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Posts: 155
My dear spacecat. I am so very sorry for your loss and pain. I have posted in this post previously
That we lost my
Beloved husbands cat Ram to this terrible affliction when he was 15 years of age and we were faced with the same horrifying and quick decision. There is very little to console anyone at a time like this but I would like to share a few thoughts. In hindsight, We were so grateful that we were there when Ram had his attack. What if we hadn’t been and he had suffered waiting for us to get home or worse. What if we had gone ahead with some Hail Mary treatment that saved him from that episode, would we want him to go through all that again? And what if we weren’t there on another occasion? From all accounts even the treatment they can give is very painful and prolonged and as you have discovered, largely unsuccessful. As horrible as this ailment is there can be so many other illnesses and diseases that our dear babies can suffer from. At the very least, this is fast and they are not left to linger and suffer for long. It is without a doubt one of the worse nights of my life and as we were still reeling from that , six months later my 6 year old Dickens became ill and after many negative tests, his kidneys became hugely
Enlarged and lumpy which the vet thought was lymphoma and we were advised to euthanize. I couldn’t believe we were going through this again. I was devastated and chased every answer as quickly
As I could but he was so sick we put him to sleep and like you I wanted all and any post mortem answers to help me know I did the right thing. There is no good or easy answer but nor should there be really when choosing life and death. I wish I had the answers for myself and all who go through this. I know we do this out of love, that we would rather suffer than them.
My heart goes out to you and wish you whatever peace you can find in this journey.

Posts: 5
Thank you both so much for replying. This grief is unlike anything I've ever experienced, every day is the worst day of my life, it just keeps getting worse.

Could the weekly checkups not be done at home? I could have either used a mobile vet (far less stressful) or done them myself. What would her quality of life actually have been if she managed to survive the hospital? Wouldn't the pain subside after recovery? Of course I am fully aware there was almost no chance of recovery, especially with both of her limbs affected, and a high risk of any number of new or old things going wrong. I don't know enough about the treatment to know how bad or not bad it would have been, I keep trying to find out but it's triggering so much guilt to start reading things that could have potentially helped my baby girl that I just howl and go lay down on her favorite rug.

I would have been able to be with her 24/7 in the following weeks but you're both entirely right, at some point I might not have been there. I felt very lucky that I heard her cry of pain was able to get her to the vet as fast as possible. I had been using that as a way to beat myself up; that we got to her so quickly, maybe she could have improved. I did not connect that one day it might not be like that. But I feel I can argue against anything, I can come up with any reason why I didn't do the right thing unless I'm certain that I did. I loved her more than anyone on this planet.

Posts: 11
I'm so so sorry for your loss. I wish I could spare you the pain. I would have paid any price or given anything to save my baby. It's been over two years now and every time I think of him I still feel such raw pain inside. I don't think I'll ever fully heal.

I don't know a lot of the medical stuff, but I know that I made the best choice I could at the time. Even if by some miracle he made it through the surgery, he might have still been paralyzed in his legs due to lack of blood flow from the clot and chances were high that it would happen again. And as much as I would give anything for just one more day with him, I couldn't do that to him. I know he would have wanted to stay as much as I wanted him to, but I couldn't put him through that suffering. He'd already been through so much.

The best advice I can give is to be kind to yourself and to forgive yourself. You did the very best you could have done at the time. I know your girl knows that too. It's clear how much you loved her and I'm sure she loved you just as much. She wouldn't want you to torture yourself with guilt. She would want you to remember all the good happy times you had together.

I wish all the peace and healing for you.
- Sierra

Posts: 5
I hear you sweetie!! I understand that guilt. Those "what ifs" will always be there. I know i wonder sooo many things know i almost got turned away from my usual vet. I think everyday, what if that would have made a difference if i had to figure out somewhere eles to go...would he still be here.

I hear you...that pain that feeling of something that feels so empty.

I wish that more research will be available soon someday. None of our cats deserve that fate...none.

My vet also gave me a feeling of no hope too...that still bothers me.

But you know we have to let go one day and unfortunately under these terms.

Talking about it is a good way to help you relieve some pain. I will alwaYs be thankful for this forum. Looking at everyones situation made me feel like i didn't have to feel alone and let the guilt feeling eat away

You have every right to feel the need to shout at the universe.


Posts: 11
I completely agree, natashaz. I'm so thankful for this forum. It really made me feel not so all alone during the worst times. So I always try to check in too. I don't know if my words mean anything or help at all, but at least there's people to listen and care.

Posts: 11

You must take on board what everyone on here are saying. Do not beat yourself up over the decision to put your baby to sleep. 
Our beautiful burmese Oscar had a Saddle Thrombosis attack. Totally out of the minute fine, the next howling in agony. We rushed to vets, they sedated him as he was in so much pain the vet couldn't touch him. They came back with the diagnosis (something I'd never heard of) and said the only option was euthanasia. Our vet explained the trauma Oscar would be in if we tried to save him. And.....he said that no matter what they do, nine times out of ten the cat has another stroke which is even worse! So, bawling our eyes out, we decided euthanasia was best for our gorgeous boy even though we cried our eyes out for months later at the mere thought of what had happened, so so suddenly. 
I know a friend whose cat had this happen and she wasn't home at the time. She came home to find the cat dead in an empty bath.....autopsy revealed a clot/saddle thrombosis. My friend had been away overnight, so you can imagine the agony the cat went through with no one to help her. We can't be with them 24/7. You wouldn't have wanted this for your girl.
We all question our behaviour or choices over many things as time passes, but rest assured, your beloved cat is thanking you that you made the right choice for HER. 

