warning for discussion of cat wounds and injury though not in too much detail.
hi all. my family has several outdoor cats (which i know is dangerous but im a teenager and i cant do anything to convince my parents about it). we live on a 50-acre property with several family members in other houses, and the entire property is surrounded by woods. weve had several cats go missing or die over the years (again i cant really do anything to prevent this) but nothing like this has ever happened.
about two months ago, one of our cats, rambo (dont know the age because he was a stray like most of our cats but hes maybe 7-8 months) came home limping with his back right leg. hed hiss when we touched it and his flank looked swollen somewhat. then, a few days later, the wound popped, and leaked pus everywhere, and then it was just a hole with no skin where you could see his muscle for a few weeks before it healed up. sometime shortly after his wound opened, we noticed another of our cats, prince, had two puncture marks on his forehead and it was swollen, and a couple days later it popped as well. both wounds healed fine and both cats are in great shape now.
then, a couple days ago, another of our cats, mickey, came home and couldnt support his weight on his back legs. he could move them, but not stand. he went missing the next morning only for us to find him in my moms dresser behind some books, alive but extremely lethargic. he peed himself upon coming out and we cleaned up and gave him some water and he was a bit more active. he went missing again last night, and there was a storm, and we couldnt find him at all though i assume he was underneath our porch, where a lot of our cats go. he reappeared several minutes ago covered in mud and his own poop and almost completely unresponsive. there's an open wound near the base of his tail, and it looks very similar to the ones that prince and rambo had. hes alright for now, we cleaned him up and he's drinking water again.
this isnt a dire call for medical advice, though if you do have any it would be appreciated, but we mostly have things under control (i think). my mom says we cant go to the vet because we dont have the money. i just want to know if this sounds familiar to anyone so i can figure out what keeps causing our cats to have these injuries. me and my mom think it's a snake, but my dad insists that rambo and prince got into a fight with each other (despite the fact that they get along fine although arent very close) and that a possum bit mickey. but ive seen cats get into fights before and this isnt anything like that. so i dont know what to think. any info would be appreciated.