posted: Jun. 10, 2011 @ 1:42p
Receipt for the exam
Cat in her cage outside, 6/11
Cat inside, end of Saturday, 6/11
Second estimate, Monday 6/13
The final estimate, 6/14
Cat in her cage, 6/14
Rest in peace
I came home yesterday at night, and ran over a sleeping female stray cat on my driveway. Grey cat, long grey gravel driveway Ė just didnít see her. It is not our cat, but we give her food from time to time, like 2 or 3 other neighbors. Usually, Iím not a sensitive person but seeing a crying animal under my car drugging her legs wasnít pleasant. I told myself that if I see any blood in her mouth or other body openings, Iíll have to help her to die, but I didnít find any signs of blood. My idea was that her legs or pelvic, or both are broken.
It was 11 pm, so I placed the cat into a cardboard box to protect from possible dangers (stray dogs etc) and left it on my porch until this morning.
This morning she was alive, so I decided to take her to a local vet. When I said ďstray catĒ they wanted to put her asleep for free, but when I mentioned that Iíd like to try to save her life, they said that they have to do X-ray to find out what the damage is. The doctor said that a broken pelvic is usually a reason to put a cat to sleep so it doesnít have a bad life after all, but a broken leg is not a problem. Also, the doctor said, it may be something simple and nothing may be broken to begin with. The cost of X-ray and exam is around $200, and put the cat asleep is free since it is a stray cat (I told them that I found the cat on my front yard). A true FW person inside of me told me to take the 2nd way, but because Iím stupid I guess I decided to pay for the exam. ďYesĒ or ďNoĒ to decide that a live creature has to live or die may be hard to say when it comes to that. I donít really have extra $200 to spend on a stray cat, but WTF Ė I didnít want to kill her without giving her a chance.
They called me an hour ago and said that the cat doesnít have any broken bones but one of her leg joints is badly dislocated and cat needs (may need?) a surgery to reattach one of her muscles. The cost of the surgery is around $500. To put her asleep is $40 now since I signed the paperwork and claimed the ownership. When I asked if the cat can recover on her own if I put her into a large dog cage I have for 3-4 weeks on my back porch, they told me it is possible, but I will have to give her pain killers they can give me for $40. And after that, she still may not recover completely.
What is your advice, people? What is a way for a true Fatwaller to have his/her animal fixed for the smallest money possible? I called a local animal shelter but they can only euthanize her. No way I can afford to spend extra $500 for a cat surgery when my relatives abroad barely have money to buy food. From my past life in a country with no vets around I know that cats are very capable to recover on their own, but still I donít want to have a disabled cat after all I have to take care for the rest of her life.
I will add a picture of the stupid cat my wife took a long time ago. The cat looks ugly as hell and was always missing one lip, but still - she is a cat
Update (11.30pm Central Time 6/10)
The cat will have her surgery (Femoral head ostectomy) done the next week. The original vet (see the estimate attached) can do it Thursday, 6/16. I will check another place nearby and will try to contact Jeff state community college that has a vet school to see if they can do it sooner (and cheaper) than that. I will do my best to convince my wife to keep the cat after the surgery.
Thank you everyone for your time to answer my original post, advise, support of the cat, sending me money via PayPal. Right now I have $195.18 USD sent to my PayPal account for the cat from 7 people. I promise to email them unedited copies of the original receipts as soon as I can. I also promise to keep everyone here posted on the outcome of the surgery and post here the final receipt and pictures.
Update (around 3:26 pm 6/11)
The cat is in her cage now (the cage is for large dogs, so it has plenty of space), with food and water. I have put a litter box for her and to my surprise she used it drugging her body into it. While checking on her I found that she is declawed - I don't know how she has survived her 2 years outside in Alabama country (the vet said that she is about 2 years old).
It is very hot outside today and I started feeling bad for the cat seating under the tarp and breathing hard; I had to bribe my wife by telling her go and use a not-so-good Old Navy $10 off $50 coupon to bring the cage inside and keep it in my garage (the only room under my control more or less).
