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(this may belong better somewhere else, but since i'm double depressive & this is bad news i'm putting it here)

just found out from the vet that my husband's kitty has kidney disease, probably middle stage.  i get to go home and tell him.  he spent 3 hours at the dentist 2day, first of all, and second of all he has major issues with death (as in, way way way too many of them in his life). 

animal deaths hit him particularly hard.  he is not going to take this well.  it will hurt him a lot.

damn i don't want to have to do it.  but i have to suck it up and be The Strong One so we can get Pud pud's medical care started.

well, shit.

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Guest ~Aurelie~

(this may belong better somewhere else, but since i'm double depressive & this is bad news i'm putting it here)

just found out from the vet that my husband's kitty has kidney disease, probably middle stage.

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Well, fuck, reddog, that's just awful. God!

Now, what are kitty's chances? middle stage doesn't sound so great; from the tone of your note I'm guessing it's not arrestible? But can meds/treatment delay the worst for awhile?

shit, I'm so sorry about this.

lily

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he's 17, which is a ripe old age for a kitty and is about the time kidney or pancreas issues would crop up anyway.

basically, it's not curable.  we can keep him comfortable and make sure his quality of life stays good as it progresses, but eventually he will reach a point where his kidneys can't deal at all & then...well, i hope he dies 'naturally' before then.  i mean, he is 17 so we know he could pass any day. 

but darn i get to break the news.  just what i wanted.

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When you love them, it doesn't matter that it's a "ripe old age," right?  Poor pussycat.  Well, I don't envy you, reddog.  It's horrible to lose your babies at any age.

I hope he can go gently into that good night.

olga

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and will someone please explain to me why, whenever i am under emotional, my lower intestinal system decides that THIS is the right time to take a dump on me, so to speak?  exactly, how, does my digestive tract think that SPEEDING THINGS UP will help the situation?  is my liver offering some kind production bonus to my lower colon "hey, boys, speed it up by 50% and i'll give you a discount on liver enzymes!"  "all right, man, here comes last nights dinner, let's get a move on! we can get it out out here by 6:00 p.m. Eastern guaranteed!"  what am i, a FedEx hub?

right now i feel like a certain Robin Williams riff: 'you're not a person, you're a human Evinrude (thhhhhpppppt). You think you're going to pass gas, but oh no!  it's a live one!  Fire in the hole!'.

sheesh.

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I'm sorry.  We have a kitty with kidney failure living with us, Starlight.  She is 12 and recently got down to 3 lbs because my stepdad wasn't feeding her the right food and she got sick again.

She spends her days in a cage so she can fatten up ;)

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reddog,

my kitty too has renal failure, though early stage.

it is true that eventually your kitty will succum to this problem, but there i a LOT that you can do to prolong his (or is Pud a her?) life.

My kittty is on an rx renal failure diet (something or other KD) and it's really slowed down the progress of her failure.  It's low in protien, so it puts a lot less stress on the kidneys.  And, at some point, you may have to start giving Pud saline injections so keep him hydrated, but that process isn't as hard as it sounds. 

Renal failure is a serious problem in cats, and one of the leading cause of death in cats, but don't give up hope. Pud may have more time in left in this world than you think.  My kitty's renal problems started out a few years ago, and with diet we've been able to halt the progression.  And, in late stage, the sub-q infusions of saline can really help prolong life.

I know it's scary.  but don't give up hope on him yet.

As for your tummy, I know that when I'm stressed I get, um, er... well frequent visits to the bathroom.  I hope that passes soon for you.

best of luck and love to you, your husband, and Pud.

Penny

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Reddog, I am thinking of you and Pud.

One of my cats is mysteriously losing weight.  She's had a lot of tests done and nothing is conclusive.  She's just a baby, though (4), so nothing should be wrong!  And I already had to deal with a crisis with one of my other cats last summer.

This sounds cheesy, but I think a lot of it is love.  My parents had a cat who was 13 and had FIV and then had a stroke... and because they loved him (and did everything they could to take care of him, but mostly I think because he was loved and wanted to stick around) he lived for over a year after the stroke.  He died peacefully in his sleep laying out in the front yard in the sun.  My mom had just shared a piece of fried chicken with him.

You have just as much of a right to grief as your husband.  Someone does need to be the strong one and get stuff taken care of... but don't not let you grieve for yourself, too.

It sounds like Pud has had a long and happy life, no matter what happens. I hope that this will all happen as painlessly as possible (which, admittedly is still very painful).  I just don't know what to say... I don't deal with death well.

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Also, in jettisoning the excess weight, the body prepares itself for moving faster if flight becomes necessary.

somehow, i don't think leaving a shit trail for enemies/predators to track you by is very efficient.  i dunno, i also think that slipping and falling in my own mess would be fairly inefficient, and thus negate the point of 'fight or flight': that is, survival.

intelligent designer my ass.  no pun intended, but it came out that way.......

