According to Cat World, there are numerous causes of limping in a cat, including bone fractures, muscle sprains and strains, tumors, overgrown claws and insect bites. Although most causes of limping are not that serious, this doesn't mean that the injury should be ignored.
WebMD suggests having a limping cat examined by a veterinarian as the best course of action. Obvious causes of limping, such as minor wounds, strains, abscesses or foreign bodies, are easily determined through physical examination. Should there be no obvious cause, the cat may undergo additional tests to determine the cause of limping, says Cat World. These tests include ultrasound, X-rays and blood tests.
According to Vet Street, minor injuries, such as strains, sprains and pulled muscles, are treated by restricting the cat's activities and exercise. This can be done by keeping the cat in a smaller space, with access to food, water, bed and litter box, until the injury heals.
Major injuries, such as fractures, tendon ruptures or torn ligaments, have prolonged recovery periods. Such injuries require immediate surgery. After surgery, the cat's limb is immobilized with a cast for up to six weeks. Cage rest is often recommended in such cases. To ensure proper healing it's imperative to follow through with cage rest, even if the cat dislikes it, says Vet Street.