Registered: 1211914530 Posts: 7
I don't even know where to begin and I'm probably going to cry all the way through writing this, but I'm hoping that writing this down and getting support from people who understand how I feel will help me. I wanted a kitty ever since I was a very little girl, but my parents would never let me get one. There was always a reason... we didn't have a laundry room on the first floor to keep the litterbox, the cat would eat our guinea pig, I'm going to go off to college and have to leave her with my parents, etc. Instead what I got was a bedroom decorated with cats... seriously there were over 200 cats in that room between the wallpaper boarder, bedspread, and figurines my mom bought me. Animals and children have always been my passions in life so I decided that maybe I wanted to be a vet when I grew up so that I could be around animals all the time. I realized I couldn't bear to put an animal to sleep and wasn't sure if I even believed in euthanasia, so I went off to college to become an elementary school teacher.
Last September during my senior year I noticed that a couple of my neighbors had cats in my apartment building and suddenly thought that maybe this was finally my chance. I asked my two roommates about it and they loved the idea, so a couple days later I adopted a beautiful 5 year old named Fifi from the Wisconsin Humane Society. She had super soft velvety grey fur and green eyes so stunning that they cannot even be described in words. She cuddled up next to me in bed right away that first night and I was in love. I had waited 21 years for her to enter my life and being that she was only 5 years old, I was excited to think she would be with me when I graduate college, get married, and have children. She was a lover and adored people. We cuddled and napped together all the time. She would sit on my books and computer so that I would pet her instead of do my homework. She would somehow make her small 7 pound frame sound like a whole heard of elephants as she ran back and fourth across our apartment everyday to get her exercise. It was a highlight of my day and brought a smile and laugh everytime. She had a strange love for popcorn and deli turkey. She would drink water from her bowl by scooping it up with her paw and drink out of the toilet if I forgot to put the lid down. She was a strange, funny cat, but it only added to her charm and how special she was to me.
I went home to my parents house last week to get my wisdom teeth pulled and since I was going to be there for a week I brought my Fifi with me to keep me company while I recovered. She had come home with me on many prior occasions and was very comfortable in my parent's house. Last Thursday, my mom and I noticed that she hadn't been eating for a few days and looked thinner, so we made an appointment with the vet for early Friday morning. The way she struggled when trying to chew made it look like something was wrong with her throat or back teeth so I didn't think it was too serious. The vet didn't find anything obviously wrong in her mouth, although she did identify a heart murmur that I did not know about, and wanted to run some blood tests and x-rays. I left Fifi there to be tested and went home.
Two hours later I got a call that brought me instantly to hysterical crying. The vet found that she was in severe kidney failure. One of her kidneys was completely shriveled up and useless and the other was huge with all its levels through the roof. She had lost 2 pounds, which is a quarter of her weight, and was severely dehydrated. They said no matter how much she tried to drink she could never hydrate herself. I was told there was an extremely small chance that she would survive the $4000 treatment and that even if she did she would probably need to be given fluids intravenously everyday for the rest of her life. The vet said that currently she felt like she had a super bad hangover because of the dehydration and that to do nothing would lead to a slow painful death that would take about a week. I found myself with no good options: either I end her life or put her through treatment in a strange place with no one she knew where she would probably die anyway.
I was too in shock to make a decision right away so I took her home with me. The vet pumped her up with fluids to ease her pain as much as possible and told me I could come back the next day. She explained to me what would happen if I made the decision to put her to sleep and I made an appointment for 10:50 am the next day in case I made that choice. I cried, cuddled with her, and stayed up all night. I kept hoping for someone to offer me a better option but it never came. The clock ticked at me relentlessly until it was time to go to the vet if we were going to go. It was so hard to make that decision because Fifi really didn't seem that bad. She was eating canned tuna, but still not her cat food, and would sit by me on the couch or watch the animals outside through the screen door. But she drank water constantly (I even conceded leaving the toilet lid up so she could have that water too), was not as affectionate as usual, and she did not run around the house at all. While holding her she peed on me, which is something she would never do, and I knew it was because she was drinking so much water and that she was losing control of her functions. So I made the decision and carried her in a blanket out to the car crying like crazy. My dad and one of my roommates came with me for support. I cried and cried as a stroked her head and the injection went in. She went quickly and quietly and I soaked her fur in tears after she was gone.
