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Deciding on Amputation for 15-yr old cat Squamous Cell Carcinoma
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Canada
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30 January 2018 - 10:24 pm
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Hi Crystal, Spirit, amd Kiko

Thanks for the continued encouragement & well wishes! I hope everyone's week started off nicely & you have less snow (or none at all!) there than we do! 

Crystal you’re such a sweetheart! Here you are having a family crisis and you’re being so sweet to ask how we are all doing! Thank you! My family had a lovely weekend. 😉

Here are some pics through the years of Spirit "Whitey" aka the Tiny Loving Man, etc.

Spirit “Whitey”, Tiny Loving Man...you are incredibly beautiful! A very special boy both inside and out! Those eyes! My gongases, I am absolutely smitten!😻
Keek, the sleek! Mum will be a tech geek shortly and get us some pics of you as well little darlin!”

 You can see his Westie love/sister, Angel, in one. I don't have any uploaded elsewhere online that include Kiko, (dropped off social media a couple years ago around the time we adopted him), so will have to upload them somewhere to be able to link them here. I haven't quite figured out how to quote other comments in multiple parts here in the forum, so hope my reply style is ok! I should know how to do this, I'm still considered a millenial! 😛

Angel is a little sweetheart! It’s no wonder Spirit was in love with her!
I hope my earlier comments on the picture uploads were more of a help than a hinderance?

The past 48 hours have been rough - Spirit only ate 1 1/4 meals and threw up yesterday morning. I gave him Buprenex last night hoping it would help but he only licked a little wet food a few hours later. I've tried 7 different foods - 5 types of wet food, including his fave seafoods, and dry, even cooking fresh ground turkey - but he just sits in front of them, like he wants to eat but wants something else. Not even sardine juice helped.

I’m sorry to hear this my darling, you are doing such a good job of keeping your boy comfy. I understand, as do many others, just how hard it is to try and force feed and medicate our babies!
I have always said to Paul, that giving the medication is probably one of the most difficult parts of the process, they don’t understand why we are forcing them and they always try and please us don’t they?!

 I had a long cry to myself after giving him the smorgasbord last night to no avail.

Oh how we understand those heart and gut wrenching moments alone, when we wish to god that we could do something to change the circumstances! Life can be seem so cruel, when we have to face such horrors, but when offered the choice of meeting Spirit and having this beautiful spirit in your life, or to never have met Spirit and live without the pain of dealing with his disease...! And please don’t answer that, it’s sort of a hypothetical question really, ‘cause I don’t think there would be a question if choice, would there?!

Of course Kiko was pretty disappointed that he could not partake in the 7-course feast, but I gave him a little extra of the cooked turkey along with his regular meal.

Oh I think Kiko forgave you very quickly when offered the peace keeping morsels!

I called the vet and my regular is not in today, but they said I could pick up some Mirtazatine. I'm not fully into this option based on giving it to the Westie before and her having tremors and vomiting after, but it's an option. I tried to find some bone broth already made that didn't have onions in the blend (bad for cats, eh?), but no luck.

You can always speak with your vet regarding other options. Onions can be deadly to both dogs and cats. im surprised that this medication is used on animals at all!!

I read up on the Neoplasene treatment, Holly,(that's my mom's name too btw!),

None of us are surprised by this synch are we?!!! 😉

I wonder if you wrapped Mojo's paws, Petra, or have any tips on tumor care/bleeding tumors of the digits? 

I’m sorry my darling, I don’t have much advice in the way of wound care in this regard... Mojo had knocked his paw on the chest when jumping up one day and it opened up one of his tumours, I had tried using warm compresses on it to keep it clean, but I’m sorry to say that it wasn’t too long after that that I asked Paul to help me make the most difficult call of Mojo’s life! You are being a warrior in taking care of your boys feet!

I did however, read an awful story of a lady in the UK I believe, who had her cat taken away and is not allowed to have animals because she was treating her cat's cancer with manuka honey! ........so the poor lady had her kitty taken and was punished for doing what she might have been doing if she had seen a vet/gotten x-rays anyway, and the kitty had to be separated from her and have his leg amputated even though it did not help!

That poor, poor woman and the poor darling cat! My heart just wrenches hearing that story! There are worse things that people do and a blind eye is turned! There are not enough emojis to show how I feel right now!:(

I'm so glad I got answers before doing an amputation, although the surgeon said it's still an option, depending on the growth of the internal tumors... to help with quality of life if the internal is slow-growing... Idk. I just got the CT images in email today and a very brief description of what I was looking at. I feel like there should have been an official report attached or something (especially for the cost!)
I’m sorry, but from what I understand the cost of a CT scan can be, they should have you in for a consultation and answer any questions you may have!

As far as suggesting that amputation is still a viable option after seeing additional masses in the lungs or the lymph nodes for that matter.....???? I am not a vet, I am not suggesting anything... but that is not the typical way of thinking, so far as I have come to understand on this site...?
How often would you have to do a Ct Scan or X-ray, to see if it’s slow going, before you decide to amputate? If you you decide to amputate?! I’m not sure what to say in this regard ...

so maybe if I can read a report it will tell.

Oh you poor thing! You shouldn’t have to try and deciphering that report by yourself! You must call up your specialist and tell them that you absolutely need a follow up to the scan to go over the results. There should be no charge for this as far as I’m concerned!

He had mentioned the bronchial area being compressed by one of the tumors, which might have caused coughing, when we saw him post-CT. I wonder too if that has something to do with him not wanting to eat... ?

Quite possibly darling, along with his very sore paw.

.
I haven't been able to speak with an Oncologist yet either, but left messages for the one a few hours away to call me back.
Good luck sweetheart in getting some proper answers to your very razzled mind!
Petra - Thanks again for the kind words! I'm happy you've been feeling Mojo's presence more through this connection and glad to know he's watching out for Spirit too. Yes, Crystal & Petra, solid names indeed! 

I can assure you that there are definitely other forces at work in the universe that have brought us all together to try and make this terribly difficult journey, hopefully a little bit easier for you and Spirit!

thanks for the quote from your niece... so very true! Gotta take the bad with the good, eh? It also makes me think of that George Carlin one, that buying/adopting a pet is akin to signing up for a future tragedy!

Yeah, I couldn’t live without my fur babies!

