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I am writing this post today because I realize that many of my friends who read regularly are not on my Facebook page. I received a couple of emails from people wondering how things went with my kitty Pancakes yesterday.I thought it was best to write it here.
Things did not go well. My dear, sweet boy has crossed what pet lovers call "The Rainbow Bridge". He is no longer with me.
I am deeply saddened and in shock. Just a week ago we took him to the vet for a 'routine' checkup. He was having some irritation on his bottom and we thought it would be a quick fix and he would be back with us for several more years. He was only 9.
But in the examination, the vet found a mass in his abdomen. We left him for the day last week and they did a full blood workup and x-rays. When we returned, the result was promising. All his blood work came back within a 'normal' range. That meant his kidneys and liver were functioning properly and there was no infection. That was good.
The x-rays showed, however, that what appeared to be his spleen was quite large. Usually, this was an indication of something else. The vet wanted to do an exploratory surgery to see what was up. He prescribed some steroids to help shrink the offending organ and boost him up and the surgery was scheduled for yesterday (Thursday). We were hopeful.
All went well for the week. The little guy even seemed much more energetic. I am sure that was due to the medication. We had thought that the worse case would be that the spleen would be removed completely. While it would be traumatic, it was something that he could live with for many, many years. I have been worried about him, though, as the numbers just didn't make sense. The vet said he was a 'mystery cat' because the numbers from his blood work showed nothing. They should have been off with the large mass there. We just had to wait and see . . .
We received a call from the vet during the surgery. Unfortunately, when they opened him up, they found that his liver was loaded with cancer. The vet said he couldn't believe it because of the numbers. But it was there. I had to make the gut-wrenching decision to let him go. It absolutely devastated me.
The vet told me that even if Pancakes were to recover from the anesthetic (they weren't sure) it would be a painful and scary recover. The prognosis for his life was only days and maybe a week or so if he lingered. My initial response was to tell him to "save him", but after talking to Keith and hearing my own words, I realized how selfish that choice would have been. I had Keith call back (I couldn't say the words myself) and tell them to let my little boy go in peace. He would no longer be in pain or fearful. I had to let go.
I have had cats all of my life, but I had never been in this position before. Pancakes was more like a dog than a cat. He was by my side every waking hour. He loved his "grammie" with all his heart. I could see it the way he looked at me. And I loved him back.
I have felt ill since yesterday. Like a cannon was shot into my tummy. I find myself falling into tears and not being able to stop. I had a fitful sleep last night and I recruited Richard (my other cat) to do some 'overtime' in the cuddling department. I am certain he is upset because he sees me so upset. He and Pancakes were never really 'friends', so I am sure he can't understand my feeling of loss.
I need to lay low for a while and grieve. Right now the pink cloud seems very, very far away. But I wanted you, my friends, to know what happened. Many of you loved when I posted about him. He had quite a following.
I keep telling myself that I did the right thing. I hope I did. Our little companions can't speak for themselves. They can't tell us they hurt. They can't tell us how they feel. He hasn't been himself for a while, and I knew something was not right. Perhaps that is why I have felt this sense of dread all week.
I will be back when I am ready. I don't know when that will be. I just want to thank you all for your kind words and deeds regarding my little boy. They mean so much to me.
I loved Pancakes with all my heart. I always will.
You are no longer in pain. <3
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