Chai Kitty

tarasgirl06

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Missing my sweet girl so much lately. :(

Chilli needs to go get her teeth cleaned, but I’ve been putting it off out of fear that something random and horrible might happen to her, like it did to Chai. What if she dies under anesthesia, what if the stress makes her get FIP, what if something else goes wrong... I already made and cancelled one appointment last month out of anxiety. I finally pushed through the fear and made another appointment... but in the days preceding, I can’t help but wonder if these are the last days I will get with Chilli. I know it’s silly because she’s a healthy cat and teeth cleaning is a routine procedure... but I still feel very helpless and anxious when it comes to my kitties. Like they could die randomly any day, and I can’t do anything at all to protect them. I know that the small risk of something going wrong is worth taking for Chilli’s overall dental health... just trying to convince my anxiety that that’s true. I still deal with a lot of guilt and “what-ifs” over Chai’s death, so I guess I’m just trying to make the right decisions for my current cats, but have lost faith in myself and my ability to make good decisions and to know what the right thing is.
danteshuman danteshuman has a good idea there. Can't hurt to call. And you're right to put it off right now, because they are asking people not to do anything medical or veterinary unless it is an emergency.
 

Talien

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Missing my sweet girl so much lately. :(

Chilli needs to go get her teeth cleaned, but I’ve been putting it off out of fear that something random and horrible might happen to her, like it did to Chai. What if she dies under anesthesia, what if the stress makes her get FIP, what if something else goes wrong... I already made and cancelled one appointment last month out of anxiety. I finally pushed through the fear and made another appointment... but in the days preceding, I can’t help but wonder if these are the last days I will get with Chilli. I know it’s silly because she’s a healthy cat and teeth cleaning is a routine procedure... but I still feel very helpless and anxious when it comes to my kitties. Like they could die randomly any day, and I can’t do anything at all to protect them. I know that the small risk of something going wrong is worth taking for Chilli’s overall dental health... just trying to convince my anxiety that that’s true. I still deal with a lot of guilt and “what-ifs” over Chai’s death, so I guess I’m just trying to make the right decisions for my current cats, but have lost faith in myself and my ability to make good decisions and to know what the right thing is.
I've been having similar thoughts since one of my Cats suddenly went terminal a few weeks back and had to be put to sleep. Now I worry about bringing my other Cats to the vet because what if something is wrong with them that can't be fixed, or what if something happens to them while they're at the vet and they die there? I know it's irrational because if something is wrong with one of them that can't be fixed it's not going to have been caused by whatever test identified it, and my Cats have been going to that vet for years since I moved here with no problems. Knowing that doesn't help stop those thoughts from popping up though, I think it's a natural part of grieving.
 

tarasgirl06

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I've been having similar thoughts since one of my Cats suddenly went terminal a few weeks back and had to be put to sleep. Now I worry about bringing my other Cats to the vet because what if something is wrong with them that can't be fixed, or what if something happens to them while they're at the vet and they die there? I know it's irrational because if something is wrong with one of them that can't be fixed it's not going to have been caused by whatever test identified it, and my Cats have been going to that vet for years since I moved here with no problems. Knowing that doesn't help stop those thoughts from popping up though, I think it's a natural part of grieving.
My heartfelt condolences for your loss of your beloved cat. :redheartpump:
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:redheartpump::rbheart:Fly free, whole, healthy, and forever Loved, precious one! Watch over your loved ones here below until reuniting.
If you are spiritual in mind, offering up Prayer for your beloved cats is always helpful. Of course you give them lots of love and the best care. Stay strong, safe, healthy, and sane, and don't worry. Cats are very intuitive and sensitive -- more than humans, some experts think (and I agree with them!) and they pick up on our state of mind, so it is best to focus on the best and when negative thoughts come in, try to push them aside. You and your cats are safe now. You have what they need. Just go day to day and do the best you can.
 
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rosegold

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Luckily my vet IS a dental specialist, and has been seeing my cats for about two years... so I do trust him and know that he’s really thorough... he always does pre-anesthesia bloodwork and dental xrays to make sure there aren’t any problems... Chilli actually had a dental cleaning done last year and it went fine. As far as I know she’s a healthy 5 year old cat who should be fine for anesthesia. I just worry that despite everything, something will go randomly and terribly wrong.

(I live in South Korea, not the US - most vets here have remained open as normal for all procedures)
 
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rosegold

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Chai was in my dream last night. I was so happy to see her. In the dream, I was walking around a beautiful aquarium and somehow knew about a special room there where I could visit her. She was sitting on a cat tree and started excitedly meowing and rubbing on my hand when I came in.