After me cleaning her crap for all the days ahead I may not give the cat away after all, so, please, disregard my offer to give the her away for now.
At this moment I have $329.59 USD sent to my PayPal account by 17 people.
Update 6/11 (Saturday), around 11.45 pm
The cat likes to be in the garage in her cage I think. She is relaxed, sleeps most of the time and eats quite well. She loved when I tried pet her a little bit (it sounds wrong when I admit on public that I tried to pet a female cat for some reason, I don't know why), and had a very strange reaction for a cat - started licking my fingers like a dog, non-stop, making a loud sound. Love hungry? I don't know, but that's what my wife thinks. After drinking some wine tonight, my wife said that cat doesn't look too ugly after that and she will get used to her she thinks. My wife is still in shock after FW thing, so she feels bad that she didn't like the cat before.
I have $481.39 USD sent to my PayPal for the cat from 21 people. I will be emailing unedited estimate to all of them tonight.
Update, around 11 pm, Sunday 6/12
The cat is doing OK in her cage, eats and drinks well. She can barely stand and shakes a lot while trying to do that, but still drugs her body into the litter box to use it. I had to give her Metacam pain killer she's got from the vet. The label on that one says use it for dogs only and never give it to cats, but there is no other effective medicine for cats for arthritis and so on pain I was told, so vets continue prescribe Metacam in small doses. They say in Canada it is considered to be safe for cats, but litigation here makes the label a necessary thing. The cat should be getting Metacam in a 5 lbs dose every 3 days.
THE SURGERY IS COVERED!!!!!
I have $761.39 USD sent to my PayPal account from 35 people. It should be more than enough to cover the cat's surgery, vaccination, possible boarding overnight and so on. Thank you to all of you who did it. I know you didn't do it for me and I shouldn't thank you because it is not what you were looking for when you send your money. But Cat can't thank you so I have to do it.
If I get anything extra later on sent to my PayPal or a different way (some folks told me they want to send personal checks) I will use it to cover $197 I spent on the cat's X-Ray, exam and pain killers, so don't send me money, please, if you don't want me to use it for that - I asked about the surgery and the surgery is fully covered as of today by 35 kind people, absolute strangers from Internet I don't know. $197 was my personal spending on the cat and I shouldn't cover it with the money sent for the surgery, but if you send me money now, when surgery is fully covered, I use your money to cover $197 because I'm a "broke member". Once again, the surgery is fully covered! Yes! Thank you, dear FW people! Whatever is left after all, is going to be donated to a local animal support group that has cats seating in glass boxes at my local PETsMART waiting for their new owners.
I promise to report how I'm going to spend every cent of the money and provide all the receipts after all.
Monday, 6/13, around noon
Iíve got another estimate from a local animal clinic this morning (attached). They played with numbers a little bit and added some extra things the first place did not, but the most important thing they have mentioned Ė the Cat needs to have her Leukemia (FIV) test done. Since we have another cat at home (my wifeís cat), FIV and proper vaccination are extremely important to prevent our cat to get infected. The total with the surgery at the second clinic is $650 Ė makes the first clinic still to be a better deal even if they add $45 FIV test, $22 Leukemia vaccination and $12 rabies. But I need to find out about the surgery supplies to have the true cost.
After doing some research I have decided not to check our local community college that has a vet program. Since Cat has money for a surgery with a pro, I donít want a student to train on it. A vet class is a nice option with no money on hand to save an animal, but since FW folks has covered the surgery Iíll skip this option.
Iím going to stop by at the first place (Deerfoot animal clinic) tomorrow morning on my way to work to get the original estimate updated to get their price and to schedule the surgery for Thursday if their deal with all the vaccination and tests is below $650.
Finance update (around 10 pm, Monday, 6/13)
PayPal - $1,014.64 USD from 44 people. Amazon payments - $10 from 1 person.
Thank you! It is more than enough for anything at the moment, dear all, so please don't send any money anymore. Everything I may think of as of today is covered by you, 45 strangers from FW, and I promise to keep you updated on everything. I still need to send unedited copies of the 1st estimate to some of you - sorry, didn't have time for that but will do it ASAP.
