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GinaXOXO

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Posts: 28
 #1 
Jasmine didn't have any known problems with her heart.  Just two years ago my vet told me that her heart and brain were great and that Jasmine she wasn't worried about her heart or brain.  I was so happy to hear it.  Just 3 weeks ago Jasmine had her yearly checkup and got her vaccinations.  The Vet didn't mention anything about her heart or lungs.  When the Vet asked how Jasmine was feeling I mentioned that Jasmine gets seasonal allergies.  She was willing to give her a prescription but I wanted to wait.  I didn't like giving Jasmine medicine. A week ago I called and asked for a prescription.  She wasn't biting her feet like she did normally when an allergy started but was sneezing and hacking.  I now realize that was a symptom of a heart problem and not allergies.

The medicine didn't help.  Jasmine was mostly herself but more tired until the last two days of her life.  The night before she died Jasmine coughed and hacked and seemed to be trying to vomit or cough something up -- it lasted a while and she started shaking afterward.  The other times she coughed and hacked it she'd just lick or smack her lips.  This time it seemed involuntary and I could see her abs constricting with the sneezes.  Her eyes watered afterward and I had never seen that before.

That episode made me decide to take Jasmine to the vet the next morning.  It seemed like she had a cold.  During the night she vomited yellow foam.  Because of COVID I had to drop her off.  The Vet called and told me that it wasn't good and that Jasmine had fluid on her heart and lungs.  There was so much fluid that she couldn't tell what caused it from the XRays.  She was going to administer medicine to get rid of the fluid but Jasmine passed within the hour.  

As I read the stories here I am struck by how many pets had fluid on their heart, lungs, abdomen.  It also seems like a lot of pets didn't show symptoms until just days prior to their passing.  Is this something that is common?  

I don't think her heart could have gone bad so quickly.  So, I feel there is another reason for fluid to come on suddenly like this.  What is your experience?  Is this common with pets?  She was 13.5 so maybe her body was just tired and shutting down.  She still played and did some things she normally did but she was more and more lethargic. She clearly wasn't feeling well but she also didn't seem like she was close to death.  Also, all week she slept really well.  She panted, coughed, licked a bit, and then slept like a rock.   


Heidi4907

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Posts: 39
 #2 
It happened to my cat boy. I noticed his abdomen looked bigger and felt firm. For him it was cancer. I had the fluid tapped twice but both times it came back in a few days. It did make him feel better and gave me some time to say goodbye, but I had him for only 2 weeks after noticing the fluid. I hadn't heard about it either. The cancer diagnosis was devastating. Lost him 6 weeks ago 
GinaXOXO

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Posts: 28
 #3 
Heidi, did you notice anything after the diagnosis that you explained away previously??  Normally, when Jasmine and I got up in the morning it started with a belly rub.  I'd have Alexa play a Partridge Family song (I think I love you) and I would sing to her and rub her belly and scratch her ears.  It was a great way to start the morning.  I kind of stopped that without intentionally stopping.  I've started asking myself why and realized that I started a few times and she'd roll back on her feet so I would take her outside believing her need to go outside was greater than her need for a belly rub.  Now I wonder if it kind of hurt her.  If her lungs and heart were full of fluid it makes sense that my rubbing would have been too much pressure.  That would mean that this didn't start suddenly but it also makes sense looking back.

Was there anything that you look back and say ooohhh --- I explained this away but it was a sign.

I'm not punishing myself over this I am just realizing something that didn't make sense before.  

I also wonder if the fluid built up before and she somehow naturally was able to fight it.  There were times when I picked her up that she seemed uncomfortable.  It could have been a full bladder.  If she was napping in the evening I'd take her outside for one last chance to go potty before going to bed.  Often she was a little stiff so I carried her outside.  Her bladder would have been full at that time so maybe that is all it was.  
Heidi4907

