Monday, September 7, 2015

And then there were 7

It seems like not too long ago, I wrote a post called "And then there were 8."

But now there are only 7, and Ozzie is no longer with us.

It happens so quickly with cats sometimes.  Yesterday, he seemed fine -- he ate, he drank, and I saw him use the litterbox.

This morning at 7:00 a.m., he was hiding under a piece of furniture, crying, and when I got him out, he had a seizure, bit me, and then started crying louder.  I put my clothes on and grabbed a cab down to the University of Penn's veterinary hospital (whenever I start hating my neighborhood, I remember I have a 24-hour, world-class vet facility less than a mile from my house) so they could examine him.

It wasn't good.  Being a male kitty, he's had urinary tract issues before, but not for about 8 years.  Well, they were back, and in abundance.  The doctor said he was completely blocked -- from urinating freely yesterday! -- and it was so severe that even catheterization wouldn't help; he'd have to have the blockage surgically cleared, which meant 2-3 days in the hospital, plus follow-up care.

To the tune of about $3,500.

Which I don't have.

Add to that, Ozzie is 14, extremely fearful of people (and anti-cat; the poor guy self-isolated in my front room for years and had anxiety attacks whenever he was forced to come out), and I just didn't see a good solution.

The doctor made it plain that there were only 2 choices -- surgery or euthanasia.  So it really wasn't a choice at all, and it wasn't all about the money, either.  Some cats can handle traumatic events (Lily and Max come to mind), and others just can't.  I don't like anthropomorphizing my animals, but Ozzie really did have some kind of anxiety issues; no cat should pee himself from fear every time he leaves the room where he chooses to live, and he was petrified of almost all the other cats.

So I did what I believe was best for him, in the long run, but right now I feel like total crap about it.

I'm going into my sewing room and I'm not coming out until tomorrow, except for more wine.

20 comments:

Eileen said...

So sorry for your loss. I lost a parrot in December. Rita lived with my ex (after we split), but I saw her weekly and did speaker phone calls (she really knew it was me). She went in renal failure. The vet said to give him a few days to try to turn it around. She was a rescue who had severe anxiety issues also. Never left the security of the cage but never could be locked in the cage either. We always let her be her and she had the best life she could have possibly had considering her issues. Having her stay at the vets was awful for her. They were giving her IV's 3 times a day and had to towel her to do it. She hated towels......I think she was abused with a towel somehow in her past. Finally day 4 I went to see her. She was not getting better. The girl came in and asked if they could clip a birds wings where I was standing as they were very busy. I said "of course".....Rita heard the towel rustling across the room and started whimpering. I knew it was time. No more. No more towel. No more IV's. I made the decision and she was gone. I cried for weeks and am finally getting over the guilt of making that decision. They could not fix her (she was old), but it is not easy. I'm finally starting to realize it was the only decision. We were out of options and she was living afraid again. Strangers, towels, and being in a strange cage. I hope you feel better soon. It's hard.

Rachelle said...

I'm so incredibly sorry for your loss, and for what it's worth, I believe that you did the right thing. You gave Ozzie the best possible life from the time you got him. Without you in his life, he likely would have lived much less, but suffered much more.

He was lucky to have you, and even luckier that you were able to let go when you did, rather than put him through a round of surgery that would have been difficult for him, and he may not even have survived, particularly given his anxiety issues.

All my best to you and your furfamily (and human family).

Saratoga Sewist said...

I am so sorry.

Linda T said...

If it is any comfort, you did make the right choice, but my heart is sad for you. You gave him a life he could live on his terms and that's much more than probably anyone else would have done. So sorry.

Kay said...

I'm really sorry. Losing a pet is so hard. I know the guilt you feel - I've been there myself - but you did the right thing for this kittie.

I remember an aunt saying, as we drove to my mother's memorial service, that sometimes death was the best form of healing. I took comfort from that, and I think of it often when a death seems so difficult to understand. I think maybe it applies to Ozzie.

Nancy Hale said...

I am so sorry.

Nancy Hale said...

I am so sorry.

gMarie said...

It's never an easy decision and I know that I always second guess it. That being said, I know you gave Ozzy a great life and are missing him now. I'm sorry for your loss. g

Jacqui said...

I'm sorry for your loss. You did right by Ozzie and gave him a good life and home.

annie said...

It is not easy to do what you did. I've done it before and shall have to do so again. I think of it as a humane thing to do but still painful. You did a good thing.

Ann's Fashion Studio said...

So very sorry for your loss!

Catherine said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. I know you'll be second guessing yourself for a long time, but it was a sound decision best for Ozzie.

Unknown said...

Karen - not easy making the choice - but it is the best choice for Ozzie. I made the same decision on Monday for Lulu. Just couldn't put her through anything that in the long run would not help for live longer. In my hear I know i made the right decision as you did -- but boy does it hurt. I could use a glass of wine myself.

Janet said...

It listed me as unknown............it's Janet

Nursebennett said...

Im ao happy Ozzie had you. How lucky was she!? You loved her enough......enough to do the hardest things. I'm sorry it was necessary. Hugs to,you'

Sharon L said...

I am so sorry you had to make that decision. We did at one time also, and I felt like the worst pet parent ever. In hindsight it was the right decision. And yours was too. In the meantime, drink the wine kiddo.

Karen Minturn Brown said...

We have lost two recently and even though they were quite old, it was still hard. You did the best thing for the cat. It is the last, loving thing we do for our beloved fur balls. I'm sorry for your loss.

AllisonC said...

I'm really sorry to hear about Ozzie and that you are feeling bad about it. It is such a hard thing to do, but you know in your heart you did the right and only thing; Ozzie had a loving home with you and had 14 good years with someone who understood his anxiety issues and let him be the way he wanted to be.

Li said...

I live in a multi cat household and your experience really resonated. We want so much to be able to give them good lives. I think you did the right thing, but I know personally how hard it is to make the choice anyway.

Gernella said...

I think perhaps you did the right thing. We had a kitty that was a rescue and she was terrified of everybody but us and our other cat. Taking her to the vet for the annual vaccination was a major exercise and if she got wind of it, it was not good. Fortunately it was not until she was 14 that we had to take her on a regular basis when she was a little more mellow, but not much. Invasive surgery was required with no guarantee of a good outcome. We didn't want to do that to her and let her go peacefully. A hard decision at the time.