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Monday, July 9, 2012
One Last Good Day
Micky reclining on the sofa several years ago
When an aged beloved animal friend begins to decline, eventually a decision will need to be made. I made the decision to euthanize Micky on Friday, July 6th. It was not an easy decision, but it was the right one. Micky showed signs of kidney failure in early spring. We changed his diet and pumped him with fluids. The fluids helped Mick's kidneys to function the best they could -- he needed them every day.
But, Thursday night Micky looked really bad. The once roly-poly Garfield-look-alike was a skeleton. I brought him to the Washington Animal Rescue League Animal Medical Center first thing Friday morning. I knew we were out of time. I have the good fortune of working with the kindest, most caring group of people assembled anywhere. We collectively decided to pump Micky with fluids and give him an appetite stimulant -- that way he could eat one last really good meal. And, he did. I found a really stinky can of something that claimed to be "ocean delight" and Micky ate it. He purred, too. He was feeling better. But the good feeling wouldn't last. Maybe a day, maybe less. And, when Micky, who was always a solid 12-pounder barely registered on the scale at less than 6 pounds, I knew that we could not buy any more time. I'm not going to anthropomorphize (big word that means projecting human thoughts and feelings onto my cat) but I know that Micky was feeling really crummy and there was no hope of him feeling better. He wasn't happy getting fluids and didn't feel like eating. So, I made the decision to euthanize Micky that afternoon after a really nice day. He was in one of his favorite spots, my office, with one of his favorite people, Max.
Micky in my office several weeks ago.
We adopted Micky in January 2002. He was said to be 6-8, maybe 10-years-old then. He had been an outside cat with crusty paws and bad teeth. His paws improved soon after his move to an indoor-only cat and his rotten teeth were pulled by a veterinarian who specialized in dentistry. Micky feared Merl, the house bully cat -- although Merl came to live with us after Mick. He loved Natalie and Max and slept with one or the other every single night that they were home. On the rare occasions that they were both gone, and I was home, I'd encourage Micky to climb into bed with me. He always declined, electing to sleep on the sofa instead. Micky was dearly loved, and is sorely missed.