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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 3:13 am 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2015 2:19 am
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Hey Everybody,

Im in desperate need of advice from all you Bengal Lovers... My 10 year old bengal is scheduled for Euthanasia Tomorrow.... yes tomorrow.....

When he was 8 years old he had adenocarcinoma and lymphoma in his GI tract. After surgically removing his carcinoma he went through a bout of chemo followed my daily prednisone. The vet initially told us we might be able to get 1 year of quality life as the carcinoma is a very aggressive form of cancer and most likely will return. Long story short we got 2 years of quality life and only until recently have we noticed a sudden decline in his health. He has lost a significant amount of weight (21lbs in his prime..currently 12lbs) and seems to have lost his appetite even though he aggressively begs for food. You can tell he knows he wants to eat but when he smells the food he realizes that he just isn't very interested. He eats very little and usually spits most of his food out. But If Im persistent about offering food he will eat a bite or 2 at a time. We brought him to vet for an ultrasound only to find a suspect enlarged pancreas with biopsy that suggested the carcinoma was back but was not 100%... best case scenario it is pancreatitis however unlikely according to his vet. The vet told us that options were limited without performing major surgery which my wife and I were against. He then told us that because of his weight loss that putting him to sleep was an option in the near future if he continues to avoid food. The vet said he had a few weeks at best. I then called a hospice vet that came to our home and said the same thing after seeing him..and so we scheduled a euthanasia appointment.

So today...the day before getting put to sleep he decides he wants to play with toys and eat a little more than usual...Im so conflicted. Just to make things even more complicated my wife and i have a week long trip planned on Monday. The vet had told us that putting him to sleep before we leave is the best idea since he feels Milo would decline faster since we are gone. My issue is that his mind is still there and he doesn't seem to be in any pain whatsoever. The only concern is his appetite and weight. I love him so much that i don't want him to suffer... but at the same time I love him so much that Im scared to let him go too early. I can accept the fact that the cancer is probably back and that the end is inevitable but is putting a cat, that you love so much, to sleep a couple weeks earlier before even worse symptoms arise wrong? I've heard the saying"a week early is better than 1 day too late" but this is harder than expected.

Any thoughts or insight is greatly appreciated. I love my cat with all my heart. This is the biggest decision of my life and I have no idea what to do...Thanks for reading and hope to hear from someone.

Love


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 2:57 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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I'm so sorry you're having to make this decision. It's never easy to figure out when it's "time" especially when they're on a roller coaster day by day.

How does he usually do when you go out of town? Does he eat well for his pet sitter? If he stresses out a lot without you there it may be very hard on his already weakened body and immune system.

My Boxer dog was diagnosed with lung cancer, it was inoperable due to blood clotting issues. It was just a waiting game, she had good days and bad days. The day I had to put her to sleep she was actually very happy and perky, but the cancer had metastasized and she had tumors appear on her head and face literally overnight with one of them pushing her eye part way out of the socket. As happy and perky as she was that day I knew there was nothing more we could do for her and the tumors would only continue to grow and it was just a matter of days before she was in unbearable pain.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 3:12 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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That is gut wrenching and a very personal decision. About a year ago I was faced with a similar decision. I had a elderly siamese about 18 years old with long term kidney failure. I hydrated her for years and she lost so much weight. She was down to 5 pounds and threw up almost daily. I had her on two types of anti nausea medication, sub Q hydration twice a week. her nose began to dry out and scab. She was also howling, which I thought was from senility. I struggled every day with the decision and researched euthanasia. I found Lap Of Love on line which is a service where a vet comes to your home and euthanizes your pet while you hold them on your lap. I spoke with the vet in advance and she suggested that I not wait until it was my pet's worst day to euthanize. I knew I had already waited too long. Madelyn was staying alive for me. I saw my therapist in my home with Madelyn on my lap and we discussed the inevitable. She suggested I use the liquid morphine each day to lessen Madelyn's discomfort and to prepare both of us to let go. That was on a Thursday. That night I began giving Madelyn the prescribed morphine each day and an amazing thing happened. She instantly purred when I gave her the medicine and she stopped howling. It was then that I realized she had been in pain all those months. I felt so selfish. She slept a lot but she was so dehydrated even with the sub Q hydration. I made an appointment with Lap of Love that following Tuesday. By that time her nose had begun to peel and must have been painful. I knew I was doing the right thing and Madelyn's exit was so quiet, calm and loving on my lap. I have no regrets. Afterwards I took her to the crematorium myself by choice. I gave her one last pet and in a couple of days retrieved her ashes which now reside in my living room in a meditating cat urn. She used to meditate on my lap with me so it seemed appropriate. This was how I chose to honor my beloved cat.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 3:27 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2015 2:19 am
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Thank you for the responses... I wish there was an easy solution to this. He's laying on my lap right now as I type this. He's seems content and still purrs when being petted. I know he's not eating much and losing weight daily but still finds a way to push forward everyday. He tries so hard to hide his illness. I just keep wondering if putting our cat to sleep so early is the solution. Obviously I'm having selfish reasoning but it wouldn't be natural if I didn't right? He still has a zest for life and probably just seems confused as to why he can't eat... I feel so bad. Would you guys go through with it if he was your cat?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 4:19 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
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I am so very sorry you're having to go through this. Most of us have been there with our kitties. Mine was 17 years old, diabetic and in kidney failure. I gave her two insulin shots and 2 subq fluids daily. She was doing fine. One day, she simply refused to eat and started stumbling around and could not walk properly. I knew then it was time to let her go and we did! It was the hardest thing I've ever had to witness in my life.

