Hope the kitty: Sad news from Salmon Brook Farms…

Lavinia Ross emailed me some news yesterday, news followers of her quarterly update on Salmon Brook Farms blog posts will find sad. Poor Hope the ginger kitty had been in poor health for several months, and all efforts to restore her health were, sadly, to no avail. Lavinia writes:

Hope was born to a feral mother under the old doublewide on the same site as the new house. She and her brother Marcus were absorbed into our family, where they have been loved and cherished.

Hope had been having some intermittent problems with stool, which turned bloody and resulted in a trip to the ER in late January.  The usual interventions were tried first, with no success.  A mass at the ileocecal junction was eventually found on ultrasound, as well as several enlarged lymph nodes.  Given all the data, including muscle wasting, this was deemed most likely to be cancer, and a palliative course of treatment was agreed upon, with the intention of buying her as much quality time as we could. Hope made some progress, and held her own for a while.  She seemed happy to be here, and I was pleased to be able to give her time, and Rick and me additional time with her.

Hope eventually developed ascites, a build up of fluids secreted into the abdominal space, in the last couple of weeks. Although she seemed hungry and thirsty, she became unable eat and drink in the last two days. Fluid was accumulating at a high rate as the cancer was progressing.  Hope’s time had come, and her vet made room in a very busy schedule to help her cross the Great Divide in peace and safety.  We had a good morning together that day.  I gave her the usual morning meds and kept to routine, folded laundry with her, read for a bit and took a short nap.  I spent a while talking to her before I put her in the carrier for the last ride.  She meowed quite a bit on the way over, and it was an hour drive, but once we got to the parking lot, called the office with the space number we were in, I got into the back seat with her and talked some more until the tech came to get us.  She was calm by then, looked me in the eye, and I had the feeling she understood this was a transition, I was there and all was well.  The vet tech took her into the clinic to put in the catheter, and then they brought me in to have some time alone with her before the vet came in to give Hope her release.  It was a state of the art room (new facilities) with subdued lighting and soft towel ready to receive her.  I had brought Hope’s brush along, and brushed her for a while.  She loved that soft brush.  The vet knocked on the door softly, and we discussed things one last time.  We agreed this was the day, Hope’s quality of life was slipping, and there was nothing more to do.  Hope was calm, quiet and clear-eyed, and gently sank down into the blanket as the injections kicked in.   It was almost Zen-like.  The vet was very respectful and gentle, almost reverent in how the process was handled.

Rest in Love, dear little Hope.

Hugs to Lavinia and Rick. Hope will be missed. This has been a year of transition for the cats of Salmon Brook Farms, a sad one. We will miss their places in Lavinia’s reports, but carry them in our hearts. 

49 thoughts on “Hope the kitty: Sad news from Salmon Brook Farms…

  1. It is always sad when a beloved friend is lost; Purrs to all who love Hope and to Hope as she starts on her next adventure.

    • Thank you for stopping by and honoring Hope’s life, Catladymac. I talked to Hope about her next adventure, whenever and wherever that may be, on her last day. She understood. 🌈🐾 ❤️

  2. She was loved and cherished…..could any of us ask for more. Hope was a joy to you for a long time. May you fondly remember her silly ways when the hurting ends.

    My heart is with you Lavinia.


        • Every one of them leaves a hole behind when they die, and it is always hard to lose one. The loss is keenly felt for a long time. When one has a lot of cats, and the majority of them are in their senior years, the odds increase. It is my understanding this type of cancer in cats tends to crop up somewhere between 9 and 13 years of age. Hope would have been 14 in August. She was robust until the problems started, and I had fully expected her to live on into her 20s. I am a cancer survivor myself, and I am still here, almost 11 years later, I don’t know why. We worked hard, gave Hope as many good days as we could, and we cherished each and every one. Our rule was no needless suffering. Hope’s ending was peaceful and merciful. Doug and I hope her story is helpful and comforting to others who find themselves needing to make a similar decision. We thank you for honoring Hope’s life. 🌈🐾 ❤️

    • I’ve been inspired by what you and Rick do, and I know the kitties are all part of what is good about Salmon Brook Farms. They aren’t just farm cats, left to do on their own. Posting this was just one small way I can repay you for your thoughtfulness when I dealt with Dougy’s passing last July.

      • Our WordPress community is a good one. We all look after each other. Each crossing over the Rainbow Bridge takes a piece of us with them, and it helps to have a caring community to help see us through the changes.

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