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When to know that it's 'time' (to pts)

(23 Posts)
Viewofhedges Sun 08-May-16 12:02:53

Our lovely tiny cat has suddenly taken ill and we took her to the vet on Friday. He has diagnosed kidney disease. In 2 weeks she has gone from being herself to being a very tired, very thin, very sleepy girl and we know that not a lot can be done.

The vet offered a drip in cat hospital but said that would only help her while she is there. Knowing her as we do we know she would rather be at home in the sunshine in the garden than in a strange place on a drip. This being the case we have been told to watch her and bring her in to be pts when we think it's time.

We haven't had a cat at the end of life before and would like some advice. She is still eating a little (chicken) and wants our company - she still chooses to go out or come in and while she is lethargic she seems ok for now. We thought when she doesn't want to eat or go out would be right?

Can anyone advise us further, as we don't want her to suffer but don't want to take her too soon. She is 17 years old.

Roystonv Sun 08-May-16 12:10:26

We have had to pts a variety of animals over the years and I would rather decide too soon rather than too late. It is horrid whatever ever stage they are at but even worse if you know you should have done it a bit sooner. I may be flamed but I consider it an honour to be able to choose a good time of passing before all the fun of life has gone and only wish it was a bit nearer being able to do it for humans.

GruffaloPants Sun 08-May-16 12:15:14

It does sound close to the time. Agree that too soon is better than too late. My Mum really regrets holding on until her wee cat was very thin, sleepy and withdrawn.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sun 08-May-16 12:20:10

I agree, sooner rather than later. My friend is a vet nurse and says cats give a great impression of being OK when actually they aren't at all.

Hard decision flowers

Viewofhedges Sun 08-May-16 12:31:35

I agree, I do so wish we could do this for humans. We are in a similar position with my Nan who is 100 but of course we don't have the same choice for her. I wish we did.

Thank you for so many kind responses already. It's good to be able to get some outside help on what is such a difficult decision.

cozietoesie Sun 08-May-16 12:44:39

I've been in very much that position, albeit with a slightly younger cat.

I couldn't intervene - just couldn't do it - and every day was a series of little (or so I thought) 'triumphs' - 'He's eaten something, so he might be getting better....' 'He's purring so he's happy and it's not time.....' etc etc. I think I'd stopped seeing him - or at any rate, seeing him with any real clarity.

In the end, the decision was taken out of my hands. I've always regretted that I didn't act.

Take care.

Threetoedsloth Sun 08-May-16 16:32:04

I lost my gorgeous Birman girl to kidney disease at 11. She'd rallied wonderfully after diagnosis, following a period on a drip. However when she crashed for the second time, after three really good months, oh how I wish I'd not subjected her to another drip admission which did nothing at all to improve things for her (she was PTS the day we brought her home and it necessitated a dash to the vet's at near midnight)
With the benefit of hindsight I should have let her go immediately she crashed again- but I loved her so, I wanted to give her another chance . I think your lovely girl has had a long and happy life, much loved and deeply cherished. Better a week too soon than a day too late. Sending you my very best. It's so unutterably sad.

Alicekeach Sun 08-May-16 16:40:57

If you can afford it, it's worth asking the vet to come and do the deed at home. That's what we did for our old boy, and it meant we had a lovely last day with him at home, he was very relaxed in safe surroundings and he didn't get all stressed about going in the car (which he hated).

DramaAlpaca Sun 08-May-16 16:44:57

Sorry to hear you are in this situation. I'd echo what others have said - better a week too soon than a day too late. It's such a hard decision to make for a beloved pet, but it does sound to me like it's time flowers

Viewofhedges Sun 08-May-16 18:32:29

Thank you everyone for being so kind. It's been a really sad day but you've helped us make the decision that we will ring the vets tomorrow.

She is sat here now on the cushion she is not normally allowed to sit on, soaking up the last of the sun. She looks exhausted and I know we must do the right thing. Thank you all for holding our hands as we make the decision. I'm so glad I posted - it's not always easy to know what do to and your collective -unanimous - advice has really helped.

cozietoesie Sun 08-May-16 18:47:26

I'm sure that many people will be thinking of you.

