I have a date set for PTS in 1 week and I am so confused

Eve1231

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My baby Titus is curled up next to me as I write this purring. And in 7 days he will be put to sleep if the vet says it’s time which I am sure he will. I’m running on emotional fumes. He has a burst of energy because I force fed him with my finger tonight. He was diagnosed with hypothyroid 4 weeks ago after a visit to the ER when he suddenly stopped eating 4 days after a forced rabies vaccine. Maybe it exasperated the illness He seemed normal before that although he had dropped some weight over the summer but he was overweight so I just thought my husband fed him less as we had discussed. . Due to Covid there was a very agonizing delay in getting him seen, a week that may have cost his life. He lost 4 pounds in less than 2 weeks. I was horrified and frantic. I spent 7 hours sitting outside in the cold rain in Oregon in my car in line at a busy ER. Many other dire cases kept coming in. I was there until 5am.
I’ve tried absolutely everything to save him. Thyroid, nausea and apatite pills all seem to make him worse. I got the compounded topical thyroid cream and lowered the dose and that did seem to help. He still would not eat. Bought every food there is. Tried people food. I started syringe feeding him and he was like his old self. Figured he just needed help for a while to get his strength. He did not like it but tolerated it. Until lately. He now will not open his mouth and runs from me. I decided to back off for today and see if he would eat on his own, he takes a few bites here and there and becomes lethargic. We have been doing this for 3 weeks.
I am torn. He’s so skinny. Depressed but still has good moments, drinks and goes to bathroom fine. The only thing keeping him alive is me force feeding him which he is starting to strongly reject now. So If I force feed him, he somewhat seems like his old self and how in the world can I bring him to be PTS in that state? If I stop force feeding him he will suffer and die slowly. Surgery is not N option in his current state. I am torn to bits. The attached pic is from 3 weeks ago. He’s much thinner and has lost 2 more pounds. At this point I have decided to let the vet decide when we go in 7 days. I’m not sure I am able to understand what I am dealing with or how to deal with it. But my heart is telling me he will not recover from this illness. I am so scared to feel like I will make the wrong decision. I already canceled one apt to possibly put him to sleep. I can’t let him go. Does anyone know is there a time frame for force feeding and if they start to refuse should I stop and let it be what it will be? I am so confused. I have had time to process this and I am at least willing to allow him to pass at this point but I can not watch him suffer by starvation. 🙏🏻
 

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Cat McCannon

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Never on their worst day. We have to ask ourselves what’s best for our cat. Are we being selfish when we wait until the last possible moment and they’re in a lot of pain? Or is it better to give them mercy sooner rather than later and spare them their worst day?

It’s tough, but it’s a choice we took upon ourselves when we became responsible for their life.

I wish I had words of comfort to offer. I’ve been through this several times myself. It never gets easier.
 

FeebysOwner

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It sounds to me like something is being missed/overlooked. I take it your cat is HYPERthyroid, not HYPOthyroid (which is rare)? There are numerous different anti-nausea meds as well as appetite stimulants - and, not all of them work on all cats. How many have you tried? There are also transdermal forms of each type too.

Have you considered a feeding tube? If the vet thinks he is strong enough to have one inserted, that will give him the sustenance he needs, allowing you to stop force feeding him. And he can still try to eat on his own at the same time. Many cats have recovered from all sorts of illnesses through the use of a feeding tube.

I also wonder if you should consult another vet for a second opinion.
 

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My prayers are with you....only YOU know what he is telling you, you know him the best. When his life is reduced to existing instead of truly living, it is time. I wish you could find some answers if there was cancer or something else causing all this. my cats have leukemia and get sick at times and every time it brings me to the point of asking myself what you are asking now. There truly is no definite answer. They will only eat one thing while they are sick, only a few licks a day, for a week or more, and it is Hartz Delectable Lickables in the stew flavors. The wasting away is horrific. But these lickable treats have kept them going until they can fight it, and then they are 'normal' until the next time, even many months later. I will pray for a miracle for your sweet Titus.......
 

