I was doing great today until I returned a call from the vet's office.

Three weeks ago near end of July I realized Samson was missing. He normally sleeps with us at night and follows me to the bathroom in the morning. But on July 29th I realized he had been missing. For at least a day. I didn't think too much of it. "He's probably been outside all night." I told Rusty to keep an eye out as I left for work. Later, Rusty called to say he found Samson in the house. In Rusty style, he bathed our cats (He had planned to do it anyway) and realized something was really wrong. Samson was lethargic, complacent and lanky. His kitty eyes were sunken in. He was bone thin. He was so weak he couldn't walk more than a few steps. He had found a quiet corner in the house to lie quietly and die.

Well, until Rusty found him and bathed him in the kitchen sink.

The next day we (eh, Rusty) took him to the vet. Samson's organs were shutting down. His kidney was shrunk, his pancreas smaller, body temp was cold, he was anemic, and dehydrated. He hadn't eaten or drank in probably days. He was put on pain kilers, antibiotics, electrolytes, an IV and monitored for two days. He seemed to be doing ok. We cared for him at home giving him medicine daily.

Until the second blood work reported that all the treatments- medication, electrolytes, IV- weren't showing any real improvement. His kidneys aren't responding, he's still anemic, his red blood cell count is low, and he's still not gaining weight. He's basically one illness away from death. He can't get up onto a chair, he has to be picked up. He can go up and down the stairs but not quickly.

After this prognosis, the vet and I agreed he was never going to fully recover. We don't know exactly what has caused all this. Poisoned plant? Cancer? Rather than subject him to unpleasant medication for the rest of his life and constant vet bills, rather than spending his days under daily care and close supervision, rather than have him in pain and limited in his abilities, it's better to just say good-bye.

So on Tuesday morning, we'll take him to the vet one last time.

What to do with the remains is undecided. Part of me wants to let the kids bury him as a rite of passage in facing death. But then again, maybe that will be more complicated than I'm prepared to take on.

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