Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Nahum's diabetes update

We took Nahum to the vet on Saturday to get the urine test (lots of sugar in the urine) and to talk treatment. The vet's goal is getting the diabetes in remission - I like that goal. She instructed us on insulin dosage and administration technique as well as diet management. Taking in all of that information helped make the whole process feel less overwhelming.

We switched his food to DM over the weekend, blending it with his other food. Monday we switched completely to DM. Monday evening I gave the first insulin shot. That all went fairly well. I am pleased the insulin needles are so tiny and the dose small, so it goes quick and I don't think he even felt it.

Tuesday morning was a mess. The new food messed up his system and he had massive poopy butt which meant impromptu bath. Diarrhea + long furs = huge nasty mess. Realizing it would probably take his system more time to adjust, I ran him to the vet for a butt shave. He only ate half his breakfast, I figured because his tummy was still upset, so we halved his insulin dosage as we were instructed to do. He seemed uncomfortable, like he looked the prior evening after eating, which looked like tummy upset.

Now comes the heart wrenching part of this. We came home from work and found him completely unresponsive in a coma. In one swift motion, overwhelmed and terrified, we gathered him up ran him to the emergency vet as fast as we could. They took him back and started treatment giving him dextrose. Before we left him for the night, we visited with him and he was able to stand like a statute but wasn't moving nor acknowledging us - this was improvement from his initial condition.

The plan is for him to stay at the emergency vet overnight for stabilization and then transfer over to normal vet Wednesday morning to figure out next steps.

The evening update from the vet: he's a lot more responsive, eating, meowing, wanting attention. That sounds like really good news.  Thank God!

Theo, our very sensitive boy, has been anxious mess since we got home from the vet. He and Nahum are best pals. I imagine Theo seeing Nahum struggle and suffer as he slipped into coma must have been very upsetting. Theo's been very unsettled, tonight, wants to be glued to a human, and even peed on the bathroom floor. Poor guy, misses his best friend. Cuddling him close - loving on him like there is no tomorrow.

Seeing him completely unresponsive was so, so scary - it totally triggered the trauma of finding Willow in that condition 15 months ago. I'm still working on settling and breathing. I'm going to be terrified leaving him unattended again- not sure how I will navigate that just yet.

Prayers and purrs appreciated.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

unpleasant surprise

A month post radioactive iodine thyroid treatment, Nahum needed a follow-up blood test to see how his thyroid is doing. He's been a lot more chill, more like his typical self, so we weren't worried about what the test might show. Although, lately we've seen him hanging out with his head over the water bowl, that's weird. He went in on Monday for that blood draw. Returning to the vets so soon after Marvin's death was painful as it stirred up the pain from Marvin's farewell. 

Greeter kitty always on duty
We received the test results today - his thyroid level is a little low, not uncommon we're told. We test again in another month, while hoping it levels out in a good place. The blood work did reveal a problem though, his blood sugar number was off the charts. Laura brought him by this afternoon for a re-check and it was also significantly elevated. Nahum has diabetes.

We're adjusting to this news. Marvin's passing gave us a well needed break from special needs kitties, a break we were hoping to enjoy for some time, but I guess that is not to be. Sigh. Now, I'm trying to learn everything I can about managing diabetes in cats. This is new territory for us. If anyone knows of any helpful resources, I would appreciate hearing about them. We follow-up with the vet on Saturday for one more test and to discuss treatment options. 

Receiving this news today felt completely overwhelming - it took my breath away. I stopped what I was doing and just focused on breathing. There is currently a lot of stress on our plate (which I'll get into in a future post), including the grief from Marvin's death. Sigh.  Deep breath.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

safe 4th

Thank you everyone for your kind words about Marvin, it was a blessing to read each of your comments. The weight of grief is heavy and I appreciate not carrying it alone. I deeply miss him, he had such a big personality in such a tiny package. I'm not sure how he fit all his kitty-stuff in there! I've been noticing his absence and also noticing the relief of no longer needing to be always on duty. The 24-hour caregiving duties added up slowly over time,  I don't think I realized the weight of the stress, worry, and around the clock caregiving requirements, until that weight was released. I hope to write up a memorial for Marvin shortly.

