is it time

Share advice for keeping your aging cat happy and healthy


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Purred: Wed Aug 1, '12 2:05pm PST 
I know it's always said that we will know it is time...and I have with all my other animals, but this different. My cat, scooter, is 19 and was healthy up until a several months ago, when she started losing weight. Ran some blood tests and she was found to be in the early stages of renal failure. Switched her to canned Science diet KD which she ate for a little while but then started refusing that.

Tried raw goats milk mixed with smelly fishy food and she has been eating that for a few months although steadily losing weight still. Tried raw- but she wouldn't eat it. The last few days now she won't eat anything just laps a little fishy liquid from canned people mackarel. She is skin and bones. Tried SC fluids a couple months ago but she hated the procedure and at that time I said we'll just keep her comfortable till it's time.

She is still purring, seeking attention, sitting on my lap and doesn't appear to be in any pain....but she has stopped cleaning herself the last couple days. She is still urinating though and has some hard stool.

Now here's the dilemma. We are leaving for Europe next week, returning on the 17th and my daughter will be moving in the house to take care of the animals. She can certainly manage an ill cat, but I do not want her to have to be the one to make the decision to put her down...or have a crazy trip to the emergency vet at 2 AM be Scooter's last memory. I also don't want her to suffer, and I'm not sure if she's not suffering now. I don't think she'll make it to the 17th- but who knows?

I don't have any problem bringing her to the vet for an evaluation, and will probably bring her in tomorrow or Friday regardless, but I just want to process what the best course of action is before standing in that exam room and deciding in a haze of grief to now run every test in the book, which meets my needs, not Scooter's. We could run some labs, but I don't think that's going to give me the answer, other than to see what her numbers are now. But what would we do with that info anyway? Her clinical condition is so poor now.

I really don't want her to suffer...and I feel selfish making this decision based on a vacation...but I also fell irresponsible not addressing it appropriately before we go. I'm very torn. She is not quite ready yet- but I know it won;t be long, and should I do this before I go?

She has had a great life. Was a stray 4-5 month old kitten when she showed up on our deck and decided she would live with us. I think it's best to do this before we leave and bring calm closure to a wonderful life- but does anyone have any insight into this? I'm going to pick up some different varieties of smelly, junky cat food tonight in a last ditch effort to get her to eat, and maybe she'll rally...but she has no reserves now.

Baltster- 1990 ~ 2011

Winks, to the- ladies, Iz still- got it
Purred: Wed Aug 1, '12 3:41pm PST 
Who knows I also had that problem and had to leave Balty at a cattery which wasn't his favourite place. I also wondered if he'll make it and I also didn't want his last days to be miserable. 2 years ago when I had to go away for work I said to the cattery I understand if he doesn't make it and we arranged what they should do with the body if that happened cry But he was there when we went to pick them all up. Again a year later we had the same deal with the cattery we were shocked he was STILL around a year later. AND again he was there when we got back but it was only a few days but still he was there. You never know. If you put them down, it's something you can't go back on and it's something you don't want to have any regrets. I know it's hard. But sometimes it's easier to look into their eyes and ask yourself do they look ready. If not, wait. Just put a plan in place if something happens what your daughter should do. Be prepared as you don't want to go away feeling guilty either thinking If you intend on burying them in the garden it may be good to dig the hole and cover it before you leave. So you don't feel like you are leaving it all to your daughter. You may be pleasantly surprise and your kitty may live for another year. If you intend to have them cremated give your daughter the number to ring for collection. Once again it may not be needed. Have a good holiday, I know it won't be easy either way.

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Purred: Wed Aug 1, '12 5:37pm PST 
Thanks for the response- she isn't ready today, that I do know. I just got home with a different kind of food to try and she did actually eat a teaspoon of it or so. A couple months ago I thought it was the end but then I tried the raw goat's milk and that kept her going for a while. Maybe some SC fluids would perk her up enough to stimulate her appetite a bit. I'm more encouraged now that she ate a little bit tonight, and was waiting in the kitchen when I got home looking for food. Hopefully a trend that continues.

Bella My- Beautiful- Angel

Mommys Kitty- Girl! I know- I\'m loved!
Purred: Wed Aug 1, '12 8:25pm PST 
ah, the roller coaster of a Senior CKD cat. Today was a tough one...but I'll fight for her, because she's my life. I love her like my child, for she is. My best friend.
We have the same issues, but feel that so long as she's eating, drinking, peeing and pooping, we will do what we can. The weather affects them...

I would suggest, if you aren't trying it, subq fluids, and azodyl. Our Bella has been on fluid therapy for a year now, and has been doing better for it.

sending purrs and hugs,
Deb and Bella and the rest of the KG cats.

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Purred: Thu Aug 2, '12 5:13am PST 
She didn't like getting the SC fluids when I tried them a couple months ago and at that time I thought "why put her through it?"But now we're in a different place b/c she is sicker so I think I will try again and see how she tolerates it. My daughter did it with her cat so she can continue while we're gone. She is eating again this morning- so your term of "roller coaster" is definitely what we're on!I just want to do the right thing for her and not have her suffer. But today...she is purring, sitting on my lap and even eating a bit again, so we'll see how it goesthinking