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Mikhail Liebenstein

Cat Oncology - 1st world problem

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So our eldest cat has developed B-Cell Lymphoma. In human years she is probably about 90.

We have pet insurance, not that I particularly agree with pet insurance as a concept as generally I'd rather not give too much treatment to animal that would then be more likely to suffer the more effort you spend keeping it alive. Though I kind of accepted it as my wife felt it necessary and it might stack up for a younger animal if they had an accident and needed patching up.

Anyway, you can see where this is going.

I'm siding within having the cat put down at the appropriate time, whereas my wife wants to meet the cat oncologist.

I think this falls into the realm of 1st world problems.

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31 minutes ago, Mikhail Liebenstein said:

So our eldest cat has developed B-Cell Lymphoma. In human years she is probably about 90.

We have pet insurance, not that I particularly agree with pet insurance as a concept as generally I'd rather not give too much treatment to animal that would then be more likely to suffer the more effort you spend keeping it alive. Though I kind of accepted it as my wife felt it necessary and it might stack up for a younger animal if they had an accident and needed patching up.

Anyway, you can see where this is going.

I'm siding within having the cat put down at the appropriate time, whereas my wife wants to meet the cat oncologist.

I think this falls into the realm of 1st world problems.

I really feel for you. It might be a first world problem but does not make it any less painful. Only you can decide what to do, but I would humbly suggest that you put the animal first.  

New year's eve my dog suddenly started being really ill.  Could not walk, back legs not working.  Carried her upstairs thinking the worst, she is nearly 13. Luckily, she started improving on New Year's Day and is now fighting fit again.  I think it was a really bad intestinal thing (the gas was unbelievable). Anyhow, it went through my mind in a sleepless night, what to do if she didn't get better, so really feel for you.

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16 minutes ago, hotairmail said:

You know their lives are worthless if it is cheaper to get a new one rather than repair the old one.

That reminds me that I've fancied a rabbit-pie for ages.

Are they currently cheaper at the butchers, or Pets At Home...?

 

XYY

                                                                                                               

The dog's kennel is not the place to keep a sausage - Danish proverb

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1 hour ago, Mikhail Liebenstein said:

So our eldest cat has developed B-Cell Lymphoma. In human years she is probably about 90.

We have pet insurance, not that I particularly agree with pet insurance as a concept as generally I'd rather not give too much treatment to animal that would then be more likely to suffer the more effort you spend keeping it alive. Though I kind of accepted it as my wife felt it necessary and it might stack up for a younger animal if they had an accident and needed patching up.

Anyway, you can see where this is going.

I'm siding within having the cat put down at the appropriate time, whereas my wife wants to meet the cat oncologist.

I think this falls into the realm of 1st world problems.

I believe that oncology for pets is a result of one of the negative aspects of pet insurance. 

Vets may now be making decisions which are purely now based on the fact an animal is insured rather than clinical need.

My cat went blind suddenly last year, the vets did not find a reason but did suggest that if she had been insured that mri scans and exploratory surgery would have been possible.

The idea that one should put an elderly animal through such procedures did not fill me with much confidence in their judgement they of course framed it from the view that I should have had insurance. Even if I had, putting a blind cat through the recommended treatment was a no go as the stress of even leaving the house was too much for her. 

By all means, if it covered by the insurance go and see the oncologist but really question them on what the potential treatments  will involve and your cat's welfare during them.  Don't listen to their bull and put your cat's welfare first, not how much the vet is going to claim from the insurance company.

 

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We've lost two cats to cancer.

I can't even begin to describe the sense of loss that I felt, and still feel, two years later, with our 12 year old female whom we adopted aged 9.

I don't know whether it could have been treated or not. The option was not offered.

What I do know is that despite her being 12 which isn't a bad age for a cat, I still know that if it could have been "fixed" to give her more years, I'd have paid literally any amount.

Don't underestimate attachment. While I am rational "to the core" about many things, there are some things that transcend that and this is one of them.

 

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5 hours ago, DTMark said:

We've lost two cats to cancer.

I can't even begin to describe the sense of loss that I felt, and still feel, two years later, with our 12 year old female whom we adopted aged 9.

I don't know whether it could have been treated or not. The option was not offered.

What I do know is that despite her being 12 which isn't a bad age for a cat, I still know that if it could have been "fixed" to give her more years, I'd have paid literally any amount.

