDS
9 months ago

One of our young cats actually named Jeep just cost us $5k at vet. Blood clot in lung. Very sadly didn’t make it. Cost as much as my truck but I’d still spend it all again if I had to.

Ben
Ben
9 months ago

Broken axle? Blame it on Ford and sell it for seven figures. 😉

M0L0TOV
M0L0TOV
9 months ago

I remember when my then girlfriend and I were feeding some of the outside cats and we saw a kitten that was not fairing well at all. We decided to grab it and take it to the emergency vet. The tech was like, “it’s okay to put her down because she’s going to need a lot.” I said no, I make the money, I pay the bills. So when the vet saw her, she had: conjunctivitis and needed a blood transfusion, subcutaneous fluids, dewormer, and flea control. Her red blood cell count was super low because of the fleas. She stayed overnight and then I took her home. I had to put ointment in her eyes twice a day for a week and she became a very happy and chonky girl. My then gf did a gofundme and it covered half the vet bills but I wasn’t worried. Also (the cat’s) name is Randi (short for Random kItten or if you ever watched Sylvester the Talking Cat, you’ll know). She’s very sweet and her fur is almost silver with how shiny it is.

George Millwood
George Millwood
9 months ago

God bless you, anyone who cares for a kitten like that deservs to be blessed.

Freelivin2713
Freelivin2713
9 months ago

“Community cats do not pose a rabies risk to humans: there hasn’t been a confirmed cat-to-human rabies transmission in more than 30 years. The number one source of rabies in the United States is wildlifeaccounting for more than 90 percent of rabies cases in animals. Since community cats involved in Trap-Neuter-Return programs are vaccinated and therefore cannot acquire or transmit the virus, they pose no threats to humans or other animals.”

Should have spent the $2000 on the vet bill + putting $ in the Jeep so we can finally get an article about it

ElmerTheAmish
ElmerTheAmish
9 months ago
Reply to  Freelivin2713

I’d rather have spent the money on the vaccine. Once you have symptoms of rabies, it’s too late, you’re done. Regardless of the chances, you won’t know you’re wrong until you’re on your death bed.

Terrysplace
Terrysplace
9 months ago

My wife, kids and I have enjoyed your Jeep kitten chronicles.
We care for around 60 to 70 cats including our personal. Lots of strays.
While uncommon, orange females aren’t as rare as they say they are.
We used to believe the same thing.
In the last 10 years, of the 40 gingers we have, have homed or just disappeared, 17 of which have been female.
5 gave birth to more ginger girls before they were spayed. Inc in 17.
Just a little bit more information about gingers.
Lol. Even local shelter doing our TNR thought that.

Toobs-N-Stuff
Toobs-N-Stuff
9 months ago
Reply to  Terrysplace

a female kitten of a ginger mom (who mated with a ginger boy) will be 50% likely to be ginger, so if you had a ginger female dropping litters, your numbers would be skewed vs the general population of cats.

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