Caroline, I am so very sorry for your loss.  What a wonderful guardian you have 
been for your Brumley.  This disease is new to me and my new Himalayan and I'm 
learning so much from this group already.  Again my heartfelt condolences.

Lynne
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Caroline Kaufmann 
  To: felvtalk@felineleukemia.org 
  Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2008 1:05 PM
  Subject: Brumley is gone




    Hello all.  Sadly I have to report that my sweet foster kitten Brumley is 
gone.  I know that so many of you championed his cause and helped me with his 
very intensive care that started the minute I took him home from the "condo" at 
the store on Dec. 22.  I so wanted him to be a success story and in a way, he 
was.  His story was about not giving up, even in the face of impossible odds 
and other vets writing him off as having FIP and then not wanting to continue 
forward with alleviating the pain his affected eye was causing him.  But my mom 
and I kept going and by the time we got to our 5th vet, we found someone who 
was willing to keep working on Brumley and in the meantime, alleviate the pain 
his eye was causing him- which he did and Brumley's quality of life increased 
and I thought he might make it.  He didn't stop eating and drinking until the 
18th of Jan. and that is also when he became ataxic.  But he never stopped 
interacting with his environment and doing the small little things that he 
wanted to do- like continue to walk around, even tho he fell sometimes- that 
never stopped him, hang out with the dog whom- he loved, sniff things, curl up 
on me and purr, bird watch, family wathc, and try to eat soil from the plant, 
etc.  He never stopped purring either until the very end.  
     
    I was worried that with Brumley I wouldn't know when it was time.  And his 
vet even said to me about 5 different times that he would "drag his feet" on 
this one because he loved Brumley's grey and white coloring and the way Brum 
was such a trooper and would just not give up at all!  So I worried that if the 
vet drags his feet, and I drag my feet, will we keep a cat going who is 
suffering?  But that didn't happen.  I don't believe Brum suffered much, if at 
all.  He was perky last night and purring away in a cat box he found the other 
night- after somehow making it all the way up the steps to the housecats room 
and climbing in it!  He had started to fight me a lot with syringe feeding 
(which I have done since Jan. 19th) and the subqu fluids- also since the 19th.  
So I was concerned that the fighting- which he had never done before- was 
either a good or bad sign.  But he was fine last night- he got his two 
prednisones and it was my typical evening of treating, medicating, feeding, and 
babying The Brum.  But this morning, he was not standing up in his crate and 
looking around and meowing- which had become his usual morning routine.  He was 
laying flat and my mom thought he had already passed.  His little front paws 
were gripping the crate and I had to pry them off- he was obviously in 
respiratory distress- as this is my 3 time since Monkee died in my arms in July 
to see this, so I know the signs b/c I live in fear of them.  He was craning 
his neck like he was trying to breathe and his breathing was rapid.  So I threw 
on clothes and we rushed him out to the emergency clinic- the same one that 
also took my Possum on the 22 of Jan.  Brumley's regular vet wasn't in until 9 
today and he had surgeries scheduled, so we couldn't go there.  Which I think 
is good b/c when I saw his vet, I would have started balling instead of being 
composed and I just think it would have been a mess for both me and him b/c he 
really liked this cat.  
     
    The emergency vet said it was grave.  Clinically, he was dehydrated 
(despite my 2x day fluid treatments), his liver was failing, she suspected 
kidneys were next, she found granulomas throughout his body (other places 
besides the eye), his temp was down again to 94, and she strongly suspected 
brain damage.  She said he was definitely dying and whether it was dry FIP, 
Toxo (which she doubted), or she proposed a very severe fungal infection-- 
either way, none of it was reversible and everything that could be done for the 
cat had been done.  It was definitely time.  Which I already knew when I 
decided to take him out there.  I was with him.  Brumley was so bad off that 
the ER vet couldn't get a vein, couldn't get the juglar and had already decided 
to euthanize with a shot to the heart.  He was even less alert than Possum was 
when we did this with him, so it was definitely the right time- he just crashed 
so fast and so hard in light of how he was last night.  Since the shot went to 
the heart, Brumley left this world very quickly.  The vet gave me a hug and 
told me I did a good job.  
     
    Honestly, I am exhausted.  I have been doing very intensive care on Brumley 
and it has taken up all of my mornings and my entire evening.  I would get up, 
take care of Brum, go to work, come home, take care of Brum, go to bed, and it 
would start again the next day.  So mentally and physically, I am just worn 
out.  But I know that- especially being a foster cat- Brumley got more care and 
better care than he ever would have if I had not intervened.  In his short, sad 
little life, he never got frustrated, he never got mad and I don't really think 
he knew he was sick, but he definitely knew love and had things in this world 
that- for a very brief time- made him happy and made his existence better.  
     
    I have offered his body to his vet who's been treating him since Jan. b/c 
he had a special interest in Brum and I wanted to make the offer in case he 
wants to do a necropsy or just take a look at the eye.  So maybe we will get 
some answers, maybe not.  If he doesn't want to do a necropsy, then I will 
leave it at that.   
     
    Thank you to all who cared and helped me with Brumley's extremely difficult 
case.  Oddly enough, I had a dream about Monkee last night and I haven't 
dreamed about him in a while.  Yes, I think about him every single day, but he 
hasn't visited me in a dream as clear as he did last night in a long time.  As 
soon as my mom woke me up to tell me Brumley was not doing well, I knew it was 
time because I think Monkee came to me to tell me it was time and he was coming 
to take Brumley home.
     
    Caroline K.       


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