Caution: This post will end really sad and if you can’t deal with high emotions please refrain from reading this at all. I wrote this to deal with my pain and read it in the future when I am able to cope with it. Thanks for understanding.
I felt for a while I need something to take care of. Not human beings, though. I seem to scare them away sooner or later *lulz* (ironically, yes)
I am not a cat person but I decided to take in 2 cats for just the simple reason of them being more independent than dogs… and as I am away most of the day for work it didn’t make sense to let a dog suffer.
But I didn’t make that choice on a whim, actually seeing picture of my soon-to-be cat made me make the decision. I looked at them for weeks before finally deciding I want to meet Berlioz.
He was found at a cliff in Greece where his mom put her 3 kitten – all nearly eaten by a wave. Animal welfare activists found them and caught them before the waves hit – but they couldn’t get the mom as she took off 😦
The kitten were then named after Disney’s Aristocats (Marie, Berlioz, Toulouse) as the colors were similar to those three kitten and taken in for a vet check. They found out that all three were infected with feline herpes and needed operation on their eyes. Toulouse died. Marie and Berlioz lost eyesight on one eye each.
With that kind of background and the pictures I checked out for 3-4 weeks of that black kitten, I really thought I wanna meet him. So I got an appointment. Originally I wanted to take in Marie aswell, but she wasn’t in Germany at that time yet and as they were strangers to each other it wouldn’t have made sense to wait for her.
I decided to take in another male: Misha.
Born in Romania, he was found at a tourist spot where officials were laying bait to get the cats and kill him. Animal welfare activists were there a few days earlier to get the cats, sterilize and put them elsewhere. Misha was different then the others and walked up straight to them, purring and wagging tail. He wanted to be taken away from there. So they did. He ended up in Germany at the same shelter as Berlioz.
When I got there the responsible woman showed me into the living room, we talked a bit about my reasons why I want cats and such. She then let the cats come in and left me alone with the nine kitten. Berlioz was curious but on distance (and wasn’t a black kitten at all, his fur seems to look darker on pictures – he is grey-silver and turned out to be a fluffy one), Misha directly adopted me – rubbing his face at my chest, shoulder, chin and hands. It was clear which two I would take in…
when she got back we talked about some formalities and she asked me to tell her in 1-2 days after sleeping on my decision if I really wanted them.
I messaged her the next day I want them both. 3 days later she checked out my home for possible dangerous spots (and looking for potential hoarding), I transferred the welfare fee, 4 days after I got both of them. She handed them and their passports to me on the parking lot across my apartment as it was more convenient for her (as she had her child in the car and was on her way to the city and looking for a parking spot is a nightmare anyway).
Misha and Berlioz moved in on 28th of September, 2018.
I wasn’t quite ready for them yet. I didn’t know back then how unprepared I was aswell.
I always had cats but not cats being indoors, just cats going out when we left the house, returning when we were… it’s totally different then having fulltime indoor cats.
First thing missing was the tree, which was delivered the following day. I just let them crawl everywhere while I was around and closed the living room door when I went to bed, so both cats would have bathroom, kitchen and hallway but not any access to living room and bedroom.
Another problem was a health issue: Berlioz had the runs for ~2 weeks already without any clear source (or as I found out later: they didn’t check with a vet at all). And he seems to have an intolerance on Beef.
I was told to feed both kitten raw chicken and mix Vitamine D globule and stomach powder with it. Which I did… damn, if I went to a vet back then already *sighs*
I got raw chicken, for the first night at my shopping center across the street (the most expensive cat food ever as I bought human food chain chicken breast). For the following weeks I received a package the next day. Raw food for pets is not really hard to come by (at least in Germany) but comparing prices and quality is a must! And I don’t buy it at a usual store – I buy online, via Whatsapp now usually. Delivery is usually made the following day.
I was also told to not cut their claws as they would use them for climbing and whatever and get rid of the sharpness anyways… well not in a closed household, no. They do sharpen them but the claws aren’t really used for anything but that. My hands looked like going through a scratcher everyday so I decided to cut their claws. For my own safety and also theirs as being tangled in clothes can be really bad for kitten too.
