Cat Has A Dip In The Back – Leading Causes

Cats are very adorable, curious, independent, and loyal. That’s why many humans love them. But like any pet, cats also express their feelings, pain, and happiness in different ways.

If a cat wags its tail, this is a sign that it is agitated. On the contrary, when a dog wags its tail, it shows that its excitation.

Cat has dip in back

Aside from expressions, some postures from cats can mean different things. For instance, if your cat has a unique posture, such as a dip in the back, it can mean several things.

Here’s what a dip in the back of your cat can mean:


First of all, it can be genetic. Some cats are born with a dip or sunken back. You can countercheck with your veterinarian and know whether the cat breed you have acquired has a dip in the back.

Besides, you can also tell if it’s genetic or not by just observing the cat. If the cat is running, playing, or even jumping in a normal way, this is a sign that it is okay, and it may have been born that way.


Another reason why your cat may have a dip in the back is due to injury. If a cat has injured its spine or bones in the back, you may notice some sagging.

However, you will have to pay close attention as cats don’t show their weaknesses easily. Cats are notably smart at hiding illness and injuries.

It is a trait they have adapted in the wild for survival instincts. So, your cat will never show you that it is sick or injured, as it takes it as a sign of weakness.

But when things become worse, you can easily notice the pain that your feline friend is going through.

If your cat has a dipped back because of an injury, you should take it to a vet immediately for treatment. A broken spine can cause pain and paralysis.

If not treated early, it can even lead to loss of mobility or bladder control.

Good Stretch

If you notice that your cat has a dip at the back while it stretches, then you have got nothing to worry about. Since cats take several naps during the day, they love to stretch every time they wake up.

Note that stretching keeps the cat ready to pounce on its next prey that comes its way.

What’s more, when a cat is inactive, its blood pressure drops. So, when it wakes up, it stretches to allow more blood to flow to be active.

In most cases, you may notice a dip in the back of the cat as it stretches. So, this is not something to worry about, especially if it only happens as the cat stretches.


A cat can also dip its back when it’s playing. It is normal in some cats. Some even lie on their back so that the owner can cuddle their stomach, while others arch their back.

Nonetheless, it is essential to know whether your cat is dipping its back to play or for other reasons. If it’s dipping its back and not growling, showing his teeth, hissing, or even spitting, this is a sign that all is well.

A Condition

However, not all cat dips in the back are good news. If you bought an older cat and noticed that it has a dip in the back, then this might indicate a condition.

If the dip is behind the shoulder blades, it can be a sign that your furry friend was flat-chested when they were born. But if it’s the length of the spine, then it can be something else.

This condition is very tricky as most cats born with it usually die. But if your cat survived this condition, then it will have a dip behind the shoulder blades.

Some of the challenges that flat-chested cats face are the inability to feed properly, weight gain, and respiratory pain.

The good news is that most cats with the flat-chest condition outgrow it, but the dip on the back can still be felt when touched.

Dip in cat's back reasons


Most cats also dip their back slightly as they stalk their prey. It normally happens after the cat has stalked its prey and wants to charge.

So, if your cat is in the garden or under the bed and you notice it in this posture, this shows that your cat is ready to pounce on something.

What Should I Do If My Cat’s Back Has Dipped Due To A Spinal Injury?

If your cat’s back has dipped because of a spinal injury, it is important to have it checked and diagnosed before it goes out of hand.

There are several rehabilitations that a cat with spinal injury can benefit from. These include cold laser therapy, hydrotherapy, and therapeutic exercise.

Nonetheless, if the spinal injury is severe, then you may have to do surgery. Apart from having a dipped back, you can also tell that your cat has a spinal injury by looking for other signs.

These include rigid paralysis, limb paralysis, lethargy, pain, reluctance to play, urinary and fecal incontinence.

Spinal injuries in cats are usually caused by dislocation or fracture. Some of the common causes include bite wounds, accidents, and even gunshot wounds.

The biggest problem with spinal injuries is that they cause damage to the spine and lead to swelling, tissue decay, and bleeding, and destruction of the nerve sheath.

That’s why you have to take your cat to a vet as soon as possible if it has a dip in the back and feels pain.

Now that you know what your cat will face if it has a dipped back due to spinal injury, it is important to take action quickly.

The good news is that fractured or dislocated spines or bones in cats can be seen on x-rays and scans. And if you commence treatment within a few hours of your cat getting injured, you can save it.

It may take about 4 to 6 weeks for your cat to fully recover if the injury is not very serious. However, if the injury causes severe neurologic signs, then recovery may take longer.

What Are The Dangers Of A Spinal Injury That Causes A Dip In The Back Of A Cat?

If the spinal injury is severe that it causes a dip in the back of your cat, you will have to do surgery.

What’s more, severe spinal injury to the lower or middle back can lead to rigid or limp paralysis.

If not taken care of, these can spread to other body sections and lead to death from respiratory paralysis.

Cat Has A Dip In The Back – Conclusion

So, if you have been wondering why your cat has a dip on the back, you don’t have to. Your cat may feel playful, a particular cat breed, a condition at birth, an injury, or exercise.

Nevertheless, it is important to know why your cat has a dip so that you can know what to do in case of an injury.

Overall, you shouldn’t panic but care for your cat and detect the reason behind the dipped back. With this information, you can pinpoint what the issue is to keep your cat healthy and in good condition.