It's been very hectic this winter! Pooh's mange and acne is improving, but then an infection started manifesting at the back of her neck. A patch of fur fell off and it looked like it was slowly turning into an open sore. I'm already overwhelmed trying to keep up with Cucu's issues, but I am working on a regimen ($$) for Pooh.
On top of the tablets I mentioned in the last update, I just began giving her an antibiotic formula. These are the same drops I was giving Wes to cope with his infected mouth. Fortunately, after I began adding it to her food, fur began growing back almost immediately and she seems to be on the mend. As long as I've known Pooh (this summer will be 10 years) she has had issues with allergies and her skin, I hope I can give her some relief.
On top of all this, we had record breaking snowfall and freezing cold this past week. The cats have been keeping cozy inside for a few days now.
Update: Jan 21, 2023
I have been keeping an eye on Pooh's skin issues for a bit. Over the summer, I began giving her "Healthy Skin & Allergy" tablets to address it, and now it seems to have escalated to mange. I just ordered and received "Mange Relief for Cats" homeopathic tablets from the same brand. They make the amazing "Oral Health" tablets that helped Wes cope with his awful dental disease and I'm hopeful these will be effective also.
Jan 7, 2023: Happy New Year! No significant changes to report. Cucu is hanging in. Her thyroid medicine needs a refill soon and it is not cheap. If she stops receiving them, she starts to become very anxious and out of control. Attempting to stay stocked on cat supplements while trying to pay my utilities usually leaves me VERY broke at the end of the month. I was very touched by all the support the past couple months. Thank you 💓
Nov 12, 2022: Two years later and I'm still nursing cats. I'm tired of it tbh. Princess Cucu is hanging in. She's still eating, present and has a decent amount of energy. Cold weather has returned and Pooh gets a very big appetite and I have to put in more effort than I'd like to keep her from eating all the food. As usual, I can barely afford their supplements. This is still very much about slowing Cucu's decline and keeping her as comfortable as possible within my means. THANK YOU to everyone that continues to support 🥰
Sep 26, 2022: Autumn is here. Fortunately Cucu and Pooh are hanging in. I'm still doing what I can to support them. Thank you for the continued help. Even now that I'm no longer dealing with Wes, with recent inflation and increased cost of living, it didn't make a big difference financially, and I'm still very much having a hard time staying stocked up on supplements for Cucumber.
Tips and wish list purchases are amazing and help so much. Bits and subs allow me to meet the threshold to receive payout from Twitch (currently it's $100) and it helps A LOT. I'm just trying to support two very old, abandoned cats with limited means, pretty please consider contributing if you haven't already.
Aug 18, 2022: Been missing Wes. The ladies still need support though. I'm beginning to think Pooh is older than I thought. She's still healthy but has definitely mellowed out the past year. I will take her for a check up soon when I have the resources.
I've been having a hard time staying stocked up on supplements for the cats, particularly geriatric Cucumber who is dealing with kidney failure, heart murmur, hyperthyroidism and dental disease. Pooh has a skin allergy that I'm now giving her tablets for.
I try to stay consistent with supplements, this helps slow their decline and keep them comfortable as possible. It is costly though. I attached a photo of empty "Oral Health for Cats" tablet bottles which was a product of managing Wes' painful dental disease. A number of these were donated, THANK YOU! Please consider purchasing something from my wish list or sending a donation via my tip page.
Jul 12, 2022: Thank you everyone for the amazing support. I was able to raise enough to give Wes as peaceful an exit as possible. During that time I dropper-fed him his different supplements to at least give him a little relief and some calories. The house call vet came yesterday. After learning he was a neighborhood cat they offered a small discount for the procedure. Wes wasn't scared, and even got up to say hi to her. He was still very much his mellow, sweet self. Everything was fairly calm and quick and he peacefully transitioned on the futon in the living room. Things feel much different without his presence, but he had a long, exciting life that featured a number of people who really cherished him. We will miss you Wes 💔
Jul 8, 2022: Wes has basically decided to stop eating the last couple days and his dental disease has become almost unmanageable. It's a big challenge giving him the things he needs. He's still drinking water.
At the moment, he isn't completely miserable. When his mouth isn't giving him trouble he's still present but I don't see things improving from here. I've been giving him CBD in hopes of calming him. He's been laying around a lot.
I've decided that after two years of nursing him, euthanasia would be best. Ideally, I would really like to have a house call vet come do this but this will cost close to $500. That's more than I have in the bank right now, and this is money I usually spend on basics and cat food/supplements for the month.