I have the estimate from Deerfoot Animal Clinic revised by their doctor to include Rabies and FVRCP vaccination, and a combo test. Total price is $592.40 now, so it is a better deal than the 2nd place I tried. I talked about the catís lip. The cat had a very bad ulcer a long time ago that has destroyed her upper lip. There is no infection now and it there is no need to do a surgery on that.
We have the official surgery date now Ė it is 6/16, Thursday. The surgery will be performed by doctor Russell. I will deliver the cat to the clinic on my way to work at around 8 am.
The cat is OK and is waiting on her surgery tomorrow morning. She canít eat or drink anything after midnight tonight, so she is eating now all the time.
PayPal: $1,024.05 USD from 45 people, Amazon Payments: $10 from 1 person. I sent unedited estimate to all of you (one email - firstname.lastname@example.org was returned as undeliverable).
Update, Thursday, 6/16, 9:23 am
The surgery day is today! Cat was delivered to the clinic about an hour ago. I have added some blood work tests they recommend to any pet before sedation, and also asked to check her for ear infection and for worms, including ringworm. They will call me after the surgery to let me know how the Cat is doing. I will update you ASAP.
Update, 12.10 pm
Iíve got a call from Dr. Russell 15 min ago. The Catís combo tests are all fine, but he found something else so he wanted to confirm that I still want him to proceed with the surgery. There is an abnormal growth of body tissue in the Catís throat that may or may not be cancerous. He wanted to make sure that I want him to perform a $600 surgery for a cat that may not live long. He sounded like the second possibility is really possible, but didnít confirm anything when I asked him directly since he doesnít know what that is without additional testing. After some thinking I told him to proceed with the surgery and take a test of that area to see what is going on. It is a $80 test, but since we have money to cover it and want to know what is going on, I think it makes sense.
That tissue growth(I donít know if it is a tumor or what) in Catís throat may explain the fact that the Cat was always very quiet during 2 years we know her, we could barely hear her meowing. Well, if she was like that for 2 years, there is a chance that it may be not too bad.
I will let you know ASAP when I hear anything else.
I just got a call from Doctor Russell. The cat went into cardiac arrest and passed away during the surgery. They did their best he says but couldn't do anything. He told me it may be related to that tissue growth she had. His opinion is that it was probably the best thing for her Ė he is sure that Cat has cancer spread everywhere. You can call him if you wish to find out more: 205-661-9630.
I will get her later on to burry on my backyard. I will refund everybodyís money end of today. Please use it to help other stray animals. God bless you all and thank you for everything you did for her.
Iíve got Catwallet back this morning. She looked exactly the same like on her last photo that I took while the Cat was asleep, just had some stitches on her left leg. I have finished her 3 foot deep grave and we have buried her under raspberry bushes. We do not go to that area of our backyard so the Cat will rest in peace, finally, after all the months of straggling with heat, cold, Alabama wilderness, illnesses, looking for food and love.
A long time ago Iíve heard a story about Angels coming to us not to help, but to change us. They come in different, usually not the most unattractive shapes, and patiently wait for us to step forward and do something good Ė something that we usually never do. If that story is true, then who knows, maybe this little ugly cat was sent to try to change me and my wife. She came to the front door of our house two weeks before our daughter was born, 17 month ago, and since then, under rain, sun and snow, was patiently waiting on us to step forward - to see her not like an ugly annoying stray cat, but as a helpless creature that also needs love and attention. For many long months, she has taught us to share food, provide a little bit of care, to notice unattractive and annoying poor things that we usually donít see or donít want to see around us while busy with our own, more important stuff. And when kitty has finally found that she is loved, that all her efforts to make me and my wife a little bit better are finally successful, that there are actually many, many people in this World that can love her the way she is, that sent their money to help her, that were thinking about her for all these days, she got satisfied and went somewhere else - on her new assignment.
It is Catwallet story I will remember and will teach my daughter when she gets older. Thank you all