Dying Kitty and Old Sibling

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by Jade Falcon, Mar 19, 2010.

  1. Jade Falcon

    Jade Falcon WTF EREN?!

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    Alright folks, any help is appreciated.

    My family has two cats, both of whom are blood-related siblings (sisters). We've raised them since they were about 6 months or so. They are now about 15, and have always been indoor cats.

    One of them is dying. Basky has a few health problems, and after a recent visit to the vet, the Doctor confirms that she is dying. She's thrown-up numerous times, despite a pill that's suppose to make her eat (it's given to her every three days). She's very thin, and hardly has any energy anymore.

    My mother and I discussed this last night. My parent's are suppose to go away for a week in April on vacation to Mexico. My mother will decide before then, if she doesn't get better, whether or not to have her put down before she leaves. If she get's better, great....but I don't think it's gonna happen. It will be very hard on the family, but at least she won't be suffering anymore. My mother has a house-call vet that will come and put her to sleep at home, rather than having to stuff her in a carrier and cart her off to the vet.

    Here's my question: how will it effect her sister, Cleo? How should we handle the loss with her? Obviously, give her as much love and attention as possible, but do we let her sniff Basky after she passes, so that she "knows" something is wrong, or do we just have her put down and let it be? They both, as I said, come from the same litter, and were very close as kittens. However, over the years, they've grown apart, though they still live in the same house and acknowledge each-other's presence, and use the same litter box and feeding-bowls, etc etc.

    So anyone who's had sibling-cats put to sleep, if you can chime in on this, I would appreciate it. Thank you!
     
  2. wrenrj1

    wrenrj1

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    We've gone through putting two cats down. One due to disease and one due to age. Who knows how they will deal in their own cat minds, that's not the point. Don't worry about the living, stop the suffering of the dying that's the most important thing you can do. These are pets, don't' try to get into their heads, they are not people. Your cats are living their natural lifespan. While not easy for us humans, we move on just like your cat will.
     

  3. 2cats

    2cats Millennium Member

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    Not sibling cats, but relevant experience. I think people significantly over-estimate and anthropomorphosize (sp?) the benefits that a cat will get from living with other cats. It's right there in what you wrote - they've grown apart over the years.

    When my guy died, the girl - who lived with him successfully all of her nine years - basically popped the champagne cork, spiked the football, and moonwalked. She was ecstatic that she was the only cat. Really, if you look at the data, cats prefer to have you to themselves (this is if you pay them a lot of attention and love).

    So I think it's great that you are concerned about the other cat, and they will benefit from your care, but I really don't think you need to worry. It's every bit as likely that Cleo will be happy to not have to share you.

    Best of luck to all involved.
     
  4. That's all Brother

    That's all Brother

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    We had 3 sibling cats, 1 male and 2 females. Before the male died the females were very jelous of each other, always stearing clear of each other. Now that the males gone, they seem to be friends, sleep next to each other. I have caught both of them down at his grave just looking at it. I know this won't help since you only have 2, but they do seem to miss him. Cats, you just can't figure em out.
     
  5. Geeorge

    Geeorge Sarcasm Inc.

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    That's tough I have two brother cats and when one's snuck outside the other goes nuts worrying about him.

    But my are very close and sleep together in the same chair often.Hopefully the loss won't be to bad on her or you and the rest of the family:wavey:
     
  6. Inyo Tim

    Inyo Tim Senior Moment

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    I've raised a few cats and I think this scenario is a good possibility. I raised three siblings from kittens, and when one of them disappeared the other two didn't seem bothered by it.
     
  7. Dr. Leaky

    Dr. Leaky Know-It-All

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    We had the vet out to put down our 16-yr old tomcat who was the only other cat our much younger female cat had known since her littermates. When the deed was done she was able to sniff him and then walk away. Afterwards she would just sit and cry from time to time - we realized she wanted company. We went to our local rescue group and found a very cat-friendly adult tom and when we brought him home the female was in heaven. Those two are usually together now and are both happy. Watch your remaining cat - you'll be able to tell if she wants to be an only cat or if she wants company.
     
  8. Jade Falcon

    Jade Falcon WTF EREN?!

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    I want to thank everyone for replying.

    I've considered all of the above answers. Some of you are right: they hardly acknowledge each-other's presence, outside of the occassional nose-rub or food-wait. They sleep in different rooms at night, but during the day, they both have chairs side-by-side where they sleep under the formal dining room table. They haven't shared a single sleeping space in many years.

    Basky is the quieter and more aggressive of the two. Cleo is the major attention whore, who LOVES belly rubs and talking. I guess, because she's the more affectionate of the two, I thought she would take Basky's loss harder than if their roles were reversed.

    I guess I'm just trying to look at this the best way that I can from the eyes of the cat. The truth is...I guess nobody truly knows what goes on in their heads. But in-put is always appreciated, so thank you.
     