I hate to solicit donations for something like this, but I don't want him to suffer more than he has to. Anything will help. I just need to raise around $250 so my check to the vet will clear and still be able to take care of the other cats. This will probably need to be scheduled within the next week. Donations (PayPal or credit card) can be made through my tip page. Thank you 💌
Jul 6, 2022: Summer is here, the cats are enjoying the weather. Cucu is responding better than I thought to the addition of hyperthyroid medicine. She put on a little weight, and is looking more like her old self. Wes hasn't been as fortunate. He's still present, demanding things, keeping an eye on his turf and goes moth hunting but has been eating less and his dental disease is slowly becoming less manageable. I am keeping a close eye, and he's now receiving CBD drops which seems to help. As usual, feeling very fortunate and grateful for all the continued support 💕
May 28, 2022: I recently came to discover Cucu is also hyperthyroid. Her behavior was becoming a bit much to handle. I started giving her the same thyroid drops I'd been giving Wes and fortunately it's been effective. Also, It was overdue, but I just began giving Wes a natural antibiotic to help him cope with his dental disease. His bad breath has improved since. The cats are hanging in. Very grateful for all the support the last two months. Thank you so much 😍
Apr 10, 2022: Spring is here. I was not expecting Wes to last this long but he's very much pulling through a year and a half later. As I've said, this wasn't about keeping him alive as long as possible, just comfortable and content. I came into this not knowing a thing about caring for a cat with kidney disease. Since then I developed a regimen and to my surprise, it's been fairly effective.
But, I'm going through over $300/mo in litter, food and supplements. To save money, I looked into some of the ingredients of the rebound formula and started adding human supplements to their food like minerals, along with Saccharomyces boulardii (probiotic) which has been very helpful stopping their diarrhea. I've been sticking with particular brands of decent but pricey wet food and vomiting has been happening much less. Wes' dental disease is up and down but he's still eating and has even been taking naps outside again now that the weather is warming up.
Once again, I wouldn't have been able to do this without donations, so one more big thank you to everyone that has and continues to contribute. The amount I get is fairly modest, but helps me scrape by at the end of the month.
Mar 5, 2022: The cats have mostly been stable. I believe Pooh has a skin allergy and might be allergic to chicken. She's been excessively grooming and going bald in some areas. I've just begun addressing it, we'll see how it goes.
Wes and Cucu are doing ok. Wes' dental disease is still very concerning so I have to be dilligent to make sure he gets enough of the oral health tablets in his food (up to 30 a day currently). I found a new renal friendly food that they really like which makes it easier to slip in the medicines they need.
Jan 30, 2022: I've been nursing Wes 15 months now. Fortunately his dental disease has improved somewhat since my last update, he's been receiving even more of the oral health tablets. He's still present and has life left in him but I'm questioning how much longer I can actually do this by myself. I am spending upwards of $200 each month attempting to sustain two old cats. I really can't afford it and I'm tired of begging. I could have had both of them put to sleep months ago and saved a lot of money and stress but I just can't get myself to do it for a number of reasons. Of course, thank you so much to everyone who continues to contribute, it means a lot to me. I tend to leave Pooh out of the cat blog since she's the one cat not dealing with chronic disease but she's doing fine. She's a cute and demanding lady that grows a big appetite in the wintertime.
Jan 9, 2022: Happy new year. Wes is still with us. His dental disease has gotten worse and he's lost some more weight. I'm helping him cope but obviously time is against us. His mouth is causing him a lot of discomfort but he's still present, eating, calm and still likes to demand pets.
Cucu is doing surprisingly better and is responding well to things I'm giving her, which gives me more energy to focus on Wes. I am doubling up on treatment and spending more to support him so my financial situation stinks like usual. Donations are welcome and greatly appreciated.
Nov 14, 2021: So I've officially been nursing Wes a little over one year now. Much of this was new to me and I'm pleasantly surprised we made it this far. My apartment has become a nursing home for cats which I'm constantly managing, especially since Cucu's diagnosis. It's stressful, costly and I'm neglecting other things because of it, but I have no regrets. These are sweet cats that were abandoned and I think they deserve it.
I was unsure trying to deal with this using herbs and supplements was going to work but I did not want to traumatize them with frequent vet visits (that I can't afford). Fortunately, treating it at home has been effective and Wes along with Cucumber are not suffering. Wes seems to be gradually slowing down, but he's very much alert and present.
Thanks for reading. I created this blog to be an outlet, a way to process my thoughts and give updates to anyone who might be interested, especially kind and generous contributors.
Oct 28, 2021: I recently reported Wes' situation was getting worse. It's improved a bit since. Thank goodness for the oral health tablets, I've doubled the dosage and he's having a much easier time eating. His dental disease is progressively getting worse, and I'm fighting the inevitable but these cat "hacks" are working in the meantime 😛
Oct 14, 2021: It's been almost one year since I began treating Wes' condition. Unfortunately he declined further this past week. His dental disease (stomatitis) is progressing and eating has become more painful for him. I had a scare that I would have to put him to sleep, but I've attempted to get more creative with giving him the sustenance he needs and things have improved slightly. He still has an appetite, is drinking and alert. If things escalate, I am in contact with an in-home vet to offer support.
Cucu is doing alright. I've also been making sure she gets the extra support she needs. She gained some weight back the last few weeks and is still active.
And of course, managing all of this would have not been possible without everyone's kindness this past year. Thank you!
Sep 12, 2021: Since I've been busy dealing with Wes, sadly I had been neglecting Cucumber. I was beginning to notice she had lost weight and was eating less. She finally got a check up and blood test this past week and turns out she is dealing with kidney failure as well. This will complicate things but fortunately I'm already in a routine of managing old cats. As long as they continue to eat and don't seem like they're suffering, I'll continue to put in the effort to support them.