I hear you on staring into the eyes of your fur baby... he has definitely been trying to communicate with me. But also I see he's been in pain lately and as a cat mom, that's super hard to see, as you prob know!

Yes, we all understand completely!

It's truly a blessing to have connected with this group, and it means a lot to me to find others who have been through similar hard situations with their beloved animal friends. Even moreso blessed with the synchs of Mojo & Spirit's journeys! 

Thank you on behalf of Mojo! The synchs are amazingly quite obvious! 😉 When I first asked Rene if I could post a blog journaling Mojo’s cancer, I really wasn’t thinking that there would be another case similar to his... but just in case, I wanted to let people know that a small toe problem can actually be a small piece of a much larger picture that needs to be looked at! I am grateful to Tripawds for many reasons as well and this is yet another example of how much of a difference that Tripawds.com makes on people’s lives!

I'm so lucky Spirit is such a loving guy and that I've been able to have such a true, dear friend as him besides me for so long. He's really one-of-a-kind. <3 (Aren't they all?  >^_^<  ) I'm hoping he'll come around and eat something tonight on his own. If not, syringe feeding it is...  

You are both very fortunate to have found one another! True friendship runs in both directions and you can’t have one without the other right?! It is obvious how much you love each other and that bond will never break ever! Mojo is a perfect example of that fact!

Please keep sending the good vibes Spirit's way! Love & good wishes to you & your fur babies! 
-Crystal, "Whitey" and Keek the sleek

I am praying for all the good vibes to come your way! Love your boy Crystal just as you are doing, that’s what he needs most from you and an open heart and mind to make all the best choices for him! You both know that you are doing your very best for him and your courage is obvious!

Take good care and all the very best
Petra, Stewie 🐾 and his Pride >^..^<

On July 10/17 I became a Super Tripawd! You can find out more about my Pawrents Allensong but first Check out my journey Super Stu Remember...“live in the moment!“  

Michigan
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31 January 2018 - 6:43 am
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Thanks for the continued encouragement & well wishes! I hope everyone's week started off nicely & you have less snow (or none at all!) there than we do! 

We will continue sending well wishes for Spirit and you!! We received a fresh dump of 6 inches of snow here ⛄️
Spirit Whitey aka tiny loving man is one very handsome kitty. His blue eyes are BEAUTIFUL ! Nice to see Angel Westie too.

I haven't quite figured out how to quote other comments in multiple parts here in the forum, so hope my reply style is ok! I should know how to do this, I'm still considered a millenial! 😛

Petra gave you the instructions for quoting and your reply style is normal and purrfect, we don’t use the quotes until we have been here too long;) No worries either way is good! Millennial or Generation X or whoever does not matter we all learn as we go. Post as you have been! Or play around when you have time!

I don't have any uploaded elsewhere online that include Kiko, (dropped off social media a couple years ago around the time we adopted him), so will have to upload them somewhere to be able to link them here. 

I say good for you for dropping off the social media I am likely the only person to agree with that move;) Yes you can open a free blog and load your pictures there and blog if you wish or just use it for photo storage to post in the forums .

The past 48 hours have been rough - Spirit only ate 1 1/4 meals and threw up yesterday morning. I gave him Buprenex last night hoping it would help but he only licked a little wet food a few hours later. I've tried 7 different foods - 5 types of wet food, including his fave seafoods, and dry, even cooking fresh ground turkey - but he just sits in front of them, like he wants to eat but wants something else. Not even sardine juice helped. I had a long cry to myself after giving him the smorgasbord last night to no avail. Of course Kiko was pretty disappointed that he could not partake in the 7-course feast, but I gave him a little extra of the cooked turkey along with his regular meal.

I’m sorry to hear Spirit passed on 7 different types of food. The only thing I did not see you mention was baby food Gerbers Chicken & Gravy, Turkey & Gravy or Ham & Gravy. Our guys love the turkey and gravy others swear by the chicken and gravy. It is not a balanced food and its not organic or hormone free etc. at times like this we throw all those beliefs out the window to get them to eat. This is when you try anything. Spirit not eating any cat not eating can become even more serious quickly!

Did you warm any of the wet food sometimes that is all it takes.

I called the vet and my regular is not in today, but they said I could pick up some Mirtazatine. I'm not fully into this option based on giving it to the Westie before and her having tremors and vomiting after, but it's an option.

Mirtazatine is worth a try. I did not have luck with it in a senior kitty. He became super agitated and angry on it. Some people have had luck with it so I don’t want to bash it based on our experience. I did better by stimulating the senses which you already did so I don’t think you have anything to lose? You can always try it and if there is a reaction stop. Me, I would try warming the foods and different types as you were.

Get Hills A/D at the vet you can syringe that food if need be. He might readily eat it too? It’s a great food for times like these and it is balanced. They will give you the proper syringe & show you how if your not comfortable doing so.

I tried to find some bone broth already made that didn't have onions in the blend (bad for cats, eh?), but no luck. I've made bone broth for the Westie in the past but it takes like a day to cook and is quite the process... not sure if it'd be worth it at that point? He hasn't had much of the CBD/coconut oil either, whereas before he would finish what was on the spoon, now he's had a few licks yesterday and today then just stops. I tried to syringe a little wet food into him mid-day today, mixed with warm water and he was really unhappy about that.

No onions for cats!! Bone broth you can get on chewy’s we have ordered some and both the guys loved it. Pricey too! I think you need to focus more on the food and getting food him in now. Treating the symptoms that are making him not want to eat. Whatever that is. Once you get him eating yes try some bone broth if you want. 

I read up on the Neoplasene treatment, Holly, (that's my mom's name too btw! & if that is Purrkins in your pic, he's her fave color of cat), and discussed it with my regular vet over the phone on Sunday, thanks so much for the suggestion! I did not call Buck Mtn because I wanted to see if it was even something my vet would ok first.  She hadn't heard of it but pulled up info while we were on the phone and saw a bunch of "gone wrong" cases and was very cautious about it. She said if we wanted it, she'd ok getting it, but did not get into administration - if I would have to do it or ? I probably will give Buck Mtn a call to find out more, though I know they are also trying to sell their product! From what I read, it might not work for where the tumor is located, as it's in the crux of the digits/where digit was removed and it looks like this stuff burns away the healthy tissue if you get it on healthy tissue too, which might be unavoidable in that location. I did put CBD in coconut oil on it for the past two wrappings and the tumor looks better overall/less bleeding/not growing significantly. I wonder if you wrapped Mojo's paws, Petra, or have any tips on tumor care/bleeding tumors of the digits? 

