Monday, April 12, 2010

Rest Peacefully, Ruthie

August 8, 2012--More than two years after Ruthie found Marty's true heart, she has moved on from her Earthly journey. Pretty little 13-yr-old Ruthie had a sudden and rapid decline in her health. Marty first noticed symptoms of unwellness on Saturday, took Ruthie to the vet on Monday for blood work, and learned that Ruthie had completely lost her kidney function. Ruthie was in total renal failure and nothing could be done for her. Marty held Ruthie as Dr. Alice helped her to the Bridge.

You were one of DCIN's early placements, Ruthie.You are very special to us, little girl. I know your Mama's heart is broken in pieces. Please send her whisker kisses and rainbow dreams to help her heal. Have a great time in the meadow by the Bridge chasing butterflies and waiting for your Mama and all your kitty friends to join you. ~Venita


June 18, 2011--Ruthie will be going to the vet for her annual wellness check-up today, and DCIN will be paying up to $200 for an exam and bloodwork/urinalysis.

DCIN would like to find friends for Ruthie to sponsor her for a total of $70 a month. DCIN is providing Ruthie, always a member of the DCIN family, insulin, testing supplies, and vetting when we are able. It is the insulin (ProZinc, which DCIN often has to buy), postage to mail supplies, and vetting that uses DCIN's cash. Before the vet visit, Ruthie's account is about ($200); therefore, her cash costs are paid by DCIN's unrestricted moneys unless we can find her sponsors. If you would like to join Ruthie's sponsors, please choose a sponsorship amount, let us know whether we may tell Marty that you are a sponsor, and click on "I Sponsor Ruthie" smilie. Thanks!

Choose Amount
Should DCIN let Marty know you are a sponsor?


Update 1/23/11--In December 2010, Ruthie went back onto insulin. To get to the reasons behind her high blood glucose levels, DCIN paid for a vet visit. (Marty continues to be unemployed.) Ruthie was found to have several feline oral resorptive lesions and also a skin tumor.
Ruthie with love-smitten Smokie

DCIN fundraised for Ruthie and she had her surgery just a few days ago. The vet extracted five teeth, and we await the pathology on the tumor. Ruthie is recovering well from her procedures. DCIN also is helping Ruthie with testing supplies.

Marty truly loves her little girl, and she is overwhelmed with the empathy of her DCC friends and the rest of the FD community toward that bond. DCIN also wants to thank the members and board of Diabetic Cat Cat (DCC) who made a generous donation of $600 to DCIN to help DCC cats. Ruthie received $200 of that support.


Update 5/8/10--Ruthie has a permanent home!! Someone on the DCC Board asked Marty whether Ruthie was still a foster. Marty replied.
And as far as "fostering" Ruthie --- well, I guess I should let everybody in on my secret. To be honest? I don't do foster cats. Any kitty who finds its way to my house for residential purposes is never on a trial basis; to get through the door to my home, you first go through my heart which is one-way only. Ruthie has never been a foster kitty to me. That's why I am so cautious to make SURE I can take them first, because I know I can never let them go.

You've always been mine, little Ruthie.
I want to thank Marty, from the bottom of my heart, for being there to save Ruthie from certain death. It was touch and go that weekend, but Ruthie made it out alive and into the best place ever.

And, BTW, Ruthie had one shot of insulin at the vet and has stayed under 105 ever since. There were issues with inappetance and an upper respiratory infection, which spread to the two other cats in Marty's home, but every one seems on the mend now.


Initial Post, April 22, 2010--I received an email on the evening of Saturday, April 10, 2010 saying that Ruthie had to be claimed (adopted or rescued) from the Douglas GA County Shelter before she was selected on Monday for euthanasia on Tuesday. We had no information about her health or purrsonality other than what I received in the email.
No: 1792
Name: Ruthie
Black/White Beauty with Gold Sparkling Eyes.

Ruthie is a spayed, 6 year old beauty who was turned in to the Douglas County Shelter today by her lifelong owners because they said they could not afford her insulin shots once she was diagnosed with diabetes.

This sweet girl is so confused about being removed from the only home she has ever known, to be thrust into a cold, locked, steel cage. She does not understand why she can no longer lay on her comfy couch, and go get tasty food and fresh water any time she wants.

Ruthie's longevity is in serious jeopardy due to her medical condition so she needs to be rescued ASAP (before Tuesday!).

Pull and transport is available to LOCAL licensed rescues.
Sunday morning was a rush to action. DCIN Case Worker Marvie immediately offered to foster in Virginia, Abby (who is the rescue person for Bean in GA) agreed to send paperwork as a GA-licensed rescue to have Ruthie pulled, and Marty of DCC offered to serve as a temporary and then a permanent foster (maybe even leading to adoption). We were all set for Marty to get Ruthie on Monday.

The process then got snarled when the local rescue person, Pat, sent me an email saying Ruthie was FIV+. Although she later said that she mistakenly put information about a different cat into the email about Ruthie, it immediately caused us to pause. Pat then came back and told us that Ruthie had received an FIV vaccine earlier in life, but we knew that because those antibodies test as FIV+, and there is no test to distinguish between FIV antibodies and virus, Ruthie was an FIV questionable cat. Because this was a "rush job," DCIN hadn't had the time to do our normal methodical evaluation of the cat. Neither Marvie or Marty were able to accept an FIV questionable cat into their homes, although Marty offered a temporary shelter of no more than two weeks. Abby offered fostering after that.

