Goodbye to the traveling cat
I haven't been on this forum in over a month as something truly terrible happened to our little adoptee, Suria.
She was our baby girl, and it's really hard just to type up the story of what happened to her, but I can't watch any kitten videos on youtube without thinking about her and tearing up so maybe this will help.
As you may remember we were having trouble figuring out to feed her (being new kitten parents) but we finally sourced some kitten chow.
A few days later we noticed she had a swollen paw, so we took her to the vet. The vet said it was probably a sprain and not to worry. This was Saturday.
By Monday her whole leg was swollen and she was listless and refusing water and food, so we went back to the vet, who told us we needed to take her to a better vet facility on the other island (about 1 hour ferry away).
Hubby took us by motorbike to the ferry pier and kitty and I went to the Big Island. There they told us she was too dehydrated to run blood tests, but they did an X-ray and confirmed that nothing was broken. They gave her a subcutaneous fluid shot and sent us home with syringes, recovery formula, and antibiotics.
On Thursday she didn't seem any better - she was so weak she rarely got up and just laid on the bed or in our laps. I don't think she was dehydrated as we were giving her water and food every 2 hours around the clock like a baby bird. We were so worried. So hubby took her back to the vet on the big island. This time the vet asked to leave her overnight for observation, which we did.
Turns out hubby had gotten confused about which vet to go to (easy to do, they were next each other and signs were in Thai) and this vet did not believe in subcutaneous fluids. He left her all night with no food or water, giving her only glucose syrup in between. When we returned to check on her in the morning she was so dehydrated she was like a bag of bones, covered in her own diarrhea (which she had not had before this vet). I have never been so angry.
We took her back to the first vet who immediately put her on IV. She said she was too dehydrated to run blood tests. We got a hotel room nearby. The next day she was still too dehydrated for tests. We stayed another night.
The next morning we decided that we were going to really push for the blood tests - plus it was getting very expensive. It was about 9 AM and Suria was mewing loudly and angrily. She was uncomfortable with the IV sticking out of her leg and didn't want to be fed, struggling. I was standing nearby and we were talking to the vet about blood tests while they fed her.
The vet was using normal soft canned cat food with no water in it. It was so thick they had to load the syringe from the back. They also hadn't offered her any plain water beforehand, so I suggested they water the food down or give her some water. The vet asked one of the attendees to get some water, and then gave Suria a squirt of food. She began choking.
The vet thought she was having a stroke. I was like "No, she is choking!!" and then it was too late. She was looking right at me in panic, and then her eyes were blank. The vet tried to get the food out of her throat, but she was already dead. I started bawling.
We were filming the vet feeding her too, in order to learn how to do it better. So it's all on my phone.
I keep going over in my mind what could have happened. Why the swollen paw? She was doing so well before that - gaining weight every day, being rambunctious and generally adorable. What changed?
So anyway. If anyone wondered what had happened to the Traveling Cat - she's buried behind our house on the hill. And every time I see the blue of the tropical ocean - the same startling blue of her eyes the first time she opened them and looked at me - I feel sad.