Friday, November 26, 2010
The Love Of A Cat? Guest Blogger, "Andygirl"
Caren heard my story on my blog from another reader, popped over and
immediately offered to let me tell my story to you here today. I can’t tell you how incredibly kind that is. Gratitude seems to be my dominant emotion lately.
I joke a lot that I’m a cat lady. And I guess it’s true. I’m not a cat hoarder,
but I’m a single woman with two cats whom I spoil rotten and who act like
children. But I love them to pieces. They’re family. They trust me to care for
them and to love them and I do my best.
So it’s frustrating when I feel like I can’t do that. It must be what a parent
feels like when their child is sick. I wouldn’t know. This is the closest I’ve
been to that feeling.
My cat Jeté has cancer. VAS, vaccine associated sarcoma. A tumor in the scruff
of her back. This, as it turns out, is a fairly common thing but has only
recently come to light.
You can read all about Jeté here and how I got her and what we’ve been
through thus far. We’re just beginning her treatment and I feel like we’ve
already been through so much, she and I.
You should read all about this kind of tumor yourselves though. I’m not an
expert and I’ve learned so much in the last month, more that I ever thought I
would. Turns out, the big problem with these types of tumors is that they
develop little spider-like legs that reach around the cat’s body and making
surgery difficult. You can cut off the tumor, but not these little legs. So
radiation or chemo is necessary to save the cat.
Many cats do survive this, I’m told, but treatment is expensive.
Thus most of why I feel like I’m failing to care for my cat. I don’t have pet
insurance and my meager income cannot pay for her treatment or surgery.
Instead of radiation (the more common treatment), I’ve opted to treat with
carboplatin (a kind of chemo), which is much less expensive ($1200-$1600 vs.
$8,000-$10,000) and hopefully surgery if I can raise the funds. With carbo, I
guess it doesn’t take in 30-40% of cats, but in cats that respond to it, it’s
more effective than radiation.
Jeté had her first treatment 2 weeks ago and by last Friday it seems that her
tumor has shrunk about a centimeter, meaning she’s responding to the treatment.
This is great news! This means maybe we can shrink it small enough to cut off
The other frustrating news is that Jeté’s oncologist is closing her practice so
I have to see a new oncologist now. I’m just hoping she’s as kind as her first
doctor is and as understanding of my financial situation.
And then there’s the financial factor. There is a whole long story with the
vaccine company, but Marielle has finally agreed to kick in $500 which paid her
her biopsy and $200 of her treatment. I was able to raise enough money to pay
for her first treatment (about $400 a pop) and two oncologist visits (about $95
a pop). But she potentially has three more treatments plus visits so I’m looking
at $1200+. And if we want to operate, it’s around $3,000.
I can’t believe how many people have opened their pockets and their hearts to
help thus far. I am so incredibly humbled by the generosity of perfect
strangers. It’s incredible how kind people truly are!
If you’d like to help, I have a donation box up on my blog. Or, you can purchase
something from my Etsy shop. All proceeds go to fund Jeté’s treatment and
surgery. If you don’t see something you like, email awesomecrazylady at gmail
dot com and I may or may not be able to make you a custom order. I generally
work with buttons or found items.
Thank you so much for reading about our little story. Jeté is my sweet girl and
all I want to do is to make sure she’s happy and healthy and knows she’s loved.