Both had really weird quirks: Misha always followed me to the toilet in the morning, put his paws on my upper leg, looking at me like “May I?” before he jumped on my legs, purring and staying there until I told him to get off so I could get off the toilet 😀
Berlioz copied that to a degree. Because of jealousy :p
Berlioz on the other hand was always really vocal (he has a really annoying high-pitched voice) when I was about to feed them and jumped up on the table. I put double-sided tape on the handles and edges, still he would find a way to get up *grrr*
Berlioz’s runs got better after a few days of raw meat and vitamines but Misha started to scratch his ears like crazy about a week after I got them.
I brought them to the vet, as heartbreaking Berlioz’ meowing was but if one of the cats seems sick, but seemingly both need to go to the vet so they do smell the same and he possibly could have the same problem 😡
The vet discovered mites in Misha’s ears, Berlioz had them too but less. Then they also saw that Berlioz wasn’t vaccinated correctly.
So 3 things the animal welfare should’ve taken care of before giving me the cats: the runs, the mites, the vaccinations.
Plus Berlioz was’t castrated yet. I got another appointment for the vet to get another mite treatment and the castration 2 weeks later.
Berlioz’ castration date came up. I hoped he might get calmer after it. The vet told me that might not happen as cats do have specifics set already and most don’t change. Bleh.
I took both cats to the vet. Misha got a short check and treatment for mites. Berlioz stayed there for his operation. I and Misha had a great time together at home. Misha was purring and knocking his head against me while asking for pats all the time before I took off to get Berlioz back. He was not supposed to eat or jump that day.
What a drama that was. Berlioz was asleep when I took him and was waking up on the way and finally at home. I put him in the living room to see when he tries to get up. Oh my. This boy is a jumper, even when half asleep. He had 2 cuts which should heal soon but it still bled. Plus he urinated onto the towel. I exchanged it for the towel I used with Misha and put the stenched one into the washing machine. Meanwhile he tried to get up and walk and jump onto the sofa x_x Misha checked out what was going on and ran off to the kitchen as saying “this is fucked up, I want no part of it”. Somehow Berlioz managed to get up really shaky and spurted through the hallway to the cat toilet in the bathroom, I ran after him as I feared he would fall down the gap in the bathroom, but he directly walked into the toilet and puked into it. I’ve never seen any cat do that. I only know them puking wherever they please and see fit. Not running straight to the toilet 😮
I put him back into the crate in the living room and alter on the sofa next to me. He wasn’t happy but also didn’t have any strength to disagree. Misha followed and slept on the sofa at a safe distance as he didn’t trust Berlioz to not puke again, while Berlioz cuddled up to me.
Before I went to sleep I put out everything of my bathroom and put Berlioz in the crate in there. He started to meow like crazy and scratched the door when I was readying some water and towel before opening the crate to let him out but he already puked at the towel – looking at me like “I cried to let me out why didn’t you let me? Now my bed is ruined”. He was really cute in that state. Who could blame me for filming him?
I got him another towel, put a bowl of water into the bathroom, cleaned the toilet again and locked the door, so he couldn’t get out and Misha wouldn’t get in. Misha didn’t care much anyway, he used the other toilet being put in the hallway. Berlioz was back to his usual self the next day. I checked the wounds alot in the following days, but it healed quite well and there was no issue.
Roughly 2 weeks after that event, Berlioz went into my bedroom one afternoon while I didn’t pay attention due to a phone call and forgot to close the door.
He ate part of my silicone earplug. I found him and tried to get it out of his mouth, he bit me in return. Four times in the right forefinger, twice in the left. I gave up after I was bleeding heavily and the kitten madly disturbed and went to the vet clinic. Misha stayed home as I couldn’t deal with both of them.
Berlioz went through normal checkups (fever testing, weigth control, tooth control) and was then given food (oh he loved that) and medicine to puke it up.
He successfully gave the earplug back. Yay. We went back home and I went to bed.
