Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Porch Kitty and Sounds of Fury

She is pissed off and I don't blame her one bit. If I was sick, hungry, and cold I would be pretty much a bitter little monster as well. PK, or Porch Kitty who we took in under our arm at the Novota house one cold and damp night has feline leukemia ( FeLV ). Feline Leukemia is not a cancer like it is in humans but is really a retro-virus much like AIDS in Humans. In fact cats have thier own HIV called FIV. This is pretty much just and off shoot of the same type of virus as FIV but works a little bit different. The reason that it is was called Leukemia is that it settles in the bone marrow and often times the first thing that a cat gets after FeLV has rooted itself into a cats system is cancer. Basically the cat can't fight off anything and other virus, diseases, and anything else that will kill you can get a much faster hold on the little guys. It is spread by body fluids and is not airborne. Only cats can get FeLV. Dogs, humans, rats, we all have our own issues so you can mark this one off the list of things to worry about.

We knew something was pretty wrong because honestly she was in very very bad shape when we found her. She as all skin and bones, lost all but 4 of her teeth, and her coat looked like somone had left her in a mud puddle to die. She was in bad shape. After cleaning her up and taking her to the vet who gave her 3 to 4 weeks to live we decided to keep her and make her happy for however long she lasted. She just hit the 4 month mark but is showing signs that the FeLV is making a comeback. She has stopped eating as much, is loosing some hair, and has wild attitude changes. Last night she swiped me for the first time ever. Followed by her not wanting to leave my lap.

She is in pain and you can tell. I have never been in the roll of "taking care" of what is about to be a decision I really don't want to make. Where do you draw the line with a pet? How do you put that mark in the sand and say "Ok it's time". As much as it pains me to watch her get worse it has to be horrible for PK. Sigh, no one tells you that one day your going to have to kill something you care for when you take it in.



Anonymous said...

Scott, I had to go through this last November. Our cat that we had for 18 years had cancer and of course I had to be the one to take her to the shelter to be euthanized. I cried the whole way down to the shelter and the whole way back. That experience is something I will never forget. Wish I had encouraging words for you but.....

Larry C

G3T Films said...

Yeah, I had to make the phone call to my partner telling her that the time had come for her beloved 17 year old dog once. A sad, sad day.

How did I know it was time? Our pup suddenly went down hill to the point that all he could give us was a look to say, 'please make this stop'. They'll let you know.

caramaena said...

Oh no, poor PK. I'm so sorry. It's a tough decision to make and though I've never had to do it myself, I don't think I could bear it if one of my kitties were in pain.

Sending much love and hugs to you all.

Damsel Underdressed said...

I am sorry that you guys are faced with that decision. I've had to witness my parents have to do that several times with pets growing up. It is heartbreaking but you guys have given PK the best home for her last days. I know you won't let her suffer and you'll know when.

The Phosgene Kid said...

It is a tough call. You have to weigh the animal's quality of life v. your need to have it around. They really weave themselves into the fabric of our life and it is really like pulling the plug on a child.

Anonymous said...

I am afraid I too have personal experience with this one and I agree...they let you know when it is time.
Much much love to you and Molli,

angel said...

oh scott, i so know where you are now... poor poor pk!
as you know my sweet grampa scratchy just went to the giant catnip covered scratchpost in the sky and i miss him terribly!

EXSENO said...

Oh man I feel for you. People that don't have pets just don't understand how hard it can be. I can't make that decision. I usually end up taking care of them and keeping them home so they can go with their loved one around them. I think I do it more for me them for them. Hard to let go.