I had a nice happy post planned for today about going to the apple orchard on Sunday, but then last night Winnie got really sick and it seemed inappropriate to put up.
I may have jinxed Winnie in all my talk about how she was thriving and how well she was doing… But she really was thriving, and she was doing so well! This happened very suddenly. One minute she was fine, and the next she was lying on the floor, clearly in pain, alternating between throwing up and and having some serious issues from the other end. I won’t get into the gory details because it was pretty gross, but there was blood and something was obviously very wrong.
It happened around 7pm last night, and the vet that I have been taking her to recently was closed. So Evan and I packed her up in her carrier and took her to an emergency animal hospital near us that is open 24 hours. I was really impressed with the staff, and how caring and attentive they were with Winnie. The vet was especially concerned with not putting her through a lot of trauma because she had already stressed herself out to the point of exhaustion with everything going on in her body.
They got to the root of the problem (a very hard stool, the opposite problem Winnie had been having recently which prompted her bloodwork about three weeks ago and her kidney disease diagnosis), but are not sure what caused it. It’s possible she has a tumour or a polyp in her intestine, or she could just not be getting enough fluids.
Which brings me to options…what could we do for her? The vet gave us three options, basically.
1. Treat her symptoms. Give her three different shots (one painkiller, one anti-inflammatory, and one pepcid to help with the gas in her tummy). Also inject her with fluids because she was not eating or drinking during her symptoms and we were concerned she was dehydrated. Observe her overnight and bring her back if her situation worsened, or keep her there for observation overnight and go from there. Also give her three different antibiotic prescriptions of the same injections (in pill form though) twice a day for the next week.
2. Do option 1, plus an X-ray and a colonoscopy to see if we could find if there is an issue in her intestines causing the problem.
3. Put her down.
Winnie is 20-years-old. I have been a very lucky cat owner and she has had very few health problems until recently. She is also still extremely spry and happy, and genuinely loves her life. She is the nicest kitty I have ever had the pleasure of owning, and she has been known to turn even the most cold-hearted non-cat lover into a huge cat fan. I knew option 3 was coming and I would have to consider it, but frankly I am not ready to go there until I have exhausted other options. Her kidney disease is under control and she has been reacting very well to her new food. This seemed like an isolated issue.
However, she is 20-years-old. Not only do I not have over a thousand dollars to spend on tests and treatments for her (option 2), realistically I know that she cannot possibly live that much longer (though I say she is fueled by love like my Nana so will live forever). I can only do the treatments that are a) not too stressful for her, and b) financially within reason. And so we went with option 1. Keeping her overnight for observation was an extra $450 on top of all her prescriptions, and I thought she would be more comfortable with us anyway. So we got all her medications and brought her back home. This was really sad-funny because she was so doped up that she was totally out of it and just staring with her giant pupils not actually noticing anything while drooling all over the place.
Thankfully, the little muffin is doing really well. We put her in a contained area with her food, litter box and blankets, and when we checked on her throughout the night she seemed to be steadily improving (Evan got up at 5am to see how she was doing, bless his heart). I gave her some more pain meds this morning, as well as her other medications, and I am working from home today so I can continue to keep an eye on her. This is riveting, as she is mostly just sleeping.
She isn’t quite back to normal, and is moving around a little slowly, but she is eating and not having any of her original symptoms and doesn’t seem to be in pain. So, fingers crossed. Now we just wait and see. I’m hoping all the antibiotics will take care of the issue and she will be good as new and I will not have to consider option 3 for a long while.
I am not sure why I wrote all this out, but I was feeling a little sad today and just worried about my little kitty so I wanted to talk about it.
So please send any extra prayers to my Miss Winnie Kitty! She has the most beautiful soul of anyone I’ve ever met (cat or human) and I know she has a lot of life left in her!
Yes, we shall!