On Friday afternoon last week our cat Jazz had yet another crisis and I made the sad, but mercy filled decision to have him euthanased. He was 15.5 years old and had been suffering increasingly from arthritis and associated health problems.
Lucy, the vet at our friendly and very caring vet clinic had tried everything to assist him maintain a reasonable quality of life as an indoor, pampered cat but sadly since Easter her efforts and our diligent care was becoming increasingly less effective.
I have returned to the many, many photos we have and they offer a wonderful record of this sociable, outgoing, vigorous, adventurous, friendly, funny cat who survived many escapades, gave us worrying times but who adored us and was a constant source of fun, laughter and love.
Jazz outlived his brother PG by just over two years. We got the kittens in 1999 and they grew to be adults who very happily co-existed.
The following photos tell something of why Jazz is so sorely missed now.
There has been a pause in my blogging in the past wee while. In part it has been due to the owner of these paws.
Jazz, our cat, is almost 15 years old and in the past 3 months ageing has suddenly impacted on him. We knew earlier this year that he has arthritis in his lower spine which means he can no longer spring nimbly and strongly using his back legs.
Then in August his pain levels increased and it was discovered that he had slipped a disc in his back in a different area of his spine. With advice and treatment from the vet that has healed up. However we then noticed he was limping on his front leg/s. X rays show that he has quite severe degeneration in his front elbows and their elbows take a fair percentage of a cat’s weight as they move about.
So Jazz is sore and stiff and now an indoor cat on various medications to support him and keep him as comfy as we can. He has always been a very sociable and lively cat. Not one to sleep contentedly in the garden. Neighbours often reported his visits and some of the neighbours lived a fair distance away. I think Jazz has worn out, not rusted out, as the saying goes.
Increasing the care of a cat requires increased observation, clock watching to time pain relief, tempting an appetite now borne of suspicion about what else might be added in to the food, encouraging more water consumption during hot days in a hot house and of course lots of extra patting and attention.
Jazz does send his Christmas Greetings however having settled for some of today in this Christmas hamper box:-)
At the same time I have been hobbling with a sore left knee. I too have some degenerative changes and up until late November there was a mysterious “loose body” that appeared on images of the joint. After several unpleasant locking incidents this year I agreed to an arthroscopy. The “loose body” was deftly plucked out and I am pleased to report that my knee is feeling much freer and lighter.
My challenge now is to get my knee moving fully again after all the hobbling about. The joint has become stiff and reluctant to straighten and bend fully. So exercises are a big part of my daily routine now. Holding on to the kitchen bench is a great place for knee exercises and I am on increasingly friendly terms with my physiotherapist. As well I am walking further each day as I rebuild my fitness, stamina and remind my brain to walk normally again.
After relentless gales from the northwest we were blessed today with a cool, gentle southerly wind change. That brought us the astounding sound of silence from the noise of the winds, stillness to be outdoors and enjoy it, and warmth from the sunshine.
Jazz made the best of the conditions as he stretched to soak up the prevailing goodness.
Our cat Jazz is a little over 14 years old and in the past year or two has developed some arthritis in his lower spine. He is on pain relief and some medication that help eases the discomfort and increases his flexibility.
I have added this Snugglesafe cat “hottie”
to his treatment regime after learning about these on Leanne’s blog:
He was very suspicious of his new hottie at first
he has crept closer to it
and finally after two days he is enjoying the steady, warmth this fleece covered disc offers to him.
His humans have also discovered how useful it is on sore lower backs and strained rib cartilage when Jazz has been outside or when the daytime temperatures have been too warm for him to want to lie on it.