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Senior cat after chemo, surgery, radiation

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  • Senior cat after chemo, surgery, radiation

    I had a groom scheduled for a senior cat who had chemo, surgery, radiation a few weeks ago. I see him a couple times a year. Feisty fellow, but I like him because I like all cats. I decided to not go through with the grooming session due to his condition.
    When his owner asked me to visit, I assumed I'd be doing what I think of as a medical or a hospice groom, where I focus on comfort and cleanliness -- clean the cat's rear, get rid of mats, work quickly, but immediately stop if any sign of stress.
    So surprised when owner asked me to shave the cat, in order to even out the shave done by the hospital! I've never shaved him before, just done bath and drying.
    Poor kitty was laying in his bed, eyes half closed, not eating much anymore. Lost a lot of weight.
    I told her that if his skin was nicked, it may never heal due to his immune system being so compromised.
    Looking at him, I felt like any excitement might kill him, or at the least, make him even sicker. Even a bath could do him in.
    He didn't look matted or very dirty. Just a little clumpy like he could use a brushing and combing.
    Owner was slightly peeved. She wanted to shave him herself and even had a clipper.
    All around a sad situation. Owner loves the cat, but my guess is she is in denial about how poorly he is doing. Cat is so weak. Felt like crying after I left.

  • #2
    WOW..........good call

    I had a client who's dog had skin cancer........it had gotten so bad that the skin was covered with huge red sores and loss of hair.......refused to put this dog thru another groom.......the wife didn't want to put the dog down, and fortunately, the dog passed away shortly after.

    Happy knowing when to "just say no"

    Dolly's Barking Bubbles, LLC

    www.dollysbarkingbubbles.com
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    • #3
      I'm starting to see a couple who are not aging well. Only two have I refuse to actually put through the stress of a haircut.
      In the past, I have had a dog his owner had cancer. First, the left eye was removed. I created a face that looked like the I was just there but hidden under a little bit of extra fur. After year and a half the left front leg had to be removed. She put the dog through chemo and radiation treatments only after about 14 months when they discovered tumors throughout the rest of his lymphatic system liver and kidneys.

      Just did a groom on a standard poodle who is also going through chemo treatments. He had a soft ball sized tumor in his stomach which they removed before putting him through chemo. He's lost most of his for his growing a bit of it back but before she dropped him off for his last grooming (Just even out the patchiness) she told me that the prognosis was for another 6 to 10 weeks. His system was so weak – even though he still acted like a puppy when he had the energy – that in clipping his nails the one they all split horizontally and started to bleed. fortunately, his next oncology appointment was scheduled for the following morning.
      The owner of the first dog was in complete denial throughout the entire episode. The owner of the second dog is very realistic and they are doing everything they can to keep him happy and comfortable and help him through a bucket list. Every owner treats this differently

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      • #4
        We all see some hard things, don't we.
        Interesting about the nail splitting. I hadn't thought about how nails could be affected too.

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        • #5
          You have a warm heart Emma. Being sensitive is a big part of doing this job well and over a career.

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