July 16th, 2013
|10:33 am - Improvements|
Sonya and I realized last night that we were both eulogizing one who had not yet fully passed. This gave the cat the great opportunity to make liars out of all of us. (He's like a little Mark Twain. Perhaps I need to tell him that Halley's Comet has yet to return.)
We had a travelling vet named Jake stop by this morning to look him over. We were all very worried that it would end with an injection and a soft goodbye. Instead Abbie got up, walked around, eyes wide open, alert and awake. He allowed Jake to check his eyes, his heart, and even his teeth. Jake was much more optimistic than we had been yesterday. Abbie was more optimistic than he had been yesterday. While he wasn't exactly dancing around, he was moving and that was more than I'd seen.
Jake confirmed that Abbie was in no pain, that his listlessness and all yesterday could very well have been delayed medicine processing and/or hospital shell shock. (This is another reason why I was loath to cart him 30 minutes north to Woburn.) Jake gave the cat an injection of not-saline electrolytes and explained the situation. The prognosis is not good, but until we have a firmer diagnosis from the oncology reports we can't do much.
Our marching orders are to put out a buffet of foods, including water, pedialyte and plain chicken broth, and see if his appetite returns enough for him to have a go. Tracy set out some tuna and the cat took it happily. This is a good sign. Remember all those bad signs I was talking about yesterday? This one is not bad. If you know of any foods Abbie might like, you're welcome to stop by and offer. (Just call first or something so we can put pants on. It's hot today.) Spicy and overly seasoned foods are right out, but apparently people food is back in. We have also been given a solution which is, in effect, cat Advil. I had hoped he'd get an appetite booster, but what with the tuna, it's best now just to see what he'll choose to eat on his own.
Simply put: Buddy's going to live through this today. He is ill, very very ill, but not quite at death's door as we feared. But his chest will continue to fill with fluid and at some time--a month, a few weeks--it will have to be drained again. Jake said he could perform the procedure at the house, which is a tremendous relief. Between now and then, at least, we will have to consider The Decision, but we did not have to make it today and for that I am extremely grateful. This house is now a cat hospice, and Abbie is still the king. He is not out of the woods. He will probably never make it out of the woods, whatever those are. But we're going to make sure that as long as he wishes to stay around, he's going to be very comfortable at it.
Thank you for your words and wishes and thoughts and songs. You are all so very, very kind. Even though I tell him he's got quite the posse, it often doesn't fully hit home until there's an outpouring. Thank you again.
I know it's not invalid food, but every cat of my acquaintance goes crazy for the cheesy flavours of Doritos and other chips.
I had seen Sonya's entry pointing to your last entry, which I read, and I was just preparing to write a reply when I thought, Oh, but first I will friend derspatchel
, and then when that was done, I found this entry, and so realized that Abbie had rallied.
I hope these last days (or weeks) are good ones for Abbie and for you.
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 03:31 pm (UTC)|| |
*hugs* for abbie, a most excellent cat. *sniffle*
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 03:37 pm (UTC)|| |
i don't have any clever food ideas, as tuna is the only people food my cat has any interest in, but i'd happily bring him some tuna or anything else anyone wants to suggest.
If you want, the vet suggested broth (probably chicken, possibly low-sodium, since Abbie has in the past puked up very salty things) and lactose-free milk. He also suggested a type of baby formula that Rob wrote down the name of. He said a lot of animals really like Spam.
He seems to like the liquid from the tuna can -- I'm not sure if that can be exploited somehow.
We also don't have any actual gooshyfood around.
I'm working form home today, so I'm around, but I can't quite justify a trip to the grocery store myself until later.
Edited at 2013-07-16 04:21 pm (UTC)
The baby forumla was Pedialyte, the electrolyte solution to give kids with the flu. We are to get the unflavored version.
Puree baby food was also suggested. And in the past I've drained tuna cans over Abbie's dry food, which he absolutely loved. It may soften the food a little too if he's finding chewing difficult.
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 02:01 am (UTC)|| |
Our older cat, who is around 10, discovered after having a fang removed that kibble mashed in some water is really great stuff. He also likes a sort of gravy made with a little wet food and some water with a few kibbles thrown in, but not mashed. You might try this for Abbie. It's a good way to get him extra liquid. It sounds like he's the sort of cat who likes to eat all kinds of things, which is good. Hubero is like that. The more people food, the better.
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 05:05 pm (UTC)|| |
i'm out now but could come over tomorrow morning or late tonght if either would work
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 12:11 am (UTC)|| |
i pretty much always give miles the liquid from tuna when i make it for myself.
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 03:32 pm (UTC)|| |
My very infrequent visits to LJ are rewarded with news like this. Still sad, but a small gift of time. And I must add I love the idea of songs for Abbie. I imagine folk ballads and jaunty raps.
Does Abbie have any weird little treats that he likes? What I mean is does he, perhaps, enjoy watermelon, as a great cat I once had did? Whatever it might be, get him some. And YAY!
I don't think we've ever tried watermelon, but that sounds like a great idea. Thank you!
