Need to decide whether to kill the cat
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29-01-2018, 07:21 AM
Need to decide whether to kill the cat
We have a very old cat called Trixie. She was born in November 1995 and so is 22 years 2 months old. She came to us about 6 years ago as s stray, we contacted the Cats Protection League as she seemed to be some ones pet, Red collar with two bells and silver coloured studs on it. We thought she was a kitten as she was small, with a bright collar and was very lively. When scanned it was found she was chipped with her date of birth and owner in the suburbs of London some 250 miles away. When the CPL contacted the registered owner they were told there was no knowledge of the cat. A couple of weeks later the CPL were contacted out of the blue by a woman in a local town denying knowledge of the cat!
About 5 years ago she developed diabeties and we have given her two injections a day since then which kept her normal and lively.
In the past couple of weeks she has gone off her food and would only eat very small amounts but was drinking normally. Over the last few days she has hardly eaten anything so we started to give her liquid food with a syringe into her mouth. She laps this up but after a short while refuses any more. She has got very thin and although she sometimes wants to be near us most of the time she wants to be alone.
It is very hard to decide if she is suffering or not, sometimes she purrs contentedly sometimes she makes odd noises, and so very hard to decide what is the best thing to do for her.

This is her as a youngster of 18
[Image: 100_0486.jpg]
[Image: 100_1121.jpg]

Steve

What do you mean Life is short. It's the longest thing you're going to do.
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29-01-2018, 07:35 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
It's hard to tell with such an old animal. Sometimes they just peacefully wind down and, if left on their own to decide whether to eat and drink or not, go to sleep peacefully.

Once you interfere in the process by administering life sustaining food, the normal course is interrupted and it is likely a good thing to cut the process short. Often keeping someone alive by administering nourishment stalls the process to where there is suffering.

So, at this juncture, the choices are to let her make the decision without interference, or to help speed it up. The goal, one way or another, is to avoid suffering.

Either way, I am sorry to see you go through this. It's always difficult. Heart

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29-01-2018, 07:37 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
Ask a vet.
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29-01-2018, 07:42 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
Been there more times than I care to remember and it is never easy. The kinds of things I watch for are whether she moves around on her own well or just hides in one spot, how much she eats and drinks, how stable her walking is, can she still get up stairs or onto furniture, and is she breathing clearly (no wheezing/snuffling/etc).

The decision is rarely clear cut but at 22 she's outlived most cats and she's obviously had a comfortable old age which is more than many of us get. If she's still getting around and can find nice patches of sun to stretch out in for a nice nap and will eat and drink even a little on her own then she's probably got more time. When it looks like she no longer has a decent quality of life and there's nothing more that can be done then it's time to let go.

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29-01-2018, 07:52 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
This is a horrible decision to have to make. If you can, I suggest you get advice from a vet.

On Friday we took our 18yo cat Muskrat to the vet in the hope there would be something they could do to improve his quality of life. After a thorough examination and discussion of possible treatments and side effects we decided that we had to say goodbye to him to prevent any future suffering. We knew this would be a likely outcome so we took along a brush to give him a final brushing, which he loved, gave him lots of cuddles and tickles as he faded away.

All the best, SteveC.
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29-01-2018, 08:19 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
(29-01-2018 07:42 AM)unfogged Wrote:  Been there more times than I care to remember and it is never easy. The kinds of things I watch for are whether she moves around on her own well or just hides in one spot, how much she eats and drinks, how stable her walking is, can she still get up stairs or onto furniture, and is she breathing clearly (no wheezing/snuffling/etc).

The decision is rarely clear cut but at 22 she's outlived most cats and she's obviously had a comfortable old age which is more than many of us get. If she's still getting around and can find nice patches of sun to stretch out in for a nice nap and will eat and drink even a little on her own then she's probably got more time. When it looks like she no longer has a decent quality of life and there's nothing more that can be done then it's time to let go.

She can still get around albeit slowly. Most of the time she is stable on her feet with the occasional wobble. She finds places to lay down and rest, usually the same places she has always gone to and will still sometimes follow us about to be near to us. She will still drink water fairly often but not enough and does sometimes have a small amount of food by herself. Her breathing is normal, no wheezing, coughing or other odd noises.
Probably it is best to leave her to it and not interfere for now as Dom suggests.
She obviously still has some love to give but we do not want her to suffer, there again we do not want to lose her. We want to do what is best for her without bothering about what we think but it is hard.

In reply to Gawdzilla the vet has said the time is getting close to make a decision but she is OK for a few more days.

finite monkeys-- Very sorry to learn about your Muskrat. He was loved to the last.

Steve

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29-01-2018, 09:15 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
I saw you mention Trixie in my thread last week about Sonja. I don't have any specific advice for you (other than to echo other people saying "ask a vet"), but I certainly feel for you. It's easy to second guess either decision as the wrong one.
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29-01-2018, 09:43 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
That's such a hard decision. I've been there, several times and it never gets any easier. I don't know of any vet that will make that decision for you. Most will just say something like "you'll know when it's time." Problem is, that's not always true. No matter what else, when/if the time does come that you feel like she's suffering and it's time to end her suffering, please remind yourself that you're doing this FOR her, not TO her. And if you haven't ever had to do this before, please also know that the process at the vet takes a LOT longer than you would think. It's gentle, yes, after the initial shot, but it's very hard to sit there so long and watch and wait.

And please remember too, that there is a difference between "quality of life" and "dignity of life." Quality relates to things like, feeling no pain. Still purring. Dignity refers more to things like the knowledge that cats feel shame when they can't make it to the litter box. It's a lot harder decision to make when it ISN'T a quality of life, obvious decision.

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29-01-2018, 10:02 AM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
When they stop eating it is a signal that the time has come.

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29-01-2018, 06:06 PM
RE: Need to decide whether to kill the cat
Usually cats will let you know when they're hurting. Until she does I'd let her go about her business. I've had to do the deed myself and it's never easy.

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