Why am I not surprised your Mom’s name is Holly 😉
Yes that is Purrkins avatar picture he is one of our favorite color kitties too he is our second male ginger tabby or orange kitty we also have his brother who his black and white tuxedo kitty. They are both special guys!

We did not try the Neoplasene obviously but it was a option so I cannot honestly say. I just remember him saying he would work with the traditional vet. Our holistic Vet would have been administering but how? We didn’t get that far into the discussion.

I figured it might be a option for Spirit? I would want you to discuss it with a Holistic Vet who has experience with it and I am sure they would tell you all the pros and cons. I figured Buck Mountain might know who uses it a Holistic Vet you could talk to.  I hate when we have zero options. The last thing I want you to do is have a bad experience with it. Do the research or skip it all together. Just threw it out there just in case it was a option again have not used so cannot say one way or another. I'm sorry I wish I knew more!

I also ordered manuka honey after someone in a cat cancer group suggested it to me to put on the tumor. Looks like there is evidence that it can slow growth up to 30% alone,  but 60% if combined with chemo. I did however, read an awful story of a lady in the UK I believe, who had her cat taken away and is not allowed to have animals because she was treating her cat's cancer with manuka honey! I think it might have been the same situation where the cancer was already internal, but perhaps she didn't see a vet to know for sure. Neighbors thought she was not treating the cat's cancer right, and maybe she didn't get to vet to diagnose and should have... but when they took the cat away and rehomed him, immediately a vet amputated the leg (I wonder if they bothered to x-ray the lungs?) but the cat had to be euthanized not long after bc of the cancer (prob because it was already internal!). I was pretty saddened by this, because essentially she was doing palliative care and the amputation clearly did no good, so the poor lady had her kitty taken and was punished for doing what she might have been doing if she had seen a vet/gotten x-rays anyway, and the kitty had to be separated from her and have his leg amputated even though it did not help!

The Manuka honey cant hurt thats for sure! I’m sorry to hear about that story.🤬 

I'm so glad I got answers before doing an amputation, although the surgeon said it's still an option, depending on the growth of the internal tumors... to help with quality of life if the internal is slow-growing... Idk. I just got the CT images in email today and a very brief description of what I was looking at. I feel like there should have been an official report attached or something (especially for the cost!) but I don't have that and was unable to reach the surgeon when I called today to discuss the images. I still don't know for sure if the lymph is definitely involved or if it's strictly the lung, so maybe if I can read a report it will tell. He had mentioned the bronchial area being compressed by one of the tumors, which might have caused coughing, when we saw him post-CT. I wonder too if that has something to do with him not wanting to eat... ?

I am glad you got some answers as well. Not that they are what we hoped for. In my opinion and that is all it is - I do not understand why you don't have more definitive answers on a CT? You paid big money for a CT you should have all your answers or clearer answers that is why you chose the CT and why it was recommended !  Plus a full report!  Call today and discuss all of this with him.

Write your questions down before calling so you do not get sidetracked while on the phone. Or have you Vet call him and get the answers.

I haven't been able to speak with an Oncologist yet either, but left messages for the one a few hours away to call me back.

I would call again until I got the Oncologist, your Vet might be able to call and get you in sooner, the very least have a consult over the phone?  I think you need to be treating Spirits symptoms now, his cough. His not eating.  They can treat the symptoms, make Spirit more comfortable. That is what is most important at this time. 

Please keep sending the good vibes Spirit's way! Love & good wishes to you & your fur babies! 

No need to ask we are and will continue !!

Please keep us posted and Spirit you have to eat for Mom buddy ! 

Hugs!

Holly & Purrkins & brother Saxton or Sexy Saxton as Petra likes to call himwinker

heart

Virginia
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31 January 2018 - 1:53 pm
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As usual, cannot add anything to the insightful knowldge Holly and Petra have gone over with you in superb detail. I can definitely ditto getting additional informationr and clarification on the CT!   I'll also add that,as Petra already mentioned, some Vets are now proponets of amputation even if mets are visible.   Obviously each case has it's own "specifics" 

One of the comluter geeks can find the blog where a Vet discussed that topic.

I can say that the pictures of your crew are ADORABLE!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

I can say that no one could provide more love and care than you have, and are, to your precious pack (present and past).

I can also add that none of this medical gibberish means swuat to Spirit!!   He's not listening to anything they are saying!

I can add one bit of information abput Manuka Ho ey that you may already know.

** In order to get legitimate medical grade Manuka Honey, you'll want to chexk the UMF number.  Generally the higher the nimber the better.  A UMF #5 is good, but a UMF #10 is even better.   Two brands that I "think"  are pure and certified COMVITA  and also KIVA.  Do your own research though and come to your own conclusions.

Hope Spirit's tummy is better .  Not eating off and on is probably somewhat "normal" on this crazy crapshoot of a joirney.

We're all continuing to send healr energy and e dless great rimes ahead!

Higs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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3 February 2018 - 8:36 am
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 Hi Crystal, Spirit and Kiko

I just wanted to pop in and let you know that you are in my thoughts. As I am sure you are in the thoughts of a few here! heart

I am sending through cuddles and chin rubs and tons of comforting energy!

Keeping you in my thoughts and hope you are keeping well. Please don’t feel that you have to respond in kind! Its just kisses we’re sending through! heart

Petra, Stewie 🐾 and his Pride >^..^<  😉 heartheartheart

On July 10/17 I became a Super Tripawd! You can find out more about my Pawrents Allensong but first Check out my journey Super Stu Remember...“live in the moment!“  

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17 February 2018 - 4:26 pm
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Hey all, has it really been this long? Wow! Feels like no time but also furever, if you know what I'm saying?

I hope this finds you all warm & well! I read your messages here a few days after they were posted, and they gave me great comfort and happy tears, thanks again ladies for your prayers & caring! heart
Maybe you saw my comment on your Stu-versary blog post, Petra? ^_^ Very nice to see pics of your gang & more synchs on the musician in the family tip! 🙂

Thankfully, Spirit is still with us, and had some really great days, and some really bad days since I last posted here. The coughing has completely stopped for a couple weeks now, so perhaps it was connected to the first surgery and tubes they placed down his throat, or maybe the supplements I've been giving him have helped with whatever was making him cough? It makes me less worried about the lung situation, for sure. Again, Since they were unable to aspirate/test the mass in the lungs, there is no real assurance of what exactly it is inside...  

