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We lost our feline Louis somewhat unexpectedly this week. He and his brother Bubba found us when they were about 8 months old about 2 years ago and we began feeding them from our back porch. Bubba became quite the homebody but Louis would venture back out into the wild for days and weeks at a time. As of April of 2017 Louis went off again and this time he was gone for months until this past December 2017. When he returned I had a time getting him to stick around for a bit but he did and my wife and I decided that since we had them both back we would take them in to the vet to have them fixed and get them checked out in hopes of making them indoor/outdoor cats. Mostly outdoor. When we took them to the vet in early January of 2018 I dropped them off and returned to find the vet telling me that Louis was having a little trouble with his respiration and she gave him a shot to help him and to hopefully protect against what could have been a virus. We weren’t sure at the time. So after their neutering and checkup we brought them back home and kept them indoors for 12 days to heal up. Bubba did very well and had a little swelling for maybe a day or two. Louis had more swelling for almost a week but it eventually subsided and we sent them back outside. It was cold so we would always bring them in at night and at any time it got below 35 or so degrees. All seemed well with Louis other than the minor breathing issue the vet had enlightened me on. I kept close watch of him as he seemed fine for 3-4 more weeks. He was eating ALOT and they had always been aggressive towards each other so it was all we could do to keep them from fighting but we did. I say that to elude to the fact that he was very active and did not seem any more sick. He was due for his booster shot on the week that he died and I intended on taking him on my day off. He began to not eat as much starting Tuesday but he was still moving pretty good so I thought that if I took him in Thursday (my day off) he could get his shot and would get to feeling better. By Wednesday morning he had grown more lethargic and had little to no interest in his food. I had to go to work so I thought he would be fine until the morning when I was going to take him in. My wife got off work at 2:30 and I asked her to go out and check on him because I had to work till 5. When she got home she found him lying on his side and struggling to breathe. She called me and I rushed home to take him in to the emergency vet. I did my best to make it a comfortable 10 minute ride for him reclining my seat back as my wife drove while I sat him on my chest and let him decide how he wanted to lay there. He really always did very well in the car. When we got to the emergency room they took him for an X-ray and determined that there was irreversible damage to his lungs, too much inflammation, and too much fluid for his lungs to fully recover. He was in pain and crying out at this point and his temperature had dropped as his gums were blueing up. Upon the vets professional advice we decided to put him out of his pain and euthanize him. We took him home in a box for a proper burial as he deserved for being such a sweet, beautiful boy. I will be carving out a headstone for him soon. I am absolutely devastated. I am dealing with guilt as much as grief thinking that there could have been something I did wrong. Thinking that if I would have not hesitated a day to take him in that he would still be alive. I joined this group because I need closure and a professional opinion on what could have caused such sudden death in this 3 year old cat. Any help is greatly appreciated, please avoid negative feedback as I don’t know if I can bear it. I don’t really expect that from this group anyway. I really would just like an experienced vet or anybody who may have had a similar experience to give us more of an explanation as we seek closure. I would also like to do a candlelit vigil for him so please fill me in on that. Thank you. -Jon&Amanda
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