Wednesday, March 10, 2010

{kiki}

Today's post is brought to you by.....

...this girl, Kiki. I tried writing this post yesterday, but couldn't stop crying long enough to clear my eyes so I could actually see the computer.

She's been secretly sick for awhile, losing weight, & getting skinnier and skinnier. I say secretly, because other than the weight loss, we really never had any other clues that she had anything wrong with her. She was her sweet, normal self! But a few months ago, she started throwing up, and wasn't eating as much. I took her into our vet, and after an expensive blood and urine test, he couldn't really tell me what was wrong. He didn't even explain what the high levels of protein and globulin's meant on her test. I told him I was worried about her losing weight, but he said that 9lbs was healthy for a cat. So we left.

I still knew something wasn't right. If you have pets, you know them. You know when they aren't acting like themselves, and I knew Kiki didn't feel good.

A month and a half later, it was visible she was thinner, so I took her to another vet. I brought the results from her blood tests and was so happy to finally have a vet that cared enough to explain what everything meant. He did another, small (and inexpensive) blood test to confirm that her protein levels were still high and after a few other tests & an exam, I was told the grim news...

My little, sweet, 3 year old cat has cancer. Lymphosarcoma, to be exact. It is rare for a young cat to get it, but it happens. He felt the tumor on her lymph nodes in her abdomen, and all of the test results and symptoms add up.

I thanked him for explaining everything and left, not really knowing what to do. We could spend a ton of money doing an ultrasound, then a biopsy, and then give her medicine to manage the tumor, but nothing can cure her, and I hate to put her through all that. And to be honest, we just can't spend that much money on something that might only prolong her life for another 6 months.

My heart is broken and it didn't really hit me until last night. Every time I looked at her, I cried. Everything made me cry and I couldn't stop. I felt like I needed to be sedated. Seriously.

Some of you might laugh, thinking how silly I am acting over a cat, but unless you have pets of your own, you couldn't understand what I'm going through. Kiki isn't just my pet, she's like my baby. Other than her brother (who's fine) she's the first cat that has been mine. I bought her, raised her, and take care of her. She is full of personality and is the sweetest cat.

The thought of putting her to sleep makes me bawl all over again. For now we're keeping a close eye on her, and when we can tell she's really sick, we'll take her in.

*sigh* Life is hard like that sometimes. Do any of you have pets that you've had to put down? What helped you cope? Thoughts?

xo, Shan

29 comments:

The Smith Family said...

OH my word! That's so sad.
I'm not a pet person for this VERY reason! It's too hard to loose something you love.
I remember when our family dog got really sick, and had to be put down. It was so sad for my brother and Mom. I didn't even really take care of him, but the sadness that they went through was just... so hard for me.
You've been so good to take care of her, this long.
I'm glad you have a great hubby to comfort you. Just stay positive, and remember that she wouldn't want to suffer, if she's in pain, or anything.
I'm sorry you have to go through this.
I hope that everything works out for the best.
Shelley

Channa said...

I am so sorry to hear that! I know exactly how you feel. I lost my cat, of 11 years, over a year ago and I cried every day.She got out and never came home, I looked for her for months, stayed up late driving around, walking calling her name, went to every shelter multiple times, and still she was gone. I still cry for her, I miss her so much. You are in our thoughts and prayers!

Heather said...

Oh my goodness I am sorry sorry to hear this, we had to put down our wiener dogs a few years ago, BOTH were very Ill and old roughly at the same time, To get through it, i just imguned that they would be running aorund and playing in heaven, and wouldn't suffer any longer, still notmuch quells the stings of losing a furry friend. God Bless you guys.

Lacey said...

Shan,

I am so sorry to hear the news of your cat! We had to put Oreo down in december of 2008. It was a really tough decision but we knew he was in pain, and that his quality of life was just not what it should be. He wasn't able to be active and enjoy his life anymore. So My mom, dad, me and my then bf took him for that dreaded last ride... Okay Crying... but I can tell you that although its hard I am glad that he isn't suffering anymore. If you want to talk about it some you can always give me a call. If you need my number message me and I will send it to you! Even thought I know we aren't as close as we once were I love you shan! Lacey

Who needs sleep? said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your kitty cat. Pets are a big part of our hearts. We lost our old mutt last year to cancer last year. I would only recommend that you stay with her through the putting down process. It's extremely hard to watch your friend pass away, but the comfort you bring to your pet in it's final moments is greater than what a vet can give.
If you do have to put your pet down, research what happens during the time of death so you aren't surprised by how the body reacts at that time. It's nothing horrifying, but took me by surprise.
Again, I'm sorry you're having to go through this.