  9. tarpleyg

    tarpleyg

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    I had a similar scenario years ago. Older cat had feline leukemia and I was forced to put him down right before I went out of town on a week vacation. The younger cat was behaving perfectly normal the night before I left. When I got back he had gone way downhill and I had to put him down the next day. That was the first indications that he had feline leukemia and I think that missing his companion so much and with me gone too just made things progress much more rapidly.

    Greg
     
  10. RLB

    RLB

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    Ours were not siblings but came from the same cage at the humane society. Shortly after we adopted them we had to put the little male down. Our female knew he was gone and mopped around for a few days.
    Shower the sibling with all the love and attention you can. She already knows her sibling is sick. Not much you can do to make it better or easier on them.
     
  11. KilgoreTrout

    KilgoreTrout Impossiblist

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    my aunt and uncle had two cats like that. they werent blood related, but they grew up together and spent many, at least 10, years together.

    One of them died. The other was still healthy and strong, but died about a month ago. They always said 'it died of grief'. The surviving cat meowed constantly and wandered the house looking for the other one.

    Ive never had cats, i dont care for them, but that isnt the only story like that ive heard. Not saying your other cat will keel over, but its my understanding that cats can grieve and suffer with a loss like that...
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2010
  12. ATL Peach Girl

    ATL Peach Girl ♥Meezers♥

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    Maybe Shoeless will chime in on this one, she recently lost one of her old girls, and I guess the other one, her sister is/was walking around howling for the one who passed. This breaks my heart.

    I think it will be the same in MY house, my 2 boys ages 5 and 6 now have been together since they were 1 year old and 7 weeks old. I think Max, the older one will really grieve if his brother were to go before him.

    I try not to think about these things. :sad:

    Jade......the best thing I can tell you, she may really suffer, and in that case, keep her busy......pet her, comfort her, talk to her......and if she will stand it, get her a kitten. She will mother it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2010
  13. fnfalman

    fnfalman Chicks Dig It

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    We had a male and a female from the same litter. The male died two years ago and the female kept on truckin'. She just turned 19 and we're taking bets to see if she's gonna hit 20.
     
  14. Jade Falcon

    Jade Falcon WTF EREN?!

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    Wow, thanks again to everyone who replied. This is a very varied-answered thread, so I guess we'll just have to see how this turns out. I was looking at pictures of them cuddled together as kittens; this is going to be very hard when we have to put Basky to sleep. Inevitibly, we all know (those of us with pets) that they don't live forever, and deep inside we acknowledge this. But when they cuddle in your lap, it seems like they can live forever and nothing will ever take them.

    I'll keep you all updated on how this goes. I left six pictures of the two over in the Caturday thread on page 71, if you would like to view them.
     
  15. the iceman

    the iceman Proud Veteran CLM

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    Would you rather be there with your cat when it passes away peacefully or would you rather come home from vacation to your family pet that passed on their own with out the family there.

    Do the humane thing and put your cat down.
     
  16. Lone_Wolfe

    Lone_Wolfe Sandbox Refugee CLM

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    Jade Falcon I looked at your pics of Basky, she's beautiful. I'm sorry about what's happening to her, I know you'll miss her.

    If I had to speculate here I'd think that Cleo will be OK, simply because she's more of a "people kitty". My prayers go out for both kitties and you.
     
  17. Jade Falcon

    Jade Falcon WTF EREN?!

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    Thank you very much! :hugs: :hugs:
     
  18. TenMillimeter

    TenMillimeter

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    Yes, it does sound like it is time to let your cat move on to a more peaceful place.

    If it were me, I would let the other one see your cat after it has passed on. I tend to give animal's minds the benefit of the doubt on things like these. Sure, at best, they have the mentality of a 2 or 3 year old child, but there are things they do understand, that we aren't aware of. There wouldn't be much to lose in giving your other cat the opportunity to understand.

    I would do it, and I am sorry for your loss. I have lost many animal companions in my life, and each and every one was a true loss to me. If only I were half the man that they thought I was..........
     
  19. Jade Falcon

    Jade Falcon WTF EREN?!

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    So Basky has slowly deteriorated badly the past couple of months. She did come back fine briefly, but within the past two weeks, she's started crapping all over the house instead of her litterbox, and she's vomiting almost constantly, even after a full can of food.

    She's also lost an enormous amount of weight; her rear-back is just skin and bones.

    My father spoke with my mother, and convinced her to put Bask down. I haven't gotten a chance to speak with my mother regarding it yet, because she just got back from a vacation. She's stalling, and my father and I both know it. I'm going to be gentle but firm with her, that she needs to do the humane thing here and let her go.

    She will probably be euthanized within the next few days, this weekend, or early next week. I won't let her go longer than that. This cat is suffering.

    My mother, before she left a week ago on vacation, didn't want to euthanize Bask because she was afraid how her sibling, Cleo, would react to it. But enough is enough.

    I'll let you know when she's gone. A part of my heart will go with her. :crying:
     
  20. fireguy129

    fireguy129

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    Im sorry to hear that, its the absolute worst part of having a pet.