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My baby is sick, and I can't afford any more vet bills...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2017

    Unhappy My baby is sick, and I can't afford any more vet bills...

    Hello everyone,

    Thanks in advance for reading my post. My fiance and I have two cats (Rowdy, 14 and Piney, 10) and a dog (Harlan, 10). Over the past year or so, all 3 animals have been sick (at different times) and we've basically exhausted any savings we had, and have borrowed money from everyone we possibly can think of (we still owe my parents $1000). We are working on our credit but I've already used up the Care Credit that I qualified for. On top of our animal woes over the past year, we've also had medical bills ourselves that we are dealing with (who knew that bloodwork to find out you don't have leukemia would cost almost $10,000??)

    One of our cats, Piney, is sick again and we have no idea what to do. She has chronic constipation which we manage by giving her pumpkin every day, and most recently (about 6 months ago) had pancreatitis. Before she was treated for pancreatitis, her abdomen started getting swollen and hard, and now it seems like the same thing is happening again. She has always been SUPER attached to me, and is just kind of a weird cat. She is extremely vocal, and doesn't really have different tones like most cats do - I can always tell what my other cat wants just by the tone of his meow - but Piney always sounds a little yowl-y. I only mention this because it's hard to tell if she's in pain or discomfort by the way she sounds - she kinda ALWAYS sounds in distress, and is ALWAYS meowing/yowling. Over the past few years, she has become increasingly more aggressive and territorial towards our other cat Rowdy, and is sort of just a bully towards him and our 90 lb dog. We've talked to the vet about it, who really didn't have many suggestions, we've tried pheromones, separating the cats for a few weeks and then slowly reintroducing them, etc, etc. Nothing has helped. This is a huge source of frustration and stress for not only us, but also our other pets, and is probably the reason Rowdy started over-grooming himself to the point of causing baldness and bloody sores (he's so anxious, runs away when she comes near, and hides under our bed licking himself 24/7..) We were keeping her locked up in our extra bedroom, but I felt so guilty - what kind of life is that for her? To be kept away from her family, but still be able to hear everything we're doing? She would just sit at the door yowling to be let out until her voice got scratchy.

    So, the question is, what do we do? We don't qualify for any discount programs offered in our area, and for some reason most programs aren't for emergency care anyway. We can't even afford what it would cost to take her in for an exam & bloodwork right now, not to mention whatever treatment she will need. I can't stand the thought of her suffering in any way. I don't want to take her to the shelter, because they'd probably just end up putting her down, and if that has to happen I don't want it to be in some gross shelter with strangers.

    Again, thanks for taking the time to read my post, and thanks for any insight.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Welcome to the forum, Rebel. Congratulations on your engagement.

    I am sorry you have to go through this. I lived a year without any cats after my last cat passed away and only adopted one after that because of my mom's fianncial situations, the biggest one by far being health care costs.

    You are smart to not take Piney to a shelter. She would be even more miserable in a cage, alone or with strangers most of the time, and sick cats are off limits to visitors. However, and I know this seems like awful advice because you and your fiance love her, is find another person who can afford the veterinary bills and is willing to treat a sick cat. At best, you can ask someone to foster Piney until she is ready to live with you and Rowdy again. Do you know anyone who can do this? The suggestion is making me cry as I type, but I truly believe it is best for everyone to move Piney.
    Keep your cats safe during the holidays. They deserve a meowy Catmas.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    New Hampshire
    pancreatitis is a nasty condition to deal with, but change in diet may help, she can't have anything fatty and you must watch for dehydration and it sometimes turns into diabetes. Change her food to something like Halo for sensitive stomach, that may or may not help. You can also add digestive enziyes to the food, that will help her digest her food and lessen the load on her pancreas.

    The other cat is over grooming because of stress and the cause of the stress is the cat always attacking him. You will have to keep them apart, not easy to do I know, if she has claws you could put something like soft paws on her that way she can't scratch him but she can still bite.

    this isn't much help to you I know but the only thing I can suggest is change her diet, make sure what you are feeding is low in fat, add digestive enzymes and get something for sensitive stomach
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

Please reply to this thread with any new information or opinions.

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