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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Mystic the Cat Update


Some of you have been asking on Facebook how my cat Mystic is doing, so here is a quick update. The short answer is: Not great, but as well as can be expected. The long answer is as follows...

Basically, he's dying. Thankfully, he is--for the moment at least--doing it slowly and without a great deal of discomfort. In fact, he mostly seems pretty content.

Not feeling well is exhausting.
 He has lost a LOT of weight, though, which is never a good sign with a cat. He used to weigh over 18 lbs, back in the day, and for many years was stable at about 16.8 (after changing his food). At his checkup a couple of weeks ago, he weighed 12.7 lbs. That means he's lost about a quarter of his body weight. Not good. So a big part of the struggle these days is getting him to eat. While he still nibbles on his prescription dry food, mostly he is eating Friskies and Meow Mix wet food, which he thinks is grand. Although the cats as a whole get fed twice a day, he now gets lots of small meals in between.

If he is interested in eating, he gets food.
 He's on a number of meds, including prednisone, Miralax and a stool softener to deal with his chronic constipation, and an antacid (a liquid he hates) that he gets right before bed because his tummy gets upset when it gets too empty. The last couple of nights I've actually gotten up and fed him in the middle of the night, but I'm not sure how often that's going to happen. Yawn.

To be fair, ONE of these is Magic's Cosequin for her arthritis.
When we went to the vet in January, his blood tests showed the beginnings (just stage one, not even worth doing anything about) of kidney failure. The tests last time showed it was much more advanced, so he is now getting subq fluids at home every other day, or whenever I can get someone to come over and hold him. He may be down to 12.7 lbs, but all of it is stubborn muscle :-)

Essentially, what it comes down to is that his system is slowing down/breaking down. Some of this is the end stage of years of irritable bowel syndrome, and some of it, perhaps, is due to something we haven't found--my vet thinks it is possible that there is some sort of underlying cancer, like leukemia. To be honest, the cause doesn't matter, since all we can do is treat the symptoms and keep him as comfortable as possible.

It is, needless to say, heartbreaking to watch him go downhill. When we lost his mom last year, it was pretty drastic over the course of a couple of months. This is more of a downward slide, and as always, unless something truly drastic happens, the hard part will be figuring out when it is no longer fair to him to keep fighting. Until then, however, he is worth all the time and effort, and we will keep fighting the good fight until it isn't good anymore.

He may be 15 years old, but he is still my kitten.

Believe it or not, he wasn't more than a few months old in this picture. Look at the size of his paws!

17 comments:

  1. <3 to Mystic! (Ming and Bun say Eat!, Kitty! eat!)

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  2. So much love. I'm glad he has you. Of course he will always be your kitten *hug*

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  3. I lost my beloved Louie to cancer recently. Losing our animal companions is always painful with the pain being commensurate with the joy and love they brought to our lives. Blessed be.

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  4. He is blessed to have you caring for him and loving him. *hugs*��

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  5. I'm so sorry to hear about your companion, he looks like such a sweet boy and you both are truly blessed to have each other. I recently purchased your book "Everyday Witchcraft" and I love it so much I've barely been able to put it down. Next month when I receive my SSI money, I'm going to use every bit of it to buy more of your books. Not only because your books are absolutely wonderful, but also so that I can maybe (even in some small way) help pay for his vet visits and medication :)

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    1. You're so sweet. But save some money for food, too!

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  6. What beautiful photos of Mystic! He's still a handsome kitty! I am so sad for Mystic and you! I well know the routine of nursing a terminal cat. It's exhausting. Your medicine tray is very familiar. I have used a similar one and know the heartache of tending to a declining kitty. May you find comfort in knowing that you're making Mystic's last days comfortable and that he is a well loved kitty.

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    1. Thanks, Vonnie. It is exhausting, and sad, but also well worth it. He IS a handsome boy, isn't he?

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  7. Bast bless him. Been through renal failure several times with my babies. I feel your pain. Sending Healing Light. Blessed Be!

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  8. It's so hard for you knowing the whole situation, but he only knows that you're continuing to be his human that loves him. For him there is no sadness, only food, the sun and your love.

    Sending you and your fur babies FGBVs.

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    1. He also knows I am continually shoving meds down his throat, which he doesn't love, but yes, mostly it is good.

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