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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited by Moderator)
Tonight I said goodbye to my beloved cat, Patches. He was 12.5 years old and was diagnosed with severe spondylosis in July. He started losing control of his bladder and his bowels. And he was starting to get irritable towards our other cat and dog.

This was one of the hardest decisions that I had to make because he still looked healthy. I have been crying all day and I just hope that this gets better. It just doesn't feel right with him not being here to snuggle with. I will miss him terribly. R.I.P. Patches, I love you.

Shannon
 

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Im so sorry Shannon. Patches was a beautiful kitty. I know how hard it is to let a pet go. I hope you find comfort in the memories you have together.
 

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I so sorry to hear of your loss. That's one of the hardest decisions any of us will have to make. I hope that, in time, you will be able to look back on your many wonderful years with Patches, and that doing so will bring a smile to your face as you think of the happy times you spent together.
 

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That is so sad. Im sorry for your loss. They take a piece of your heart with them whe they pass. He is out of pain and running free now. May the happy memories help comfort your broken heart.
 

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Awwww, what a gorgeous kitty! He's healthy and running around at the Bridge now, and Cinderella has a new friend.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you. Everything just looks so bleak right now and I see him everywhere. I broke down after I dropped my kids off at school. I just can't help it. I feel so horribly lost without him.

Shannon
 

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So very sorry, Shannon. Patches' aggressiveness was likely the result of pain and discomfort he was feeling, and you did the right thing in not letting him suffer. It's always a hard call when to make that decision.

I don't think a love is ever lost and that you will some day be reunited with Patches.

"No heaven will not ever Heaven be; unless my pets are there to welcome me." ~ Anonymous
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Patches Story

Thank you all for the comforting words in my loss of Patches. I have a special bond with him because he was my first baby and he kind of found us.

When I was moving into my husband's apartment, there was a little kitty sitting on his porch meowing as we moved my stuff in. We had one more load to get before we were done and I asked my husband if he was still there when we get back, if we could bring him in to be ours. He said yes since it was a cold day in November. As luck would have it, he was still there meowing to come in. So, we brought him in and later found out that he belonged to our landlord. We spoke to the landlord and he told us that we could keep him.

I know that everyone says this, but there is no other kitty like Patches. When he was younger, he would play peek-a-boo with us and slide on our hardwood floors from running like a maniac. He also would snuggle under the covers until it was time to get up. He would give me a kiss and greet us at door when we would come home from work. He also liked to hide and then jump out, attack my legs and then run back to hiding spot. He never hurt me when he did this, he was just being playful.

After a few months, we introduce another cat (KC) to the family because we thought that Patches needed a friend to keep him company. He didn't like KC at first, but they quickly became best friends. I can remember them snuggling together, quite often, when they were younger. Patches tried to be a lap cat but he was so big (20 lbs) he just couldn't always get comfortable in our laps.

Fast forward to July 2010, he developed a UTI. We took him to the vet and he gave us medicine to give to him to treat the UTI. It didn't seem like it cleared up because he was still peeing in various rooms of my house. So, back to the vet we went. Instead of testing him to see if he still had a UTI, he prescribed a drug called amitriptiline which is a behavioral medication. This only made him spaced out and he started having diarrhea. He was still peeing outside the box. I decided to take him back to original vet, before we moved, to find out why he was still peeing outside the box. He had to stay at the vet's office for the day and night so that they could collect a urine sample. They got one and called me to tell me that he had blood in his urine and that they would treat him for a UTI. I opted for the shot instead of a pill because I thought that it would be easier.

He was back to his normal self after a few days and then went back to the vet for a follow-up. His urine test came back negative for presence of a UTI as well as the x-ray that they recommended to check for crystals. Incidently, the x-ray showed that he had severe spondylosis of the spine, which the vet said that this just didn't happen over night. It had been going on for a while. There was really no treatment for cats with this condition. There is no cure for spondylosis and over time it just gets worse. One of the side effects of having this condition is loss of bladder control and bowel control. There is no drug that has been approved by the FDA to help relieve pain. Throughout the summer and to this date, Patches continued to have accidents at night, which weren't everyday. They were sporadic and never in the same place. He peed on all of my stairs leading to the basement, the couch in the basement, the landing and part of the carpet by the couch. We had been going back and forth to the vet to try and treat this. We just started giving him glucosamine for cats (on it for 2 weeks) when he pooped on our landing on Sunday. On top of losing control of his bladder and most recently his bowels, he used the litter box as well. When I would watch his behavior in the box, he seemed like it was painful for him because he wouldn't squat. He would just stand to pee and when he tried squatting for a bowel movement, his back legs would shake really bad. When he walked, he never bent his back legs....he always walked withe them straight out. I'm not exactly sure when he started walking that way but it had been for a long time.

He also started to get irritable with our other pets. Which is why I made him another appointment for yesterday. It had left me torn all day, yesterday, because it was such a hard decision for us to make to let him go. The reason why it was so hard was because he was just chasing his tail earlier and rubbing up against us. He acted normal, looked healthy and it was really hard to know if he truly was in pain. The vet gave us 2 options. One was a drug, that had the side effects of renal failure and the other was putting him to sleep. He left my husband and I to talk it over and although it was one of the hardest decisions that we had to make, we couldn't let him suffer with possible renal failure for a drug that is still experimental. Unfortunately, they don't have an ibprophen pill for cats to help with bad arthritis. So, out of love, we had him put to sleep. We stroked his head and told him that it was okay and that we loved him very much. We also told him that he was a good kitty.

We felt so bad making this decision and keep questioning whether or not it was the right decision. I know in my heart that it was because I feel that he was in pain. It's just the not knowing of how much pain he was truly in when he looked so normal.

It is going to take alot of time for me to heal, but knowing that I have this board to come to is comforting. I have been having my ups and downs because he was one of my babies and everywhere I look there is a spot in the house where he used to lay. Thanks for letting me write this and for reading it. It is comforting in trying to remember all of the good times that we had with him and that God chose us to be his people.

Shannon

R.I.P. Patches (5/98 - 12/1/10) You will be forever in hearts and one day we will be reunited over the rainbow.
 

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My condolences :patback

While I know there's sorrow, I'm glad you can still focus on the good times in the past.
I personally agree with your decision. I know other people would want to keep their kitty, even if it meant spending $$$... and that would be great, if it meant better quality of life. Some might say this in inappropriate, but I think it's true..."There are things worse than death". Sure pets can live longer with drugs and extensive vet care, but they might not be living comfortably.

I've already made the decision that if my cats become ill with something that would cause them to suffer, even with care, I would rather they not.
I also would get a new cat...not to replace the other one, but to fill the empty space in the home - and there's TONS of cats waiting for a home, so I figure there's no point in wasting time for their sake.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thank you Vivid Dawn. That made me feel better about my husband's and my decision.

Thank you to everyone else for your sympathy's. Today, I am feeling a little be happier and I have been able to remember all of the happy times that Patches brought to our lives. He was a unique cat and was so silly sometimes. He was so curious in seeing what we were doing whether it be starting the water to our showers or putting clothes away in our closets. He was always following me around. Or when I would leave a room, he would get his little beanie baby duck and carry it around in his mouth meowing (catterwalling). I will miss being able to hug him so tightly when I was feeling down. He brought comfort to me and I will always hold on to that.

Shannon
 
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