A few years ago I adopted a kitty named Kiki. She suffered from chronic kidney disease. With much guidance from an internet community and the writer of Tanya’s Comprehensive Guide to Feline Chronic Kidney Disease: Everything You Need to Know to Help Your Cat Kiki was able to live out the rest of her time in peace with affordable treatment.

I joined Tanya’s support group. This was a good starting point.  From there I went to the vet and got a lab panel done. After I got the panel results back, I shared them with the group via PDF and was able to get some more guidence.

At first, Kiki at prescription food and a warm heated blanket. Kiki was very very loving and just wanted to be treated like a normal cat. We were on prescription food both wet and dry for a season. Then her bladder function needed some help so twice a day I expressed her bladder. The vet taught me how to do that and asked if I would be willing to do so and I said “Yes!”. This was the longest season.

After several months, Kiki still kept hugging me and expressed a strong desire to live. I checked with the vet every 4-6 weeks to get an assessment of her quality of life and it was deemed good, as long as I was willing to express her bladder, tolerate her missing the box periodically, and give her all the hugs she wanted.

In her final months, about a year from when I adopted her, she started to ‘crash’. Her body temperature dropped. I installed a heater right beside her blanket. She was still happy and huggy but needed a constant food rotation of wet food. At this stage the prescription food was of no interest to her and the vet said that she should be fed anything she would be willing to eat at this stage. I tried a lot of pate which worked for a while, then shreds, and finally packets of tuna and other meat that we people use for quick dishes.

Finally, one Friday she was really not doing well, not eating, and was being attacked by fleas. I took her in and she had dropped a lot of weight and was running a temperature. She was given fluids. I was instructed to watch her over the weekend and potentially start fluids on that Monday. Kiki passed away silently in her bed by her heater on Saturday night. I found her Sunday morning, peaceful, having passed without any pain.

My vet didn’t initally think Kiki would live very long but I dedicated a year – with good care guide Tanya’s Comprehensive Guide to Feline Chronic Kidney Disease: Everything You Need to Know to Help Your Cat and good community, Kiki had a good hospice care experience and I had the best kitty ever.