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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 09:11 PM Thread Starter
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Looking for support

Hello,

I've stumbled upon this forum trying to search the internet for answers and ways to cope with the decision of euthanizing my cat. My beautiful girl Sasha was two months away from her 16th birthday, and in March, she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
We did the surgery to remove the lump, but I was told the form of cancer she had was extremely aggressive and it was already in her lymp nodes. At that point, I decided not to put her through further testings or rounds of medication due to her age and the stress of it all. She was already on medication for her thyroid which she wasn't able to keep down most of the time.
For the most part, she had remained the vibrant cat she always was, but slowly she started loosing weight, thirst increased, her coat was cover led in matts, she stopped using the litter box and she spent most of her time in my closet. In spite of all of these things, she still came to me, sat with me and talked to me like she always did. Her meow sounded more urgent over time and her walk was more tender but she was still herself.
On Friday, I took her to the vet for a shot of morphine to see how she behaved with her pain controlled. That's when the vet told me she wasn't getting any better, she had diabetes because of the cancer and the amount of weight she had lost was the equivalent of an 200lb man loosing 120lbs. She went from 10lbs to 4lbs, she was skin and bones.
I know I was in denial over her health and I was blind to her rapid decline. I was told my cat was ready to go and that I was days away from making this decision. When she got home, all she did was lay around. She didn't want to be touched or held, and couldn't even eat much. I called the vet and arranged to do it Saturday afternoon. The day that has now become the worst day of my life.
That morning she was output socializing and sitting with my two other cats. But she wouldn't let me hold her and didn't sleep with me the previous night. When it was time, she ran from me and hid. It killed me to put her in that carrier and she never fought it. She didn't make a peep when the vet started her IV and that was the first time she had sat still in my lap for weeks. It felt like she gave up.
This is the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life. I keep going over everything in my head and thinking I rushed this decision. Did I give her enough love? Did I do this too quick? Did I give up on her? Did I do everything I could have?
I feel such an overwhelming feeling of guilt and regret, especially since she seemed more active the morning of. I didn't want to see her suffer anymore but part of me wonders if we still could have had a few more good days together.
I just want to know how others have felt in this situation and how you were able to deal with this extreme loss. My best friend is gone and I've never felt so empty and alone. How do you make peace with a decision that you have regretted the moment you made it?

Kaitlyn
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 09:48 PM
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Kaitlyn,
What you are feeling is 100% perfectly normal. When I made that decision for my Mocha, I spent many months questioning every tiny little thing. Many people who come to this forum and have just made that decision for the first time do the same questioning. You are not alone....it is part of the grief process.

As I read your recount of her last day, I had the feeling she knew it was her day and she was saying goodbye to her friends. She didn't fight you about the carrier....so it's like she knew where she was going and that she was going to be painfree. She even said goodbye to you...she let you have your last minutes.

While you may feel it was rushing, it sounds like she was ready and she wanted to leave her old, sick body behind to fly. She is at the Rainbow Bridge (or wherever they get to go) chasing butterflies like she is a kitten again. You did all you could for her and gifted her with a release.

...Always in my heart... Mocha....Nov. 13, 2002 - Dec. 6, 2013
.... Slave to Bengal Cats....Luna, Mystik, Simba, Komet, Meli,
Spark
, and Star
.....and a collection of kittens at various times.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 10:03 PM
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To end the life of a beloved old friend is always the toughest decision to make. Thanks for the detailed medical history....if anything you did not do this "too quick", but a little too late. When she got to the stage where she didn't want to be touched, ate very little, "ran from me and hid" she was telling you that she "gave up" and was ready to go. It's very difficult to ever know the exact time, because often the day before a cat dies, they will rally a bit and then crash a day or so later. Yes, you gave her enough love, she was your sweet companion for a long 16 yrs. and you looked after her very well......I doubt very much she would have had "a few more good days together". You did the right thing, as she was in pain with an incurable and terrible cancer. I feel so very sorry for your loss, and it is OK to grieve, but don't let it become too prolonged. There are many more cats and kitties looking for a new mommy to love them and give them a good home. When you're ready, go and visit rescues or shelters or breeders if you're looking for a purebred kitten or cat, and let the kitten or cat pick you---be colorblind and don't worry about what sex it is. The best bond is when a cat chooses you to be its special friend. All the best!

"There are no ordinary cats.";"Time spent with a cat is never wasted."~ Colette
"A loving cat can mend a wounded heart." ~ Unknown Author
Alkitotle aka "Alkee", "Lambie" (July 2/04 - Oct. 2/15) -- white Devon Rex
in avatar. "Always in my heart."
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 10:23 PM
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You did what had to be done. Careful and caring and loving. It's really hard to get the timing right, always we have questions. Better a bit early than too late.

Much sympathy on your loss.

When the moment comes, a new cat will enter your life. Open your heart, there's plenty of room.

If people give you a hard time in your grieving, "it's only a cat for goodness sake", pity them, for they have no idea how empty their lives have been.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-14-2017, 11:19 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you everyone for your kind words.
It's hard to come to terms with the right decision when the right decision feels so wrong.
I knew this was something I was going to have to do, but it wasn't something I thought I would be facing so quickly. Friday was just supposed to be a checkup and to give her some pain relief, but the next day became her last. It was a decision I made in a couple of hours after she had spent the last 16 years with me.
I think the biggest struggle is the regret, anger and sorrow for her loss. I know she's not hurting anymore and for that I'm greatful, but I'm hurting for the loss of her and the hole her passing has left in my heart. She was a permanent fixture for over half my life, I never took the time to think of how life would be without her in it. Even though she had changed, my house feels different, the energy is different.
This was only two days ago, so I know my emotions are still raw. Only time can heal wounds but this is something I'm afraid I will never come to terms with.
I knew she was terminally ill but she still had some of the same personality, and was able to do everyday activities for the most part. How she did these activities changed, and the vets advice really hit home. I wanted to give her a couple more weeks and her words were "you have days, not weeks"
It just hurts and I feel I betrayed her by making a snap decision based on what someone else said when I knew my cat best.
It's obvious I'm full of self doubt. It's nice to know I'm not the only one whose suffered from guilt after having made this decision, I just want to be at peace with my decision. She was ready, part of me knew that, but I will never be ready to accept it.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-15-2017, 01:10 PM
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Yes, it will take some time to accept your decision, but you will come to see that it was for the best of your sweet cat. My consolation in the cats that have died or had to be euthanized is that any love for a person or an animal is not forgotten, and I truly believe that you will see your cat again when you pass to the spiritual world. I have had two cats who came back to me after they died in spirit a week or two after their deaths, one actually did it twice.....really just to say she was fine and happy and for me not to be sad. So that is my consolation that when it's my time to leave this earthly plane that I will again be with my beloved pets that are in the spiritual world. Here are a couple of links you may find of interest.

Do Pets Go to Heaven? | petMD

Do Pets Go to Heaven?

"There are no ordinary cats.";"Time spent with a cat is never wasted."~ Colette
"A loving cat can mend a wounded heart." ~ Unknown Author
Alkitotle aka "Alkee", "Lambie" (July 2/04 - Oct. 2/15) -- white Devon Rex
in avatar. "Always in my heart."
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