Best wishes, stay strong,


Posts: 599
A lot depends on whether it was effecting both sides or just one and if it was a total block or partial.  My cat had a partial block and only one leg was effected by paralysis.  He recovered quickly and was not in the agonizing pain that most are in.  When he was put on blood thinners he went another 3 years with no problems.  His specialist said he was one in a million as most are in such excruciating pain they have no choice but to euthanize.  Had he been in that kind of pain I would have made the decision to euthanize.  As it turned out his heart was still going strong when I had him put to sleep for severe IBD that we were unable to treat due to his heart condition.  It all gets so complicated when there are multiple issues.  He even made it through a congestive heart failure episode and was fine.    

Posts: 2,437
Spacecat - to answer the question, yet the follow up checkups could have been with mobile vet and I understand that you could be there 24/7.  But I think the important piece to keep in mind that even if you were there - if/when your baby threw another clot and suffered that horrific pain again and you were there, it still would have taken you at least 10 minutes to get to the vet.  That is 10 minutes of pure agony for your baby.

I totally "get" the second guessing; questioning.  But I have felt that as we struggle to make sense of a situation that has no sense....we question everything.  But what I know to be true - I read the pain that you are feeling, so I know without a doubt that you made a decision on what is right for your baby with your heart.  Your head is now wanting to second guess but trust that your heart would never have let you make a decision that was not in your baby's best interest.

Please take comfort in knowing that you did not get bad advice and that you loved your baby enough to let them go; knowing that you would be left here hurting. You took that agonizing pain away from your baby and took it on yourself.

Take care

Posts: 5
I forced myself to eat today, I'm so weak I can barely type this. I'm still obsessing but I'm not crying as much. I've been afraid of blood clots ever since I learned about them many years ago. A sudden and excruciating death that can happen to you at any time with no warning...I never imagined a cat having one for some reason. It's preventable and treatable if discovered early in humans, to get there with cats more cats have to suffer.

Sierra, I'm touched that y'all are selflessly sticking around years later to help others. I know every time there's a post alert in this thread you all think of your kitties, I'm sorry to make you relive it. I don't know if I'll be strong enough to do that. I read so many stories yesterday that I wasn't just crying for my darling anymore, I was crying for every animal who met an early or upsetting end. Before I found this forum I was actually looking at grieving parent material because so many pet loss resources approached it in a way that bothered me (calling guardians/parents "owners" or needlessly acknowledging a pet is part of the family, they are even more than that to me and I just found it patronizing). I'm not religious so all I have are the words of kind people like you who went through this horrific experience themselves.

natashaz, we didn't know this vet and she said if this were her cat she'd put them to sleep. I thought well that's YOU before coming to the same conclusion. But this complete stranger, this lady who has to put animals to sleep every week, cried with us. I've never seen a vet cry. They have to be firm and hopeless because every second we spend thinking about the choice our babies are suffering.

julieuni, the story about your friend's cat--and everyone telling me the possibility of such a thing--has helped me more than anything else. I would be catatonic right now if she'd had prolonged suffering all alone, I would trade extra time to spare her that. Thank you.

pansy, you had such a strong, brave boy. Both of my cat's legs were paralyzed and I've never heard such noises before. She was dragging herself around the house in a frenzied loop as I was preparing her carrier. I took the top off and slid her in as gently as I could. She writhed around, trying to get into a less painful position, screaming and squeezing the door with her claws, squeezing my finger...she couldn't even look at me she was in so much pain.

I was very certain in the moment that it was the right decision. It wasn't until I'd slept on it that I started to wonder if I was just traumatized by seeing her like that and I just wanted it to stop, that I was selfish. I'm slowly coming back around but I still have questions. I'm going to compile a list and talk to a vet. If there's anything of note I'll post it here for the unlucky ones who come after me.

Thank you all.

Posts: 11

I'm glad my words have helped you. The day after having our boy euthanised, we too questioned the decision,  just like you are doing, so I think it's pretty normal to go through that. Everything is great in hindsight, with a crystal ball we could prevent and do a lot of things, unfortunately we don't have a crystal ball. 
I still miss my gorgeous boy who'd jump up on the bed and go straight under the covers with me and rest his head on my chest. He was simply superb.
It'll be 3 years in July that we lost Oscar. We talk about him all the time and I can now do so without tearing up. It takes a long time to get over the loss of a loved pet, but in time you will feel better. 
All the best in the days and months ahead.


Posts: 1
One of our cats had saddle thrombus due to an enlarged heart. It was very scary. Our vet said that his legs might have to be amputated and that if this were so, then we would need to choose between amputation and euthanasia. What a difficult choice to make! Thank goodness, we didn't need to make it! The next day, when we went to see how our cat was doing, we were told that we were lucky. Our cat needed neither to have his legs amputated or to be put to sleep. We brought our cat home with medication. He recovered. It took awhile to figure out what was the best way to give him his meds. He doesn't play with toys (it's too much exertion for him due to having heart disease), but he's enjoying life with his sister cat and best buddy cat, and he and his best buddy still know how to get into mischief. It's been two years now, much longer than we thought he would live. He's eight years old now. 
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