Today's the 4th of July - the day I always think of Oliver and his family. I remember all those years of him being outside and being all terrified by the fireworks. I did my best to give him and his family a safe place to hangout. Even with the accommodations I provided, the fireworks caused him great stress, which in turn caused me great stress.

Today, Oliver and Pierre are happily inside - chilling with no worries about fireworks or cars or any other dangers! And I no longer stay up all night worrying about them darting across a busy road after getting spooked by fireworks. Tonight, they are happily inside! Yah!!

Oliver's preferred napping position                  July 4, 2019 12:32pm

We live in an in-town apartment here in Lebanon, NH and the people around here seem to be a lot less into fireworks - which is great! I'm not a huge fan of the noise.

Pierre enjoying the view and keeping eye on the human     July 4, 19 8pm
 Pierre and Oliver - now forever inside cats!!
Oliver, snoozing safely and soundly as inside kitty!!      July 4, 19, 8pm

Pierre enjoying the sun!                           June 22, 2019

I hope all your kitties are safe and sound this evening!

Monday, July 1, 2019

farewell Mr. Marvin

It is with tremendous sadness that I report, Marvin let us know he was out of rallies and ready to go home to join Willow, Max, Buddy, and MK. 

I love you Marvs - always will. Please say hello to Willow 
when you arrive in your new forever home. 

Saturday, June 15, 2019

rally #351

Marvin has rallied once more! He keeps approaching what looks like the end of the line and then he reveals he has another life yet. Miracle cat, this one.

We learned from recent ultrasound that his worsening breathing problem was complication of his asthma, mucous accumulating in his lungs. Terbutaline seems to be helping quite a bit, yah!

We also learned that his kidney failure keeps getting worse. We knew that was inevitable. Thankfully, he's still eating well. He still gets sub-q fluids twice a week.

We're appreciating every moment with this guy, never knowing when the next rally won't come. He's a love.

Go Marvs!

Friday, June 7, 2019


Nahum is radioactive!

He went in for his i131 radioactive iodine treatment for his hyperthyroidism. We were able to coordinate the treatment when we were going to be out of town. He spent the week at the vets chilling as the treatment did it's thing. I was able to watch him from the webcam they had setup in his suite.

He looked pretty bored in his suite, even with kitty television going.

We got home on Thursday and picked Nahum up on Friday. Before we picked Nahum up, Theo was looking very subdued and withdrawn. For the first time in his life he was separated from his fluffy pal, and he's such a sensitive guy. Theo was soooooo happy to see his Nahum come back home! Sadly, Nahum needs to be quarantined for 2-weeks, so they will only have little visits for now and it's going to be a challenge not to give into Nahum's pitiful crying!

Meanwhile, Mr. Marv's health continues to decline. Before we left on our trip, he got an ultrasound (which in this area is a big deal). The report indicated no congestive heart failure (yah!!), instead mucus is building up in the lungs, due to asthma. That was good news, with that information, we know better how to treat his condition to help him cough the mucus up. The blood work however revealed his kidneys are much worse off now. He came back from spending the day at the vets and stopped eating and looked awful. We thought we might loose him leading up to our trip or even when we were away but he rallied. We certainly have the sense that our time with him is getting more and more limited.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

cattery update

Marvin's health continues to go up and down. He's in a down state lately, with a lot of congestion that keeps him coughing and hacking. The vet hasn't been able to figure out what is causing the congestion. She says it's not in his lungs, so I guess that's good. Sadly, it keeps getting worse.

He continues to eat well, which is good. He wakes me in the middle of the night for 2-3 feedings, which I happily oblige. He needs to keep eating and sleep is overrated anyway.

He still likes a good cuddle, but spends most of his time on his heated bed. Purrs for him to rally once more would be appreciated. 

Meanwhile Pierre is still Pierre. He's getting quite bold!

Pierre gets really close to the humans when a string is getting wiggled. He's quite handsome! And fuzzy!!

He went in to the vet for exam and shots recently. They have to sedate him cuz he won't let any human touch him without significant bitey and razor sharp claw action! All his tests came back looking good, which is good cuz there's no way we could administer any meds to him.

In other news, we recently celebrated Nahum's 10-year gotcha day! Where does the time go?!?! crazy! And of course celebrating his big day without Willow seemed awful. I still can't believe she's gone.

After several weeks of cooler temps and rain we are finally scheduled for some warmer weather-  I'm ready!