I miss her extra now, though. :(
 

tarasgirl06

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Chai was in my dream last night. I was so happy to see her. In the dream, I was walking around a beautiful aquarium and somehow knew about a special room there where I could visit her. She was sitting on a cat tree and started excitedly meowing and rubbing on my hand when I came in.

I miss her extra now, though. :(
They come to us in our dreams to visit us and let us know they are with us. We feel the physical separation more after this happens, but we may be reassured because they have come into our dreams.
 

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Today I had to let go of my sweet, beautiful, and indescribably special girl Chai. She went very peacefully and painlessly in my arms, wrapped in her favorite blanket and looking into my eyes purring gently until the sedation kicked in and she fell asleep... I kissed her goodbye and stayed with her to the end... But I can’t stop crying and it feels like there a piece of me has died with her. It was FIP, and while FIP is by nature cruel and unfair, this is honestly one of the cruelest and unfairest experiences I have ever had to go through in my life. It was far too soon and totally unexpected. I am completely shattered. I will never forget her as long as I live.

This post will be a bit long but a thousand pages wouldn’t be enough to describe how much she meant to me and to everyone who met her. She was so amazing and I wish I could do more to honor her... More than anything I wish I could bring her back...

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In her short life Chai suffered a lot. She endured living as a semiferal on the streets, a car accident, a leg amputation, coronavirus and calicivirus, stomatitis, a full mouth extraction, and finally the fatal FIP—but she never stopped being brave, and she always forgave us. For that I will always remember her as the most joyful and inspiring little creature I’ve ever known.

She was found as a young street cat about a year ago, wandering the freezing streets with her front left leg badly injured and bone sticking out. She was taken in by a shelter and her leg was amputated. Though she recovered from her injuries, she was extremely shy and avoidant of people and labeled as wild and unadoptable. No one could touch her. While she liked other cats, she was packed in a room with many other stressed, aggressive cats and she hid almost all of the time.

I first saw her photo on Christmas Day, 2017, and something inside me knew she was mine (and not just because I have a gigantic soft spot for calicos!). Here is that first shelter photo:

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Irresistible, right? :) I immediately sent a message to the shelter to inquire about her. (It is such a cruel twist of fate to have to lose her again at Christmastime just one year later...) I visited her in January 2018 and while she was scared, she crawled out to lick treats off my finger like the brave little fighter she was. I sensed more than ever in that moment that she craved connection and that I was her person.

I knew she would not be an easy first-time cat, though, so I thought about the decision for a while. I even joined and posted on this site for the first time looking for advice. In February I made my decision to adopt her. However, the shelter staff then told me she was just too wild and they couldn’t adopt her out. Undeterred, I kept asking. They finally said I could foster her first if I wanted and I agreed. Then, she got very sick. To this day I don’t know what she was sick with. They said they had to keep her in the shelter until she healed and they couldn’t tell me when or if she would be available. I was so sad, but it seemed like a dead end. I decided to move on and keep her in the back of my mind for when the time was right. But I thought about her and looked at her photos every single day.

In the meantime, my other cat Chilli (still alive and well) came into my life by happy chance. She is an easy, fun, amazing dream kitty and I bonded with her very closely and fast—but I also still couldn’t get that little three-legged cat out of my mind. However, my work was busy and my apartment was tiny and I felt I didn’t have time or the proper living situation for a second cat. I kept inquiring about Chai regularly for updates.

Finally, FINALLY, this August I moved to another place that was much bigger and I also had a break from work. I felt it was finally the time to bring Chai home. I can’t explain the joy I felt bringing her home that day in September, even though she was still terrified of me and I’d never even gotten to touch her yet—even still I loved her immediately. All the bowls and toys and “Chai stuff” I’d bought months ago came out again. I set up her safe room in the bathroom and the socialization process began.

I remember the first time she slow blinked at me. The first time she groomed and ate in front of me. The first time she flopped on her side and showed me her belly. The first time she came out of her hiding box with me nearby. The first time she sniffed my leg. The first time she let me pet her with the petting stick. The first time she meowed. The first time she purred. I remember lying in the most ridiculous, uncomfortable positions on the cold hard bathroom floor just to be near her and get her used to my presence. I would stay in that room for hours, talking and listening to her. We binge watched full seasons of cooking shows and dumb reality tv together on my laptop in that little bathroom while I fed her endless kibbles and treats. I teared up after the first time she let me pet her with my hand, about 5 weeks later (it seemed so long but really, it was so short, and she was so ready to be loved).