Giving him mirtazapine to stimulate his appetite really was a life-saver, although I had difficulty getting him to take the 2nd 1/4 pill dose - I guess they taste pretty badly - and had to have the vet help me with it this past week. It definitely works for a few days to get him eating on his own, and he even purrs while eating! I can't complain about that, and it seems to give him some pep/comfort overall, though I wonder about long-term use of it. He had to be syringe fed a few times prior to trying the mirtazpine + when I couldn't get him to take the dose + this morning (tonight is when he'd be due for his next 72-hour dose, so it seems like it's lasting less than 72 hours).

The tumors on his paw have gotten worse/spread - but are still only on that one paw/ankle. I'm re-evaluating doing an amputation at this time, because he's in great pain. I see it every night when I cleanse his paw & rebandage it, how he reacts to touching it - I mean, it just LOOKS painful anyway. It's at the "stepped-on-a-landmine" stage again now... and he got off his bandage yesterday while I was in the bathroom and I came out to a bloody mess and him licking at it. 🙁 The vet said we'd feel/know if there were other tumors on the other legs/paws, before they would show up as bone issues in X-ray, and so far no others have been noticeably effected! 

I'm having such a hard time gauging whether or not to do the amputation at this point... of course, sooner is better, and otherwise I feel like he's going to get to a point of pain with this paw where I'm going to have to consider euthanization. But maybe that would be the best decision if it's going to pop up somewhere else? Still, it hasn't yet, so I feel like there's hope, but Idk!
As you may recall, I'd been all set to go through with amputation if nothing had been found in the CT scan of his lungs (even pre-paid for the surgery!), but then had the call that masses were found, and the surgeon presented it in a way that doing the surgery would not be advised. Unfortunately, they did not provide me with a size of the lung mass so we could compare vs. the size given in the first X-ray months ago. I feel like that would have been helpful in determining the growth rate of the lung mass(es). When I called to ask about it, the tech that I've had issues with @ surgeon's office called me back and said that it was 1 cm, and that her info was the same as what I had - but I had no size listed/noted at all on my full CT scan report that finally came through. So that was confusing... especially since the Radiologist from the first X-ray had gauged the mass at 11mm (1 mm larger). I feel that if she only had the same report I did, which had no size noted, then maybe she was looking at the old X-ray info/11mm... but Idk. And if she was able to somehow get this accurate 1cm reading from the CT scan, then that could mean it hasn't grown much. It is near his heart too... This is copied from the report:

FINDINGS:
following general anesthesia, 2 mm contiguous slices of the thorax were obtained pre-and
post contrast administration. In the caudal mediastinum immediately ventral to the esophagus, a round
to oval soft tissue mass is seen with patchy ring enhancement. This is contiguous with the mass
involving the ventral aspect of the right caudal lung lobe, which appears to wraparound and indented
the right caudal lobar bronchus. This mass does not appear to extend to the chest wall. Enlargement of
the right hilar lymph nodes is seen ventral to the right middle lung will bronchus.

ASSESSMENT:
enlarged thoracic lymph nodes with ring enhancement, and focal infiltrative process in
the right caudal lung field as described. Considering the age of the patient, neoplasia is most likely.

Discharge Instructions:
A thoracic CT with contrast was performed today. The CT revealed that Spirit has a mass in his caudal
mediastinum, above his heart (that appear to be enlarged lymph nodes) and that the lung adjacent to
that lesion also appears involved (has a mass in it) and the bronchus to that lung is being compressed.
Unfortunately the mass is in a location that we were unable to sample it today. We do not believe that
the mass in his lung spread to his toe, but it is possible that the tumor on Spirits toe has spread to his
chest.

I'm surprised with the bronchus compression and mass being near his esophagus, that he is no longer coughing... Could it be the supplements are working? I found a pretty extensive protocol via pathwithpaws site (I think that's it!), including medicinal mushrooms, IP6, artesimin, etc... and ordered the recommended items asap. It's been hard to get him to take everything when he was refusing food, but he's been on enough of them (albeit sometimes less than the recommended doses, having to space things out around Buprenex, CBD too) for at least a week and a half - to maybe show a difference? But maybe not soon enough for his paw...? I've used the Manuka UMF 15+ (thanks Sally & gang for looking out on the UMF tip!) even mixed with CBD full-spectrum drops for at least a week on the paw itself... If this is slowing the growth, I'd hate to see it without!

You're so right Sally - that none of the medical gibberish matters to Spirit... what does is that he's in pain though. It's really hard for me to know if he'd be able to bounce back in happiness with the amputation... Obviously he'd be out of immediate cancer-tumor pain, but the surgery pain would be real...  I know the CBD and Buprenex are helping right now... and I let the vet give him an Onsior shot on Valentine's Day too... He'd been on oral Onsior for maybe 7 days a week or so before then, and I stopped because it seemed to be effecting his appetite. Since they gave him Mirtazpine too, I figured the appetite would be better, but like I said, had to syringe feed today, (though he seemed to want to eat, none of the 7 options I gave him he actually ate), so it's not lasting as long as the first 72-hour dose did. He lost about .5 lb since the last weigh-in... at 8 lbs 6 oz currently :/ Skinny little man! Still, even with Onsior, CBD and Buprenex, that paw is painful! Since nothing else has manifested in the other limbs/paws, but keeping in mind the lung potential, and that this may end up being FLDS... what do you guys think about amputation at this point? Is it too risky or could it only help? Ahhh... I'm going crazy about it. 

I'm really done with the surgeon who did the CT scan - he hasn't even called to check up on Spirit, and I was in tears that morning because of our interaction with him, so I'd need to go to the vet where I had the last X-rays done, which offers no overnight care, which would mean us picking him up and going through the rough first night post-op on our own, which I know seems to be doable, but rough, eh? The CT scan hospital /where original plan to amputate if lungs were clear was is the only place that offers overnight care, but we were still planning to get a big cage to keep Spirit Kiko-free during healing process, so we'd need to do that & get a small litter pan to put in there, etc... We called that vet to see when he could potentially do the operation, but he did not get back to us today. He's in tomorrow so we'll check back then. 

