plaza79
Today I had to make the decision to put my cat Yanks down. He was just short of turning 5.  

Over the last few weeks, I had noticed that one of Yanks' eyes had started to water. Since he was never declawed, I figured that he may have scratched himself and left it alone. Over the holidays, with family members and their pets staying over, he kept to himself. At times he seemed skittish. Again, I dismissed his behavior because there was so much commotion. Once everyone left, I watched his behavior more closely. I noticed that the watery eye had started to stain his fur and over the last few days he sounded congested. I googled and googled, looking for answers as to what it could be. Everything pointed toward sinusitis or a respiratory infection. 

I called the vet yesterday and insisted on making an appointment for today. If it was an infection, I wanted to get on top of it. Instead, after blood work and an xray, cancer was the diagnosis. The vet felt that instead of lymphoma, it was bone marrow. There were 2 large masses around the ear spaces in his skull. He said that trying to do a biopsy would be nearly impossible. He informed us that the best course of action was to let him go. In his opinion, the breathing trouble was because of the cancer and even with steroids or any other medication, he didn't think he was going to make it through the night, let alone the weekend. 

My husband and I made the decision to put him to sleep. It was the hardest, most devastating decision I have ever had to make. To me he didn't seem that sick. And maybe that's why I feel so guilty? But I have to remember the facts. His blood work and the xrays pointed to the fact that he was really sick. 

I feel sick to my stomach and I am exhausted. But at the same time, I am wide awake, my mind is racing. Hopefully reading other people's stories and seeing that I am not crazy for crying over my kitty will help with the healing process.

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- Stephanie -

Yanks (aka the baby): 4/19/10 - 1/15/15
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Bellamum
I am so sorry that you had to say goodbye to your sweet Yanks.  He is gorgeous.  What a beautiful little face.  I know the overwhelming grief that you are feeling right now and I also know the "going crazy" feeling.

Everyone on this forum has been exactly where you are now.  The devastation, the guilt, the "if only" questioning of every decision you made....it is tough, really, really tough.
Nothing I can say will take away the deep pain that you are feeling, but I want to reassure you that you are perfectly normal.  We grieve this much because we loved deeply and were loved deeply in return.  Your Yanks, and my Bella, are family.  They were and they always will be and we grieve for them just as we would for any other family member.

I know making that decision was hard.  I had to do it for Bella too.  After we said goodbye, I questioned if I was too hasty etc. etc. etc.  I nearly drove myself mad.  After a little while I made peace with my decision and acknowledged that everything I did was for her.  If I had my way I would have kept her beside me forever...just like you would have, I never wanted to say goodbye.  I now think that we were brave and gave Yanks and Bella the most loving gift we could every give them.  We ignored our own "wants" and put their "needs" first.  No greater gift could we ever give them to show the depth of our love.  Be proud of yourself.

You will have tough days to follow, but everyone assures me it will get easier to cope with our "new normal".  We will never "get over it", and I don't really want to. Yanks and Bella deserve to be missed every single day....that is our tribute to them.  When times are tough, remind yourself how privileged you were to be chosen to be Yanks' family.  That is what I do when I am struggling.  It does help.  The feelings of gratitude help to make the feelings of grief more bearable.  We were so lucky!

I wish you peace and healing.  I hope that soon, your memories of Yanks will bring more smiles than tears.

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Karen
(Bella, Charli and Buddy's very lucky mum)

My gorgeous girl, Bella  26/07/2004 - 03/04/2014
"You were once by our side, but you will be forever in our hearts. Until we meet again baby girl."
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plaza79
Karen --

Thank you so much for your kind words. It's comforting to know that we are not alone.

I'm sorry to hear about your girl Bella. She was beautiful. 

Last night was hard. Yanks used to sleep on an extra pillow above my head. Not feeling him resting against my head was excruciating. All I could do was rub the spot where we would have been and wish that he would magically appear.  

Today is definitely a little better. I've been thinking about it all day and I've come to the realization that it was the best decision. I researched what treatment options are and the side effects of those options. Everything sounded like torture. Thinking back to where the cancer was located, those would not have been available. Letting him go in quietly and without pain was in his best interest. 


- Stephanie -

Yanks (aka the baby): 4/19/10 - 1/15/15
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Apollo_the_great
I feel your pain. January 11 we had to put our baby Apollo to sleep. I've been dying even sine,even though we knew it was the right thing to do. What you said about ignoring our own wants and putting their needs first touched me very much. I'm sorry. Our baby was a doberman, ,
And like everyone else thinks, he was a wonderful son,brother, what have you. I miss him so much, but I know everyone knows exactly how I feel
William
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Catmummy
I'm so sorry for your loss. Im so glad to have found this post. My heart is also broken. We had to let our beautiful Maggie go in the early hours of the 14th January. She had been ran over and was dying but we couldnt prolong the pain for her. She was 18 months old and my little baby girl. We stayed with her the whole time and held her head and told her how special she was. We brought her home but couldn't keep her with us as I was scared our other cat would see her and become distressed so we put her in her favourite room in blankets and even though I know this is irrational I was so scared that if she somehow woke up I would be there for her or be able to hear her.

She is now buried in my partners parents garden with their family dog. This provides some comfort. I am so overwhelmed with grief and sorrow that it physically hurts. My partner is the same and I can tell my other little one is sad and confused as she keeps looking for Maggie then just lying in the bedroom. I also can't sleep but then when I wake up I wish I hadn't as the grief just floods back over me. I feel as though we're living a nightmare and there is no end. I just want her back with us. X
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Apollo_the_great
The pain is very difficult to deal with. I can tell you this, being able to express your grief on here will work wonders for you, it has for me. EVERYONE here understands the pain you are going through. Just having an outlet to express and share your sorrow with others and at the same time share their sorrow because you are not alone. People have shared their experiences and that information can help you find answers to some of your questions.
William
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Catmummy
Thank you so much. I'm so greatful to have found this forum. I told my partner and he too is going to look. He came home from work today sobbing, our hearts are truly broken. He then popped out and returned with new toys for Penny to cheer her up and some to put on Maggie's grave, I've chosen to keep some in house just in case she comes to see us. Today I started writing a list of my Maggie memories and special things about her, it is painful but I'm very frightened we might forget something. I hope today has been easier for you both xxx
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Apollo_the_great
It will be a long time before I feel better, but thanks for the thought. I have a lot of pictures and videos, and I think that I am going to try and make a video tribute and post it every where I can on the Internet and that way he will always be there, even if I'm not . I think writing your memories is a good idea. If you just need to talk, I will try to be there for both of you.

My big beautiful boy R.I.P Apollo 1-1-2015

William
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