I am still feeling all of the guilt and pain constantly as I wonder if I did the right thing. I drove back to my apartment alone the next day and continue to cry daily. I have trouble sleeping in my bed because she is not there next to me like she is supposed to be. This morning was the first time I spent a lot of time in my apartment alone and I cried for hours. I went on this website, which was referred to me by my vet, and cried as I read everything there was to read. The idea of the rainbow bridge has already helped me a lot because I can picture her in a better place and know that I will see her again. I just feel like my friends don't understand that pets are as important as people to me and that for me this is like losing a child. I wear her collar on my wrist as a bracelet. The little bell on it is a constant reminder, which is good as well as torture, but if I weren't wearing it I would be hearing that sound all the time in my head and thinking it was her. Wow, this ended up really long and I doubt anyone is going to read all this, but I think it did help me to tell Fifi's story.
Registered: 1183436105 Posts: 296
Gosh, I am so very sorry for your loss! What a shock it must have been for you, as you've said, she was 5 yrs. old and you expected her to be with you during all your life experiences.
There are no words to ease your pain right now. I, too, am slowly coming to realize that my beloved husky mix, Kirby, may be nearing the end of his days as well. I should take comfort in the fact that he is, after all, shy of 14 yrs. old, which is a good long life for a big dog, yet my heart is still breaking, as I force his arthritis and thyroid meds down his throat, as he is so smart, he will spit them out if I try to give them with food. I feel so bad doing this, but it's the only way I know that he will get his meds. For days, I was finding pills scattered all over the house, so now I have to do it myself. Grieve as long as you have to. Maybe, when you feel a little better, you can think about taking on another kitty. It is damned hard to come home to an empty house. Take care of yourself, you did the right thing! Your kitty is no longer suffering. Laura
Registered: 1197250967 Posts: 258
Oh, Fifi's Mom!
My heart is breaking for you as I read your post! I am so very sorry for your loss, and the terrible shock that news of your precious Fifi's advanced illness must have been for you! Please know that you made the most loving and unselfish decision that you possibly could for your sweet girl. And also that the love that you gave her during your time together made her so happy...maybe happier than she had ever been before. The two of you had an instant bond and that connection will last always. I understand and can relate to the overwhelming sadness that a loss like this brings. I lost my Shih Tzu, Max, in December, when I too had to send him on to the Bridge ahead of me. It has been nearly 6 months and I still miss him every day. He was my heart-dog, as Fifi was your heart-cat. I am glad that you have found this wonderful site, and hope that you continue to come here for comfort. Write whatever is in your heart...2 sentences or 200 - I can guarantee that they will be read and thought about and replied to. I found this site the day my Max died, and the wonderful, caring people here are what has gotten me through. You and your sweet Fifi will be in my thoughts and prayers. She is with you always. Warm Hugs, MaxsMom ~ Joanne
Registered: 1194492978 Posts: 5,100
First of all, Sarah,
I read every single word of your post and I am crying with you over the loss of your beloved kitty, Fifi. Oh, it hurts so very badly to lose a little furbaby! All the unconditional love they give so freely, all the devotion, all the companionship is gone, and we are bereft and inconsolable. We have all walked in your shoes. I am so very sorry for your loss. I wish there were some magic words I could say to lessen your pain, for I would surely shout them from the rooftop so they would reach you. But, there is only one way to deal with grief....to simply let it wash over you, cry whenever you feel like it, scream if you have to, seek out the comfort of friends and family who love you. And, COME HERE to post and share stories of your beloved. We ALL understand the pain you are feeling, dear. I am curious about one thing. What was the $4000 treatment the vet wanted to do? It sounds as if your baby may have been born with a kidney malformation, so I was just wondering. But, it also sounds like she was so gravely ill. You are so lucky you had such a caring vet. But, I want you to know you did nothing wrong. You loved Fifi with all of your heart and soul. I can't imagine another kitty that was so very wanted and so "planned for" for so very long. You were so blessed to have found each other even though the time was short. And, Sarah, she felt every bit of your love, even as she passed. And,she still does. My little beloved terrier, Betsy, passed just four months ago, and I still sing and talk to her when I miss her the most. Sometimes that helps. Also, sleeping with their blanket or toys can be comforting, as well. Please tell us more about your Fifi when you feel up to it. Maybe, even post a photo of her. We will be here for you. You are not alone. Hugs, Melissa Betsy's forever mom
Registered: 1175512324 Posts: 76
I am so very sorry for your loss... Because of what is happening to my Wizard and how he's feeling this evening, I was nearly in tears anyway.... But I cried all through your story.
