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Posts: 5
I don't even know where to begin, my heart cat Willie is gone and I feel am the cause. He was diabetic and over the course of nearly 2 1/2 years we cared for him, or at least what seemed like enough at the time, but was it? I am struggling with the tremendous guilt of "did I do enough," did I make right decisions in his health care. I am sooo tormented along with just the extreme sadness of losing my sweet boy. He began to sucum to the devestaing effects of his illness this September. The insulin did not seem to be helping, and he continued to lose weight at a rapid pace. He had been missing his cat pan for about 6 months, and we tried everything a bigger box, and easier box to get in and out of, we even used a storage box for under the bed because we thought it would be easier for him to get in and out of. We even put a pan in the bathtub so if he missed it was OK. We ended up discontinuing the insulin shots so that we can give him the treats and food that he loved as we thought he was close to the end of his life, and also we thought he would eat more, and gain weight. He didn't like the special food that he had to eat, he ate it because it was there. The routine of his medical care became a part of our lives and while they were frustrations at times and difficulties we did it and we did it for him. But did I give up too soon? What more could I have done, if I didn't temporarily stop the insulin shots would I have had more time with my boy? When we took him to be seen in August he had an infection in his mouth, and lost a tooth, he was given antibiotics and really bounced back. But he started to decline again in mid October, but I couldn't let him go. His vet and a vet friend of ours both told us that they felt there were underlining issues because when we started him back on insulin a week ago he became sick, and did not have the reaction they expected. We made the decision to put him to rest on Monday, November 27, just shy of his 15th Birthday. I needed closure so I went and spoke with his vet just yesterday and asked her again if we made the right decision, she said we did and felt there was another issue, outside of diabetes that was affecting his weight loss. In the course of explaining his condition and what was most likely happening to his body and underlining issues there was a comment that stated "he was starving from the inside" that's why even though he was eating and begging for food he wasn't gaining any weight. At his healthiest he was 17 pounds and when we got his diabetes in remission he was about 15 pounds and at the end of his life he was barely 9 pounds. And now all I can do is focus on that, my god did I starve my cat to death?! What if I placed them back on the insulin sooner and gave it more time? My God, I feel like it's my fault, I am so sorry, I just want him back, do things differently, have more time. I am at such a loss, it is unbearable, but I truly feel I deserve this pain, for not giving my special friend another chance, for not doing more.

Posts: 438
Guilt is a crazy thing.  There are so many "what ifs". I have been in your shoes quite a few times.  You do not deserve this pain, none of us do, but we unknowingly (or knowingly) sign up for it when we bring our babies home.  You did all you could do and loved him until the end and beyond.  You can't change anything now.  Willie is healthy, in the arms of his creator now.  He knows you did everything you could for him.  You will see him again one day.  Until then, grieve for him, miss him and look to the stars to talk to him.  Light a candle.  Do whatever feels right to honor him in death as you loved him in life.  I promise there will be a day when you don't cry every day.  You will start to smile at the memory of him.  The bad will fade over time.  It takes a long time, but your love for him will live forever.  You are in my prayers.

Scruffy 1998-2004
Gimli    2005-2007

Posts: 5
Thank you scruffysmom, your words are so kind and I appreciate you sharing with me. I am so thankful for you and others that are also willing to share their stories and experiences when I know it's so hard. So thank you again. The pain is so substantial.

Posts: 22
Hi WilliesMom.  I saw some of your posts in other topics and I'm glad you started a topic in memory of your beloved kitty Willie.
I can definitely relate to your struggles.  My Bella was also diabetic, for the last 3 years of her life.  I would have done anything for my sweet girl, and I did my best with the insulin injections and all that goes along with that.  I wasn't perfect with it though.  There were definitely times I should have taken her out for an extra walk and gotten an additional sample of urine to test her BG.  There were times when her appetite was low or she didn't want to eat and I would skip the injection completely instead of taking the time to call the vet and ask how much to give her under the circumstances.  We do our best but we also aren't professional medical technicians and most of us also have to work or have other commitments to family and whatnot that take up some of our time.  Bella's care consumed most of my waking hours when I was not at my job.  It's so much work and we do it willingly because of how much love our animals.  And we always second guess.
It does sound like Willie had some major health problems outside of the diabetes. Poor kitty lost so much weight.  Friend, even if it was a side effect of the diabetes I would say that's a sign that generally the insulin wasn't doing what it was supposed to do, over a long period of time.  Not just a few weeks of allowing him treats and whatnot while skipping the injections.  You just wanted him to have some enjoyment!  The special diets are no fun, Bella was on them for a long time and also only ate it b/c it was there not because she loved it.  I highly doubt any of that hurt him and it sounds like he was at a point where his health was already deteriorating without much chance of getting better.  That's so wonderful you were so patient with him, setting up different littler boxes.  You tried so hard!  Many pet owners would have put their animal to sleep as soon as there were accidents in the house.  You really did your best and he was lucky to have you.
Take care of yourself and try to stop beating yourself up.  You made a valiant effort.  Willie would never want you to be so sad.  xx

Posts: 5
Thank you BrooklynDogMom, for your kind words, they have truly helped. It's difficult, we always seek answers, that sometimes never come, but so wonderful we, and this community, can help each other through these tough times.
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