Kelly said...

Thanks shannon, now i'm going to bawl. I'm sooooo sorry. It is so hard having to put a pet down. It's so hard because it is losing a friend, which is never fun. I think we need a night full of chocolate and anything else that is fattening!

Sarah Knight said...

I wish I could tell you how much this breaks my heart. We had to put my 17 year old dog down last month and it may have been the saddest yet most comforting moment of my life. The selfish side of me just cried and cried for about 3 days because I missed her so much but then my not so selfish side of me realized that she was dying, and to keep putting her through the pain she was obviously in was incredibly selfish and I knew I did the right thing. It will be a hard thing for you when any of your pets have to go but know that you have to do what's best for them and in the end (after lots of tears) you'll know in your heart you did what was right.

Allisha said...

So sorry Shan. That's very difficult. When our favorite dog died a few years ago we did a stepping stone with his name on it out in the yard, and my parents have a picture up of him as well. Maybe you could do that with the picture above. Hope you're okay. Sorry.

alyssa said...

That is horrible and it brought me some teary eyes :( We had 2 scares with one of our cats, and the first time our vet did the same thing - she basically said something came up high in her bloodwork but not sure what could have caused it. And we spend a bunch of money just on the tests! A few days later she started getting better. THEN, more recently, she was acting really weird again (hiding a lot, not moving from one spot). We thought maybe she was hurt, but we didn't want to take her to the vet again b/c of what happened the previous time. So we just waited and I felt really bad for her, but she started to do better, again.

So i just wanted to say I know how you feel, I really love my kitties and doggies and they are like our kids. We feed them and take care of them, and when something bad happens you are obviously going to be very distraught. I'm sure she knows how much you love her and that you take good care of her, all you can do is give her a happy life! :)

Amber said...

Having had to put 2 of my childhood dogs down, I totally feel your pain! And honestly I cried for days and days after we had to let them go. The only thing that has made the pain subside is time. Sorry about Kiki, I hope you can enjoy your time with her a little longer.

Melisa Lynn Photography said...

Ohhh I am so sorry. My fiance and I have cats too. How sad. I have to add you are really making me have 2nd thoughts on one of our cats last vet visits it sounded the same as your 1st one but our cat still seems too skinny. Thanks so much for sharing and I am so sorry.

Megan and Brian Rogers said...

I am so sorry!!! Pets are members of the family. The dog I grew up with since I was 10 died a couple of years ago and it was so hard for me. What helped was believing that I could see her again and that she wasn't suffering any more. It is the hardest thing. Just rely on your husband and remember the wonderful times your sweet kitty gave you.

Ashley and Brian said...

I am so sorry to hear about Kiki's illness. It is so hard when a pet is sick, you are right, they are our babies. I have a german shepherd who has terrbile allergy problems and actually scratches all of her fur off when her allergies are bad, it is just the most pitiful thing to watch and to see in her eyes how uncomfortable she is. She is only a year old so I can not bare the thought of putting her down, but I dont think it would be easy at any age. I have changed my pets over to a home prepared diet and the results are amazing, its really shocking was is put into animal foods and all the dangerous associated with whats in the food, maybe a home prepared diet would help Kiki to gain weight and feel a little more like herself? Id be happy to pass along some suggestions if you are interested.

Eri said...

Oh Shan, I am so sorry! Am thinking about you and Kiki xxx

alyssa said...

Ahh - why don't I have your email address? Haha, anyways, I would adore if you featured my kitchen on your blog!!! You're awesome!!!

Jessica said...

I have been through both, putting a cat down and watching one die. Both were like watching your child die.

My first cat had a stroke and couldn't walk. We decided to to put her down so she wouldn't be in any pain. It was awful to watch as her life slipped away.I cried like I never have before.

Our other cat was fine one minute and dead the next. Apparently he had Parvo. It was so sad to watch him in pain.

I refused for a year to get another cat. But after my sadness wore off, I got another cat. That was the best thing I could have done. Our new cat has brought a sweet spirit back to our home that we lost when our cat died.

All I can suggest is to enjoy your time you still have with Kiki.

lifeinredshoes said...

Just ask Brie about Maizie, I can't even talk about it!

I'm so sorry, sometimes life sucks:(

Al, Wendy, Max, and Lil said...