Wolfiefan Sun 08-May-16 18:49:36

I'm so sorry but you are doing the last great act of love.
We had to pts our 19 year old last year. I have always thought of it as preventing suffering but the vet said it was about dignity. She didn't have any. It was time.
Still cried buckets though. Here if you need a handhold. X

Threetoedsloth Sun 08-May-16 20:30:05

Handholding. We're alongside you.

ghostyslovesheep Sun 08-May-16 22:10:47

Somebody told me here it's better to do it a day too early than a day too late and they where so right - my lovely Billy had brain cancer and we had him PTS earlier this year

He muddled along wobbly but happy for 3 years then suddenly lost his sense of smell and it made him so sad and scared - it was the right tim

Huge hugs - it's never easy xxxx

DigestiveBiscuit Sun 08-May-16 23:41:37

We had our 16 year old cat pts in September. She was diagnosed with aggressive lymphoma in July. The vet gave her a month; or upto 3 with steroids. We chose the steroids, as she loved the summer.

By September, she had lost 25% of her body weight and the tumour was the size of an orange. We asked the vet to come to the house, as she was always sick in the car. We gave her a bowl of chicken, which she loved, before the vet came. They gave her a sedative, which made her sick, but she peacefully went to sleep in 15 minutes. The vet turned the razor on to see if she stirred at the noise - she didn't. The vet could not get the final injection into a vein, so she did it into a kidney. The cat was dead within minutes. I can honestly say, apart from bringing up the chicken, and the sting of the first injection, she was not stressed and as far as she knew, she just went to sleep. The vet left us with her for about 15 minutes, then took her body away - for an individual cremation.

We felt it was not enough, and later asked the vet if we could spend some more time with her, at the vet's. They let us have a room with her for an hour. I told the vet, I felt really guilty - she said I had done absolutely the right thing, while she was still eating. She said cats go on too long - they can not eat for weeks, and end up not being able to move.

When her ashes came back, we held a funeral and scattered her ashes in all the places she loved, in the back garden. A far better death, than my father had with cancer!

Threetoedsloth Mon 09-May-16 08:31:33

Thinking of you and yours and your dear, sweet girl. It's a beautiful day here. I hope the sun is shining on all of you and you are able to bear what has to be borne.

cozietoesie Mon 09-May-16 08:58:56

Yes. Thinking of you.

Viewofhedges Mon 09-May-16 11:57:16

Thank you to everyone for helping us make a good decision. This was mumsnet at its best.

We called the vet this morning and were given an afternoon appointment but when we realised her breathing was getting more laboroured we brought the appointment forwards to this morning. We took her in at 10.

The vet was fantastic and she died very peacefully. Poor little scrap.

We brought her home and DH has just buried her in the garden, wrapped in tissue paper, curled up very neatly as she always slept.

RIP our opinionated lady who spoke like the Queen, took notes on us for the Russians, disapproved of our dancing, was building a rocket in a secret lair in the garden and who expected us to bring her pearls every time we went anywhere and was always disappointed. We shall miss her posh commentary on 'bloody' this and 'bloody' that, and her little pink nose and white, white tummy.

Sally T Cat. We hope you had a good ending and we did love you.

Vinorosso74 Mon 09-May-16 12:05:40

RIP Sally T Cat. It sounds like she had a long and happy life with you and a kind, dignified end.
I think I may have something in my eye....

cozietoesie Mon 09-May-16 12:06:35

You did the right and loving thing. It's still hard though.

Take care.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 09-May-16 12:07:45

You did the right thing OP flowers < blinks furiously, must be something in my eye>

Threetoedsloth Mon 09-May-16 15:47:48

RIP lovely Sally T Cat. It's the toughest of tough times, but you did the right thing by your dear girl. Take care of one another.

Wolfiefan Mon 09-May-16 15:49:13

You did the right thing. A peaceful end to a life full of love.

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