Aug 25, 2021: Thank you so much to the mysterious and amazingly generous person that recently cleaned out my wish list 🥰 Things are already being put to use.
Aug 11, 2021: Until now, I had never managed a cat with kidney failure, but in my opinion Wes is doing surprisingly well. This isn't about keeping him alive as long as possible, just comfortable and happy.
And of course, still very grateful for all the amazing support and kind donations!
Jun 14, 2021: Wes is doing alright. We're approaching 8 months of managing his condition. As it gets warmer he is spending more time outside fortunately. I've started giving him smaller doses of medicine more frequently throughout the day and it's been effective. It's grown very exhausting though and I'm left with close to no money at the end of the month.
I'll keep doing what I can within my means. If you happen to be reading this, please consider making a contribution. Thank you so much to everyone that's helped sustain my friend.
May 2, 2021: Happy to report all the cats are well and enjoying the spring weather. I've been managing Wes' CKD for 6 months now. He's stable and still in better shape than he was. Also, like Wes, Cucumber is now choosing the indoor life 🐈
Mar 25, 2021: Fortunately, Wes still seems stable! I recently updated his regimen to include "Kidney Support Gold" drops which I'm excited about. And of course, I'm still blown away by the continued support! I am patiently waiting for the next government stimulus, once this arrives I believe we'll be in good shape for the season.
Feb 28, 2021: Wes is doing alright! He seems stable, and this wouldn't be possible without all of the amazing support. Caring for his condition, along with dealing with the rest of the cats has become very exhausting but I don't want to see him suffer, so I will do my best within my means to support him.
The routines and procedures have become more familiar. Wes is less traumatized when I apply drops in his mouth, so giving him medicine has been going better. I switched over to a low phosphorus, low protein wet food (less toxic for the kidneys) and his vomiting has improved.
Jan 26, 2021: Wes is doing alright at the moment! He lost a little weight but is still eating, drinking, has good energy and started going outside again for short periods of time late at night. His energy and mood has improved over time and I think I've dialed in a decent regimen to support him for the time being.
I've been preparing little "soups" of food mixed with medicine that can take a bit of craftiness and coaxing for him to take to, but the gambit has mostly been successful. Also, happy to report the "Oral Health" tablets are helping with dental disease issues, and because of all the amazing support on top of stimulus money, I was able to stay stocked up on everything the babies needed this month 💝
Jan 7, 2021: Happy New Year! Thank you for the recent tremendous support 😍 Happy to report that I am stocked for the time being on wet food, litter, and remedies to support Wes and the babies.
Wes had a check up this week. Not too remarkable, the vet noticed the same issues as last time. No dental surgery will be happening, apparently because of a miscommunication it was scheduled but shouldn't have, given his current issues. He already had an extensive dental plus tooth extractions in 2016. For now, I'll be focusing on supporting him the best I can from home. I'm waiting on "Oral Health for Cats" tablets to arrive, which will hopefully make eating less painful for him.
Dec 18, 2020:Wes is healthy at the moment. He's alert, has energy, still eating, drinking, and not having bathroom issues. The last couple weeks were stressful, he was having difficulty with indigestion but since then I've added "Digestive Upsets" drops and it's been improving.
Things I'm currently addressing: kidney disease, dental disease, dehydration, heart murmur and hyperthyroidism.
Thank you so much for all the support.
Over the past 15 years I've been caring for three rescue cats. Cucumber arrived in 2008, she had belonged to a friend of my housemate at the time and needed to be re-homed because of issues with other animals. Then in 2013, two neighborhood strays, Wes and Pooh, would adopt me. Cucumber is approximately 19 years old, Pooh I estimate to be around 15. Wes lived to be around 18.
At my first vet visit with Wes, we discovered he had a microchip and had been abandoned by his original owners ten years previous. They called him "Heavenly". Apparently, Heavenly did not like a new family dog and stopped coming home. They moved away soon after and he became a neighborhood cat. As he became geriatric, he was diagnosed with a number of ailments in the fall of 2020. This event inspired me to start this blog. After putting up a good fight, he transitioned peacefully in July of 2022.
Cucumber was diagnosed with kidney failure and a heart murmur in September of 2021. She is also suspected to be hyperthyroid.
Pooh is dealing with issues concerning her skin, hair loss and allergies. This has been going on for years, but lately it escalated. I now have her on a regimen of to address these issues.
Currently, I don't have the resources to easily rely on the vet, so I tend to handle it at home with a number of supplements and formulas with fairly positive results. There is no cure for kidney failure, but it is manageable and will take ongoing work to slow the deterioration down. My priority is to keep Cucu comfortable and pain-free as possible.
Our current regimen.
My financial circumstances were not ideal before this cat crisis, and it's now being stretched to the limit. If you'd like to support us, please consider purchasing something from my Amazon Wish List or send a donation via my StreamElements tip page (card or PayPal). Thank you 💕