Don't underestimate attachment. While I am rational "to the core" about many things, there are some things that transcend that and this is one of them.

 

Ours is probably 16, we are not sure of her precise age, and actually apart from the cancer she is in very good shape. Definitely part of the family, and has been for a long time, and I can understand why my wife is desperate to try a treatment. But I like to stay realistic, and most cats never make it past 14, so giving a cat of 16 chemotherapy when she will also start going down hill due to age does seem rather cruel to me. Equally, whilst this treatment has a high success rate, the success is only measured as giving another 6-9 months of life, and then she'd need it repeating.

7 hours ago, lulu said:

I believe that oncology for pets is a result of one of the negative aspects of pet insurance. 

Vets may now be making decisions which are purely now based on the fact an animal is insured rather than clinical need.

My cat went blind suddenly last year, the vets did not find a reason but did suggest that if she had been insured that mri scans and exploratory surgery would have been possible.

The idea that one should put an elderly animal through such procedures did not fill me with much confidence in their judgement they of course framed it from the view that I should have had insurance. Even if I had, putting a blind cat through the recommended treatment was a no go as the stress of even leaving the house was too much for her. 

By all means, if it covered by the insurance go and see the oncologist but really question them on what the potential treatments  will involve and your cat's welfare during them.  Don't listen to their bull and put your cat's welfare first, not how much the vet is going to claim from the insurance company.

 

I agree. Pet Insurance has had a lot of negative impacts, firstly it has driven up costs as more money flows into the system and secondly it does seem to have resulted in all kinds of weird and expensive treatments that probably in effect amount to animal experimentation and which could be deemed cruel. It one thing putting a knowledgeable and self aware human through treatment, but a cat doesn't know what is going on. 

 

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9 hours ago, The XYY Man said:

That reminds me that I've fancied a rabbit-pie for ages.

Are they currently cheaper at the butchers, or Pets At Home...?

 

XYY

 

                                                                                                               

 

The dog's kennel is not the place to keep a sausage - Danish proverb

 

There is a pet rabbit buried in my mates garden though it was blind and deaf before it popped it's clogs.  Can't comment on the quality of the meat now but in its day it was well made and  it would definately fill a fair sized pot.

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Quality of life.
Ask questions about that.
Will the cat be able to go out during treatment? Will they be able to do normal cat things?

The RSPCA have five guidelines for animals:
 

  • need for a suitable environment
  • need for a suitable diet
  • need to be able to exhibit normal behaviour patterns
  • need to be housed with, or apart, from other animals
  • need to be protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease.


I know someone who took an elderly cat to the vet and it had to stay in overnight for ages on and off. It saw a cat cardiologist. I thought it was probably the cruellest thing possible for the cat.
It wasn't at home, or able to enjoy a normal life and was probably in a lot of pain.

 

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Not that it's in any way a financial decision, but I'd say you have been paying for pet insurance you might as well actually get them to pay out and go and see the oncologist. As suggested ask the right questions, but basically if it comes down to a decision of extending life for a period but with pain or full recovery then you can make the best decision for your cat. 

 

 

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2 hours ago, hotairmail said:

It was a trick question. Turn the point on its head...."how much do you value your cat?" Only the owner can know that and it can't be decided by others on a forum. Perhaps looking for support to battle one's family on the outcome?

Value?

Love.
If you love your cat you want what's best for it, and not to impose your version of what's best for it.
Most pets hate going to the vets.

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Our 18 year old girl had an osteosarcoma on one of her paws last year. We did discuss amputation with the vet and he did offer to refer to an oncologist but we decided to go for palliative care. She had a nice few weeks getting spoiled with cuddles and roast chicken and we had her put to sleep before things got too bad. It was hard and we miss her like hell but we don't regret it all.

 

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4 hours ago, gilf said:

Not that it's in any way a financial decision, but I'd say you have been paying for pet insurance you might as well actually get them to pay out and go and see the oncologist. As suggested ask the right questions, but basically if it comes down to a decision of extending life for a period but with pain or full recovery then you can make the best decision for your cat. 

 

 

That is the reason I have pet insurance. I don't ever want to be in the position where finance influences the decision of what is actually best for my hound (though given her age I think this year will be her last)

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