Pudgy Pets - Need advice on a very sad situation
10-01-2009, 05:37 AM
My 10 year old kitty lil O ( her nickname ) was diagnosed with megacolon about 3 years ago. For those of you that arent familiar with the condition ... its basically where part of the colon becomes dialated and in turn the kitty isnt able to have frequent normal bowel movements. It basically collects in the dialated part and by the time the kitty feels " full " to go potty ... it is too large to pass through ... so constipation occurs. The longer it stays in the bowel the more water is extracted from it making into almost cement like. As time goes on if medication etc doesnt work ... kitty has to go through enemas and other not very nice things. There is no absolute reason for why this happens to some pets ... but its a very frustrated and sad condition for both kitty and owner ( because you hate seeing them suffering ). The medications havent worked ... nor the natural ways we've tried to help " move " things along in ther bowel. The surgery was not an option for her unfortunately so the vet has tried other things. The past 6 months has included MANY vet trips ... stays ... enemas ... etc etc. Lil' O has lot a lot of weight. She is bones now. You can see her spine ... etc. She has stopped throwing up ... still trying to go potty ... but hasnt gone in over a week. She started to eat and drink again but very little. Always looks uncomfortable ( obviously ). She just wants to curl up on my lap or next to me in bed and sleep. My vet discussed with me last month that soon I have to decide when enough is enough for her. I suppose Im being selfish ( or maybe hopeful ) that she'll get better but then the motherly part of me is wondering if I am just making things worse for her. Ive almost made a decision the past day to go ahead and do the humane thing and have her put to rest. Its heartbreaking for me and all Ive been doing is crying. See, since I was little we've ALWAYS had pets, both cats and dogs. Ive always been more of the cat person tho. The first time I moved out of my parents house and into my first apartment after college I was a few hours away from home ... and didnt have any of my pets with me. The first few months were awful. I was lonely ... would drive home EVERY day ... cry on the phone with my parents because I hated being away. A few months later on Christmas Eve they surprised me with Lil' O. She was a lifesaver for me in that lonely time in my life. I think that is why my bond with her is so strong ... she truly was/is my companion. So you can see why its so hard to bring myself to know what is the right thing to do. Among my questions is the process for having her put to rest. Ive asked the vet but I dont know if they are sugar coating it. I told them i NEED to be there. They said that I could be there til after the sedation but they would ask me to leave the room while they administer the actual " ... " Im sorry but I just cnat bring myself to type the word. I asked them why and they said because after sedation the kitty will be comfortable and sleepy ... and it would be the best time to say my good byes. They said that sometimes when the final " ... " is administered that the kitty might moan... or twitch etc ... and that its not a good thing for an emotional owner to see. So my question to those of you that have gone through this ... does any of this " hurt " the kitty?? I dont want her to be in pain through this. And do you think its bad of me to not be there for that second part??? I feel guilty if I cant be there through the whole thing yet understand what the vet is saying. Im sorry if Im all over the place in this post ... I am just devastated. :(
10-01-2009, 08:08 AM
They put our dear Goldie down laying on our dining room floor - she twitched and couple of times and it was over. Hardest thing we've ever done but wouldn't have it any other way.
You've made the hardest decision based on your love. My heart goes out to you.
10-01-2009, 09:01 AM
We've had a kitty put down before because of cancer. The initial prick of the shot will hurt them, but that's it. I was told it's just like going to sleep for them. Our vet was very compassionate. My thoughts are with you!
10-01-2009, 09:02 AM
As a vet, I think you've made the right choice. They will never be normal, and it will always be a struggle. I feel that this is the one final gift you can give her, after everything she has given you.
On the aspect of not being there, from a professional point of view, is a little odd. Many of my clients stay there for the final injection, and it is RARELY a bad situation. They must do it because of something that has happened in the past. If she's already sedated, and you were there, the only difference you'd probably see is her to stop breathing. Dogs tend to "twitch" more than cats do, and it's rarely something that scares the owner (esp. b/c I warn them).
In reality, I often give the client the option that they are giving you...she can fall asleep in your arms, you are the last person she sees while she's conscious.
I know it's difficult for you. Just remember - you are giving her the gift of peace. No more pain, no more being uncomfortable.
10-01-2009, 09:34 AM
Smilette31, I am sitting here in tears. My thoughts and prayers are with you. I'm so sorry you are having to go through this.
10-01-2009, 10:06 AM
We had to put my old Tobydog down. She was old and had water around her heart, and masses in her lungs. It was right for her, but it was a horrible, painful decision to make.
When we took her to the vet, she could barely walk (she had hip dysplasia, too, and had deteriorated very quickly in a week). She wanted so desperately to stand and follow my dad and me, but she just couldn't seem to get up. So my dad carried her into the exam room. We all--even the vet--sat on the floor with her. Toby was on a blanket lying on her side, and my dad had her head in his lap. I was at her front paws, and the vet gave the final shot into one of her hind legs. And she just closed her eyes and went to sleep. She was with her people that she loved, and the last thing she felt was dad rubbing her ears and me rubbing her throat. I was crying when it happened and I'm crying as I write this, but I'd much, much, much rather remember through tears than remember being on the other side of a door when my pet left me.