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I completely agree that you should consider the feeding tube, which is not anywhere near as upsetting as it might sound to you at first. If he is better when he eats, I would not stop feeding him. Through no fault of your own, you don't have a clear diagnosis. Something is missing from this puzzle.

You do not want Titus to suffer, but if you don't pursue this a little further, it may stay with you as a huge unknown for a long time.
 
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Eve1231

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It sounds to me like something is being missed/overlooked. I take it your cat is HYPERthyroid, not HYPOthyroid (which is rare)? There are numerous different anti-nausea meds as well as appetite stimulants - and, not all of them work on all cats. How many have you tried? There are also transdermal forms of each type too.

Have you considered a feeding tube? If the vet thinks he is strong enough to have one inserted, that will give him the sustenance he needs, allowing you to stop force feeding him. And he can still try to eat on his own at the same time. Many cats have recovered from all sorts of illnesses through the use of a feeding tube.

I also wonder if you should consult another vet for a second opinion.
 
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Eve1231

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I have tried all the drugs, apatite, nausea. I switched to transdermal when the pills seem to make him sicker. He is too week for any kind of surgery. I see the vet again soon to try t find out what’s happening. My guess is the delay to get help due to Covid damaged his liver and also I think he has anorexia and much is mental at this point. In Oregon we have had a crisis where pets are dying because of a backlog and Covid. His illness came on suddenly in that he just stopped eating and all was normal before. He dropped many pounds in a very short time which is dangerous for the liver. He may have kidney issues but they won’t know for sure until the thyroid issue is cleared up. Feeding tubes and radioactive iodine treatments seem selfish to me to put a cat through. I’ve spent over a thousand already and that’s fine but at some point you have to ask if it’s selfish to keep putting a cat through it. I know my cat and in my heart I think it’s time.
 
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Eve1231

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A fresh perspective, a second opinion. Could be something that can be treated.
Cats can recover in an extraordinary manner.
There is hope.
I have not given up. I spend 24/7 trying to get him to eat. Making sure he knows I am here. I’ve been at it for almost a month now. I will do all I think is reasonable for his comfort. Just knowing when to let go is very hard.
 
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Eve1231

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I completely agree that you should consider the feeding tube, which is not anywhere near as upsetting as it might sound to you at first. If he is better when he eats, I would not stop feeding him. Through no fault of your own, you don't have a clear diagnosis. Something is missing from this puzzle.

You do not want Titus to suffer, but if you don't pursue this a little further, it may stay with you as a huge unknown for a long time.
After I switched from pills to transdermal there was improvement and he did start eating more on his own. Just a few bites. He does drink milk which he never did before. I will keep force feeding him but ge resist more and more. He seems to get better one day and then it’s two steps backward again. I’ve learned to not get my hopes up and think we’re out of the woods. It’s been a very long month. The blood work showed possible kidney issue but won’t know till thyroid levels out. Thyroid was the only issue other than a slight heart mur mur. From all I have read he seems to be acting anorexic. Too long without food and force feeding doesn’t help that. I use a different food then he’s ever had to mitigate it. And I don’t force it down. I stop when he’s had enough which is more quickly now.
 
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Eve1231

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A fresh perspective, a second opinion. Could be something that can be treated.
Cats can recover in an extraordinary manner.
There is hope.
Thanks. I haven’t given up yet. He is eating more on his own. Just not near enough. Well if you call friskier treats eating. The only thing he will eat basically and milk. On Wed I go to the vet to discuss next options. I think he may say it’s time to PTS and I am dreading the day. Having to decide at that moment. Ultimately it has to be about quality of life.
 
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Eve1231

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I completely agree that you should consider the feeding tube, which is not anywhere near as upsetting as it might sound to you at first. If he is better when he eats, I would not stop feeding him. Through no fault of your own, you don't have a clear diagnosis. Something is missing from this puzzle.