I'm so sad for you. We are not "cat" people. Last May, we adopted Jack. Our cat. We rescued him since his owners had turned him into the pound, unable to care for their pets anymore. We patted ourselves on the back for "saving" this creature. He fit into our family so easily. Now we, humbly, realize he fills a void we didn't know was there. He follows my son around like a puppy-dog. He lets Max chase him and wrestle with just like a dog. He gives our son unending unconditional love. Because we love Jack so much it makes me understand a little of what you must be feeling. I can't imagine how sad we'd be if something took Jack from us. My heart truly goes out to you.

Manda Jane said...

I'm so sorry about your kitty! I know how you feel! My kitty was my baby and I was absolutely heart broken when we had to put her down. It will be okay tho! Even though it's hard it will be better in the long run so she doesn't suffer. A couple of years later I was able to adopt a new cat and that helped a lot **hugs**

{B} said...

I started crying when Maizie got old even before it was noticeable. In fact the day we went to put her down I bawled on the way there and even harder on the way home. It was such a hard thing. :( Now I see Gracie getting old and I don't know what i'll do...I can't think about it. I'm so sorry.

Jenny @ Anything Pretty said...

Just wanted to let you know that you and your sweet cat are in my thoughts. I get tears in my eyes just thinking about a sick pet.

Kelly said...

I know what you mean--my dogs are not REALLY dogs. They are my babies. Or my "angels," as I call them. I know how I would feel in your situation, so I understand. I am SO sorry you're going through this.

Barry Cann said...

Sis, I'm so sorry. :( Kiki is such a sweet little cat!

On a semi-related note, she looks like she's smiling in the picture. I couldn't help but feel thankful that cats and dogs always seem to be smiling when they're content. What a great perk Heavenly Father threw in. :)

Lindsey said...

I'm sorry to hear about your Kitty. I know exactly what you are going through. I had a cat go missing last year that I had for 13 years.


We get so attatched to those little rugrats. Chin up baby girl.

Amy said...

Oh that is so sad, my heart goes out to you and your family, and your cat. I have 4 dogs and i would be so terribly sad if anything happened to them. They are exactly your kids, i hope she get's feeling better she is such a beautiful cat! So sorry to hear your story. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Brittany said...

just reading that made me want to cry. i grew up with cats and it's like your sibling, or baby as you said. it's so heartbreaking. i'm really sorry :'(
i hope she doesn't go through too much pain.
i know there'll never be another Kiki out there, but getting another kitty does help :) especially when you know that there are plenty that need good homes, and that Kiki is in heaven :) it'll get better i promise!

sarah marie p said...

Hey Shan,
I'm so sorry I've been such a bad bloggy friend/ commenter. I've been thinking about you & your grandma ... and now your dear Kiki.

I'm SO sorry to hear the news about your sweet cat. It's incredibly sad when an older cat is having medical issues but that's even more horrible that your young baby has cancer. :( Ugh!!! That's so unfair and just so sad.

I totally understand when you say that your cat is your baby. I feel the same way about my two cats and my puppy.

I'm crossing my fingers for you that somehow, someway there's a miracle and Kiki goes on to live to be 20 years old. xoxoxo

Hawleywood said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your kitty!! We have three cats (yes, we're those people), but we used to have four. We were devastated when Kevin the kitten died, and we still think about him often. The only thing that helped us was cuddling with our other kittens and telling each other we would think about Kevin a lot. I know the next few weeks will be hard for you, but you will get through it! You're in my thoughts and prayers!

Ashley and Brian said...

http://www.drbasko.com/nutrition.htm

here is one of the most helpful links when switching to a home prepared diet. some personal tips, cats arent so big on legumes, at least mine isn't. we basically make a rice, meat mix with veggies and oats. It's kind of a myth that cats should eat tune, actually mackeral, shrimp, and salmon are far better for them. Also, my cat really likes foods that are more of a gravy, so don't be scared to get your blender out and mix up some veggies and meat and serve it over the rice/oats. Some animals need a little help with the transition and plain yogurt is a great way to make sure their digestion stays on track, just a tablespoon or so a day. My cat thinks yogurt is a treat. It is the OMEGA's that help their coat, nails, skin become shiny and healthy... this if found in all of the fish. Also, leafy green veggies are one of the healthies things you can feed a person, much less an animal. My cat hates them, so here is where the blender and meat come in. If you give your cats treats, mine LOVES dried sweet potatoes. If you dont have a dehydrator, don't worry you can cook them at about 200 degrees for a few hours and they will crisp right up. let me know if you have any questions or want more ref. websites. I found a lot of websites make it more confusing than it is. They need a balanced diet, just like we do, so don't be scared to mix up the options. Use what is in your cupboards and freezer. You can used can goods or frozen goods, just keep in mind that fresh foods are always the most nutrional.