July 11, 2006

The six million…er…hundred dollar ManCat

Thank you all for the well wishes for Jasper. It’s so amazing that people I haven’t even met can comfort and support me and my little feline buddy. And I feel the love from those I do know, as well. XOXO.

Today was a stressful day for Jasper. He got dropped off at the vet at 7 a.m. to wait for the mobile ultrasound unit to arrive and take pictures of his little body. And wait he did. Until nearly 3 p.m. I wish he could have stayed home and just showed up at the office when the ultrasound folks did, but once the ultrasound people got there, they were very quick, and even called me during it to say he’d be ready to pick up in a bit.

They completed 2 ultrasounds: one of his chest cavity and one of the abdominal cavity. There is (of course) good news and bad news. The vet told us the good news first. Jasper does not have heart disease. His murmur is a little worse than it used to be but we just need to keep an eye on it with future ultrasounds.

The abdominal scan did not have good results, as I feared after Saturday’s visit. Jasper has a mass on his left kidney, about the same size as his actual kidney. They did a fine needle aspiration so they could examine some cells from the growth and I’ll get the results Wednesday. If it is cancer, this test should show it. If it isn’t cancer, it won’t be so easy to diagnose what else it could be. But I’ll know more in a day or so.

I listened to the options: surgery to remove his kidney, chemotherapy (if it’s cancer), or surgery to remove the mass. I just can’t make my little man endure any of that. He’s 14 years old. Kidney removal is a big surgery. He’s gotten so thin, and frail-looking I don’t know that he could recover well. And I’ve always said I wouldn’t give him chemo. It’s not about money. If I could pay $5,000 to make him better without causing him pain, suffering, or risk, I would do it. But Jasper is too special to me and has been such a wonderful companion, I can’t force something like that on him. He deserves better and I want to keep him happy. (As I type this, he’s purring on my lap, making it hard to maneuver my way around the keyboard, but I don’t care. I welcome it. But if there are any typos, it wasn’t me.)

Thank you again for your kind words and good vibes. I won’t turn this blog into a daily cat diary, don’t worry. Just for now, it’s therapeutic to share my thoughts.