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From that moment on it was all rapidly uphill in terms of her socialization. She absolutely worshipped Chilli from the start but she also warmed up to me too very quickly after that initial pet, and was always ready to start purring the second I offered my hand. She loved life, SO much, perhaps more than she could have ever imagined possible.

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During the best weeks of her life, almost every waking moment was spent purring. She loved me. She loved her kitty sister. She even loved visitors. She just loved everything and everyone with a forgiveness and courage that I could never have imagined possible after all she’d been through. She loved being near Chilli constantly, annoying her with awkward three-legged headbutts and losing her little kitty mind when Chilli deigned to lick her face, rolling around and sleeping on her back on my heated floors, playing like crazy with her fishing rod toy, getting hours of pets and cuddles in bed, getting tummy rubs while cuddling my hand with her cheek and her single front paw, eating ALL the treats and stealing Chilli’s treats too, rubbing her head on the bottom of the coffee table, making “back toe muffins”, sleeping on all my clothes, sitting next to me purring on the couch for morning coffee time, racing around the house like a hooligan with Chilli at night, meowing at 6am for kibbles with the cutest and most irresistible face... and so much more. Even though I had such a tragically short time with her, I still have so many good memories.

When I think of her, I will always think of one special morning just a few short weeks ago. We awoke just before dawn to the first snowfall of the year. Chilli and Chai sat with me purring on the sofa in the warmth and quiet of my apartment while we watched the snow fall and the sky grow lighter. I remember for just a moment Chai looked up at me, with such profound peace and contentment, while she purred gently and let her chin rest on my hand. I will always try to remember her like that. I don’t know what I believe about an afterlife for our kitties but I hope with all my heart that wherever she is, she feels like that. Completely safe, loved, pain-free, and above all knowing she is not alone.

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Goodbye my love. I’m so sorry I couldn’t save you. I tried the best I could. But even if I’d known this would happen I would do it all over again, without an ounce of hesitation. You were worth every second of it. You made me a better and kinder person and you brought so much light to me at a time when my world was so dark. I promise to try to live as fiercely and bravely as you did. Run fast and free on four legs and hunt lots of mousies and birdies at the bridge. Nothing and no one will ever hurt you again. I love you.

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what did happen to leg she was beaiful
 
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rosegold

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what did happen to leg she was beaiful
I don’t know exactly what happened since she was rescued with half of her leg missing. My best guess is a snare or trap. The rest of it was amputated after her rescue.
 

tarasgirl06

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rosegold rosegold

She's not a Calico, but I figured you'd appreciate this one. One of the new arrivals at the shelter I volunteer at, she's really scared and hides ontop of a cabinet all day.
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OH, she's very lovely, isn't she? *PRAYERS* for her to be adopted quickly into her loving forever family and home! :hearthrob: :vibes::bicolorcat::hearthrob::loveeyes:
 
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rosegold

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rosegold rosegold

She's not a Calico, but I figured you'd appreciate this one. One of the new arrivals at the shelter I volunteer at, she's really scared and hides ontop of a cabinet all day.
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Awwww, she is so precious and certainly reminds me of Chai! I hope she finds a wonderful home soon!
 
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rosegold

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I’m still in some FIP groups... although maybe it’s not good for my mental health. It’s been really hard for me to see stories of cats recovering from FIP now that treatment options are becoming more easily available. Part of me feels happy for the owners, of course, but there is a lot of envy and guilt too. When Chai got FIP it was a death sentence unless I had 10k+ to spare and even then the prognosis was so dubious that it wasn’t even deemed worth it. Now, less than two years later, it’s so much easier to obtain GS/Mutian that on almost every post I see the cat is already being treated and generally showing immediate improvement.

Obviously it’s a good thing that the treatment is becoming more easily available and that cats’ lives are being saved... but it doesn’t really make me feel any better. I thought it would, but it doesn’t. It doesn’t bring Chai back and it almost accentuates the sheer unfairness of the whole situation. I know it’s bad to do “what if’s”.... but if I’d postponed her dental surgery for even a few months, she might be alive now. Maybe I should’ve researched more and tried harder to save her... sometimes I feel like I just gave up on her.

I was, and maybe still am, at a point in my life where I feel that a longer life isn’t necessarily “better” than a shorter life... especially when it comes to animals who don’t have a sense of how long they’re “supposed to” live... but I know a lot of people would disagree with me, and I understand that. I see it very frequently in these groups where people will fight so hard to save their pets and I do admire that. It makes me feel guilty that I didn’t fight for her hard enough. How could I let her go so easily after all we had been through together? But I am trying to remember that that’s just from a human perspective. From her perspective, that was just the natural length and course of her life and it ended in happiness and love.