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 12:39 am (UTC)|| |
Re: Wonderful News
(I am one of Abbie's other housemates.)
Abbie, having just been offered some of this watermelon of which you spoke, wishes to inform you that surely cats do not eat this, as it is not recognizably food, at least not while anyone is watching.
I mushed some up and left it by his regular food and water, just in case he changes his mind once I leave the room. It was totally worth a try. Thank you for the suggestion!
It was worth a shot. The cat I spoke of, a big old tom named Tigger, adored the stuff.
Here's the story, from my blog of a few years back. I hope it provides a grin.
"I once owned a cat who adored watermelon. Any time I would have a slice, he would sidle up next to me and meow for some. The first couple of times he did so, I more-or-less ignored him. I said, "Silly cat! You don't want watermelon! I'll give you some mackerel after I'm done."
Finally, perhaps the third time he jumped up on the table and meowed for the watermelon, I said, "Okay, dopey, I'll give you a little piece, but you're going to be disappointed."
I broke off a tiny bit of the fruit and held it out for him. He gobbled it up, then meowed for more. I sliced off a couple of larger hunks and proffered them. He chomped on them greedily, even licking up the juices after the solid stuff had disappeared down his gullet. It was so much fun to see a cat lusting for watermelon, I gave him half of my slice, rind and all. He attacked it, devoured it down to the rind, and then he gnawed on that for a while, too. When the watermelon was completely gone, he seemed to be as sad as I was (and I was pretty sad, too, because I had given half of my watermelon to him.)
After that, whenever I had watermelon, I would cut him up a small bowl of it, and he'd dive into it with the sort of fervor usually reserved for female cats in heat. I've never seen another cat with such a taste for watermelon."
So it appears I still haven't seen another cat with such a taste for watermelon, but, again, it was worth a shot.
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 03:52 pm (UTC)|| |
Tell him to hold on 'til August and I'll bring him sushi.
Hooray for Jake the vet! Hooray for Abbie's return and resilience! Reprieve is a wonderful thing.
I saw the previous post and this one almost simultaneously, so I figured I would skip straight to responding here -- I am so glad Abbie is still with us for now. Give him a headrub from me, please, and I hope he stays comfortable for some time yet.
And *HUGS* to you in this emotional time. I'm glad you've got good people with you.
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 04:54 pm (UTC)|| |
"But we're going to make sure that as long as he wishes to stay around, he's going to be very comfortable at it."
Abbie the Cat has a Buddy, too.
I can't bring food around, so I will virtually bestow a nice pile of dark meat chicken, sans bones. I don't know if Abbie appreciates chicken, but my Rose will toss furniture out of the way to get near whoever is eating chicken.
John Barleycorn got up again!
I am so very glad. If he will accept the homage, please skritch him for me.
|Date:||July 16th, 2013 06:17 pm (UTC)|| |
Oof, it's most difficult and draining. I'm glad Abbie has rallied. I hope the test results come in soon and give guidance.
My cats love chicken breast lightly poached in (low salt) chicken stock, and served shredded in one bowl and the stock in another.
I'm very glad to hear he's rallying; I hope your life isn't too upended by caring for him. I've been there, too, with two ailing elderly cats at the same time.
I'm glad to hear that a most excellent cat is going to continue hang around and make lives awesome for a while. :)
My friend's cat went through something similar a while back. With regular drainings he was around and comfortable for another 6 months.
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 01:05 am (UTC)|| |
My cats have liked any cooked chicken or fish, waiting at my feet while it was grilled. My most recent cat liked crunchy things, like corn chips or anything contained in a chips bag that crinkled!</p>
Glad to read he's rallied. Hail stubborn cats who are not in pain today!
*house hug*, too.
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 02:41 am (UTC)|| |
Clearly a Jellical cat.
Would catnip be welcome? I have a catnip plant, and if he's still around on Friday I could probably arrange for a sprig or two. (The plant is in Allston at the moment.)
...but really, I have no idea if psychoactives are a good idea.
My thoughts are with you, and Abbie.
So glad he's doing better!plumtreeblossom
has way more catnip than she or Chickenfinger know what to do with, so you should ping her if that sounds like a good idea. She was just allowing as how she was going to need to find a whole bunch of cats to pawn it off on.
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 10:53 am (UTC)|| |
So glad to hear this.
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 01:51 pm (UTC)|| |
*hugs to kitty*
|Date:||July 17th, 2013 02:32 pm (UTC)|| |
When my eldest cat, Mittens, was very weak and uninterested in most food (even tuna!), we bought mixed baby food for her (turkey and veggies/rice was a favorite) that was rather liquid. It came in little plastic tubs, though I am blanking on the brand. We had been feeding her pure meat baby food, but this seemed to go down better. I truly believe that it prolonged her life for about a month past what it might have otherwise been.
My sincerest sympathies on your impending loss -- it's not easy. I still miss my baby girl, who was fifteen when she died at Christmas.
*hugs* and best wishes to Abbie and both of you.
|Date:||July 18th, 2013 03:40 am (UTC)|| |
His posse is always here. Because he is JUST THAT AWESOME.