This is a rather remarkable day in that I have posted three times in my Blog.
I feel like I still need to talk to people about the sweet cat, Jack. I asked Gary to phone from his ski trip. I cried to Susannah at lunch. I spoke on the phone to Nancy about my feelings of guilt and grief.
Tonight the phone rang, and to my surprise, it was Dr. Vogel. He had taken it upon himself to perform a quick necropsy (autopsy) for his own information. What he found was that Jack had “pyothorax”. In brief and in lay terms, that is (ugh) a pus-filled chest cavity. The cat’s lungs themselves were not directly affected or infected, but they tragically ran out of space for inflation. The cat died from what the vet called “respiratory embarrassment”.
I guess for further information, you can look up pyothorax on the internet, if you so desire. What Dr. Vogel’s phone call did for me was to inform me that this condition was easy to “miss”, especially in a quiet cat, and might have been impossible to treat. We cannot imagine how Jack contracted pyothorax, but it is unlikely to be something transmitted to other cats or caught from a visiting cat. It can start from a viral infection, certainly, but also an injury.
So I will miss the big fluffy tabby, adopted by proxy from an acquaintance who died from cancer (we have been gifted with several cats this way…). I will miss him, but can let go of the guilt I was feeling. Jack didn’t die from being too lazy to drink water, or dehydration from water not being available enough. It’s not my fault.
Of course I thanked Dr. Vogel sincerely.
Goodnight, my kitty.