Skills: She is a true survivor. She is a stealth ninja cat-she crawls through the shadows, silently stalking her bowl of tuna...
Arrival Story: Hope has decided to hang out around our yard with the other ferals. I have seen her quite infrequently for the last 3 months, usually quite late at night. The past week, she has been coming by once in awhile during the day. She is not sure what quite to make of me yet; however, she knows I bring her out food if I see her.
Bio: â™¥Hopeâ™¥ came to me on November 10/07, while I was at work. She had never come up to me before that day. The condition she was in was very poor and very sad. I know she must have been looking for help because she was suffering.
Between me and my boss, we managed to catch her. I promptly took her to the vet to see what could be done for her. She was severely dehydrated and emaciated; her claws had grown over into her pads; she was wheezing for air. Although her prognosis did not look very good, I took her home anyways determined to do all I could to save her. I had to feed her with a syringe for the first couple of days, as well as giving her water in this way. She vomited the first night, and had a few gagging incidents over the next few days. It was so hard watching her frail little body go through it all. I gave her all the love I could and kept trying to help her. At least the anitibiotics had worked to help her respiratory distress.
The next week, the vet told me she was very anemic. He told me that because of her condition, it was most likely due to kidney failure. She was still dehydrated, but not as badly as before, and had not gained even an ounce. He said it was possible that her anemia was due to a parasite and he could prescribe me some medicine that would help if that was the cause. I asked for the prescription and went home with Hope, hoping for the best. The next week of antibiotics seemed promising. She stopped gagging, began to eat on her own, and was getting up once in a while on her own. I thought that maybe she was going to be okay after all.
After her antibiotics were done, we went back to the vet. Sadly, Hope had still not gained any weight, she was still dehydrated, and she still had very pale gums. The vet said because she had not responded to the medication, her anemia was most likely due to kidney failure. He told me to monitor how much she drank and went to the bathroom over the next 48 hours, and call him with the information. Over the next 2 days, Hope drank 2 cups of water and went to the bathroom 15 times-she only weighed 3 and a half pounds. I told this to the vet, who said that was not a good sign. He said that we could try sub-q fluids and putting her on a low-protein diet, but kidney failure was not something that coould be cured. He also strongly recommended to me that bloodwork be run so that we could know 100% for sure that her kidneys were the problem. He let me know the cost of everything and I went to discuss it with my fiance. He told me that whatever I needed to do to try and help Hope was fine with him. I called the vet back and set up an appointment to run bloodwork. I did some reading online about kidney failure in cats. It did not make me feel very optimistic. I did not want to put poor little Hope through IV's and medications to try and get a few more months, or maybe just weeks, of life out of her. Reading other people's stories of how cats "crash" made me realize that Hope had already crashed, and I had helped her back already. I did not want her to go through another crash; it was heart-wrenching to watch and was likely not pleasant for her to go through. I told myself that if herbloodwork confirmed kidney failure, I would not put her through anything more. It would not be fair to her.
On Wednesday, November 28th, We went to the vet to get full bloodwork done. The results took about an hour. They confirmed that her kidney's were indeed in bad shape. The vet told me it was important to get her on sub-q's and a low-protein diet if I was going to keep trying. I asked him, "If we do all this for her, it still isn't going to cure her kidney's, is it? It is a terminal illness that she is going to die from, right?" The vet said yes. I asked him, "Even if I put her on fluids and a special diet, it will probably only slightly improve her condition for a few weeks before she crashes and gets bad again, right?" The vet said yes. I began crying really hard at that point and told him it was not my intention to prolong her life when it was inevitable that she would get worse and eventually die. I did not want to prolong her life simply to wait until she was really suffering before I made the decision to let her go peacefully.
I went back to the vet a couple of hours later, after snuggling and cuddling with Hope. There was a warm blanket on the table for her to lie on. She was very calm and peaceful. The vet gave her a sedative first, to make her sleepy. Her breathing became very slow and peaceful. I held her little paw and pet her. I told her everything was going to be okay. I told her that she was going to a place where she would never again know pain and suffering, and she would be a healthy, happy kitty forever and ever.
The vet came back with the second needle. I continued to hold Hope's paw the whole time as I watched her chest stop rising, and her heart slowly stop beating. At 7pm Wednesday November 28th, Hope went to the rainbow bridge.
I cannot help crying when I think about it. I still feel guilty because she wasn't really bad when I took her in. She still might have lived another few weeks, perhaps even a few months. I just couldn't bear the though of putting her frail little body through medications and IV's to try and prolong her life. I would have felt like I was doing it for my own benefit instead of Hope's benefit. I did not want to wait until she got really bad before I put her down. She came to me when she was in a horrible, pathetic condition. I helped her get to a comfortable condition. She was warm and safe; she had all the food and water she wanted; most important, she received love and she learned how to give love back. I wanted her to go feeling comfortable and loved. I didn't want to wait for the disease to progress further. I feel so bad. I wish I could have done more. I hope I made the right decision. I felt it was the only decision that would not cause her any more discomfort. I miss her very much. Hope is now my very special angel kitty. She will always have a special place in my heart. I taught her how to trust and love, and she rewarded me with trusting and loving me back.
Good-bye, my sweet baby Hope. You will always be loved.
I have been tagged by Jessica (498910) in a wonderful game of Angel Tag. The game is called "All I Want For Christmas" and I am pleased to state my 7 Christmas wishes here:
1) I wish that all the feral kitties out there will find a caring human who will take care of them, love them, and help them stay safe.
2) I wish that more people were aware of the importance of spaying/neutering their animals.
3) I wish that people would stop fighting amongst themselves, and instead, start trying to work together to solve our problems.