I'm turely sorry. How long did you end up having her? I've had my Wizard since Kittenhood and have suffered through the loss of 3 other cats durring that time. But Wizard was my special boy, totally best (and often only) true friend and companion. Due to an accident and surgeries, I've been somewhat of a recluse for a few years and in a depression. Wizard (or Wizzy) was always there for me sitting on my paperwork, my computer and so forth to get attention.. Or, walking aimlessly back in forth in front of or on the keyboard for attention. I always had to spot and pet him. He is also a talkative kitty... Not meowing all the time, but conversing! I'm say something, he's answer and sometime continue. Then he would patiently wait for my reply. Now, with his kidney failing, I have but a few days before it starts to get painful for him so'll be putting him to sleep soon it seems. So, I've taken him out for walks (he was an indoor kitty all his life) and he's done some exploring over the last few days... He's been thrilled about it. I've fed him his Deli Sara Lee Turkey Breast that he love until he lost the taste of it... I've made hamburgs on the gril, large for me, small for him and came in to eat with him... I've even taken over 200 pictures of him enjoying his final days and, ready for this, recorded several conversations with him and saved them on my computer... I'll always have his sweet voice, his pictures and his memories. So, I can relate... I'll be devistated soon.... Please keep in touch with me.... Maybe it will help to share our grief and try to encourage each other since we loved out kitties so and lost them for the same reason. Again, I'm sorry for your loss. Bob D Wizzard's Daddy I've Booked My Room In Heaven Daddy... They're Ready When I am..... I'm sorry but I have to leave soon.... I'll miss you Daddy but I'll keep an eye on you.... Please save another kitten and treat him like you treated me all these years... Promise me Daddy, Promise me! I’ll see you again someday and this time forever…. I’ll send your love to Demon, Merlin and Putty Tat when I get there. Please be strong Daddy…..
Registered: 1208508336 Posts: 820
To Fifis mom
Please don't feel guilty. I did the pts thing in January and I howled when I read your webpage. I still feel down some days. My Rupert had kidney failure and he was 15. Friends don't understand the love we have for our fur friends. Come to this web site to talk. I have so much sadness some days and it has been 17 weeks. I miss him soooo much talking about him is so hard. I wanted to go with him when he died as I felt so sad. I couldn't get out of bed or eat. My kids got me going. Kids are like that, they were worried about me. He was my best friend and companion and Fifi was your friend too. One day I will probably get another cat but the pain is still too raw. The love for animals will get you through this and one day you will love another who needs your love. You gave Fifi a loving home she might never of had if not for you. Don't be too hard on yourself. Grieving is very painful. A pyschic told me animals go to a lovely place and we will see them when we die. She told me Ruperts spirit was around me and he was comforting me. That helped me to heal a little. She was sent to you to show you unconditional love but her time here was over and she had to return home. She took a piece of your heart as did Rupert take a piece of mine. Thinking of you, you are not alone in this. Ruperts Mum
Registered: 1205159567 Posts: 1,015
Dear Sarah (Fifi’s Mom) - I’m so very sorry to hear about your sweet little Fifi. It’s always so hard when they are so young. 5 years ago we lost our 4½ year old Bernese Mountain dog Bingo and my heart is still broken over it. She was just a baby. But more recently my 21+ year old kitty Rusty left me suddenly on Feb. 16, 2008. Everyone keeps reminding me – he was old and led a wonderfully long life . . . and all that is true, but it still doesn’t change the fact that he left me unexpectedly and he’s forever gone from my physical presence. But I know now that we do not have to suffer with our grief and sadness alone. PL has been a life saver for me and I hope you find the same comfort as I and so many others have by coming here and sharing our stories – which we lovingly read, word for word. I know the complete and utter grief you felt when you watched that injection go into your Fifi’s body as I watched them do the same to my Rusty – oh the pain and anguish I felt is like nothing else I’ve ever known, and I can so understand your sorrow. But p lease try to believe it was a gift you gave to Fifi by setting her free from her ill little body. Your Fifi’s time on this earth may have been short, but I’m sure it was filled with a lifetime of love, and for that, you can be sure she’s so grateful. She will have taken that gratitude with her and tucked it safely into her heart, as you’ll take her love, her wonderful little antics and keep those safely in yours. Rest assured though, your baby is safely at the Rainbow Bridge, playing with her new friends, including Rusty, who loves all animals great and small. To our earth angels who have gone before us to the Rainbow Bridge. . . until we meet again . . . we love and miss you so . . . Warm hugs Sarah, Rusty’s Mom – Allison.