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Northern Lights Quilt Guild - Quilt Show

Northern Lights Quilt Guild, is hosting their quilt show this weekend in Hanover, NH. We decided to check it out and it was a lot of fun!

So many beautiful quilts, it's quite amazing to see how gifted people are!

kitty in the window!

This was my favorite kitty quilt. If you look close you will see birds too! There is so much going on in this quilt, I left the picture size large so you can click on it and see the detail up close.
Kitties, birds, flowers, oh my!

This was Laura's favorite

They had a quilting-themed book sale, which of course we had to check out. Right there on top was this book, Cats on Quilts - which of course had to come home with us! It's for a good cause!

Monday, March 4, 2019

Winter updates!

Winter time greetings!

Where does the time go?!?! We are all doing well. Not much new going on, lots of work, house hunting continues without much success. We've been in this tiny "temporary" apartment now for exactly a year. That was not in our plan! I'm happy to report that my depression has remained in remission since the retreat I did in early January! That has made life significantly better.

Pierre still loves cuddling with his papa! And I still love seeing them cuddle!

Rose insists in eating behind the couch in the corner! She needs to feel protected to let her guard down to eat. She has been coming out more and hanging out across the living room, giving us the opportunity to admire her from a distance. Maybe in another 25 years she'll let us touch her!

Oliver continues to amaze me. Even though he sometimes gets bullied by Theo, he refuses to cower, nor to fight back. He could easily kick Theo's butt, but he is so gracious. He occupies the space he wants to occupy and tells Theo to just deal with it. He's never aggressive with any cat, which is so different than when he was outside cat. Then, he would cross over onto neighboring properties and pick fights with the neighboring cats. I'm so grateful his outdoor days are over. He seems pretty grateful too! It's not uncommon to see him laying upside-down on the couch in his favorite spot!

You can look and admire how soft and beautiful I am, but you can't touch! 
It's still weird having a semi-feral cat inside our apartment! He keeps a distance from the humans, but occasionally lets us walk by him in the hallway without moving. I would bet a kilo of catnip that he lets us snuggle him long before Rose does!

Nahum is perpetually the playful little boy. I love that he never grows up!!

Marvs has been doing great! He still goes in for 2x/week juicing, which seems to help. He has nearly daily asthma attacks, which are rough to witness. He recently started sounding more congested, so he's been getting an anti-biotic that has helped. He won't take pills, but thankfully he still loves dry food. And now that he doesn't have teeth, he just swallows down the dry food, so now we can hide a pill in a small gel cap, put it in the bowl of a few nuggets and he eats them all down!

Theo gets more lovey by the day. He's very clingy and needs more and more affection. 

Nahum has a thing for my shoes. It's not uncommon to find him out sleeping on the shoes. He's such a unique personality, makes me adore him to no end!

Marvs has been super affectionate since his brush with death a number of months ago. When he's not on his heated spot, he loves hanging out on top of me or in my lap. 

Friday, January 11, 2019

tiny chocolate cuddle monster

I often look at Marvin and marvel over his tiny size. How does he fit all of his kitty parts in such a tiny package?! 

Everyone needs a tiny chocolate cuddle monster!

Marvin has been exceptionally cuddly lately! You'll get no complaints from me about that.

Marvin's asthma keeps acting up. He has these spells where it's difficult for him to breathe, it's quite distressing to witness. We've been giving him topical steroid for years now and it's not good for him, but it keeps him breathing (mostly). We have an AeroKat for administering inhaler-meds. Sadly, he's always been ultra-resistant to having his mouth touched (mask goes over his nose and mouth) because of his chronic dental problems. Now that his dental issues have been resolved and the constant pain is no more, I'm trying to slowly acclimate him to the AeroKat breathing mask by having him fish shredded cheese from it. I don't have much hope this will make him any more accepting of it, but thought it was worth a try.

Marvin spends most all his time on the heating pad bed on the human bed, in my lap, or on the heated window perch when the suns out. He likes his heat! And he prefers his dinner on the heated bed!

Happy Friday! I'm ready for the weekend - the retreat was emotionally and spiritually restorative but physically tiring (more on that in a future post). Then Thursday and Friday work schedules were crazy busy to make up for so much time out of the office. This weekend we go house hunting - hopefully we can find our next home with a sunny porch for Theo!