Losing a pet is a devastating event. Our pets are part of our daily life; many of us spend more time with our pets than we do with family and friends. It is a moment that all pet owners dread, but it is, unfortunately, inevitable.
If you are a cat owner and your cat is getting up in years, there are some signs you should be aware of. Some of these actions may be signs that your cat may be suffering and its last days are near.
Signs that Can Show Your Cat May be Dying
If you are concerned about your aging cats’ health, please look for these signs. If your beloved pet displays some of all of these signs, it may be time to take them to the vet or make plans for their death in whatever way you find most comfortable.
Your cat does not want to eat or drink. This may be a sign it is having difficulty processing food and liquids. It may also mean they do not have the energy to get up to eat and drink.
Extreme weakness or tiredness
If your cat is very lethargic, does not want to move, and has trouble standing and walking, this is not a good sign and may need medical care.
They sleep more than usual
Pets that are not feeling well tend to sleep more than they typically did. This may be a sign they are losing strength.
Lower body temperature
Often when cats are struggling and not feeling well, their body temperature will begin to drop. If you are unable to take its temperature, you can feel the pads of their feet. If they are cooler than normal, this could mean that their heart is beginning to fail.
If your cat always used the litter box and all of a sudden begins to have accidents, this could mean they are suffering from kidney, liver, or urinary issues. You should seek the advice of your vet to see if tests can be conducted, or if they can be treated with medication. Often, this is a final sign, and it is too late to hope for a miracle.
Changes in appearance
Often, cats that do not well stop bathing themselves. Their hair starts to look matted and messy. They may also begin to smell; this is due to the toxins in their body.
Changes in behavior
If your cat has always been social and now begins to seek solitude by hiding under the bed and wanting to be alone, this is also a sign that they are not well, and they may be close to the end of their life.
Eating and drinking a lot yet losing weight
Many cats that suffer from kidney, liver, and diabetes may seem to have an insatiable appetite and always thirsty, yet they are getting thinner and thinner. This could be a serious ailment; you should see your vet who can conduct some tests and let you know the prognosis.
What to do if Your Cat is Near the End:
If all signs point to the fact that your cat may be at the end of its life here are a few things that will help them be more comfortable.
- Make them a clean cat bed where they can lay and feel comfortable.
- Give them quiet time. Make sure the bed is in a quiet area without a lot of foot traffic to wake them up if they are sleeping a lot.
- Stay close to them. Cats and other pets feel comfortable when they are close to their people. You do not have to be by their side, but they like to know you are close by. For instance, if you are in bed, put your cat’s bed close to yours.
- Change their bedding if they have accidents.
- Contact your vet to discuss the next steps and possible options.
End of Life Options:
Seeing your beloved pet suffer is one of the most painful things you can experience. Your furry friends are too precious to see them suffer. If you expect that your pet is near the end of its life, take them to your vet and discuss options.
If an animal is in pain, euthanasia may be the best option. It will put them out of their pain peacefully. Other times, your cat may die before you can get it to the vet.
Those that have looked at the options and have decided to have their cat freeze-dried should contact the provider and let them know the protocols to take. A great resource for freeze-drying your pet is Animal Family Pet Preservation. They can instruct you how to keep your pet preserved until you ship it to them. They treat your pet with the utmost respect and love, just like you would.