If you care for an elderly, injured or special needs pet, you've come to the right place!
About 3 weeks ago, my kitty suffered some kind of trauma in my apartment. She was a jumper, so the vet thinks she hurt herself somehow. As a result, she became somewhat paralyzed in her back legs, but could nonetheless urinate. The doctor gave her B12 shots and anti-inflammatory/steroid shots, and she improved--to the point of walking again!
After one more up and down like this (covering the span of about 2 weeks), Hairy became paralyzed in her tail and could no longer urinate. I took her to the vet last night for a routine checkup, and I was shocked to learn that her bladder was full--so full she would have to use a catheter to relieve herself. I didn't know.
We went to the emergency room, where the vet encouraged us to put her to sleep. The doctor said that, because Hairy's tail had only recently become paralyzed, it was an indication that the paralysis was spreading. The doctor said that the paralysis would eventually go up her spine--to the front paws and eventually her head. Hairy also had some horrible skin rash where she was urinating on herself (we tried to dry her off as best as we could).
The vet said that the humane thing to do would be to put her to sleep, and we did. But now I'm second-guessing everything. I would not have put Hairy to sleep if her paralysis were not, in fact, spreading inevitably to her front paws and head. Now I'm angry and terrified I made the wrong decision--or that the vet pressured us to do this. I hope the vet knows I would have happily cared for Hairy--it was never an issue of "inconvenience."
Please help. I'm so sad. Life's not the same without Hairy. The world needed this little kitten. She was only 1.5 years old...
Hi. I am so sorry for your loss. I know that was a hard decision, and one that most of us here have had to ponder given the circumstances of our dog's or cat's injuries and prognosis. I'm not a vet or anywhere close, but I'm wondering if your cat was diagnosed with myelopathy. My understanding is that myelopathy can cause loss of nerve function that travels up or down the spine gradually effecting the whole body, inlcuding your pet's ability to breathe. Whether my dog, Sydney, would be able to breathe or not or would be struggling for breath would have made me seriously consider putting her down. (It's hard for me to even talk about, so I can't imagine what you're going through. You have my deepest sympathies.) If you have serious concerns about the information you received on which your decision was based, I think that you should definitely ask your vet for a sit-down or good phone convo where you can have your questions answered. I know that when these things happen and you are forced to make a decision, everything happens very quickly and ti's all so shocking that it can be hard to even remember what you were told by the doctors. You may want to request her chart as well, as I have requested from the hospital that did my dog's surgery when I thought I wasn't being given answers to my questions. I wasn't. Reading the chart helped me to understand what was going on. No matter what, your decision was made out of love and that is the important thing.
Hello, I too am very sorry. All we can do in life is make the best decisions given the information that we have. You will never have perfect information before making any decision and will never know what the results of another decision may have been. I am sure that you did not make this decision lightly and had only Hairy's best interests at heart. I know this is probably not very comforting but you did the best you could and sometimes that is all you can do.
I am very sorry for your loss, and hope you find the answers you seek.
I think I would take the advice of the others and talk to your vet and have them really go over the chart.
A lot of things are possible; including
Myelomalacia is a form of spinal death that usually occurs within a few days of onset. It does lead to death.
I am not a vet; please consult your vet before making any treatment decisions.
Hunter IVDD Surgery x 2~Walking
Oscar IVDD Surgery x 1~ Paralyzed
Sage and Misty
I am so sorry for your loss. Everyone here feels your pain as we all have experienced the intense grief that occurs after the death of an animal.
It does sound like your vet was describing myelomalacia. That is the death of the spinal cord and like Cindi said it is fatal and there is no cure for it.
No matter what you did the best you could making a desicion based on what the experts told you. I think it is pretty common to second guess your desicion when put in these positions. With most of my pets that have passed I have done the same. Like someone said you made your desicion based on love. That is the best that any of us can do. Take care and again I am so sorry for your loss.
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