Trailblazing Surgery Saves Life of Cat Born with Backward Legs

Corky is a kitten who was born with his back legs on backwards.

The medical term for Corky's condition is "Bilateral Arthrogryposis": A rare congential disorder that results in the shortening of joints and subsequent muscle weakness. In addition to having two sets of front paws, Corky's hind legs were also crisscrossed like a corkscrew — hence his name.

The seven-month-old moggy was found roaming the streets of Fargo, North Dakota, by a young boy, and handed over to a shelter that had no choice but to schedule his euthanasia.

That is, until he was rescued by Gail Ventzke and Carol Stefonek of CATS Cradle Shelter, and helped back on his feet by Dr. Dan Burchill, who pioneered a type of surgery capable of righting Corky's legs.

Here is an update from earlier this month:

Corky had his 5 hour surgery on Thursday, April 5th 2012. He is doing very well so far and his pain is being managed quite well. He wants to get up, but doctors are keeping him off of his feet for the time being. He has his bandages and splints changed daily and is getting rehabilitation therapy 4 times a day. Corky's pain will continue to be managed once he is released.

Since then, Corky has started moving about, as you can see in the video above. If you'd like to help speed up Corky's recovery, a donation page has been set up on the CATS Cradle website.

[Arbroath, photo and video via CATS Cradle]