Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Passing

With sadness, we announce the loss earlier today of our companion of the last eight years, and occasional co-blogger, Lieutenant Kizhe the Siamese cat. For the past four months Kizhe had been suffering from a series of stubborn bacterial infections and an associated inflammatory condition, which eventually progressed to the point of open sores. Kizhe endured one surgery and several rounds of antibiotics and steroid treatment, however the sores were not healing and he was growing progressively weaker and more anemic. It became apparent that he was uncomfortable and that recovery was unlikely, hence The Decision was made. He was euthanized at home this morning, on his favorite chair in the sunroom, surrounded by the sounds and smells of the backyard. This picture was taken a few days ago:
Many thanks go to the vets and staff of the Merivale Cat Hospital, in particular to Dr. Emma Thom who spared no effort in her attempts to diagnose Kizhe's condition, including consulting with experts around the world via the internet, and also to veterinary technician Jessica who assisted Dr. Thom with the euthanasia.

Kizhe in younger days, contemplating the possibilities of the internet:(And you thought this post was going to be about that folk singer, right? Yeah, she'll be missed too)
Update, 28 September: The necropsy results are back, and contrary to biopsies taken back in May, it was cancer. Specifically, a rare form of lymphosarcoma. Apparently, experts all over the continent are fascinated by Kizhe's case, and papers may even get written on it. Being science geeks, we're actually rather...comforted? gratified? at having managed, at least, to contribute something to the vet-med literature....


John Pieret said...

My sincere condolences. It is always a sad duty to relieve our friends of their suffering.

RBH said...

John is right: it's tough to make that decision. But as a retired vet of my acquaintance says, we can do for them what we still aren't allowed to do for ourselves: relieve their suffering. Condolences on Lt. Kizhe's passing.