Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Hard Choice

This has been a hard week for us at Sparrow Haven. We had to make that final choice for one of our beloved cats, Cassie. Even though I know it was the right choice it has just been to painful to think about without lots of tears.

Three months ago she started sleeping a lot more than normal and hissing whenever we tried to touch her. The vet diagnosed a sore spot along her spine which we hoped was nothing more than a tight muscle. With a two week dose of anti-inflammatory she seemed to get better. About two weeks later the same thing happened, so we treated her again. She got well enough to move around but she was much more irritable than before with the other cats.

This went on until two weeks ago. Over night Cassie went completely blind. She was unhappy and kept bumping into things. She would follow me into the bathroom and then sit crying at the bathtub, trying to figure out why I wasn't talking to her. We learned to click, chirp, and call her name to help her find her way when following us. The vet upped her dosage on the anti-inflammatory and we all crossed our fingers that the swelling would go away and her eyesight would return.

Of course that was not to be, or I wouldn't be writing this post. Over the last two weeks Cassie got progressively worse. She went from blind and eating well to just laying around, eating only when coaxed, and using the litter box (we moved three upstairs in the same area so she would always be near one) all the time. The vet said it was just a side affect of the pills and cut the dosage in half.

That was last Thursday. She cried all day Saturday and slept all day Sunday, even coming downstairs to sleep in front of the wood stove her favourite place to be. Sunday night she tried to come back upstairs by herself and got lost in the kitchen. She called until I picked her up and brought her upstairs where she settled in and went back to sleep.

Monday Cassie woke up when I did and cried constantly. I managed to get her to eat a little food and the crying stopped. A little later she tried to follow me to the bathroom and stumbled and bumped her way in, only to sit and cry at the tub again. I gave her a pain pill and she went to sleep for a couple of hours. When she woke she could hardly walk and only managed to stumble a couple of steps before she would stop and cry.

She didn't want food so I picked her up and put her on my lap. She stayed there for about an hour then wanted down. She drank a little water and then just stopped moving. By the time Peter came home from work we both knew it was the end. We called the vet just to be sure and he agreed that there was obviously some kind of damage to the soft tissue areas around her spine and she was progressively getting worse. We decided to end her pain.

Cassie was only 5 years old. She was only 4 weeks old when we took her in and she was attached to me pretty quick. She was my little space monkey, all long and lankey and clingy when she was a baby. She was my little Cassanova, loving and rubbing on me from day one. She was my little teapot, her tail was the handle, after she was spayed. She was my happy little chirper when she found a mouse toy and brought it to me proudly. She was my constant lap companion. She was my friend and I miss her terribly.

8 comments:

Lisa Hook said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. I'll be thinking of you in the coming weeks. It was very difficult when my cat died a couple years ago. Lisa

Dianne said...

You are in my prayers as you go through this very sad time. It's so hard to lose our furry babies.
Dianne
http://buterflydreamz.blogspot.com/

Dee said...

Thank you both. It has been 6 days now and the pain and tears are still waiting just below the surface to catch me at a vulnerable time. There have been a couple of good days but the bad days more than make up for it.

Looking at pictures of Cassie has been an ordeal which is why I have not added more pictures of her to this post as I had originally intended. Hopefully, I'll be able to add some pictures soon of happier times and will be able to smile rather than cry.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to for your loss. I know how it feels; it’s really difficult losing a much loved pet. That is one of the hardest things about owning a pet, knows that we will most likely out-live them. Be grateful that at least she was with you when she passed, and in a way you sort of had a bit of control and knowing of the matter. It hurts even worse when your cat gets hit by a car or just disappears without a trace... you feel so powerless and angry about the sudden, unexpected loss. Cassie was a lucky kitty to get to live her life with you and Peter, and I'm certain she was fully aware of that. Plant something for her or make a concrete plaque and write something about her. Although your little Cassanova may not be here anymore, she will live forever in your hearts. Take care of yourselves, guys. Ginette

Scratch the hostile fay said...

There is no such thing as "just a cat".

My sympathies... I think you did a good thing .

:::huggles:::


Aye,
Scratch

La poupée de chiffon said...

In 2006, my cat, Mae, died. She was 15 years old. Mae entered my life as a zootherapy pet when I was 12. She was my best friend since we came through a lot together. I totally understand your feeling of loss.

It might sounds weird, but the only way I could find happiness then was to adopt other cats.

Each morning, I had my routine with Mae, and now that I had other cats, I wasn't like "Oh Mae would have done this" but I was more like "Ohhh Miu Miu has done this and that ..."

Of course, I would never forget Mae. I have her ashes at home.

I can understand you, and I wish you the best. I am sure Cassie understands the choice you've made and that she is now happy playing with other furry friend in Kitty Cat's heaven.

Carol said...

I am so sorry for your loss. My dogs are just furry children and I am sure you felt the same way about Cassie. Leaves a hole in our heart but I promise it eventually is not as painful to think about her. She is now painfree and playing in Heaven. Putting her down was the loving thing to do. I also suffer with depression and anxiety. It is no fun to say the least. I had to retire last year when my depression was extremely bad. Last summer I started my blog to help me focus on pleasant things and to help me through the painful days. You hang in there and if you ever need to talk about depression maybe we can IM. Carol
www.incarolsworld.blogspot.com

Carol said...

I am so sorry for your loss. My dogs are just furry children and I am sure you felt the same way about Cassie. Leaves a hole in our heart but I promise it eventually is not as painful to think about her. She is now painfree and playing in Heaven. Putting her down was the loving thing to do. I also suffer with depression and anxiety. It is no fun to say the least. I had to retire last year when my depression was extremely bad. Last summer I started my blog to help me focus on pleasant things and to help me through the painful days. You hang in there and if you ever need to talk about depression maybe we can IM. Carol
www.incarolsworld.blogspot.com