Most cats don’t survive an interaction with a coyote.  They just “go missing,” and they disappear in the night.  Tiki is the exception.  Tiki not only survived one coyote, he survived three.

Three coyotes

Late one evening, Tiki’s Dad heard a sound outdoors.  Much to his surprise, he found three coyotes in his backyard, and one of them had Tiki in his mouth!  Tiki’s Dad scared off the coyotes, and rushed Tiki in to TLC’s Emergency Department.Tiki's cute faceOur triage team assessed Tiki to be in shock; he was obtunded, which means he was very poorly responsive.  We placed a catheter quickly, and he received several doses of crystalloid fluids.  Bloodwork results were good, so Tiki received a dose of a strong pain medication called Methadone.  We took x-rays to assess internal damage.

Tiki Lateral

We knew Tiki was lucky just to survive the attack, but to see no significant internal injuries (such as a broken spine, bleeding in the lungs, avulsed bladder, etc.), we were very impressed.  Tiki had a minor deviation of his sternum, which did not require specific treatment.  An ultrasound was performed on Tiki’s abdomen to confirm no internal bleeding.

Tiki’s main injuries were to his rear legs and groin area.  There were several punctures and bruising, and strong suspicion for significant muscle damage.  Tiki was stabilized overnight with additional fluids, broad-spectrum IV antibiotics, and a CRI of strong pain medication called Fentanyl.

 Tiki in Tx Cage

The next day, Tiki was taken to surgery.  He did very well under anesthesia.   First we made sure none of the bite wounds in his groin area extended into his abdomen; gratefully they did not.   However, the coyote’s bites crushed the muscles of his legs.

lateral view of cat leg

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Poor Tiki.  The inner thigh muscle’s in Tiki’s right legs (#1, 20, and part of 8 above) were transected.  And the rear thigh muscles (#2, 8, 20) in Tiki’s left leg were also transected.  Many sutures were placed to appose the muscle bellies.  Additionally, much of the fat in Tiki’s groin area was crushed, and needed to be removed.

Tiki's wounds

Several drains were placed, to allow any infection to exit the body.

Tiki stayed in our hospital nearly three days, recovering from his mauling by the coyotes.  This handsome black cat now knows its best to stay indoors to avoid those coyotes!

Susana and Tiki

Susana is one of our dedicated technicians who cared for Tiki during his stay at TLC.  Tiki was a wonderful patient, and we were so happy for his excellent recovery.

Take Care, Tiki!

~L.Scott, DVM

Sept. 2013

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