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Posts: 39
 #4 
Coco took meds for IBD and had trouble with constipation which was taken care of with Miralax. Both were adjusted as needed, if I noticed discomfort or if poop looked too hard. A couple times in the last few months his eyes looked squinty, which I later learned is a sign of pain. I'd noticed it started to take time for him to get situated sometimes. Occasionally he would lie down next to me and very quickly get up and try again. I mentioned this to the vet last October and nothing came of it. I guess she felt his belly? She thought he probably had some degree of arthritis. His appetite changed a couple weeks before diagnosis; not wanting wet food as much but eating dry. It seems sometimes that would happen, then back to normal. I took him to the vet because I noticed he looked bigger, and his belly felt kind of firm. His weight was up a pound in one month, from 19.4 to 20.4 lbs.  Somehow I didn't expect it to be anything serious. In the last few weeks he wasn't running after the laser dot as usual, but about once a week or so he'd race full speed through the apartment. I hated taking him to the vet, because he hated going, and nothing seemed urgent until the weight gain. He'd slept in my closet a few times (could be the IBD?), but by morning would be in bed with me. I did noticed, when he was sleeping at my feet, that if I repositioned myself he wouldn't budge. Normally he'd get up and wait for me to reposition and then lie down again. He was still always a big lover. I would say I had some concern but wasn't thinking he was near the end. More that it was a big cat getting older. I've had trouble with blaming myself, as several people here do, so I'm trying not to dwell on anything. It's hard not to. I compare it to reading a mystery. Once you get to the end you can't figure out how you hadn't put the pieces together. 
Heidi4907

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Posts: 39
 #5 
P.S I had a cat who got fluid around is heart, in the pericardial sack, from cancer.
GinaXOXO

Registered:
Posts: 28
 #6 
 Normally he'd get up and wait for me to reposition and then lie down again.


Awe, that is so sweet!!  Isn't it so precious how patient and accomodating they were with us??  

She thought he probably had some degree of arthritis. '

That is interesting, that is what my Vet thought too.  That is a problem with inflammation so it makes sense that other inflammation would arise, doesn't it?

but about once a week or so he'd race full speed through the apartment.

Yep, the day before Jasmine died we spent the mid-morning outside and she ran around the house like she didn't have a problem in the world.  I didn't like giving her medicine but for the last week of her life she spent a lot of time with her tail down.  I thought it was seasonal allergies. But, she definitely could rally.  The night before she died she suddenly started barking and running from door to door.  She had done that once before and when I let her out, thinking she had lost her mind, I smelled a skunk.  Well, the night before she died she did the same thing and sure enough I smelled a skunk when I let her out.  Her oxygen wasn't good but she was still protecting us.  

I've had trouble with blaming myself, as several people here do, so I'm trying not to dwell on anything. It's hard not to. I compare it to reading a mystery. Once you get to the end you can't figure out how you hadn't put the pieces together. 

I agree.  At this point I'm not really trying to blame myself.  At first, I was.  But, as I sit here thinking I start to wonder -- could this be why she did this or that.  If I am right and she had fluid building up before isn't it amazing that she was able to repair herself without intervention?  And, sometimes I'd swear that she would weigh two pounds more when I picked her up and then go right back to normal.  I thought it was a full bladder and sometimes worried if she had a problem with her kidneys.  A different picture is starting to evolve.

Thank you for sharing!!
Heidi4907

Registered:
Posts: 39
 #7 
I read something interesting about the blame/guilt part of the grieving process. It makes us feel that we could have had power over what happened, so in a way we feel less helpless. We think if we'd have done something differently they'd still be here.
I think for Coco the fluid build up was the end stage of his cancer. It was carcinomatosis. The pressure of the fluid seemed to be what made him feel bad.

Thanks you for sharing too.
GinaXOXO

Registered:
Posts: 28
 #8 
That makes sense.  I wanted to protect her.  I think I am at peace, mostly.  Or, at least I am today.  I might have missed something but I don't think whatever it was would have made much of a difference in her life.  And, that is something the Vet told me.  She was almost 14 and she knew she was loved.  We gave her a good life.  I didn't want her to have pain.  Prior to last week she didn't have much pain -- she might have had arthritis in her legs and struggled with going down steps. She was starting to have hearing problems.  She still could hear but not well.  There were a couple of times I was teased her that her hearing problem was a good thing -- she could not hear thunderstorms or the train.  I started to notice that when I pet her that I startled her.  So, I was more careful to make sure she saw me before I pet her. 

She must have had a high pain tolerance.  While we were on vacation last month she was bitten by a dog at the sitters.  It was a large bite that turned into a big scar where her hair didn't grow.  It had to be painful but she sure didn't let on.  You'd think nothing happened if you didn't see the big scab.  

I worried about her a lot.  I saw signs of her failing and did not want that for her.  That said, I didn't, and still don't think it was quite her time to go but I also don't think she would have been around much longer if this wouldn't have taken her first.   She was our soul mate and I loved being her Mommy.  I miss her.  But, I took good care of her.  She took good care of me too. 

It does seem there are a lot of people who lost their pets to a sudden problem with fluid on their organs.  I tend to think their heart problems are not easy to detect.  I think that is why it seems so sudden.  
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