News & Advice

Diego – the stray kitten that gained an extra life

Mar 29, 2022 | Cats, Pet Health

A story about a stray kitten that lost his leg and gained a second chance at life.

This cute little kitty was found with a broken leg and was surrendered to our clinic. Although badly hurt and in pain, he captured the hearts of the staff at Anexa Morrinsville team with his gorgeous puss n boots eyes and snuggly nature. 


The stray kitten resting before his surgery.

X-ray showing badly fractured leg.


After checking him over, the team found that he was very healthy and well (except for his badly hurt leg).

With no owner, the team had three options:

  1. To find an owner willing to take on a cat that needed its leg pinned and the recovery time and care that comes with it. 
  2. To amputate the leg (if repairing the fracture isn’t an option, either due to cost or if the leg is beyond saving. We find that animals have a great quality of life and adjust very quickly.)
  3. To euthanise the kitten.

The team needed to act quickly; there was no time to find an appropriate owner. So option two was taken. 

Our staff affectionately started calling him Diego (inspired by the movie Ice Age) and he was taken to surgery. Nurses Kim and Sam monitored Diego while he was under anaesthetic to keep him stable and comfortable. Then, Anexa Vets Nicola and Georgie operated and amputated the leg just above where the fracture was located. The surgery was a success, and he spent a few more days hospitalised to ensure he was comfortable and his pain was well managed. 

Diego the stray kitten under goes surgery, monitored closely by vet nurse, Sam.

Diego recovers after surgery.

Diego has recovered well, swiftly adapting to 3-legged life. We have just seen him again for his booster vaccinations – his fur has completely grown back, and he is a very playful kitten. He has found a forever home with one of our large animal technicians; she has even decided to stick with the name Diego! Our whole team is ecstatic about this terrific outcome for Diego and his new family. 

Here are a few photos of Diego living his best life.

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