The next day my right forefinger was double in size so I went to emergency myself. They x-rayed my right hand as it was more damaged, took a blood sample and told me I got inflammation markers, they would need to slize the fingers open at the bite marks and I wouldn’t be able to work for at least a week (actually they wanted me to stay for 6 days but I refused as noone could take care of the kitten at such short notice). I stayed home and took 3 different medicines for 2 weeks before I was able to work again.
In those weeks it was already clear to me I had a problem with both kitten. Berlioz was way too hyperactive while Misha was a calm drops. Berlioz wanted attention at all costs at any time and would get between me and Misha whenever he could, like throwing things off the sink or poke his nose against Misha until he left my lap or side… or do something stupid, like jumping into the trash bin while not being able to get out again as the lid only opens to the inner side.
I was always on edge, even when I thought I might have some quiet time right after feeding them – and as I am aware now: I was overwhelmed by 2 cats jumping into my life so suddenly.
It got also pretty clear in that time: those 2 boys didn’t get along very well. Although most pictures I got do look different.
Misha’s belly grew suddenly. I went to the vet with him, they checked him out and said he had a high fever. He got antibiotics there and pills for a few days. Feeding him those were a nightmare, as he wasn’t such a cheery eater than the other cat in my household. Still I got them into him. His belly grew further. As I knew my vet doesn’t have x-ray equip and other things, I took him to the vet clinic Berlioz was treated before. They x-rayed him, took blood samples, made an ultrasound. I was on the phone with the animal welfare woman when they broke to me he might have FIP (feline infectious peritonitis). I cried. The woman blamed me for him getting this disease and told me to leave the clinic immediately as they weren’t that great. I should’ve chosen a clinic taking care of pets based on alternative healing…. I felt betrayed and left alone. She gave me the kitten in bad conditions and now blamed me for trying to do the best for them… I told the vet and asked for their opinion what I should do to improve Misha’s life.
She told me as long as the blood and fluids results aren’t in there’s nothing much I can do, except doing the same as usual and feed himt he antibiotics for the fever. I did that.
I got home with Misha and broke down crying. Misha jumped on my lap and just kept on purring, pushing his little body onto my chest and arms telling me “Hey, it’s okay. Stop crying, I’m okay”
My mom and grandma visited me 2 weeks later and saw his state. He also jumped to them, purred and cuddled as he did with me, just his belly was really big now although he didn’t show any sign of pain (but well cats are best at hiding things).
The monday after this weekend the results were in: effusive (wet) FIP.
I went to the clinic to get cortison and tried feeding it to Misha as I did with the antibiotics before. He puked it up every day the next three days after I left for work and refused food on the 4th day while being more lethargic and mostly not being able to jump on his beloved sleeping place.
After I put up pictures into the closed facebook group of the animal welfare adopters I was told to let him go as he looks really not like a cat that wants to go on further. I started crying at work when I read this, as they were right! I let my pet suffer for my own cause. I called my vet and told her what happened since the fever diagnosis and that I would need her to come over that very night to euthanize Misha.
She agreed and arrived shortly after 7PM with her assistant. She checked Misha and agreed to euthanize him (as a confirmation to my decision).
I sat on the sofa, with a basket in front of me and put Misha on a towel in that basket. He wanted to crawl on my legs, but the assistant turned him back into the basket so they could observe him better. Berlioz checked out what was going on, poking Misha’s nose and my hand, then leaving for the kitchen in search of food.
Misha got the first injection to make him go sleep, Berlioz returned and poked his nose again, Misha poked back.
Berlioz left again and Misha started choking up water and taking his last breath before they even could get him the second injection.
The vet checked the heartbeat and told me by law she is required to put the killing dose into him although he seems dead already as he might wake up later. I agreed. They stayed for another 10 minutes before leaving me with my now dead kitten. I stayed at his side, crying and patting him for an hour.
Misha died on 14th of December, 2018, at the age of approximately 1 year and 2 months.
Last 2 pictures were taken on day of death – in the morning and after he was put down.