I can't help but feel guilty though. Sometimes I wish I could have provided Bubba with a stable home. The long flight to New Zealand was stressful and he developed Feline Diabetes shortly afterward. He nearly died from Ketoacidosis. I was broke and homeless in a new country but I couldn't let him die... so I got out the credit card and told the vets to do whatever they needed to do. There were no guarantees that he'd live... but he did. I've never regretted my decision. That was a year and nine months ago. All of the articles I've been reading about Diabetes in cats says that the average cat lives to the age of 12-14 and a cat with diabetes lives an average of two years on proper treatment. So I suppose Bubba's done pretty well.
Since we've come to New Zealand, Bubba has been attacked by a few wild cats. He's fought back but has had a few nasty abcesses as a result. This is how I think he contracted the Haemobartonella Felis. It's also known as Feline Infectious Anaemia. It's caused by a parasite destroying his red blood cells. It is quite serious and could lead to his ultimate demise. We're treating it with antibiotics but he has become quite weak and anorexic. My big fat Bubba cat is now Fat Boy Slim.
I'm in denial... clearly. I think that he'll pull through this and fatten up and be Bubba again. His personality is still the same - he's a momma's boy and wants to be carried around like a baby. I can tell that he wants to be strong and follow me around - instead he follows me with his eyes - with that longing look saying "pick me up Mommy".
This is a tough one. Haemobartonella Felis can be treated - but it's quite aggressive treatment and costly. We've already been down that road with the Diabetes. I've already spent a small fortune on getting a diagnosis. How much can I try to prolong his life? Is it worth the stress it will cause him? Besides, the treatment will be much more complicated because of Bubba's Diabetes. It may make him sicker. It's tricky also because the symptoms Bubba is displaying could also be caused by the Diabetes advancing. It really is difficult to say which problem is causing his lethargy. You can see the shaved patches from all the blood work he's had done in the photo above. At this rate, he'll never be suitable for a rug or handbag as planned!
But it's so hard watching him fade away and not do anything when I know I could choose to do more. I wonder how he feels? Somehow I just don't think he's ready to die. I know I'm not ready to let him go. He is fading so fast... two weeks ago he was normal old Bubba... the king of the cats... the pride of the household... and the talk of the town. He's the most popular cat I've known. And he's MY BUBBA.
Just look at that face