I found a Facebook group that was specific to Feline Squamous Cell Carcinoma, though no one else's kitty has that type of cancer on a paw - just Spirit and Mojo heart, they're all on the jaw or mouth. They've had some decent tips and suggestions on diet/supplements.

Maybe I will get around to starting a blog here, but if Whitey's not a tripwad (yet), would it be blasphemous?! For now, I feel like I could sleep for a hundred years! sleepy 

Looking forward to spring! The birds have already begun to come around, but the more the merrier for the kitty boys to enjoy from the windows.
Happy & healthy wishes to you & your furbabies!superstar __/|\__
With gratitude,
Crystal, Spirit & Keek the sleek!

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spirit333 said
Maybe I will get around to starting a blog here...would it be blasphemous?

Not at all! Thank you for sharing all this information.

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17 February 2018 - 7:49 pm
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Hey Crystal good to hear from you!

Maybe you saw my comment on your Stu-versary blog post, Petra? ^_^ Very nice to see pics of your gang & more synchs on the musician in the family tip!

We did see your post in Stewies blog and were happy to see you and Spirit! We have been looking forward to your update!

Thankfully, Spirit is still with us, and had some really great days, and some really bad days since I last posted here. The coughing has completely stopped for a couple weeks now, so perhaps it was connected to the first surgery and tubes they placed down his throat, or maybe the supplements I've been giving him have helped with whatever was making him cough? It makes me less worried about the lung situation, for sure. Again, Since they were unable to aspirate/test the mass in the lungs, there is no real assurance of what exactly it is inside...  

We are really happy to read Spirit is having some great days!! Glad to hear the coughing has stopped. The lung situation is still a situation. I understand you dont know what it is as of type.

We do not believe that
the mass in his lung spread to his toe, but it is possible that the tumor on Spirits toe has spread to his
chest.

From what I do understand the tumor has mets to the lung or visa versa and they believe in their notes it has mets from the toes to the lungs. I still do not understand why we have so many questions after a CT? 

Giving him mirtazapine to stimulate his appetite really was a life-saver, although I had difficulty getting him to take the 2nd 1/4 pill dose - I guess they taste pretty badly - and had to have the vet help me with it this past week. It definitely works for a few days to get him eating on his own, and he even purrs while eating! I can't complain about that, and it seems to give him some pep/comfort overall, though I wonder about long-term use of it.

I would not worry about any long term use of it, it is working !
Eating is the utmost importance in cats! #1 Spirit has to eat, use the drug if it is working! Please do not question more right now you have enough questions trust me take this one off that list right now. This is the least of the concerns right now .

The tumors on his paw have gotten worse/spread - but are still only on that one paw/ankle. I'm re-evaluating doing an amputation at this time, because he's in great pain. I see it every night when I cleanse his paw & rebandage it, how he reacts to touching it - I mean, it just LOOKS painful anyway. It's at the "stepped-on-a-landmine" stage again now... and he got off his bandage yesterday while I was in the bathroom and I came out to a bloody mess and him licking at it.

The vet said we'd feel/know if there were other tumors on the other legs/paws, before they would show up as bone issues in X-ray, and so far no others have been noticeably effected! 

No new xrays were taken of any of the limbs correct? I am sorry to hear the paws are landmines! You need answers to some very important questions. Yesterday ! GRRR This is unsettling to us all, I have no doubt and feel terrible for you both!

I'm having such a hard time gauging whether or not to do the amputation at this point... of course, sooner is better, and otherwise I feel like he's going to get to a point of pain with this paw where I'm going to have to consider euthanization. But maybe that would be the best decision if it's going to pop up somewhere else? Still, it hasn't yet, so I feel like there's hope, but Idk!

As you may recall, I'd been all set to go through with amputation if nothing had been found in the CT scan of his lungs (even pre-paid for the surgery!), but then had the call that masses were found, and the surgeon presented it in a way that doing the surgery would not be advised. Unfortunately, they did not provide me with a size of the lung mass so we could compare vs. the size given in the first X-ray months ago. I feel like that would have been helpful in determining the growth rate of the lung mass(es). When I called to ask about it, the tech that I've had issues with @ surgeon's office called me back and said that it was 1 cm, and that her info was the same as what I had - but I had no size listed/noted at all on my full CT scan report that finally came through. So that was confusing... especially since the Radiologist from the first X-ray had gauged the mass at 11mm (1 mm larger). I feel that if she only had the same report I did, which had no size noted, then maybe she was looking at the old X-ray info/11mm... but Idk. And if she was able to somehow get this accurate 1cm reading from the CT scan, then that could mean it hasn't grown much. It is near his heart too... This is copied from the 

You have far to many questions still that we can not answer, I am so upset for you, you paid for the CT and you still do not have the answers you paid for. That makes me angry for you! What about posting some of these questions in our Ask The Vet forum?


FINDINGS: following general anesthesia, 2 mm contiguous slices of the thorax were obtained pre-and
post contrast administration. In the caudal mediastinum immediately ventral to the esophagus, a round
to oval soft tissue mass is seen with patchy ring enhancement. This is contiguous with the mass
involving the ventral aspect of the right caudal lung lobe, which appears to wraparound and indented
the right caudal lobar bronchus. This mass does not appear to extend to the chest wall. Enlargement of
the right hilar lymph nodes is seen ventral to the right middle lung will bronchus.

ASSESSMENT: enlarged thoracic lymph nodes with ring enhancement, and focal infiltrative process in
the right caudal lung field as described. Considering the age of the patient, neoplasia is most likely.
Discharge Instructions:
A thoracic CT with contrast was performed today. The CT revealed that Spirit has a mass in his caudal
mediastinum, above his heart (that appear to be enlarged lymph nodes) and that the lung adjacent to
that lesion also appears involved (has a mass in it) and the bronchus to that lung is being compressed.
Unfortunately the mass is in a location that we were unable to sample it today. We do not believe that
the mass in his lung spread to his toe, but it is possible that the tumor on Spirits toe has spread to his
chest.