Registered: 1206744372 Posts: 174
I am so sorry for your loss of Fifi. We are never ready for these babies to die and the first few weeks are shock, disbelief, sadness, guilt and hopefully for some of us acceptance. My loss of 2 kitties in 6 months this year has left me devastated too. One was expected and she was quite old, the younger one Sherry died of acute kidney failure and went down rapidly until she had to be put to sleep because the disease was so advanced. I have enormous guilt over this because my husand and I waited too long to get her to the vets. Her life was cut short a lot sooner than it had to be and she suffered in convulsions at the end. Those last horrible moments haunt me and probably will forever. Keep posting because the people here understand and want to share this difficult time with you and give all the support you need.
Registered: 1207914495 Posts: 38
Hello Fifis mom; I am so so sorry to read of the loss of your beloved Fifi; The Pain and sorrow you feel I wish I could take away!!So I send you Love Hugs!!!instead, I am crying with you as this is what happened to my Black Scottie Molly on 8th April 08;and it is so unbearable and I still cant believe she is gone as she just went of her food for a few day,s also; and Lucy went to the Bridge yesterday;; so please believe you have come to the right place; there are wonderful people here you can get some great advice and comfort in knowing we all share the same thing in common;; we care and love our Precious Angels greatly; you and Fifi are in my thoughts and Prayers;; Marion. Lucy and MOLLYSMUM.
Registered: 1194654202 Posts: 881
My heart is with you and how I know your pain. I'm so very sorry you lost your precious Fifi. Please don't feel guilty for not wanting her to suffer..you truly gave her her wings so her spirit could fly. And bless you for rescuing an older cat. You gave her bragging rights at the Bridge over how much she was loved .... the wonderful home you gave her and how you waited just for her to come into your life after 21 years.
My Cicio also came from the Wisconsin Humane Society. I'm sure she's already found Fifi so they can both talk about their Wisconsin moms. This will be a very difficult time for you..it's an enormous loss...take care of yourself. We're here to help as much as we can. Sending many hugs, Donna
Registered: 1211851862 Posts: 8
I am so sorry for your loss. I just had to make that decision myself with my Standared Poodle Ishta. It was so hard because like you I looked into her eyes and knew she was dying. We didn't know what was wrong with her which made it really hard. What if it could be treated, what if, lots of what if's. But, I knew looking at her that I had done all I could and now I had to let her go. I am still crying, but it does get better, I just think of all the good times and look at her pictures thinking about how she would feel about the squirrels have taken over her yard since she left this Memorial Day.
Registered: 1211914530 Posts: 7
Thank you all soooo much for your kind words and support. Being here with all of you is really helping me heal after this devastating loss. I'm still crying for Fifi everyday but reading all of your stories and knowing that I am not alone in how I feel has given me so much hope for getting through this. I am looking forward to adopting another kitty from the Wisconsin Humane Society, although I think it will be some time before I am ready.
Here is a picture of Fifi... I hope I've attached it right so you all can see my beautiful baby girl.
Registered: 1175185691 Posts: 104
Fifi is beautiful. I am so sorry for your loss. I read all your post and know how you feel. I lost Pip aged 2 of a stroke. I lost Fred to kidney failure, it is a horrible disease, they waste away confused and if I am honest Fred should have been let go sooner than I was willing to - but my pets are the only children I can have. YOU DID THE BEST thing for Fifi - your little friend never deserved to suffer and you made sure she didn't. Fifi knew a lot a love in her time with you.
It will get better in time. Good wishes to you.
Registered: 1194492978 Posts: 5,100
Oh, she is simply
gorgeous. I can see why you fell so hard when you first laid eyes on her. Sending hugs and support, Melissa Betsy's forever mom
Registered: 1211242652 Posts: 355
I just read your post (every word of it) about your beloved Fifi and I want to send my heartfelt condolences to you on your loss. Fifi is a beautiful girl. My heart and prayers go out to you. I truly can relate to many of the things you wrote also.