It’s still so unfair though— if not for her, then for me. Even if I can rationalize that Chai had a good life with me and that I made the right decision for her, it still absolutely sucks for ME to have to go through losing my kitty in such a horrible and meaningless way. I should have had her for years to come. She should still be here right now. Sometimes I wonder what she’d be doing if she were still here. I wonder about all the future milestones I could’ve seen with her. I bet she would’ve become a lap cat. There are so many “firsts” I never got to experience. First time she would come on my lap, first time I would return from vacation and greet her again, first time she and Chilli would cuddle... It just isn’t fair. There are so many bad things in the world that I’d rather experience than this. It’s like the universe specifically chose an event that would hurt me the most.
 

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Being in those FIP groups may not change anything in your own life right now, but it changes things for the future. It gives you knowledge which is power, it gives you hope. It shows you that life goes on, what was a certain death sentence a short time ago, is not always the case now.
Try not to feel guilt over not trying hard enough. It would have been just that, trying. There are no guarantees in this world, other then the sun rising each morning and that each and that every life has an end. When you think about it, these are natural, nature. Everything involved with man is ever-changing, ever-evolving. Saving that precious girl from the suffering in the present and the worse to come in the future was not something to feel guilty about. Concentrate on that. Chai was in your life for a reason, no matter how short a time. She needed you, she needed your love and you were there. That is all that matters. She will carry your love for eternity and you will carry hers. Though you are left behind to suffer, through suffering comes strength. You will slowly find the strength to live again one day, to love again, because that is Chai's legacy. It's hard to believe that right now, and a part of you will always suffer, but in all things, good will triumph over evil, and love will triumph over pain. Let Chai's love fill your soul until it pours forth to guide you in life. She taught you what love is, don't use it as punishment for yourself, use it to offer to others, to Chilli, to bind with hers and though different, allow you to live again, to love once more. One day at a time.........
 

Talien

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I was, and maybe still am, at a point in my life where I feel that a longer life isn’t necessarily “better” than a shorter life... especially when it comes to animals who don’t have a sense of how long they’re “supposed to” live... but I know a lot of people would disagree with me, and I understand that. I see it very frequently in these groups where people will fight so hard to save their pets and I do admire that. It makes me feel guilty that I didn’t fight for her hard enough. How could I let her go so easily after all we had been through together? But I am trying to remember that that’s just from a human perspective. From her perspective, that was just the natural length and course of her life and it ended in happiness and love.
It's true that longer isn't necessarily better, it's the quality of that time that matters, especially to them. Obviously them having a long good life is better for us because we have the capacity to think ahead and see the bigger picture, but our animals live day to day so as long as we take care of them and spend time with them they're happy.

There was nothing "easy" about it, that much is obvious from your posts. Yes you probably could have had a few more weeks with her by having the fluid drained when it built up, but it wouldn't have been a very good few weeks for either of you. She'd have been suffering and you'd still have been wondering if you were doing the right thing, and probably felt guilty about it the whole time because it would have been more for you than her. But you didn't do that, you didn't let it get to the point where she was really suffering, and that's all we can really do in a situaton where there are no good outcomes, no good choices, and just bad or worse.
 

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The true purpose of euthanasia is ultimately to alleviate incurable suffering, in members of any species. While I as a person of deep spiritual Faith will always wonder about the outcome of many of my own actions, I also, as a person who has suffered quite a lot physically, believe and feel that I would not wish protracted and incurable suffering for anyone I care about. I have made the decision of euthanasia many times. I have also NOT made that decision many times. The bottom line is that all of us are mortal and all of us will eventually leave this physical existence, this earthly plane, by whatever means. I believe the soul is eternal and that we pass from this often painful existence to one that is infinitely better, so I believe and know that my beloved ones are watching over me and enjoying a pain-free life of another type than we can ever know here on earth.
Having lost one beloved cat to FIP at almost 16 and another to the far worse wet-form FIP at just short of 3 months, the former to euthanasia and the latter naturally, I do have some experience of what you may have gone through and are still going through in terms of self-doubt and wondering. I can say that we simply do not have answers for all the questions we so want answered. But di and bob di and bob has some very comforting thoughts for me, and I hope they are for you as well.
Chai is watching over you. And you WILL meet again.
 

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I am so sorry for your pain...I can relate to the feeling of second guessing and what ifs, the desperate researching in hind sight to try to find some answers. And yes, you said it...the unfairness. I am sure for all of the stories you have read now where there are successful outcomes, there are also many examples where ++interventions did not have the same outcomes, such as with this story:


It's ok to take a break from things too...

Your kitty and you were blessed to have each other in your life for the time you did have. Nothing can ever take that away.
 
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