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Speaking of bowel continence issues and Pud pud (?) the Pussy:

My dignified old man Moe died also from renal failure, though he was only 14 - (say 80 to Pud Pud's 110). Eventually, he became not only bladder incontinent, but bowel incontinent also, more or less. He was always an outdoor pooper (no litter box except in severe ice or snow) and adept at "holding it" overnight or if we were away during the day for several hours.

However, as his renal failure progressed, he could no longer manage that. Smart fella that he was, though, he always either did his bidness in the bathtub or on the bath mat. If he needed to go out at night, he would wake me by combing his claws through my hair, never harming my skin at all.

As I said, he was dignified. Like my grandfather.

One cool spring night, Moe was stumbling as he came over to me on the stoop. I realized that he had reached his final hours, so I took him to the 24 hour vet.  They fixed him up with an IV line and let him sit in the basket in my lap while my husband and my daughter, seven at the time, said goodbye.

After the two of them left the little "quiet room (a sofa, low lights - comfy - I think specifically for these kinds of situations)", I sat and talked quietly to my friend of almost a decade and a half. When the vet came back to see if we were ready, I looked down at Moe and asked him, one hand cupped under his head, my forearm around his skinny old body, and the other curled loosely beside him: "Is it time to go yet?".

He just looked up at me with his beautiful pale green eyes and placed his paw in my free hand as if to say "Okay - it's time".

I nodded to the vet, who gently placed the syringe into the IV line and pushed.

Moe never pulled his paw away nor lost eye contact with me until they gently, slowly closed and his breathing stopped.

We had a lovely memorial service and burial in the backyard the next night. Moe was buried with his favorite toys, his food bowl, and a can of his favorite wet food...all wrapped up in the blanket from his basket and nestled inside his white cardboard kitty coffin.

The 24 hour vet sent a lovely sympathy card; I still have it. It is hand-signed by the on-staff vet tech. Of course, it is an expensive $ 150.00 card, so DAMN RIGHT I still have it.

Moe's former best friend, Larry, lost his owner the following year and is now officially our cat. Moe and Larry were best friends in the way that cats are: They would sit outside together, six feet apart, very peacefully. They only rarely fought, and Moe was always ?Alpha Cat?. Larry is not the new guy's original name, but he has always answered to it, even as a boy-kitten, maybe 5 or six months old. He used to come, in summer when I left the back door open for air,  into my daughter's room to lie on the floor and listen while we read bedtime stories. Larry is about seven now, best we can figure.

The black molly fish, Curly, lived a lot longer than I wanted him to. I was grateful when he passed - I thought it would me a two-week kid-fish experiment, but NO - he kept on living and growing for FIVE YEARS despite my best efforts to care for him poorly. He  did graciously bequeath to me, his not-so-very-loyal-and-not-hardly-humble-tank-cleaning-and-feeding servant, the stunning chunks of white glass and the buddha statue with which his tank was decorated, however, so I do owe him at least a little posthuomous respect:

Peace out, Curly, wherever you are...and tell Moe we miss him.

............................................

There has not yet been a Shemp in our household, and I, too, get quite "poopy" when stressed or nervous.

............................................

pigs - feeling quite writerly at the moment. she asks that you please not be obvious in your yawns and eye-rolls; she has enjoyed the reverie.

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animal deaths hit him particularly hard.  he is not going to take this well.  it will hurt him a lot.

damn i don't want to have to do it.  but i have to suck it up and be The Strong One so we can get Pud pud's medical care started.

well, shit.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

reddog, it sucks. After my first baby was born, my big fat cat, Bruno, died of renal failure. Over a period of about 3 mos. It was awful. I always felt like he couldn't handle not being the baby anymore. I haven't had a cat to call my own since, and that was almost 18 years ago.

Saying goodbye just sucks the big one to loved ones human, animal.

On your other matter, I had the shits for 2 weeks straight after Bradley died. Lost a ton of weight, but seems like that was all I could do. I wasn't even eating, not much of anything.

My thoughts are with you.

Suze

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Hey, Red,

I'm sorry to hear about your cat. Renal disease is typically what gets em if coyotes, disease, or some other natural predator doesn't get to them sooner. Kidney failure is what got my 18-yr-old best cat in the whole world, Rocky. It's not an easy decision. I mean, I always told myself that I would not let my cat suffer in order to prolong his life to fill my needs. But, fuck, how do you decide that today is the day, and not yesterday or tomorrow. Somehow, though, you will look into his/her eyes one day and know that it's time and it's what you would want for yourself in a better world. Grieve all you want and all you need to. There is nothing like an independent, never-quite-tamed cat who has decided that the safest place in the world is in your lap.

Greeny

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update: Kevin took it very well, almost callously ("how much is this gonna cost") but i put that down to having just been awoken and not feeling well himself.

i suggested that we simply get Pud through his current health crisis of sinus infection and abscessed tooth then reassess how he's doing once we've done the course of antibiotics.

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I thought MY husband was the only one who asked that question when I come home from the vet with one of the animals!

Good to hear that you're a little bit cheered this morning.  I hope Pud responds well to the antibiotics and then you guys can address the kidney condition. 

olga

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