I've always said they let you know when it's time! The fact that yours will eat a little and is still playful means the fight is still on. When IS the right time? It's hard to say. Nobody wants to let their kitty go and, yes, maybe some of us wait a little too long and others want to see the end while the cat is somewhat happy! I don't know. It's just a personal thing. You do not appear ready to let him go and he does not appear to be ready to leave. Euthanasia can happen at any time. It's not as if you don't do it today, the option is gone. Personally, I'd postpone it! I'd probably postpone any travel plans as well .. but that's just me! Separation anxiety while you're gone can make your kitty worse -- and that's not what you want, nor would I do euthanasia just to have the freedom to travel. Let your conscience be your guide. There is no WRONG decision here. You're in the situation and you know what's best for today and tomorrow. And let your little boy guide you along. You know he won't get better -- but every day with him is a blessing for both you and him.

You can feed him a high-calorie wet food with a syringe. I've had to do that when my bengal was ill and not eating.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 4:32 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 2:26 pm
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So awful for you. Animals often hide their illness so as not to appear weak in the wild, it's a basic instinct for them. I imagine your poor kitty has good and bad days and it's just horrendous to be so torn. If a hospice vet has confirmed the same thing as your vet has confirmed then there is no hope of recovery for him. I can't imagine what you are going through. My only advice is that with hindsight I kept some of my old and poorly kitties going just that little bit too long as it's too heartbreaking to say goodbye. We always have the vet come to our house to let our animals go to their final sleep. It saves the stress of going to the vets. Whatever you decide there is no right or wrong. Please do not feel guilty if you do decide to go ahead and say goodbye to your lovely boy. Remember, letting him go to sleep peacefully, without pain and in your arms is the final act of love you can give to him. Will be thinking of you x

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 6:31 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Yea, it's brutal, and no matter what you do you are likely to second-guess your decision to various degrees... I always have.

Here's what might be some clarity though (I've been through this a few times)....

You are his guardian. He's counting on you to make the right choice for him. I really think that the only question here is: what do you think he wants? If he understood the ramifications here, what decision would he want you to make? End his pain now? Let him enjoy some additional time with you while the pain is still manageable?

Don't euthanize him simply because you feel compelled to keep an appointment, that's immaterial, remove that from the decision. Maybe this isn't the kind of decision that you make ahead of time with a date circled on a calendar. I like the way Jackson Galaxy talks about this with his cat Benny in "Cat Daddy". He writes that when his cat Benny started to decline, he made a promise to him that when Benny gave him a sign that it was time, that he wouldn't hesitate, he'd get in a car, go to the vet, and get it done.

Good luck, this is the part that really sucks, but it's also where you get to really fulfill your role as your pet's guardian.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 7:57 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2015 2:19 am
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Thanks everyone again for the posts... My wife and I decided not to put our emotions in the way of our little boy... It became obvious to us that we had only been looking for the little positives day to day and failed To notice his downfalls. He try's so hard to go through his daily routine... But when we really take a deep look we noticed that all he would do after exerting a little bit of energy is wince with an uncomfortable look... He can't seem to get comfortable as he's always readjusting himself.. The look he gives you can see it in his eyes that he is uncomfortable. Milo try's so hard to push forward and ignore what's going on inside him... It confused us. He no longer eats what he used to love... He no longer stares out the window at all the birds...and all he does now is hide under the sheets of our bed...I would hate for him to feel anymore discomfort. We will be putting Milo to sleep today... He is a great kitty... He helped me get through the toughest time in my life when I faced cancer.... He always put a smile on my face when I was at my all time low...my wife and I were so lucky to have him in our lives... I will miss you Milo... You changed our lives and I will always be grateful for the time we spent together and the happiness you brought us each and every day.....We will always Love you... Till we meet again...Mom and Dad


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:54 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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:cry: *hugs* to you and your wife.

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Diesel - snow Bengal born 09/01/2013 adopted Feb 2014
Tuck, Chloe, Buddy, Lewis & Tia - rescue kitties
Clyde, Bleu & Coal - Great Danes


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:56 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 2:26 pm
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You will be with Milo again one day - stay strong x big hugs to you and your wife

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Oscar - Rescue (Rascal!!!) Bengal


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:48 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Comforting us in tough times is something cats do really well. Now it's your turn to do the same for your little one. I feel your pain.
xo

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2015 5:35 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
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From your last post, I think you "talked yourself through everything." I can understand now why you feel this is the right thing to do. Oh gosh, it's the hardest thing in the world ..... but Milo's quality of life is not there and it appears he is not getting any enjoyment from it. The hole in your heart will never close. I hope that you somehow can enjoy your week away. If you focus on the positives -- the joy he brought into your lives and all the love you gave him -- it's easier to get through this. Sending mountains of {{{HUGS}}}. I am so sorry!


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