this week we're struggling with an issue i never really thought about. how to talk to your 11 year old about the possible death of her cat. and this is not just any cat; this is her baby. this is the cat that comes when the girl makes certain noises; that tears through the house to get to the girl if she hears her crying. this is princess meow meow, one of the most incredible cats i've ever known.
i'd posted earlier that my cat, rebel, had a bad weekend. he's 17 and seriously, every day with him is a gift at this point. he has rallied back and doing well, however, monday meow lost her voice.
meow is incredibly vocal. she talks all the time. when she's hungry, when you come home, when the girl talks to her, when anyone talks to her, she's just amazing. so, no voice, a slight cough monday. tuesday the hubs took her to the vet. they gave her an antibiotic and drew blood, just to be on the safe side.
yesterday the vet calls and says 1) meow could be diabetic, her sugar levels were sky high. this sometimes happens when cats get excited or nervous (like when they're put in a cat carrier and taken to the vet?) so they wanted to check sugars again. 2) meow either has had or does have heart worms. this, i have since read up on, is incredibly uncommon in cats, it is a dog disease, and especially in indoor cats. our cats don't ever go outside.
(for the record, heart worms are transmitted by mosquitos. i've been reading up on it and cats can take heart worm prevention pills, like dogs, and if you have cats you should look in to it. srsly. even if they're indoor cats like meow.)
today meow is back at the vet (and jasper the new kitty is too for his distemper shot and because his eyes haven't totally cleared up) getting xrays (perhaps to better diagnose the heart worms) and more blood work.
diabetes---totally treatable. we'll just be giving cat shots every day. heart worms---not treatable. since it's so rare in cats there aren't medicines to treat it like w/ dogs. they can't use the same meds on cats. they can manage it w/ steroids, but, ultimately fatal.
i'm getting ahead of myself because we go back to the vet at 3:30 and will find out then, i hope, just what we're up against.
oddly enough the girl, who knows nothing yet about the possible severity of any of this going on with her cat, woke up feeling puny (now there's an old fashioned saying for you huh!?) so i stayed home w/ her today. i'm not feeling the greatest, but i think mine is nerves/stress about the cat.
the hubs and i are torn on what we might have to discuss with her. the girl is a huge worrier, huge. if it turns out badly and we tell her meow is very sick and untreatable, i don't think the girl could handle it. seriously guys, this cat is like her best friend, baby, lovey, protector all rolled up into one. on one hand i'm of the mind not to tell the girl anything. but, the hubs' point on ok, what if she wakes up one morning and the cat's in bed with her, dead? or she comes home from school and the cat's dead?
this is the part of parenthood that really, really sucks. knowing that you're going to tell your child something that will devastate them or knowing that something is going to happen that will devastate them and there isn't a damn thing you can do about it.