I'm surprised with the bronchus compression and mass being near his esophagus, that he is no longer coughing... Could it be the supplements are working? I found a pretty extensive protocol via pathwithpaws site (I think that's it!), including medicinal mushrooms, IP6, artesimin, etc... and ordered the recommended items asap. It's been hard to get him to take everything when he was refusing food, but he's been on enough of them (albeit sometimes less than the recommended doses, having to space things out around Buprenex, CBD too) for at least a week and a half - to maybe show a difference? But maybe not soon enough for his paw...? I've used the Manuka UMF 15+ (thanks Sally & gang for looking out on the UMF tip!) even mixed with CBD full-spectrum drops for at least a week on the paw itself... If this is slowing the growth, I'd hate to see it without!
You're so right Sally - that none of the medical gibberish matters to Spirit... what does is that he's in pain though.

Is Spirits pain being managed with what you are giving him now? If not please discuss this with the Vet tomorrow.  No matter which route you go Pain Management is key! If it is not being managed they can help with the meds and tweaking them or changing them. We have to speak up for them.

You are in a tough spot and I understand the torture of what to do not to do!

I think at this point one question you NEED to ask yourself what can you live with?

What decision can you live with taking the leg knowing it may or may not be giving him quality of life? Not taking the leg and managing the pain? You have a nagging sense to you Crystal please take some time and breathe and listen! Whatever that nag is listen to it! That is your answer!

What we need to do is get you feeling ok with one decision no matter what happens. I hate to say these things like that but that is where we are. We cant make the decision for you but we can help you see all the angles maybe ?

What can you live with and what can you not live with in the best and worst case scenarios. Play both out in your mind and how do you feel? Which decision can you live with ? Play the worst case out, are you still glad you took the leg or are you wishing you did not take the leg? What do you feel is the BEST for Spirit? 

We are here with you on this journey either way.

It's really hard for me to know if he'd be able to bounce back in happiness with the amputation... Obviously he'd be out of immediate cancer-tumor pain, but the surgery pain would be real...  I know the CBD and Buprenex are helping right now... and I let the vet give him an Onsior shot on Valentine's Day too... He'd been on oral Onsior for maybe 7 days a week or so before then, and I stopped because it seemed to be effecting his appetite.

Amputation is a major surgery it will be painful and to compare those? I don’t have that answer. Both need good pain management! Both I believe can be managed.

Every cat that I have read about on the site in our time here that have been on Onsior had anorexia it is a side effect. Any reason that is the drug of choice? I would X that on my list, just my opinion when Spirit is having appetite issues. Ask for a alternative drug.

Since they gave him Mirtazpine too, I figured the appetite would be better, but like I said, had to syringe feed today, (though he seemed to want to eat, none of the 7 options I gave him he actually ate), so it's not lasting as long as the first 72-hour dose did. He lost about .5 lb since the last weigh-in... at 8 lbs 6 oz currently :/ Skinny little man! Still, even with Onsior, CBD and Buprenex, that paw is painful! Since nothing else has manifested in the other limbs/paws, but keeping in mind the lung potential, and that this may end up being FLDS... what do you guys think about amputation at this point? Is it too risky or could it only help? Ahhh... I'm going crazy about it. 

Has any of the surgeons said Spirit is a candidate for surgery?

I'm really done with the surgeon who did the CT scan - he hasn't even called to check up on Spirit, and I was in tears that morning because of our interaction with him, so I'd need to go to the vet where I had the last X-rays done, which offers no overnight care, which would mean us picking him up and going through the rough first night post-op on our own, which I know seems to be doable, but rough, eh? The CT scan hospital /where original plan to amputate if lungs were clear was is the only place that offers overnight care, but we were still planning to get a big cage to keep Spirit Kiko-free during healing process, so we'd need to do that & get a small litter pan to put in there, etc... We called that vet to see when he could potentially do the operation, but he did not get back to us today. He's in tomorrow so we'll check back then. 

Let us know when you hear and ask if Spirit is a candidate for surgery, ask about his pain being managed better, ask all these questions and see what they suggest or advise.

Maybe I will get around to starting a blog here, but if Whitey's not a tripwad (yet), would it be blasphemous?! For now, I feel like I could sleep for a hundred years!   

Starting a blog no matter which way you go is a great idea! It will indeed help you and help others that come along in the future. We look forward to reading your first post;)

Looking forward to spring! The birds have already begun to come around, but the more the merrier for the kitty boys to enjoy from the windows.

I think we are all ready for Spring a time for new beginnings and regrowth one of my favorite times of year. Nature resets at least here;)

Get some rest and keep Spirit as comfy as you can and make your phone calls then make your decision knowing the facts and out of love and that will be the best decision for you and Spirit. 

Bounce more off of us and we will do our best to bounce our ideas back and help you in anyway we can with whichever path you & Spirit take.

Did you try the gerber's baby food? I think you will be surprised Spirit might just lap that up for you! Also don't forget you can warm his foods. This is the time to pull out any food ! Throw all the beliefs out the door and get food into Spirit! Nothing else matters if you cant get him eating! Pain being managed better will help with the appetite too !

I hope we can help figure out what is best going forward. Please give Spirit a big cuddle and chin scratches from us please, We will continue to keep you both in our thoughts and prayers . 

Hugs,

Holly & Purrkins heart

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18 February 2018 - 7:47 am
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Morning Crystal, Spirit and Keek the sleek, 😉 😘 

you know I sat down last night and i wrote what i thought was a pretty good response to your post Crystal and it was a long one, just like yours and it went ‘poof’ into cyberspace when i hit send... 🤬 I’m sure you will can understand my frustration. Obviously Mojo didn’t like that one. So I am sitting here again getting ready to dive into your post... Please bare with me... it is on it’s way... You have both been on my mind, so there is no getting away from me now darling! 😘 

loving hugs and special nose kisses to Spirit and his Keek! 😘 

Petra, and gang 🐾 & >^..^< ❤️ 

On July 10/17 I became a Super Tripawd! You can find out more about my Pawrents Allensong but first Check out my journey Super Stu Remember...“live in the moment!“  

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18 February 2018 - 11:02 am
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spirit333 said
Hey all, has it really been this long? Wow! Feels like no time but also furever, if you know what I'm saying?

