Monday, June 15, 2020

Mancat Monday - RIP Oliver

Oliver Hughes
September 22, 2013 - June 12, 2020

This is one of the hardest posts to write in a long time.  Oliver had to run to the bridge this past Friday.

He went to the vet on Thursday May 28, to have some small bumps on his side looked at.  He was given an antibiotic injection and told to come back in two weeks.  The bumps didn't show any cancer cells, but had bacteria and some inflammation.

During this two weeks, Oliver felt puny on the Friday after that visit, and I figured it was from the antibiotic.  By Saturday, my boy was playing and back to his goofy silly self...see photo above :)

Over the course of the next couple of weeks, until our recheck, he had good days and some off days.  He was always eating though and drinking, just didn't always feel like playing.  

Two days before his recheck appointment on Thursday, he started lying around and not wanting to be part of the family much.  I could tell he didn't feel like himself, but again was still eating and drinking.

I took him for his recheck on Thursday, and the vet felt a large mass in his abdomen.  We did x-rays and blood work.  The x-rays confirmed a mass and also fluid in the abdomen.  We needed to wait on the blood results, and he was scheduled for an ultrasound on Tuesday, when the mobile clinic comes.

I took him home and gave some pain meds to help him because he seemed a bit painful.  He rested all afternoon and evening, eating when I took him food and drinking.

Friday morning the vet called and said he was super anemic, that the ultrasound could not wait and to go to the emergency clinic at the vet school immediately.  He would call and send over all the records.  All other blood values was normal.

Off we went and they took Oliver inside, because we still can't go in because of COVID.  They called and confirmed the masses from a preliminary ultrasound, they heard a heart murmur as well.  Testing recommended:

Platelet count
Ultrasound with aspirates
Chest x-rays

I accepted all but the Echo because I felt the murmur had to do with the abdominal fluid and not the primary focus at this time.

The vet agreed and since it would take a few hours, I could go home.  I gave the CPR order to try and save him once and if he continued to arrest just let him go. 

It was a long afternoon, but at 2:30 they called and said the fluid in the abdomen was blood.  He had masses on his spleen, liver, pancreas and in some lymph nodes.  They were waiting on pathology reports which could take another couple of hours.  They were not able to aspirate the masses because of all the blood in the belly, but they pulled some of it out to test anyway.

5:30 the vet calls back.  There isn't a definitive answer for the type of cancer, but everyone is in agreement that it is cancer.  The vet had spoken to surgery to see if he would be a candidate, and the surgeon said no, there are too many masses in too many locations.  He spoke with the oncology group and they also said chemo was not an option, this is far too aggressive and has already spread to too many places.

My only option was euthanizing him.

I made that decision and asked if I came over would I be able to be with him during the procedure.  He said absolutely, so off Auntie and I went.

The room was set up nicely for us, and I was able to spend a lot of time with Oliver before calling them in for the procedure.  He was high as a kite from all the meds, but enjoyed his snuggles.  It was the hardest thing to press the door bell to have them come back to administer the drugs.  Again though, we were able to spend as much time as needed with him before calling them back to collect him.

I have requested a necropsy, but we are not sure if he will get one.  Again, because of covid things have changed and they aren't doing everyone, just a few a day.  I hope he gets selected because I would like to know what kind of cancer he had.  Options are hemangiosarcoma (which is what Devon had) or carcinomatosis.

I’ve been reflecting today on all the positive things and came up with the following…

  1. Thankful for Covid and the time I’ve had at home to spend with Oliver.  I was able to give him snuggles every time he asked over the last few months.  I will always cherish those times together.
  2. Thankful that the decision to euthanize was completely clear.  It was still a terribly painful decision for me, but it was without a doubt what he needed.  Surgery and chemo were no options for him.  He was bleeding internally and would have gone into cardiac arrest. 
  3. I am glad I could be there with him.  He was surrounded by love, and he was at peace.  He wasn’t scared because I was there holding him.  That brings me comfort.
  4. Thankful for friends that can understand the sorrow and that have surrounded me with kindness.  I am blessed.

The other boys have noticed he isn’t at home.  Rusty is extra clingy today, because Oliver acted like his mom at times, always washing his head.  Harrison and Flynn have come for more attention too…I’m not sure if it is for me or them. 

One day at a time and we will heal.  I will keep the good thoughts and memories of Oliver in my heart always.


  1. Suzanne, it brings an ache into my heart to read this and I am so sorry for your loss. I remember all your kitties well, and of course your handsome Oliver. May he rest well beyond his Rainbow Bridge, I know he'll always be in your heart of hearts. Fondly, Ann

  2. We are so very sorry to hear about your dear Oliver. It's never ever easy. Purrs and hugs from all of us.

  3. Oh, God...such a terrible shock. I'm bawling my eyes out, I'm so very sorry for you. I wish I had words of comfort. I'm so sorry...I'm so very sorry....

  4. Godspeed your journey to heaven Oliver. We are truly sorry ♥♥♥♥♥

  5. It's always so hard to make this decision, even though we know it's what's best for our furry companions. My heart is breaking with you. Sending purrs from Truffle and Brulee and hugs from me.


  6. We are so sorry for the loss of your sweet Oliver. We’re sending purrs.

  7. I am so sorry, what a sweet boy. Hugs.

  8. We're so sorry to hear about Oliver. You made the hardest decision, it's never easy. We send you comforting purrs and gentle headbonks. Purrs

  9. Oh we are so so sorry to read this ! (We just lost our black cat Oliver to CKD and it was a long, slow decline.) Of course you made the right decision, painful though it was - and how good you were able to cuddle him and be with him and love on him. We send purrayers and POTP to all who love him. He will never be forgotten and will never leave your hearts.

  10. I must apologize - our black cat was named Oscar - when I typed the above I was thinking of your sweet boy.

  11. I am so sorry and words are not enough. I have always loved all your boys from afar and will miss dear Oliver. Taken far too young.

  12. This just breaks our hearts. We are so very sorry. We know it wasn’t easy, but you did what was best for Oliver. Sending you many comforting purrs. We will miss Oliver very much.

  13. We will miss Oliver. He was a sweet boy and a great Cat Scout. The Rumbling Thunder patrol dedicated our Saturday dinner to him. ((((hugs)))
    The Florida Fukids and Mom Sharon

  14. Oh no. I am SO heartbroken for you. Oliver was such a wonderful cat, and we'll miss him a lot here on the blog.

  15. Oliver was such a great kitty. I am so sorry for your loss. My Cat Scout Sammy and I send our love and prayers. Rest in peace sweet boy. XO

  16. Cancer can be a quick, ruthless and murderous enemy. It is pitiless. I am very sorry that Oliver had to leave, and at such a young age. I just lost two of mine, and there is no comfort for such a feeling. But if there were, I hope it could be taken from knowing that Oliver was loved, and safe, and he undoubtedly knew it. Godspeed, Oliver.

  17. I am deeply sorry to hear about the loss of Oliver. It is so hard to let them go,even when we know it's all we can do. We love them so unconditionally. Be gentle with yourself and I will keep you in my prayers and the kitties will keep you in their purrs.

  18. We are so sorry to read of Oliver Hughes' passing. Sending you gentle purrs and prayers as you miss your beloved and special mancat.

  19. We are so sorry about our dear friend Oliver. He was a wonderful fellow and was not with us near long enough but had enough love for his full nine lives. Fly free dear Oliver and watch over us until we all meet again
    Timmy Tomcat, Dad Pete, Toby, Rumpy, Miss Fitz and Einstein


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