You do not want Titus to suffer, but if you don't pursue this a little further, it may stay with you as a huge unknown for a long time.
I can get food into him without doing a feeding tube. He doesn’t like it but if I do short sessions many times he will allow it. The question is how long is reasonable to do it? I give him breaks to see if he will eat on his own. I think he has developed anorexia and much is mental.
 
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Eve1231

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My prayers are with you....only YOU know what he is telling you, you know him the best. When his life is reduced to existing instead of truly living, it is time. I wish you could find some answers if there was cancer or something else causing all this. my cats have leukemia and get sick at times and every time it brings me to the point of asking myself what you are asking now. There truly is no definite answer. They will only eat one thing while they are sick, only a few licks a day, for a week or more, and it is Hartz Delectable Lickables in the stew flavors. The wasting away is horrific. But these lickable treats have kept them going until they can fight it, and then they are 'normal' until the next time, even many months later. I will pray for a miracle for your sweet Titus.......
Thank you for the prayers. I can keep him comfortable but is it just me keeping him alive you know. That’s the hard decision. I’ll ask the vet more questions soon. Just afraid when I take him in the vet will say it’s time. Have to prepare mentally for that Wed. I’ve been in save him mode 24/7 for almost a month. I’m loosing weight as he’s all I think about. I’m no longer trying to save him for me but switched to thinking what’s best for him. The more I do, the more I feel he’s letting me know to stop. I’m asking now if I am making this worse when I have tried so many things to make it better. Deciding when it’s enough or too much is between me and him I guess. I do trust I know my cat. He is very loved through this. He still purrs and snuggles but even that is starting to slip. Maybe a miracle will happen and he’ll suddenly start eating. He did yesterday, more than he has not enough, but stopped today.
 
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Eve1231

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I think you should assess the reason for his starving first.
From your post I have understood that apart from the HT, there is no reason why he's feeling sick.
I wouldn't have one of my cats put to sleep without even knowing what's going on.
Although many cats can recover from HT, not all do. He’s had blood and urine test. He may have kidney issues which can’t be confirmed yet. I suspect he has anorexia as well at this point.
 
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Eve1231

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I won’t have much of a choice other than PTS if he continues to waste away when I know what’s wrong and I can’t stop it. The only question really is how long do I wait…..until he can no longer walk or go to the bathroom? It’s a problem this timing. I trust my vet. He saved my other elderly cat when she took a drastic turn.
 

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I'm sorry you don't see a way out.
You're asking when it is time, what you have to wait for.
If you know your cat well, and he trusts you, he'll let you know when he's ready. Look into his eyes and he will tell you he's ready, he wants to go.
This is what I did when my cat was very sick and near the end. I tried to keep her with me as long as possible, and I know she wanted to stay with me, but one day she let me know she was tired and wanted to go. That was the day...
They know their time better than we do.
 
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Eve1231

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I’ve been in survival mode operating on emotions. I need to take a step back and clear my head tomorrow. I thought I could wait until Wed but I think I need to get him in sooner and talk to the vet to see what else can be done if anything. I just know when I take him in what the vet will say and I can barley handle making that decision to go in wondering if that’s the day. I’m scared to go into a weekend and it to get worse. Each day seems worse now.
 

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I know what you feel. My cat had highs and lows for several weeks, and every now and then I thought it was the end, but then she would get perkier, and I was grateful I didn't act hastily. We were together three more months since I started thinking it was over.
 
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Eve1231

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I'm sorry you don't see a way out.
You're asking when it is time, what you have to wait for.
If you know your cat well, and he trusts you, he'll let you know when he's ready. Look into his eyes and he will tell you he's ready, he wants to go.
This is what I did when my cat was very sick and near the end. I tried to keep her with me as long as possible, and I know she wanted to stay with me, but one day she let me know she was tired and wanted to go. That was the day...
They know their time better than we do.
The last 2 days that is what I am feeling from him that it’s time. I wanted to give him until wed to see if he turned around with the new transdermal meds. Now I am frantic because the weekend is coming and vet will be closed. I am sure I can get him in Fri or Monday. I don’t see another choice right now.
 
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