Crystal lovey, I know exactly what you are saying!!!! Time is of no essence right now my lovey, you are caught up in a whirlwind time machine called ‘’life really sucks sometimes!” Only Spirit matters, time doesn’t!!!
Spirit lovey, your name was chosen WAY before you came to this earth! You have obviously given your Mum a universe filled with love! She is already halfway to the moon and back for you and is willing to go again my darling, you reallly are one very special Spirit Boy!!!
My hope is that my post will bring you comfort, I hope that my words will come true... Sorry, it’s going to be a long one... I’m very good at writing Novellas! 😉 😘

I hope this finds you all warm & well! I read your messages here a few days after they were posted, and they gave me great comfort and happy tears, thanks again ladies for your prayers & caring! heart
Maybe you saw my comment on your Stu-versary blog post, Petra? ^_^ Very nice to see pics of your gang & more synchs on the musician in the family tip! 🙂

Crystal, I was soooo hoppy to see you post on Stewie’s blog, that was so sweet! Stewie says to send you many thanks! We are synched in so many different ways Crystal, I couldn’t begin to explain, but i love that music is one of them! We have a song called “All the Little Things” that makes me feel super grateful for all of my little things that are in my life every time I sing it and I know that all your ‘Little Things’ will add up and bring you tons and tons of love and comfort!! I am going to offer you my truths from my heart and I am in no way trying to tell you which direction to go in with Spirit... he will tell you that. 😚  I just want to share with you the difficulties and the joys that I had with my Munchkin during his very difficult journey with FLDS.

Thankfully, Spirit is still with us, and had some really great days, and some really bad days since I last posted here.

I am thankful for you too Crystal. I do know how hard this is for you!!!! I know that the world you are living in isn’t comfortable, it is a living hell!!! It is a time full of all things beautiful and strange and dark and ugly!!! But most importantly it is a world with Spirit! It is a world in which you can physically hold your boy and tell him that you love him! Im sorry that you have to suffer through so much pain, both of you!!! Reason has no bounds at this point and everything and nothing is possible!!!! I get it 100%!!!

The coughing has completely stopped for a couple weeks now, so perhaps it was connected to the first surgery and tubes they placed down his throat, or maybe the supplements I've been giving him have helped with whatever was making him cough? It makes me less worried about the lung situation, for sure. Again, Since they were unable to aspirate/test the mass in the lungs, there is no real assurance of what exactly it is inside...

Dr. Laurie told us that Mojo’s lung situation wasn’t going be his problem in his last days, in fact she said that the lung masses had probably been there for some time. The tumours in his feet, more specifically the one front paw, was going to be his downfall!!! 😭 Crystal as I have mentioned before, once Mojo knocked open that one lesion from trying to jump on on a bench with me, It was so clearly painful, as you see with Spirit, that I knew his time in his beautiful earthly fur pants, was going to be coming to an end. 😭 He noticeably slowed down from there on in, his treats were passé, his food was n’ah and his outdoor trips were only to his birdie tree and back and by this point i was carrying him everywhere! 😭 Mojo and I had many conversations... Daddy couldn’t listen! 😭 Would Mojo have survived an amputation of his arm at this point, probably not and I don’t think Dr. Laurie would have done it to tell you the truth.

Crystal, you and Spirit are blabbing up a storm! Gather all of the facts as you know them, even from DR. 👹! All information is power right? Make some phone calls and demand some answers, you have paid for them! Ask them again why they made their suggestion as to why they think it is a bad idea to proceed with amputation. Then call your vet who is willing to do the amputation and ask them if they think Spirit it truly strong enough to go through the amputation! It is a major surgery that takes EVERYTHING out of them for a few days, I saw this with Stewie. It literally and figuratively knocked him to the ground for a few days. Stewie was super strong going into his surgery!

Take all of this information (& it’s a lot my love!), close off all the lights, turn off your phones and have another chat with your Spirit, come to a decision that you can both live with! I know how hard this is Crystal... I understand the gut wrenching fear that you are living with every hour of the day! To see your boy in so much pain is gutting!!! I know it!!! Ive been there!!! 😭 😭 😭 My boy has been with us for a couple of days now and it’s not always made clear as mud, but he was telling me that we have to be in full support and love mode for you and for darling Spirit!!! I find it pretty amazing that my Munchkin cares so much for your boy! 😻 I think he’s in love! As am I!! 😚 

Giving him mirtazapine to stimulate his appetite really was a life-saver, although I had difficulty getting him to take the 2nd 1/4 pill dose - I guess they taste pretty badly - and had to have the vet help me with it this past week. It definitely works for a few days to get him eating on his own, and he even purrs while eating! I can't complain about that, and it seems to give him some pep/comfort overall, though I wonder about long-term use of it. He had to be syringe fed a few times prior to trying the mirtazpine + when I couldn't get him to take the dose + this morning (tonight is when he'd be due for his next 72-hour dose, so it seems like it's lasting less than 72 hours).
The tumors on his paw have gotten worse/spread - but are still only on that one paw/ankle. I'm re-evaluating doing an amputation at this time, because he's in great pain. I see it every night when I cleanse his paw & rebandage it, how he reacts to touching it - I mean, it just LOOKS painful anyway. It's at the "stepped-on-a-landmine" stage again now... and he got off his bandage yesterday while I was in the bathroom and I came out to a bloody mess and him licking at it. 🙁 The vet said we'd feel/know if there were other tumors on the other legs/paws, before they would show up as bone issues in X-ray, and so far no others have been noticeably effected!
I'm having such a hard time gauging whether or not to do the amputation at this point... of course, sooner is better, and otherwise I feel like he's going to get to a point of pain with this paw where I'm going to have to consider euthanization. But maybe that would be the best decision if it's going to pop up somewhere else? Still, it hasn't yet, so I feel like there's hope, but Idk!

Whatever you decide, know that it is with your heart and all your love that you are making this decision ... it is not an easy decision and nobody can make that choice for you, but whichever way you decide to go.... And if you are being offered a hope that is filled with realism, then hang on to all that hope and go with your decision with strength! We will be behind you 100%! We understand your fight, we totally get the battle that you are facing!! We all (your vets and specialists included) are your map that is showing you all the different routes that you can take. You and Spirit must make the difficult choice as to with path to follow! 

