mortality

Sasha is dying, and I don’t know what I’m going to do.

I have a little more composure (and I’m out of Kleenex at work), so I suppose I can provide more information.

Sasha turned 14 in October. She was born in October of 1994, and I’ve had her since May of 1995. She’s been my longest relationship, and the only time we were separated – Brooks kept her for 4 months while I got myself settled in Calgary – was hell. She is my favourite, and I am her person.

In late 2007 she started showing signs of age. She lost a lot of weight and had a great deal of difficulty keeping her food down. I took her to the vet who had me change her food but basically said “she’s old”. Her muscles were beginning to atrophy, and her kidneys were starting to go. I took her home, and the change in food seemed to help a little – she gained a little weight and threw up less often.

A year later though, we were back at the same place. Sasha had started to throw up in alarming amounts again and was creating some earth-shattering stenches in the litterbox. She lost more weight, and began drinking enormous quantities of water (which she doesn’t always keep down). The vet suggested we try a different food that she seems to enjoy very much, but can’t really keep down for very long.

This past weekend, Sasha started having accidents in strange places. She’s listless and tired, seeming to barely have the energy to look my way when I pet her bony frame. She’s so frail that it hurts my heart to look at her. I pick her up, and she’s so small – she can’t weigh more than 5 pounds. I can’t tell if she’s hurting. She purrs and responds to attention, but she’s not well. I can deny it all I want, but it’s too obvious now.

We’re going to the vet tomorrow morning. Ed is telling me to prepare for the worst, but even typing that out makes me sob. I can’t let her go. She’s my Sasha, my baby, my pain in the ass, my best friend. I don’t want to have to choose between the compassionate thing to do and what won’t absolutely destroy me. This isn’t fair.

39 thoughts on “mortality

  1. Oh, sweetie. I am so fucking sorry. That is one of the hardest things ever to deal with. Dammit. Why can’t kitties just live forever and mock us in our old age?

  2. This is quite sad, Kimli. My kittens are both just 3 years old, but I know this day will come one day and I don’t know how my wife and I will prepare for it. I really hope that perhaps there is something good that will come from the vet visit.

  3. I’m so sorry Kimli. I had to put my cat to sleep in Dec 2007 and we just lost our dog in November, so I totally know how you feel. It’s your baby. It’s the ultimate show of love to put their needs ahead of your own and let them go when they are suffering so much.

    One thing we had done when we put our dog to sleep is had a imprint made of his paw, and now we have this gorgeous clay impression of his pawprint with his name underneath. You could inquire if your vet does this? It’s such a nice way to remember him.

    Hugs to you.

  4. ug, is what I’ve been fearing based on how much weight she’s lost.. Putting a cat down that I had only for a couple years was much harder than I expected, so I can’t imagine how tought it will be for you guys. I’ve had reggie for 6 years and can’t even fathom not having him around.

    Cats are superior to humans in all other ways, why can’t they have superior lifespans?

  5. the tears im shredding are all for you. greeper was born in 04 around july i think got her very wee. i simply dread this day and im so so sorry you have to go through this. my heart aches for you because greeper has age problems and they make me cry and adam tries to console me but i know im never going to feel a worse pain and i just hate so much that you are going through this. she is also my longest relationship. fuck im trying to make you feel not alone not make it about me or gus. i just really really hate that you have to go through this. i care a lot and i know sorry doesn’t help but i am. <3

  6. I started to cry at work when I read your post. I have 3 cats and it kills me to think about what you’re going through. :-(

  7. Oooh I am so sorry….My cat lived till she was about 16 and it was tumour that got her in the end..she was my best friend…it was the toughest thing to do.

    My husband inherited his now deceased mom’s cat and she just past away of old age…..she died at home before we had to bring her into the vet…..I thank the gods for that…

    They are our family and our friends…..
    Hugs to you

  8. Our poor dog Moosh was in bad shape in 2006 (I had her since she was a puppy) and I wasn’t sure what the right thing was to do, either.

    You’ll know what the right thing is for Sasha. It’s a hard decision.

    Take good care.

  9. Oh, gosh, Kimli. I wish I had something profound and comforting to say here. I’ll tell you that I’m bawling reading this and the other comments. Sasha IS your baby, your furry family and it’s a horrible, terrible thing to have to decide what’s right. Yet we make those decisions out of love and I believe you’ll know what you need to do for her, even though it will break your heart either way.

    I know she will go having the best human love from you a cat could have and she was very lucky, as are you, to have had each other.

    My thoughts and love are with you all.

  10. Sometimes, with the seniors, they are in pain and you don’t really know it. I would suggest trying some pain management as that may increase her well being. Also, with the weight loss and the drinking of lots of water she may be diabetic – if she is diabetic it is treatable and she will respond. I think you ask them to test her blood sugars. Cats (I’m assuming it is a cat…) are also prone to hypo-thyroidism but i am not sure about the symptoms. Good luck!

  11. I was gonna say the diabetic thing too – one of my cats was, and that’s exactly what happened, but it was easy to fix… I hope that Sasha is easy to fix, she was the bestest cat that ever hissed at me because I wasn’t you :)

  12. I’m so sorry to hear that Kimli- I so know how it is- we lost our 11 year old kitteh last summer to diabetes/cancer- all you can do is love her and make her comfortable, you will know what to do when it’s time. Our kitteh kind of told us, she was doing fine in the morning then all of a sudden not so fine. We made the decision and it was awful but it was time. It takes time to heal over it but know that you are her buddy and she is yours and that’s what’s important.

  13. The cleanup would be a lot easier if she was expelling solids… :o. I’m hoping for the best possible outcome, whatever that might be.

  14. I’m so sorry, Kimli…
    She knows you love her, and we all know you’ll do whatever is best for her. I’ll be thinking about you.

  15. For all of you who are reading this or receiving followup comments by email, we’ve setup a donation page for Sasha’s mounting vet bills over at http://sashacat.chipin.com/kimli-ed-and-sasha

    If Sasha has brought you kitty love, kitty hisses, and overall Sasha-ness anytime in the past, donate.

    If Kimli entertains you on a daily basis with her humour, wit, and inappropriate cleavage, donate.

    If you are a pet owner yourself and know how rough it is to have a sick kitty, donate.

    Do a good thing! xoxo!

  16. *hugs*

    I lost my puppy of almost 18 years last March. Taking him to the vet for his final visit was the hardest thing I have ever done, and I cried for a very long time afterwards. I still cry. I will always miss him.

    You and Ed and Sasha are in my thoughts.

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