Monday, July 13, 2009
This is a sad story. I feel I should warn you up front that this is a sad story about a cat.
I have always loved animals and have a had at least one cat or another in my life for the past 27 years. There was George, then Marmalade, Shadow, Rambo, Poopie Kitty, Thing One, Thing Two, Boneless Kitty, Ezra, Penny, Phineas, Tibbles, Tulip, and Stanley.
Our current cats are Phineas, Tibbles, Tulip and Stanley. Last year we added two pugs to the mix and everything was fine until recently. The trouble is dear, sweet Tibbles.
Tibbles has been an indoor/outdoor cat for about two years. She had started peeing on all the beds and after treating her for a UTI, doing x-rays, and bloodwork we determined that her problem was behavioral. We bought more litter boxes and cleaned them daily. When that didn't work we tried anti-depressants and then tranquilizers. Nothing helped. Finally the vet suggested letting her outside. His thinking was that she needed more territory. He was right. Once we started letting her out the problem ceased. Hallelujah!
Everything has been going really well for the past two years until about eight weeks ago. I was laying on the bed when Tibbles jumped up and peed on it. Off to the vet we went for urine tests, blood tests and more x-rays. She had a UTI which we treated. The infection went away, but the peeing on the beds did not. I began to have a very bad feeling about what was happening. We began trying steroids and pain medication but it was becoming increasingly clear that Tibbles was letting us know how unhappy she was. She spent more and more time in the attic and basement- the only places off limits to the dogs.
Her distress became most apparent when we went on vacation and took the dogs with us. The cat sitter reported that Tibbles was sweet and happy and most importantly, had no accidents. We were away for a week and when we came home Tibbles seemed relaxed and content. Then the dogs came in. Tibbles ran to the attic to hide and within a few days was back to piddling.
Every morning I would wake up to find a wet stinky spot on each bed. It became impossible to do regular laundry because I needed to wash and dry three comforters every day. Something had to change.
We started having family discussions about Tibbles, about her unhappiness and the sad truth that the peeing all over the house has to stop. There were lots of tears, because Tibbles at her best is a very sweet and loving cat. Rebecca has been crying for days because she knows that there is no good solution to this problem.
Today I brought Tibbles to a cat boarder. I am calling around at no-kill shelters, trying to find one that will be able to find a good home for a good cat who has a lot of love to give to a family with no dogs.
Dropping her off felt rotten and calling around to shelters feels worse. I've never had to give up an animal before. I've nursed sick cats and cared for elderly cats. This is just so heartbreaking.
We are all feeling a bit shattered around here. I usually do a giveaway on Monday, but I hope that you will understand if it waits a few days. Thanks.