I must make mention here that Mojo’s toe tumours were not in his bones. They were in the soft tissue and getting larger by the day, but what did show up on the toe/limb X-rays were masses, nonetheless... 😭 

I often wondered and i still do, why we, Mojo and his Pride, were given such a bloody difficult and gut wrenching disease to deal with? Not only were we having to deal with the decision as to the ‘right time’ to call it for our boy, but we had to live with his pain too! 😭 As you understand 100% right?!!! 😭 I still don’t understand! And I still don’t know if I made the right call?!!! But I do know that right now I went through that, so that I can at least be here for you!! An understanding ear and voice, that may not be filled with proper wisdom, but please be assured that i am here filled with love for you both!!! 💞

Since nothing else has manifested in the other limbs/paws, but keeping in mind the lung potential, and that this may end up being FLDS... what do you guys think about amputation at this point? Is it too risky or could it only help? Ahhh... I'm going crazy about it.

I realize that I am asking a lot, but is it possible to get another X-ray of Spirits other limbs, prior to making any further decision towards amputation? I don’t have the right to ask this of you Crystal and it is ultimately a choice that you can or can’t make, it doesn’t matter, but I do know that with Mojo, the other tumours in his paws were not obvious at all to the touch or sight! We were going to amputate his ‘bad’ toe to get a biopsy done, but the appearance of the other tumours in his lungs and then in his other paws made the decision, no less difficult, just a lot easier on our Munchkin!

I'm really done with the surgeon who did the CT scan - he hasn't even called to check up on Spirit, and I was in tears that morning because of our interaction with him,

Please make another call and make a plea to them, telling them that you are desperate for some further insight! You are trying to make an educated decision that is going to affect both of your lives!!! Ask them why they are failing to follow through on a critical piece of the information. You need to understand why they would not recommend doing surgery!!! You need to understand the very expensive test that you had done for Spirit! They need to hear from you again Crystal, I know how hard this is for you! Can you get a friend who understands all the questions you have, that can make the call for you or with you? If I could I would lovey! Stay strong and give them another chance to explain...

so I'd need to go to the vet where I had the last X-rays done, which offers no overnight care, which would mean us picking him up and going through the rough first night post-op on our own, which I know seems to be doable, but rough, eh? 

Yes, anything is doable, especially with a warrior like yourself 😚!  We know how far you will go for your boy! 😘 Yes it is very rough!!! None of us will fib to you on that one! The first couple of weeks are rough and it is a very tough balance of the proper pain medication (critical!!!) and Spirits water and food intake (also critical!!!) Our fur babies are amazing in their resilience! But they also need to be in top shape in order to battle through! Spirit is a warrior, he will take on and do his very, very best for you Mum, no matter what you decide to do FOR him!!! We will be here for you 100% if you decide to go this route too! Please know this!!! 😘 💕 

I found a Facebook group that was specific to Feline Squamous Cell Carcinoma, though no one else's kitty has that type of cancer on a paw - just Spirit and Mojo heart, they're all on the jaw or mouth. 

FLDS is very rare in Kitty’s, I am reading this time and time again, but because it is rare, it IS possible that Spirit DOES NOT have FLDS and possibly he has a rare type of Feline Squamous Cell Carcomoa?? What i have read though that if a tumour shows up in the limbs, an X-ray of the lungs should be done and if there are masses there, it is more than likely FLDS. From what I have read, most vets will not proceed with amputation when seeing the two together.

It is a true understatement when I say that you have an incredibly difficult decision to make in the next little while my darling and my heart in its’ fullest is there with you! I want to support you in any decision you make Crystal! After all we have been synched in so many different and beautiful ways! 💕 🐈 🎶 and more 💕 

Maybe I will get around to starting a blog here, but if Whitey's not a tripwad (yet), would it be blasphemous?! For now, I feel like I could sleep for a hundred years! 

Please and please write a blog for Spirit! He may not be a Tripawd, but he is a true Warrior and we all bow down and respect our Warriors!!! And the fact that Spirit has gone through a toe amputation, he is already giving invaluable information for others to read!!! He is truly worthy of his own blog!!! 🦁 👑 Mojo wasn’t a Tripawd either, but he and I have both been truly comforted by all of these amazing people on Tripawds and I feel far more settled in my decision with Munchkin since I told of his journey here on this site! Plus, we got to meet you!!! 💕 >^..^< 💞(((synched)))!!!  Mojo has done his job! He has opened up a discussion about FLDS in comparison to Feline Squamous Cell Carcinoma and is making people more aware of the potential of this ghastly, horrifying disease! Thank you to both Mojo and Spirit for offering their journey for others to see, as difficult as it is for all of us right?!!!

Plus, Mojo will now be in his own blog for the rest of my life and them some... what more of an honor could I ask for!!! 💞

Lay down for a while and cuddle with your boy, rest while you can! A good nights sleep probably feels like a thousand miles away right now heh?!? I am sending more strength to you lovey! 💞

Looking forward to spring! The birds have already begun to come around, but the more the merrier for the kitty boys to enjoy from the windows.
Happy & healthy wishes to you & your furbabies!superstar __/|\__
With gratitude,
Crystal, Spirit & Keek the sleek!

You are surrounded by birds, love and tons and tons of healing Spirit!!! My boy and I are with you Crystal! Wherever your heart takes you,   We will be here to support you!!! Im sorry i can’t offer you the magic wand to take away all this pain, I would have used it a million times over by now!!! 

A million nose kisses to you dear Spirit! My whole being is with you right now! 💞 And to Kiko and Mum, I am embracing you with my heart and hope to keep you strong through out this journey!!! 💕

Many heart kisses from Petra, Stewie 🐾 and his beautiful Pride >^..^< ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

But most importantly Mojo, Munchkin baggy pants is there with you, I know this!!! I’ve ALWAYS  called him my spirit cat and that’s no lie lovey... he is soooo with you both right now!!!! He’s bringing sustenance to Spirit Boy! 😉 😘 

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 💖💫💞✨💖

On July 10/17 I became a Super Tripawd! You can find out more about my Pawrents Allensong but first Check out my journey Super Stu Remember...“live in the moment!“  

Virginia
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Forum Posts: 15148
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18 February 2018 - 6:39 pm
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Hope you and Spirit  feel the love Crystal. heart  Yes youare BOTH WARRIORS.......And part of our family!

You jave gotten such INCREDIBLE input from Holly and Petra!!  They are the best!! 🙂

So I'll just send my love and give yiu a standing ovation for being such an outstanding advocate for Warrior Spirit!!   That sweet kitty KNOWS how much you love her and thatr all that mattersheart

Sending you lots  of hugs and clarity and sunny days filled with birds!

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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