Hello Lorrie,

I am so sorry.  I have been in your situation one three occasions.  The
first time I did nothing.  I let her stop eating, as force feeding in this
situation seems only to bother them and prolong their suffering.  She lived
for approximately two weeks after she stopped eating.  She would take only a
little water.  Everyday I watched her get weaker and slowly disengage
herself from me and the world around her.  The last two days were difficult,
her breathing pattern was altered, she was confused and wandered and would
meow for no apparent reason.  This is likely secondary to altered electrolye
status and poorly functioning liver.  She died at night, when noone was
around.  Probably a cardiac arrhthymia.  She was not necessarily in pain,
but it was a prolonged period of atypical behavior that is difficult to
read.  Certainly, however, her breathing was labored at the end.

The second time I tried a blood transfusion.  This was stressful on her, but
after about a week of intensive care she improved and did well for about
three months.  When the anemia returned, I found myself in this position for
the third time.  I decided to not put her through a transfusion again - it
was stressful, involving lots of medication and at times forced feeding.  I
let her be until she admittently refused to eat or drink.  I waited another
few days as she wasn't in any pain but when her behavior changed and her
breathing become labored I put her down.  I had to take her to the emergency
clinic to do it and I regret that.  I highly recommend doing it where she is

Given my experiences, I would put her down somewhere between when she stops
eating and when she develops signs of distress (labored breathing, altered
mental status, clumsy walking, any sign of distress you can identify).  With
that said though, I would really try to find a vet that will come to the
shelter.  In my opinion it is well worth searching for a vet who would do
it.  I would also ask about sedating them prior to the injection.

I am so sorry for your position and do not envy you you're current decision.

May God bless you and good luck.


On 8/11/09, Lorrie <felineres...@kvinet.com> wrote:
> Dear Friends,  I have a difficult decision to make, and I hope you
> can help.......  I have several FelV cats at a shelter I have in
> town. Most remain in good health by all appearances, however one 8
> year old female has been steadily losing weight, she is now very
> anemic; extremely emaciatedm and she stopped eating two days ago. She
> will still lick a bit of baby food from my fingers, and she is still
> drinking water, but this is all. I know she is probably going to die
> soon, but I want her to die in familiar surroundings where she is
> loved, rather than having to make a trip to the vet which is always
> terrifying for cats. The vets here will not come out to see or
> euthanize a sick cat.
> This cat does not appear to be in any pain. She has no tumors, nor
> neurogical symptoms, but I know she will soon die from the anemia.
> I do not believe in extending the life of a cat who has a terminal
> illness, therefore I will not put her through transfusions or heroic
> measures.  If I had a terminal illness I would not wish this for
> myself!
> What I'm asking is this........ I'm sure some of you have had anemic
> FelV cats and I want to know if dying from anemia is painful.  If so
> I will have her put to sleep. Even though I know the trip to the vet
> will be frightening for her....... I do not want her to suffer.
> Thank you for your help,
> Lorrie
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