Leslie’s health took an unexpected nosedive on Saturday. Vet consultation Saturday, one on Monday, and then an emotional one over the phone last night.
On Monday, we were so optimistic.
But her kidneys are shutting down. Last night, with the vet’s help, we were trying to figure out the best and kindest thing to do for her and whether that meant “really aggressive treatment mode” or “kitty hospice” mode. His gentle advice was tending towards the latter. It’s what we already felt intuitively in our hearts.
This is a sad time. I’ve spent the night staying up with and monitoring her twice since Saturday, but mainly just being with her. Having her sleep on my lap. Getting her more water, colder water every few hours. Gently wiping her face and paws since she has essentially given up grooming.
When I was 18 years old, my childhood dog (a big shaggy blonde sheepdog mutt) died in my and my brother’s arms. He collapsed as we tried to help him stand up and go outside. As we realized what was happening and saw his breaths slow until they just didn’t come again, I remember that mixed in the deep sadness was guilt and anger that we hadn’t taken him to be euthanized a week earlier. Sure, he did die with us right there for him, but that last week was so hard, and it didn’t feel very humane.
Right now we’re torn for Leslie. I feel like she’s counting on us to help her “go” peacefully and humanely, but I’m not sure if that means waiting it out at home a few more days or taking her to the vet. We’ll see how things are tonight and tomorrow.