Last Updated: 2/11/06
Kisty was a shorthair (but shed like mad) tortoiseshell. She came to us in the spring of 1987, very pregnant and about one year old. She had four wonderful kittens on 5/24/87 that my parents made us give away (not to great homes, I am afraid). The girls were T'aimy and Cudzy and the boys were Wilby and Rolly. Officially their names were Je t'aime ("I love you" in French), Cuddles, Wilbur, and Roly Poly Junior. We named the black and white long-haired stray tom cat Roly Poly who we assumed was the father. Cudzy was a shorthaired tortoiseshell like her mommy. T'aimy was a longhaired calico (black, orange, and white), sort of like Bootsy. Wilby was a longhaired gray or silver tabby. Rolly was a longhaired black and white cat like his daddy. I wanted so much to keep them. Kisty was then spayed. Kisty was fritzy, and the other cats attacked her so she lived in the garage. She was very sweet with me but ran from most everyone. Being so afraid all the time, she often had diarrhea especially after a trip to the vet. She also had many scabs on her body probably due to the car exhaust. I wish she would have come live inside but she just would run to the garage door and wail to go back in there.
Beginning in 1999, Kisty's appetite decreased and her drinking and urination increased. A full blood panel showed nothing in the spring. Try as I might, I could not get her to provide a urine sample for testing for urinary tract infection. When her urination increased to maybe 5 or 6 medium sized pees a day, I took her in again in September. This time, she peed in the carrier on the way over as she always does. The urine showed no infection but another blood panel revealed early renal (kidney) failure. She went onto prescription diet (she never touched a single pellet) and Tagamet (1/8 a pill) for a while. I did not look forward to the day she would need IV fluids like Tootsy. Alas, Kisty went back to the vet on 10/18/99. Her kidney enzymes were worse, and she was dehydrated. I had to give her 100-200 mL of fluids daily for at least 10 days. What fun! She did not mind the cow needle in her back but meowed constantly, and the IV did not flow fast. It had to be forced by squeezing the bag (for Tootsy too).
On 10/26/99, Kisty went to the vet again. They said she was better but should remain on about 150 mL of lactated ringer every other day. The problem was that she was wise to me and would not let me catch her. She lived in the garage and went outside when the garage door was opened. Whether in the garage or outside, if she did not want to be caught, she would not be. Another problem was that after I removed the needle for her fluids, water and blood come spurting back out. I do not know why her body did this since Tootsy's water never came back out, and he did not bleed.
Kisty went to the vet on 1/6/00. Her kidney enzymes and weight had not changed so she was stable. Kisty had her yearly checkup on 3/23/00. Her weight was 6.4 pounds which was still way too low. Her BUN was 47.5 which was up slightly but not too bad (Tootsy's was 61.4, <25 is normal).
Well, Kisty took a major turn for the worse. I found her on 6/22/00 unable to move her back legs. The regular vet said it looked like an aneurism or blood clot. She sent me to an emergency vet place with a cardiologist on staff. A sonogram revealed that her heart was fine, her femoral artery was blocked at the branch that goes to the back legs, and she had a huge mass on one lung. They believe a piece of the mass (most likely a cancerous tumor) may have broken off and clogged her artery although it was more likely a blood clot. Shots of heparin were given to prevent further clotting. As of 6/24/00, she had regained minimal use in one leg and pretty good use of the other. As for the lung cancer, 14 years in a garage can do that to you. I had been asking for years to let her live inside but my parents refused. Lung cancer is rare in cats. On 6/24/00, I bought a big dog crate and put her in there inside the house. Kisty was put on baby aspirin twice a week to "prevent" further clots.
As of 6/28/00, she had not improved much. She had eaten only small amounts of food so I put gel cat vitamins in her mouth three times a day. I also moved her legs three times a day so the muscles did not harden. Her toe pads on the bad leg were now purple and not pink. She had regained some use of her bad leg above the knee. Her bad leg was still unresponsive to pain or muscle movement below the knee. Kisty had taken to her cage and seemed content. She purred a lot except when I did her physical therapy which made her cry out. It must have hurt. At least she felt something in some parts of her legs.
On 7/3/00, she went back to the vet again. This time, when the vet hurt her bad foot, she felt it (she screamed). He gave me appetite stimulant pills to give her. With these pills she began eating. By 7/8/00, she was almost fully recovered. She was eating a lot, drinking, running, and had regained almost full use of herself except for her right toes. It was Saturday (the vets are closed) so I groomed her and trimmed her nails around 2:30 pm. She seemed perfectly fine. At 4:30, I discovered her laying in her litter pan. She has just made a large poop (the first since she had her first clot) which had triggered another clot. This time, she was like a rag doll. It had just happened and her eyes were partially shut and jumping from one side to the other. I think she was having a seizure but with no body movement. She was unresponsive. About a half hour later, her eyes cleared, she could look at me and recognize me, she meowed, and she could feel her legs somewhat but could not stand for more than a few seconds. Then, she vomited her stomach contents. About a half hour later, she began rapid, shallow breaths (I assume tachycardia). After a short time, her heart failed. She died about 6:30 pm on 7/8/00. Another blood clot or piece of tumor must have logged someplace fatal this time. I believe it was her heart or brain (a stroke). Her body was drained of blood but still very pliable when I buried her shortly thereafter. I will always feel guilty for time not spent with my sweet Kissy-Pop.
In 2002, I read an article that described the problems that Kisty had. She most likely had hypertropic cardiomyopathy that resulted in the thromboembolism or "saddle clot" that paralyzed her legs and later resulted in a clot that logged in a fatal location.
Someone asked me on 5/25/05 how I came up with the name Kisty. It is simply a slurring of the word, "Kitty." It is baby talk if you will for that word.
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