4) I wish that no more animals would have to suffer cruelty or neglect at the hands of people. Animals love so completely and unconditionally-they deserve the same in return.
5) I wish that people would give more and take less. Giving feels so good-why doesn't everyone understand that?
6) I wish that every animal and person in the world gets to experience love before they have to depart from this life.
7) I wish everyone a peaceful, joyful holiday season full of warm hugs and lots of love.
The five fur-angels I am tagging are
Yesterday was sooo overwhelming for me. On Friday, I was starting to feel really sick and my picture was taken up-close. Meowmy could hear that I was having a hard time breathing, and she knew I needed help. She tried to catch me by talking to me and coaxing me with treats while she slowly creeped closer. She got within a couple of feet, but I got scared and went away. I knew she was trying to do something, but I just couldn't be 100% sure what it was. She seemed like a good human, but could I trust her?
I didn't come back that night-even though I knew it would be a rough night for me alone.
Meowmy has been in contact with a feral cat organization just this last week, and had arranged to rent a trap so she could get us all into the vet to get us fixed/checked-up/etc. Daddy was going to pick up the trap the day after meowmy took the picture of me when I was sick. When meowmy woke up on Saturday morning, she was worried because she did not see me before she went to work like she usually did. She came home for lunch, and checked out the picture she took of me yesterday on the computer. She started crying because I looked so sick and skinnny, and it showed that I had really bad runny eyes and nose. Thick mucus was caked to my nose and around my eyes, and it was getting really hard for me to breathe. I was feeling terrible, and meowmy knew she had to help me fast because I am so skinny and sick, and the weather had been windy, rainy and cold overnight.
She went back to work so worried because she still hadn't seen me. She told everybody at work to keep an eye out for me because she didn't think I could survive another night outside. Meowmy lives across the street from where she works (at a garbage/recycling depot), so she thought there was a good chance I was around the area if I was still alive. A couple of hours after her lunch, someone saw me at the front entrance. Meowmy and her boss started to go after me because there is lots of traffic during business hours-8am-4:30pm-(there is next to no traffic after hours). They were scared someone would run me over. They tried to catch me, but I ran into someone's yard. That was still a good sign to meowmy because I had survived the night, so she would have a chance to catch me.
About half an hour later, meowmy was standing next to a van, helping the customer unload it when the customer said, "What a little scraggly looking cat that is!" Meowmy got very excited and asked where the cat went. The customer said it was under his van. Meowmy knelt down on the ground, and there I was-crouching under the van near her feet. She couldn't believe it! A stray/feral cat coming out in broad daylight to an environment where there are people and cars everywhere.
She laid down on the ground and tried a few times to grab me, but she had gloves on and they smelled funny-I got scared and ran again. I went running towards the exit, but I wasn't going too fast. Her boss was close by trying to catch me. I tried to run through a hole in the fence, but I fell over and her boss pinned me down. I bit him good through the thumb because I was soooo scared. Meowmy came running up and grabbed me with those thick gloves and I hissed a little, but was still for her. She went into the bathroom and placed me gently into the tub. I was very scared, so I was very still. She told me she was going to get a carrier to put me in and she would be right back.
Meowmy ran to her neighbours house to borrow her plastic carrier (meowmy only has a cardboard one for Luna) and then came back for me. I was still lying in the bathtub when she came back. She put the carrier beside me and to meowmy's surprise-I walked right in and she closed the door without a fuss from me.
Meowmy called the vet and told them what had happened. They told her to come down and they would have a look at me. At the vet, I was so scared, I just cooperated with the people there. meowmy kept telling me it would be okay now, no matter what.
I was so badly dehydrated, when you pulled my skin-it just stayed they way and wouldn't spring back. The vet said I had no bady fat. When I was flipped over onto my back, meowmy found out I was actually a girl, not a boy like she thought I was. (She had never seen me with my tail up before.)
Then, when they checked my paws, they found out that my claws had become ingrown. All of them had grown deep into the pads on my feet.
Because of this, they thought that might explain why I was so skinny. I could not hunt without my claws, and I couldn't run well because they caused me so much pain. That made the vet think I might be older, until he checked my teeth. My teeth told him I was still quite young.
The vet cut my claws for me and cleaned my paws. He gave me liquid antibiotics. He told meowmy I was in very rough shape and needed to be rehydrated and possibly force-fed. But he told her that there was still hope. Meowmy could not afford "gold star" treatment where I could stay with the vet and be put on IV and monitored all night, so she had to do the conservative treatment. He showed her how to give me my medicine and told her to get me to eat and drink, even if she had to force -feed me.
Meowmy paid the $105 and took me home, armed with medicine, kitty "rocket-fuel food"(high moisture and nutrient wet food), and a syringe in case she had to force-feed me. She put me in her bathroom and made a bed with towels and a hot water bottle. She put food and water out for me. When she got me out of the carrier, I went straight for the food and water and started eating and drinking on my own! Meowmy was so happy I did this, she cried. She called her friend and told her the news. Her friend said my name should be "Hope".
So, my name is now Hope, and I am a girl. I had a good night last night. It was warm and cozy. Meowmy came in every few hours to refresh my hot-water bottle and make me drink water. I got sick a bit at 4am, but meowmy cuddled me up and made me feel lbetter. She gave me a syringe of water to rehydrate me after, since I had been sick.
It is now noon, and I am curled up sleeping. It is sooo nice to feel warm and safe. I trust meowmy so much, after she gave me my medicine at 11am, I crawled up into her lap to let her know I love her.
Meowmy wants everyfurr to purr and pray that I can recover. I've been in so much pain from my claws and my respiratory infection for a long time. My breathing sounds better today, and I went pee. It was yellow and stinky, which the vet said would be a good sign.
Meowmy will keep everyfurr posted on how I am doing.