Thursday, June 10, 2010


First with the funny. My cat, Suggs, is 17. She isn't grooming well and as she started to shed for the summer, her fur got very matted. And so I decided to have her shaved.

Here is a before picture:


Here is an after picture:


Are your LOLing? Are you ROTFLing? I knew it. Poor thing looks ridiculous and Roady (the other cat) hissed at her for days. She seems so pathetic.

On a less comical note, she was always a "fat cat." She has lost a lot of weight, and we could tell by picking her up. The vet wasn't worried because she was overweight before. But now that I see her naked, she looks like she's on death's doorstep.

She's also having a lot of trouble in the **ahem** litter box department. We thought she was severely constipated from all the straining she was doing and the very little that was coming out.

The vet said it was quite the opposite -- she had diarrhea. I don't see how one can mistake the two, but he felt and said there was no back-up inside. So she took some medicine for a week and ate special food for the tummy.

And neither did a thing. She seems to be in pain and she is having "accidents" around the house that aren't doing a lot of good for my marriage since my husband is very upset about living like that.

**edited to add: She had bloodwork done and everything checked out great. There didn't appear to be any problems at all. The vet said next step is X-rays, but he doubted they'd show anything. After that, he said, would be exploratory surgery, which we aren't willing to put her through. She is not having issues with peeing, just "number 2."**

We both think she has something really wrong, but we aren't sure if it's time to put her down. Frankly, we aren't going to put her through treatments for something like cancer, or surgery for that matter, at her age. But she's still eating and drinking and often seems pretty happy, so it's really a hard situation. Any advice?


Kerry said...

I would take her to another vet for a second opinion. It sounds like there is something wrong - accidents outside the litter box generally indicate a problem.

Read this

Emily said...

This post made my whole day. Too funny.

Lisa said...

Too funny- naked kitty! And funny that the other kitty didn't like the haircut! "Who is this strange cat that you bring into my house?"

Sorry to hear your kitty is not doing well- it's never fun to have a sick pet.

If it gets to this point for you, and I don't know if this is the advice you wanted, we waited too long to put my kitty down and I am sorry we did. I now think it would have been kinder to let him go when he started to fail. It ended up where we made an appt. to put him down, and then I ended up holding him while he died in my bathroom about 3 hours before the vet opened. Not something you want to go through. I cried for days. It took longer to remember him with smiles, because I was remembering that day. If we had done it before it got that bad, I would have had better (well, sort of better) memories of his passing.

I know it's grim, but that's my experience. I hope this isn't the stage you are at!!!

Robyn said...

I appreciate that information. The same thing happened to my husband with his childhood dog. They had an appointment and he died the night before in my husband's arms. He's very concerned about going through that again.

Hilary Baumann said...

I would also get another vet's opinion. IF she's drinking and peeing A LOT she may have chronic renal failure (like kidney disease.) If it is diarrhea then there could be something else wrong or maybe you could change the food (all depends on the individual cat.) Or could simply be the old age.

Peeing outside the box could be incontinence or it could be that it hurts to pee or even she could be arthritic and it hurts to step up and over the edge of the litter box.

The decision to have your pet put to sleep is a very very personal matter. My opinion is that if their quality of life is still good and they are enjoying themselves, then wait.

I did not put my baby to sleep and overall I think I made the right choice for him (going to the vet was traumatizing for him) but at home was somewhat traumatizing to me. I still have a hard time talking about this part though not because it's traumatizing but because I still miss him.

I have more info about my experience with his disease (CRF) on my personal blog... I don't want to ramble on here too long.

Robyn said...

Thanks for the comments. I edited the post to add a little more info on her health.

Marissa said...

Oh, Robyn, this sounds very much like what our 21 year old cat went through in January. I don't want to sound harsh; I know our pets are like family, but at 17, I'd only get a second opinion if you plan to treat what you find. Our cat would never have tolerated any kind of treatment (probably would have thrown herself overboard on the ferry trip across!), and we respected that. I hope she comes around...maybe she's retaliating for that haircut!

Robyn said...

Marissa, She has had this problem for a while now -- since before the hair cut! We don't plan to treat for any problems at this stage, I mean, unless it was just a round of antibiotics or something, but we already tried that.

jules.maas said...

gosh, this sounds almost EXACTLY LIKE what Algie went through last year. Except he did not have accidents outside the litter box (although he was 12 at the time, so maybe age has something to do with that?) He was having BAD diarrhea and all the tests came back inconclusive. And we, too, stopped short on the tests when we got to the point where they wanted to do an endoscopy. The only two things it could have been was cancer or Irritable Bowel Disease. So we decided to treat him for IBD and see if that was it. Turns out, it was, and after a 6 week treatment of B-12 & steroids (plus a short fever detour) he did recover. Ask your vet about IBD.

jules.maas said...

oh, and I meant to add, he was sick for about 4 months before we treated for IBD, and I was really worried we'd waited too long. But he proved us wrong. The 6 week IBD treatment was actually very reasonable, cost-wise (especially if they let you give the injections at home). He had to stay on pills and that forta-flora additive for his food. And when he had flare ups, we'd give him one or two shots and he'd be right as rain again. Of course, he did recently develop diabetes from the shots, but he's on just 1 unit of insulin a day and it hasn't been that difficult to manage.

Anonymous said...

WOW I was checking out random sites today and I have to say our cats are total twins!
I had to double check to make sure someone had not stollen my photos!!

Good job and my cat has had a lot of the smae issues as yours; but what can you expect she is getting a lot older than what she was when I first got her!