This is the last gift you can give your cat--free her from her pain, and let her go knowing that you were with her.
10-01-2009, 10:18 AM
Thank you all for the kind words. There is comfort in knowing that others have gone through this and that I'm not alone in how I feel. I'm single and no children but my cats are my children. They are like little humans to me. I talk to them ( yes they talk meow back and get sassy sometimes ) ... spoil them ... you name it. They are everything to me. Theres something to be said about the UNCONDITIONAL love of a furry family member.
10-01-2009, 02:34 PM
Let her go. She's in pain and has been through enough. As hard as it is to accept, she probably won't get better, so you need to end her pain at once. It's the best thing you can do for her. I've been there and know how hard it is, but she is suffering! Let her go!
10-01-2009, 02:41 PM
:hug: You have been a good kitty momma. Their lives are so short compared to ours so it is inevitable to have moments like this. Give her a kiss and send her on her path to whatever may be.
10-01-2009, 03:20 PM
In the past 3 years I have had to put my 13 yo doggy down and my 19 yo cat. I was there for both of them. It was sad but I wouldn't have it any other way. I wanted the last thing they heard to be my voice. It was emotional; but not unbearable. Please know you are doing the right thing.
10-01-2009, 03:29 PM
I'm crying as I remember putting down my two darling Porties in the past 18 months. Yes, giving them release from pain is hard but also caring responsible and unselfish. I held my Lucy while the vet administered the sedative and she fell asleep. The I wore the stethoscope and listened to her heart slow and stop. It was very painful but I am glad I was there. You will be glad too when your heart starts to heal.
10-01-2009, 07:39 PM
My heart goes out to you and all the others that have shared about their wonderful friends..
I had to say goodbye to two kitties, two brothers.. One of 'my boys' had a terrible cancer (sarcoma )and his brother who outlived him by 3 years had been oxygen deprived after a severe asthma attack and became dangerously aggressive towards me... It was one of the hardest times of my life coming to the decisions I made, the kitty with cancer was not easy, but seemed to make more sense because he was in pain. The decision about his brother weighs heavy on my heart, it was just last year, and because he 'seemed' fine, but unprovoked would corner me, attack me and draw blood, and then be loving and 'normal' for a time. The episodes grew closer together, he was diagnosed with probable apnea and the vet felt it was unsafe for me, or an adoptive family to keep him... I'm crying now thinking about them...
I have to look at it this way; I was a great mom, they had all of my love, and each other for a time, they had the best food, best toys, lots of play time, kind words, my lap whenever they wanted it, attention when ever they could get it, big windows to look out and breath in fresh air, a bed in every room, clean litter boxes, clean bowls, midnight treats. They had a great life and they made my life better.. we had lots of fun...
They also had a mom who cared and loved them so much she made the best decision for 'them'. If only they could speak, I know they would thank us for keeping their transition comfortable and painless as possible ... know you are not alone... look at all of us cryin...
On the other hand, my kitties were a couple of nuts who swung from my drapes when they were kittens play tarzan in the floor plants in my living room... and then fall asleep on top of each other.... grew up to be 12 and 18pounds... yup, they were nuts !!
May you find peace :hug:
10-01-2009, 08:44 PM
My prayers are with you.
We have lost pets here too...it is never an easy thing to go through dear.
10-03-2009, 05:46 PM
My heart goes out to you. My friend that I've known for 30 years has had several cats pass on her, naturally, including one that had seizures for the last year of his life. I always thought it wasn't fair of her and her family to let them suffer like that.
When I was young the family cat had to be put down because he would attack unprovoked, often going for my face and eyes, and I always wished I could have been there to say goodbye.
I have two cats now, and I too am facing the hard decision of possibly putting one down. She's got arthritis and she has some other health issues.
10-05-2009, 12:14 PM
Hi everyone. I want to thank you again for all the thoughts youve passed my way. I just wanted to update you. Over the weekend lil O was doing pretty good ... eating and drinking ... being playful. Today she isnt so well again ... I was examining her and noticed under her tail a bit of skin is protruded out ... about the size of a big marble. I knew she hadnt gone to the bathroom ... I was right unfortunately. I still struggle with the decision to have her put .... you know. I also struggle that the vet wont let me stay past the sedation. I called my parents vet ... and talked with her. She said I can stay til the end if I want to bring her to her vet hospital. She warned me that its sometimes hard to find veins on a cat ... so it might take a prick or two ... but that I am allowed to stay til the end. She also warned me of what a few of you have mentioned ... that she may twitch etc ... but knowing I can stay with her and have my voice be the last one she hears ... is what I need. It makes me feel ... the word better doesnt work .. but it just makes me feel more at peace knowing she can be put to rest knowing I was there til the end. Its just really hard to make this decision but we made the appt for Wednesday afternoon. They said she would be ok til then ... but it will give me a few days to be with her so I took the next 3 days off work ... and going to spend as much time iwth her as I possibly can. Thank you again for all your support and helping me to make the right decision for my lil O.