I don’t really know what my angle is here, but I’m burning with rage and sadness and need to get it out.
In early April 2016 my health took a nosedive. A couple days later a little orange tabby came to my door. We decided to let him in and he became my best man. He had one of the best personalities I’ve ever seen in an animal. He meant more to me than I can express. I truly wonder to this day if he was more than ‘just a cat.’ Also, over the course of the next three years, my heath has improved, but I’ve taken great measures to overhaul my entire lifestyle.
In June of 2019, it was suggested our cat needed surgery. (It is worth sharing that about two weeks prior to this recommendation, I felt that for the first time in my life, I was able to let go of fear and enjoy myself.) Its against my nature to go the surgical route, but because I was trying to learn to trust others and let go, and he was struggling with urinary issues, I went ahead with the surgery. The vet explained that there was a 5 percent chance of stricture, but in all his years he’s never seen it. And he did not tell me that stricture meant death.
I picked my cat up from the vet and had a sinking feeling in my heart when I saw how they butchered him. Maybe it’s normal for a surgery to look that grotesque,..? There was a 1000 dollar discount on my bill, meaning that they charged me 1000 dollars still. (2000-1000=1000)
He was sent home in a floppy cone that did nothing to prevent him from licking his surgical site, and I was warned that it was imperative to his healing that he could not chew on his stitches, and that I might need to find a harder cone, so I did. Every day I cleaned blood off of his cone and crossed my fingers he’d improve. He wasn’t improving and I called several times and was told he just needed time to heal.
I was then told to bring him in so they could check him. It was a drop off appt. and when I picked him up, they told me he was doing well and just needed more time to heal and they were able to get a good stream of urine out of him. I then saw in the receipt that they vaccinated him, behind my back, without my permission. I was told a couple weeks prior that this was the new office policy, due to a staff member being bitten by an unvaccinated cat. Sure, I understand this… but my cats body was under extreme stress due to surgery. And he was in a cone, he couldn’t bite if he tried. Also, I had been seeing this vet for about 10 years. She knows my stance on vaccinations past kitten shots. My cats are kept indoors and I view routine vaccinations as unnecessary.
The very next day, my cats health began to decline even more, small droplets of urine everywhere. Blood. His coat became dull and he didn’t care to eat anymore.
A week passed and I called again. This was on July 2, I believe there was a solar eclipse. I was told by the vet who performed surgery to bring him in again. Hours later I received a call that his surgery had strictured and he needed to be put to sleep. They said they have never seen a cats urinary system so inflamed.
I was working outside with my husband when I received the phone call. In the course of the 5 minute phone call, the sky went black and it started to rain. A literal black cloud over my head, the trees were blowing sideways. When the phone call ended, the storm blew over, and the sky returned to blue.
I was in complete shock. Devastated. Devastated.
Can’t really put it into words… but my heart has been aching ever since. I have been so depressed. So angry. I am trying so hard to fight it, some days I can, some days I cry and cry.
I will never know what exactly went wrong. But I do know: I would have never agreed to this surgery if I knew stricture meant death. And I will wonder until the day I die: Did these UNNECESSARY vaccinations send my precious cats immune system into overdrive? Are they what ultimately inflamed him to the point of no return?
I do know that veterinarians take an oath to ‘first, do no harm.’ This oath was, in my opinion, broken.
My cats birthday was supposedly on Christmas Day. He would have been 4. My heart is broken.
I want to move forward, but I feel like I’m being choked. This is an attempt to move forward.
My cats name was TANMAN. He was a magical cat who was born with half a yin yang on his back.
He will spend this Christmas buried in the cold earth behind my house.
I pictured him curled up under my fireplace on his birthday.
He is instead in a box under a tree, frozen.
And I feel dead inside, no matter how hard I try to fight it, something in me has burnt out.
I know I will always carry this heartache, but this is an attempt to get it out so I can move forward.