Title: Got some bad news again
Author: Neko
Date: December 27th 2008

Hello everybody. I hope you all had a merry Christmas. Mine wasn't so great, but I'll talk about that later. First of all, there's a new SoL up and I also have a bunch of new art in my galleries:

I also received a lot of new additions to the fan art gallery:

Okay, so now for the bad news. You may remember that I mentioned my cat, Tiger, having his maulers removed a few weeks ago. Well, he wasn't recovering as well as I thought he should, in fact he was getting more and more lethargic and to make matters worse, he developed lameness in his right front leg. It all went rather quick too. He was pretty much fine on Thursday the 18th, and in the following weekend he suddenly got quite ill. So last Monday we took him to the vet and explained the situation. The vet took a few x-rays, which led her to a rather dire conclusion: Tiger may have the early signs of bone cancer in his right front leg. His elbow, to be more precise.
For those of you who don't know, bone cancer is a very aggressive form of cancer. It progresses fast and the most common kind of bone cancer also spreads like wildfire. It likes to migrate to inner organs such as the liver, the lungs and the kidneys. So yes, this is a pretty nasty situation. And the poor cat is also in a lot of pain, which is probably why he is so sick.
How we will handle this will largely depend on the cat and his general condition. Right now, he's on pain meds (Metacam, usually prescribed for arthritis), to which he is responding reasonably well. And when I say reasonably well, I mean he needs a double dose (risky, considering the possible side-effects of the medicine include total kidney-failure) and that allows him to sleep without moaning and it has restored his appetite. But it's not like he's bouncing around the house as usual.
Anyway, we're supposed to come back to the vet after one or two weeks (depending on how well Tiger takes to those pain meds) and have some new x-rays taken. These will probably confirm bone cancer. Last week the vet said she couldn't be 100% certain that it was a tumor, but she said she thought it was highly likely considering the pain Tiger's in. After that, all bets are off. Whatever happens then will depend on the results of several tests he'll need to undergo. If full-body x-rays and blood tests show that the cancer has not spread to the rest of his skeleton or to his organs, and if Tiger passes a full physical check-up to determine his overal condition (his heart in particular), he might be able to undergo surgery to have his leg removed.

But that's all a very big 'if'. Like I said, it's a particularly nasty form of cancer and Tiger is not a young cat anymore. He's 15 years old now. His heart has always been good up until now, but there's no guarantee that all of this will work. Right now, I'm trying to be more realistic than optimistic. Although I certainly hope that he can be helped, I just don't know if he can be saved. Considering that he was a stray kitten when we got him, he's had a pretty good and long life. In human years, he's now 73.
What makes it so painful for me is the fact that he's my childhood pet. I got him when I was 9 years old. Against all the odds, we managed to stick together. He moved with us from Oman, all the way to the Netherlands. He survived a very nasty case of peritonitis combined with a double case of pneumonia when he was younger (he was seriously ill and on death's door). He has had to deal with 3 other cats and 3 dogs for housemates in his life, most of which he has outlived. So overal, he's one tough cookie.
He's also my best friend in the world. Somehow I think that everybody, who has a pet all for themselves for the first time, thinks that animal is super special. Well, I'm no exception. Tiger is special. There is this bond of trust and love between us, that I can't explain. Whoever says that animals do not have souls, has obviously never had a pet before. Tiger has helped me through some pretty rough patches in my life, for which I can ever repay him.
But now, for the first time, I feel I cannot protect him. And that makes me feel so helpless. So all I can do is wait and pray and cuddle him when he comes asking for some loving. The past few days I've been getting to terms with this situation. Everybody dies at some point, myself included. So I try to give myself some peace by telling myself that whatever happens, it'll all be ok. If he can have the operation and if he survives it, maybe he'll get a few extra years. And if he can't have the operation and has to be put down, at least he'll be in a better place where there won't be any pain. And he'll be able to keep both my grandfathers company until I see him again.

And that's basically what's been going on this week. My Christmas wasn't terribly merry, but I am not letting it determine my mood 24-7. I try to be cheerful every now and then as well. And I also really appreciate the Christmas art I got this week. It has really helped brighten my mood. So thank you all very very much. And I wish you all a happy new year.

Title: Yes, new update!
Author: Neko
Date: December 20th 2008

Hello you guys! The new SoL is up and I also have two new pictures in the galleries. One of them is tagged for mature content, though, due to some blood and stuff. So if you can't handle that, maybe you shouldn't look. ;)
And finally there is also a new addition to the fan art gallery!

Please don't forget about the Just Gotta contest! Prizes include art by me, so that's why I'm pimping this event, 'kay? Go for it!

Title: Sorry I'm late!!
Author: Neko
Date: December 13th 2008

I really had a crazy week, so today I slept in. I figure I deserved it. One of the weird things that happened this week is the tooth extraction my 15 year old cat had last Thursday. Turns out he had to have all his maulers removed, because they were all infected. He never lets me touch his teeth, so I had no idea. Man, he must have been in SOOOO much pain, and yet he never let me on to it until this winter. Animals can be real troopers when it comes to pain tolerance... But he does seem more relieved now that the pain is probably gone.
Anyway, on to business. The new SoL is up and I have three new pictures in the galleries. Enjoy! :)

Title: And yet another month just zooms by...
Author: Neko
Date: December 6th 2008

December already. Heh, how time flies! The new SoL is up, I have two new pictures in the galleries and two lovely additions to the fan art gallery. Go check them out!

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