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Saying goodbye is hard

August 21, 2013

July 8th my husband and I decided to risk dental surgery on the older of my two cats, though she is 18. She has bad kidneys and has been getting subcutaneous fluids every day for about 8 months now, having gotten diagnosed about two years ago – though at first she was only getting the fluids every 3rd day. We figured she might not survive the anesthesia, but her quality of life is miserable because of the state of her teeth. She made it through with flying colors.
Miss T, the name of the cat I mention above, threw up all day Saturday, when I was in NJ at a meeting and then at a PCMNY picnic and then meeting my nephew and his girlfriend, and then ushering. So my husband Daver had to deal with it by himself all day long. Daver is allergic to cats, but has been living with these two for 18 years. He says he doesn’t like anything, but he is the one who takes care of them and notices when they are sick or anything. Since then she has been eating very little and has been unsteady on her feet and we have had to help her get off the window sill to get water and go to the litter box. You see where this is going.
I took her to the vet today and they agreed that the only alternative was another hospital stay, to give her fluids and see where her kidneys were. As they don’t get better from kidney disease, we did well to keep her doing this well for almost 3 years. So I asked them to euthanize her, and Daver had gotten some clay so we could make a sculpture of her pawprints, and they helped me to create that.
When I came home with the empty crate, I found myself carrying it as though she were still in it.
Reggie, the other cat, didn’t come to greet me. He has been sleeping in his cat tree or on the floor near the ramp Daver rigged for Miss T yesterday.
When my brother Tim died in 2008, he waited until his chihuaha had passed before he finally let go, after fighting his cancer for 5 years.
I don’t know how to deal with this. My husband has warned me that he will fall apart when Reggie dies. Reggie is only a year younger than his mother, Miss T, so we are trying to find out how to deal with this. I am hoping life will give us a break, but we will see.
They asked me if I wanted to be in the room and I said yes. I was in the room when my brother Mike passed in 2000. They had said it was peaceful, they give the cat a sedative and then an overdose, I believe. But there was a dog about to be fixed barking excitedly, and the vet had a hard time finding her vein, and kept shaving her to find a better one. It’s odd where your mind wanders during such times. She didn’t want to be held there overnight, to hear those sounds and be filled with fluids in hopes that she would feel better again. She won’t have to have any more needles stuck in her, or have a hard time digesting, or deal with her son beating her up. I petted her and told her I loved her, and the sedative took effect, and now she is gone.
We made the pawprints and cleaned her paws afterwards, so Daver wouldn’t be haunted by her furious looks at leaving her feet covered in clay. She was 6 lbs. 10 oz. She was 9 lbs. when healthy.
We will miss her – even Reggie will. But we had to say goodbye today.

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