Tag Archive | cancer in cats

Missing Oliver

On June 21st, my dear sweet Oliver passed over the Rainbow Bridge.  As you know, he had Fibrosarcoma for about 18 months, and had two surgeries to slow its progression.  Sadly, these tumors are almost never cured, and his had grown large again…

I brought him home from the shelter in 2005, about six weeks after Zorro died.  He was a little over a year old at the time.  Full of spunk, and ready to give his older sister Martini a run for her money.  He was long and lanky, and much bigger than her, but he never quite had the courage to stand up to her when she laid down the law.

 

After Martini died, I realized just what a lap cat Oliver had always wanted to be.  He proudly took up his spot on my lap during movies and snuggled against my chest at night.  He loved sleeping in his puff by my computer.  He hated when Coraline bullied him out of his spot, but sometimes she just wanted to cuddle.

Oliver and Coraline Snuggling – Don’t they look happy holding hands?

Oliver was never much into people food, but loved to chew on things.  Paper, the corners of the furniture, the corners of books – there are quite a few items around my house that bear his tiny teeth marks.

He also loved to drink water out of the faucet, and would turn up his nose if the water in his bowl wasn’t fresh enough…  He would wait until I stirred in the morning, but once I appeared as if I might be awake, it was a free-for-all to get me out of bed for his breakfast.  He got smart in his later years though and wouldn’t leave his perch until it was clear that I was going downstairs, lest he get rudely kicked out of the bedroom so I could snatch another hour…

 

I hope you are having a good time in heaven, Oliver; you are sorely missed…

Oliver’s Hump

Oliver is still here.  His tumor keeps growing; I have taken to calling him Quasimodo, because he looks like a hunchback.  It is hard to tell in the photo, but it is large and firm.  It is more uncomfortable for him now when I give him his fluids, since I imagine the fluids don’t feel good when they stretch out his already stretched skin.

Despite all this, he is purring, eating and still jumping up on the bed, so I guess it isn’t time yet.

Oliver’s Bedtime

Oliver is enjoying his time spent cuddling with me more and more.  He sleeps the sleep of the dead at night…  The other night he was lying down, waiting for me to finish folding the laundry and go to bed.  I tucked the duvet up around him and he just stayed like this.  What a cutie! 

 

 

 

 

Oliver Rests

Oliver had a hard weekend.  His tumor has grown more, and his breathing seems a little impacted, so I bundled him over to the vet on Saturday morning to check on his tumor’s progression.  The vet heard his breath changes too, and we put him on a steroid to help relieve the inflammation.  The first dose was Saturday evening.

Sunday morning Oliver wasn’t feeling well, and I found him hiding under the bed.  His tumor was more swollen, and felt warm to the touch, and he wasn’t very interested in his breakfast.  I canceled my plans for the day, and we snuggled in to watch a movie in the morning, while he settled down some.  I ended up getting the deck ready to be cleaned and then scrubbing about half of it.  That is a lot of work!

He was perkier in the evening and ready for dinner before snuggling in for the night.  Overnight he did more roaming too, restless before coming back to bed to snuggle more.  I didn’t give him the steroid again, just in case his discomfort was a result of the medication.  This morning he was ready for breakfast, but then went to curl up somewhere out of the way afterwards.

Oliver getting a well deserved nap

I talked to the vet today and he says it is more likely that he is fighting an infection in the tumor tissue than swelling caused by the prednisone.  So, back on the med, and watch and wait for a couple days to see if the swelling goes down.  We’ll see how he does.

Oliver’s Boxes

Oliver’s health seems to still be holding it’s own, even though his tumor is growing.  It is currently about the size of a lime, nestled in between and under his right shoulder blade.  It is just this hard lump, visible under the skin – you can absolutely feel it.  So far, it doesn’t seem to be painful to him, so that is a positive.

His appetite is good, and he still enjoys snuggling with me every chance he gets.  He likes to be warm under the covers.

Oliver loves boxes, even if he can’t fit…

I continue to just try to be grateful for the time I have with him, not knowing how much longer that will be.  No matter what, it will never be enough.

 

 

Counting Days

I’ve been home most of the weekend, venturing out only a little because I have felt pretty crummy.  Oliver likes that.  He gets to snuggle up in bed next to me, or in his favorite kitty puff on a little table next to be at the computer.  He’s snoring…  Loudly.

His tumor is continuing to grow.  It’s gotten to the point where it is stretching his skin, making it obvious that something is there because it makes his fur look thinner there.  It doesn’t seem like it is bothering him yet though, other than the fact that he is much more content to snooze more of the day away.  His dementia symptoms are more obvious and pronounced too (he frequently seems confused if I am in another room and he can’t find me), but the vet says there’s no way to tell if that is related to his cancer or not.

He is still as loving as ever with me, and at times irritated and impatient with Coraline.  Granted, she still likes to chase him and annoy him, but she also smells his tumor and inspects that spot carefully while he is lying down.  I think there is certainly something to the research that says animals can smell tumors.

I don’t know how much time there is, but this weekend has been good time with him.

 

 

Oliver’s Tumor is Back…

I felt it last night, before I started to get ready for bed.  That familiar hard bump nestled in next to his shoulder blade.  His fibrosarcoma has again sent its tiny tendrils out to make a new tumor.  He has had two surgeries already; I knew the second time that there would not be an option for another.  It wasn’t a matter of “if” it would come back; it was a matter of when.  And the when is now.

Oliver-Breakfast

Oliver and Cora (blurry on the right) demanding breakfast

 

He already had an appointment for his routine kidney bloodwork this Saturday, but now they will confirm what I already know.  Oliver’s days in my world are coming to an end, but only God knows how many more I get with him.  It all depends on how fast this stupid tumor grows, and how quickly it takes his quality of life.

 

Oliver-Yawning

Oliver Yawning

My heart is breaking…

 

Cora Loves Ollie

Oliver is slowing down lately.  He is content just snoozing most of the day away.  And he doesn’t usually have patience for Cora and her antics.  Today she marched over to him and started to give him a bath.  After initially looking really skeptical, he settled down and let her lick him…  I think he even might have liked it…

Oliver Covets

Oliver has kidney disease.  It is relatively mild, and well controlled with his kidney care food.  Who knows whether the kidneys will go, or whether the tumor will return, first.  It could be either, so I watch both.

Unfortunately for me, Oliver is a bigger fan of Oscar’s food than he is of his own.  Which led to me having to babysit meal-time, since Oliver will give Oscar the stare down to try to get him to leave his bowl.  I finally just decided to pay the money and have Oscar eat Oliver’s super-expensive kidney food.  At least it means I won’t have to police dinner!

Happy Thursday everybody!

That is not the food you are looking for…