Pat took the extraordinary step of getting a reprieve for Ruthie and taking her to the vet on Tuesday for FIV/FeLV testing. She was negative, and Marty picked her up the same day, what would have been Ruthie's final day on this earth.

After getting Ruthie and her medical records, Marty said she didn't see anywhere that Ruthie has received an FIV vaccine at any point in her life. She has had regular check ups, rabies shots, distemper and FeLV shots, but no FIV.

Ruthie's BG level at the vet was 383 and she was given 2U of ProZinc. That was her first and, so far, only insulin shot. The last Marty posted Ruthie's numbers on DCC, on April 19, she was down to 109, all on her own.

It also turned out her birthday was April 4, 1999, so she was 11, not 6YO.

Ruthie's first week with Marty has been tough. Ruthie was not eating, although she was drinking and peeing OK, purring, being affectionate. Marty's describes Ruthie's introduction to her two boys:
I decided to carry Ruthie around the house and give her a little tour. Smokey was very interested in her and wanted to sniff, and Bouncer was simply watching. However, RUTHIE is the one that wanted to play hard to get with the boys!!! When she saw my cats, she hissed and growled at both of them, which in turn caused THEM to hiss and growl right back at her.

Well, finally got that calmed down, and at one point I placed Ruthie in the top barrel of Bouncer and Smokey's kitty condo. Ruthie loved it; I guess she felt safe there but still had a good observation point.

Well, Stealth Bouncer climbed up when no one was looking, and before I knew it I heard all sorts of commotion!! But it wasn't Bouncer and Ruthie, it was SMOKEY growling and hissing and chasing BOUNCER!!! Smokey, my laid-back, simple-minded, happy-as-long-as-I'm-fed-and-loved cat, apparently wants Ruthie for his own (although she's not interested in him), and he was ENRAGED with Bouncer for getting too close to his girl, and Smokey was aggressively chasing poor Bouncer, my alpha cat, all over the house, and batting his paws at him and growling and everything!! Good grief!! And here I am, running after these two battling cats with their fur flying and hair standing on end and tails fluffed out to 6 inch diameter, trying to catch either one of them without getting bit to pieces!!!
On April 18, Marty wrote:
The good news is, she IS eating MORE herself - but still ONLY eating yogurt. But she has eaten at least a full cup of it today, possibly a few spoons more than that. I don't like her getting that many carbs, but at least I feel better that she's getting some CALORIES, and at least SOME protein, and she's doing it voluntarily by herself, without being force fed. So I know she WANTS to eat, and still has an appetite, and hasn't given up, and I really didn't want to have to force her to eat with a syringe and make her even more miserable. This is a very good sign and I'm encouraged that she is finally adapting to her new life with us.

However, since she has shown no preference for ANY kind of cat food, it looks like I will just have to make the decision for her and select something myself - probably the Friskies turkey, it's predominantly what my two boys eat - and I'll start mixing tiny amounts in with her yogurt and gradually increase the ratio. If I do it slowly enough, hopefully she won't notice it enough to turn her nose up at it in the beginning, and eventually she'll be eating more "real" food instead of just the yogurt.

Also, Bouncer is still hissing at Smokey, but he has calmed down a good bit. Smokey will hiss back if I give them the opportunity to work themselves into a "hissy fit," but I've tried to stay on top of them enough to keep it from escalating to that point.

For this afternoon/evening, Bouncer has been on the sofa beside me, Smokey has had free reign, and I also opened Ruthie's door and let her out so she could explore. Amazingly, things have gone VERY well. Bouncer hissed at her a couple of times when she got too close to him, but otherwise she has been appropriately curious and checking things out. She found a hiding spot once but only stayed there for about 10 minutes, then came back out and walked around again, sniffing and looking. Smokey is absolutely enthralled; he watches her with complete adoration in his eyes. I swear, it is so cute! At one point while I was on the computer tonight (still with Ruthie's door open, she's been coming and going as she pleases), Ruthie was in here with me and Smokey decided to come in, and he'll only come as close as Ruthie will let him. If she doesn't want him any closer, she'll hiss just a little bit, and he'll back away and lie down and just worship her from afar. I swear he's in love!

And she is holding her own and doing fine. She's still very affectionate, very curious, completely alert, still grooming and using the potty, she sleeps sometimes in her kitty cube, sometimes on her flat bed out in the open room, sometimes on the floor by my feet, she rubs against my legs and loves to be stroked and petted, she WILL back away as if frightened if you try to pet her on TOP of her head, and I HOPE she has not been hit before; I try not to even think about it, I just give her lots of love and assurance and talk to her a lot and snuggle with her.
Marty continues to work on getting Ruthie to eat. On April 20 she wrote:
The biggest problem we have faced since she has been with me has been finding something she is willing to eat that is appropriate for her, and in sufficient amounts. As of today (Monday April 19, 2010) her not-that-great-yet diet consists of whole-fat milk, whole-fat yogurt (both of these mixed with as much all meat baby food as I can manage to sneak in before she turns her nose up at it), grated cheese, and real bacon bits. I know that sounds like a terrible diet, but it's GOT to be better than dried kibble, table scraps of toaster streudel (which she was CLAWING me for yesterday!), and other high-carb poison.

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