Monday, August 12, 2019

#Microblog Mondays: Feeling Like a Failure

Oh, Maebe. It's been a rough go, and once again we find ourselves wondering about that point in time called Enough.

At this point, Maebe is on three medications (blood pressure, thyroid, Prozac), which now she is refusing to take. She isn't eating -- sometimes not nearly enough, sometimes not at all. She went back into confinement in the guest/craft room again after using my dirty laundry basket as a litterbox and actually peeing UP the wall of the closet in July. That's when the Prozac started, as well as the Feliway diffuser (it puts out "happy cat" pheromones and is supposed to help ease stress).

But the problem is, is that Maebe isn't really happy here. She and Lucky are both the same age, 12, but they have very different personalities (probably since they've had very different lives). Lucky is like barely reined-in playboy, like a George Clooney sort of cat, and Maebe...she's more of a dowager Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey type of crotchety duchess. So when Lucky wanted to play, she was not having it, and then she became a hunting game where he'll corner her under a dresser and just lie across the floor in front of it to nonchalantly block her exit. The laundry basket incident was at least in large part because she was hiding in the closet from Lucky, and she probably thought "well, this is a gray box, and it's a lot softer than my (special nontracking nondust corn litter) box in in the other room, so I'll just go here."

I am so sad, because we really just wanted to get a playmate for Lucky and save an older cat from the shelter, but I don't think she's feeling super "saved" right now. We have to find another home for her, and I don't know how to do that when she is so medically complex and has the dreaded litterbox issues (although, to be fair, since the Feliway and the Prozac, she's been consistently in the litterbox, no accidents, no near-misses in the washing machine tray her litterbox sits in).

It feels like a terrible failure, although I don't know what else we could possibly do. She still won't come downstairs, she hides, she's getting skinnier every day. She's a sweet cat, when not terrorized and on a hunger strike. It's not kind to keep her. It just sucks.

Mid July, before the Laundry Basket Incident and the food issues.

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  1. Awww Jess, I’m so sorry. I understand how sad you feel. Over the years we have had a failed adoption of a dog and a cat at different times. The cat situation was an older cat who had been abandoned by her owners on the doorstep of of vet clinic. She was so sweet, but obviously stressed and upset, and we actually found out that our other cat was a “one cat house” type cat, and so the new cat felt cornered and hid and wouldn’t come out and would hiss at us and try and bite when we would try and pet her, so we had to take her back, and she was just so stressed they ended up keeping her as an office cat.
    I know it’s really hard to re-home a pet with medical issues. When we moved my cat didn’t do well and we had litter box issues (around the time baby boy was coming) so I was trying to get a shelter to take her and all the rescues said they wouldn’t take her because she wasn’t adoptable with behavior issues. Someone suggested we give her her own space completely where she was mostly isolated from everyone else (they suggested an empty room or even a bathroom or garage) and let her have her food and litter box and toys and let her be. Well, it ended up being the thing that worked, and it worked right away. She has never wanted to come back into the house with everyone even though we have tried, so she’s our garage cat and loves it. She’s so much friendlier now and we will leave the door open and she comes in for pets and goes back on her own terms.
    And recently we were asked to take my brother’s dog (who doesn’t get along with dogs his own size or bigger) so we have been working on that and it has been really rough and slow-going trying to acclimate everyone without causing more stress to them. After the summer we may have to hire a behaviorist to help.
    Thinking of you guys as you try and work through all this is some way.

  2. Oh, and depending on where you got Maebe you could try reaching out to them or other rescues that are no-kill, because they are more likely to try and help the animal vs euthanizing them.

  3. I am so, so sorry. That is such a sucky, hard situation to have to figure out. I hope things come together in a good way for all of you. Sending lots of thoughts.

  4. I'm sorry you have to figure out this situation. Good luck.

  5. That sounds like such a tough situation. You really really want to do well by Maebe, but the path isn't clear.

    I'm just hoping that things line up, and the person who will feel blessed by Maebe and whom Maebe will bless comes into your lives. Promptly and with ease.

  6. I'm so sorry you're going through this - and sorry for poor Maebe too. Some cats just don't get on with each other. We had two from kittens, but in latter years they fought like cat and dog, and I worried that they got stressed. You're making decisions that are in her best interest, and that are filled with love. Don't beat yourself up.

  7. Such a difficult situation. I am so sorry. I hope you are able to find a solution that honors Maebe and eases your mind and heart.

  8. Aw, so sorry. I know you tried your best and sometimes a solution is just not in reach.

  9. Thanks everyone. It's so, so super hard. We had what seemed like a really positive week, and then she unloaded SO MUCH SHIT into our laundry basket when there was really only about a 15 minute opportunity to do so... we can't do this anymore. She's been having difficulty pilling and she's not eating nearly enough, and it just feels like this isn't much of a home for her. So many of the rescues are full now, and so I called the shelter where we got her (which unfortunately is a kill shelter, but they also have insanely good veterinary care and they really do try to give the cats their best possible chance), and after leaving a sobby voicemail I got a call back from Admissions. They said we've done everything they would have suggested and more, and they will absolutely take her back and try to figure out what's going on. I really do think she'd be okay in a single cat household that was less open layout, less threatening. She didn't start out using the world as her litterbox, it wasn't until after she and Lucky were...not friends. Sigh. Thanks for the support, and we have one more week with Maebe (they have a distemper quarantine currently, so we can't surrender her until after next week, because otherwise she will definitely be euthanized, and no one wants that). This is so awful.

  10. Oh Jess... I am sure you tried a lot harder than most people would have to make this work. It sucks, but please don't beat yourself up too much, as Mali said. (((hugs)))