I lost my cat Cheeseburger (age 10) on May 4th 2008 and I am devastated. I cry everyday for him. I miss him so much. He was my baby, my friend, my sweet handsome boy. My Cheesey's illness seemed to come on so quickly. I keep questioning myself: did I miss something somewhere? could I have done more? That week I really began to notice that he wasn't eating much, looked thinner, wasn't interested in playing or being brushed (which he loved,) and he was hiding in strange places. I took him to the vet on Saturday May 3, 2008 and that night he was in the hospital. The first tests they ran showed lung cancer that probably began somewhere else and had spread to his lungs. We also had to make the decision as to what to do. I could not let my baby suffer; it was hard for him to breath even with the oxygen. I held him in my arms when he crossed over. I find it hard to sleep in my bedroom because when I went to sleep, so did Cheesey (of course he had first pick as to where he wanted to sleep on the bed! - I just worked myself around him.) I usually sleep over by my Mom's house now. I wear Cheesey's name tag on a chain around my neck, and I still look for him in all of his favorite places. All of his things are unmoved; his water and food bowls ( I even still fill up the water bowl everyday), his blankies, his leopard sofa bed - I cannot bring myself to put away any of his toys either. I feel so lost without him and one way I find some refuge, some comfort, is when I think of the 10 wonderful years Cheesey was with me and how much love and happiness he gave to me. He shared my life and my heart, through good times and bad - no matter what, he was there for me, and no matter how down I was, I could look in his beautiful gold eyes, stroke his soft white and black fur, feel his soothing purr, and find peace, comfort and love in him. He always made me smile. And now I apologize for my lengthy reply. I just felt a real connection to so many of the things in your post about Fifi and I needed to write. I am also finding writing is a healing outlet for my grief. Please know you have friends here that care and understand. This is an absolutely wonderful website with so many supportives, caring people. If you ever need me here is my e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Dee Cheeseburger's Mom
Dee and Cheese - Unconditional LOVE
Registered: 1197250967 Posts: 258
Thank you for sharing the photo. Fifi is just beautiful! Her little face looks so sweet and affectionate...like the love just radiates from it! And...since you were taking the picture...that look of perfect love and contentment was for you! That love never leaves. Warmly, MaxsMom
Registered: 1211860763 Posts: 139
I am deeply sorry to hear that this has happened to you and your beloved friend. Never second guess yourself when you are thinking about how it ended. You loved your Fifi and made a decision that is breaking your heart but you did it for her. This is a wonderful site and the people and their furbabies are wonderful and soooooo comforting. I put my girl down on Sunday (golden retriever) so I understand the pain that your in right now. I think it helps to talk to the people that have been through this before us. I find that they have some good ideas and the support is wonderful.
I read your whole post and think that you are so lucky in that you had the opportunity to have the cat you always dreamed of and Fifi was lucky that you picked her up and brought her home. Seems to me like she knew it by the way she showed you her love. Wanting to be next to you whenever she could so just know that even though your time with her was short you gave her a wonderful life and she gave you more. You'll always miss her but they tell me that once you get through the pain the memories come back as sweet as when she was here. I'll keep you in my thoughts and hope you find the peace you need for the decision you made out of love.
Registered: 1197081544 Posts: 686
Oh honey, I am so terribly sorry. Your Fifi is such a beautiful girl. I know how much you are hurting and the intense loss you are feeling. I lost my kitty, Gus, in December. He was only 3 yrs. old. I still miss him so much.
I wish I had some magic words to ease your pain. Grief takes time. Give yourself time to cry, spend time on this website, look at pictures of your precious Fifi--anything that helps you. Just know that we are here for you. Hugs and prayers Kate (Gus' mom)
Registered: 1208278231 Posts: 199
I am so sorry for the lost of your beautiful Fifi. I wish I could take your hurt and pain away. Sadly, we all know how you feel.
It's a horrible feeling that we have to deal with when you lose our angels. Just know that your Fifi is in a better place and that she loves you. My calico kitty angel had to be put to sleep on 4/13/08 due to kidney failure. I'm still trying to figure out what to do will all my pain. We are here to listen. Big Hug, Piggy's Mom
Registered: 1211914530 Posts: 7
Thank you so much to everyone who has read Fifi's story and posted their kind words of support. Seeing that so many people have taken the time to read my baby's story and put her and I in their thoughts has helped me in ways I cannot begin to thank you for. I find myself crying a little less each day when I think about her and smiling instead about our fond memories. I will definitely be adopting another kitty sometime in the next few months and although sometimes I want to rush out and get one right now, I know that I need to wait until I am truly ready. Until then I know I just need to keep myself busy because the hardest time for me is when I am alone in my apartment.
I love reading all of your stories about your babies and am so glad I found this place where animal lovers can come together!
Registered: 1208278231 Posts: 199
I had the same problem. I live alone and I am still trying to keep myself busy so I don't "really" have time to think about it. I guess it's a way of fooling ourselves. :(
I have two other cats that have been my saviors. They have been more affectionate since my Piggy left me. I'm really sorry about your Fifi - she is beautiful and you are right about her eyes. I can see why you fell in love with her. BIG HUG, Piggy's Mom