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Adopting a sick pet? WWYD?


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My 23 yo daughter just adopted her first cat from a local shelter.

They had 2 videos online of the cat, one said she was 4 and one said 5. Her adoption paperwork said 2.

She took cat to vet for checkup after adoption and vet said cat was 7-8 based on eye condition (comes with age?)

Cat also had several cracked teeth and bleeding gums.Surgery is needed and estimate is $800-$1300

They also did bloodwork for $200 plus fees for exam (around $75)

She paid $300 adoption fee to shelter.

She is now in for $600 plus surgery costs and has owned cat for less than a week..

Pet insurance is not an option because of so many pre-existing conditions.

She is a sweet affectionate cat but I don’t want my daughter to blow through her savings in medical bills during the first year she owns the cat.

I am heartbroken for her. This was supposed to be this wonderful experience. 

I advised her to wait and see what bloodwork says but if there are further health complications I would probably lean towards returning the cat.

She has been crying ever since. (Insert mom guilt)

WWYD?
 

Edited by gingersmom
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I would keep the cat and spend the money to get her healthy. I personally could not live with myself knowing that I returned the cat and she most likely will not get adopted again. Most shelters are swamped with cats and the poor souls who are older and/or have health problems are usually passed over.😞

I would call around for prices from other vets because those numbers seem on the high side.

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59 minutes ago, Selkie said:

I would keep the cat and spend the money to get her healthy. I personally could not live with myself knowing that I returned the cat and she most likely will not get adopted again. Most shelters are swamped with cats and the poor souls who are older and/or have health problems are usually passed over.😞

 

This. 

If she does keep the cat (and I think she should!), let us know and I will set up a fundraiser for the cat's medical bills here on the board.

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39 minutes ago, MercyA said:

This. 

If she does keep the cat (and I think she should!), let us know and I will set up a fundraiser for the cat's medical bills here on the board.

That is the nicest thought ever! 

I’m at a loss for words.

Thank you.
 

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She should talk to the shelter: I'm sure it was an honest mistake, but the info was clearly wrong, I would not have adopted the cat had I known, I cannot afford the care, what can you do? They may be able to hook her up with a shelter vet for care at lower prices. If they are a brick wall, she could gently ponder other possibilities, like hmm, if you can't help, maybe I can tell the story on social media and get some donations . . . 

 

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Once we adopted an older “kitten” from a rescue/shelter. Our vet determined that is was not an older kitten but a cat who had so many birth defects it should have died in utero.  The vet couldn’t believe that during the spay they missed the massively oversized liver (it was noticeable). The records that came with the cat were suspected to be fraudulent as nothing really match and the bloodwork won’t have had that turn around so quick.  Due to how many people had “missed” so many signs, I did go back and made a stink. I was peed off that after some investigating, they had done this before and were getting away with it.  I did end up getting my money back.  The cat lived the rest of her very short life with us as a very spoiled, loved cat.  We did have to put her to sleep a month later due to organs failing.  
 

I don’t regret keeping her at all.  She enjoyed her last month of life being spoiled and pampered.  

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$300 does seem unreal to adopt a cat but so does $25 for two cats. The shelters around here (there are 3 that I can think of within 2 hours of where we live) charge $75 - $100 adoption fees, younger animals (puppies and kittens) are more expensive. Sometimes they will negotiate the price if you donate items they are in need of but most of the adoption fee is to cover their costs to spay or neuter the animals.

I do agree with the suggestion above to talk to the shelter again. They might be able to set you up with their vet. And social media is always an option if nothing else, as was mentioned.

We have a shelter dog that is the best dog we have ever had really. We also have a bassett hound that came to us so emaciated, she smelled like death. We are pretty sure she was within a week of dying of starvation. We kept her and brought her back to health, we put up ads but no one ever claimed her so I think we've had her for two years now, maybe 3 this summer. No regrets on either of them.

 

P.S. Ds wants a horse, if you know where to get a horse for less than $300 that is broken, I need to know where this is happening. There is a horse rescue about 2.5 hours away from here but it is still $400 - $500 to adopt them and most of them are broken and about half are gentle enough for children.

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9 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Cats here are like weeds in the spring. It's sad. They just come in huge numbers. The 2/$25 is better than just killing them all without trying. There are more cats here than most shelters and rescues can handle. 

People keep herds of feral cats on their property around here to control rodents so I guess being more rural is part of the equation. And all the shelters around here are no-kill shelters hence the reason why they spay or neuter every animal that comes in, in order to keep the population down as best they can.

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Happy happy update!!!!

The bloodwork came back with no issues with thyroid, liver or kidneys!!

She is going to keep the cat (Daisy) and the whole family is going to chip in and help cover dental costs.

I’m a cat grandma!!!

**The $300 fee included spaying. I agree it was high but for her area it is what all rescues charge. Some charged even more!

 

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9 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

My comment on the horse was just a comparison side note as a companion animal. BLM will pay you to take some horses at certain points of the year- you either break them or you have some Yard Art (which is what many people like.). However, if you want a horse for an inexperienced kid that is safe, be ready to invest in it.

Broke vs Bomb proof are two totally different things with horses. 

Ds is interested in learning how to break horses so while he learns to ride on horses that aren't his own, it's going to be a while before we can get him his own horse to show ride or even just pleasure ride. We are neighbors with  a family that keeps a yard art horse and they let ds help take care of her. Ds loves Sassy and he is very good with her even though she's not broken and as old as she is, it's unlikely she could ever be completely broken, if at all. I'd feel safer with him learning to further tame an already broken horse before he tries to tame an unbroken horse lol. He has people willing to teach him, we just need to find a horse for him to practice with.

ETA: Meant to say also, that is very cool about the BLM. I had not heard of those programs before! Thanks for the tip.

Edited by sweet2ndchance
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I would work really hard to insist they give your dd the money back that she paid, since they weren't being truthful.  I would fight for that!  And then I'd keep the cat, and put that money toward medical bills.  As another poster said, I would not go broke over this, but I would do what I could, and make sure the cat was comfortable and well-loved.

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1 hour ago, gingersmom said:

Happy happy update!!!!

The bloodwork came back with no issues with thyroid, liver or kidneys!!

She is going to keep the cat (Daisy) and the whole family is going to chip in and help cover dental costs.

I’m a cat grandma!!!

**The $300 fee included spaying. I agree it was high but for her area it is what all rescues charge. Some charged even more!

That is wonderful!!! So happy for your DD and for Daisy! What a cute name. 🙂 

Would you like me to do a fundraiser for the dental care here, or do you think you have it covered? 

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2 hours ago, sweet2ndchance said:

Ds is interested in learning how to break horses so while he learns to ride on horses that aren't his own, it's going to be a while before we can get him his own horse to show ride or even just pleasure ride. We are neighbors with  a family that keeps a yard art horse and they let ds help take care of her. Ds loves Sassy and he is very good with her even though she's not broken and as old as she is, it's unlikely she could ever be completely broken, if at all. I'd feel safer with him learning to further tame an already broken horse before he tries to tame an unbroken horse lol. He has people willing to teach him, we just need to find a horse for him to practice with.

ETA: Meant to say also, that is very cool about the BLM. I had not heard of those programs before! Thanks for the tip.

Just my .02, I know several people who work with BLM horses and I wouldn't recommend adopting one unless you have years of experience. They are typically not a good project for a beginner!

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Just now, Selkie said:

Just my .02, I know several people who work with BLM horses and I wouldn't recommend adopting one unless you have years of experience. They are typically not a good project for a beginner!

We are looking for an already broken horse that just needs some more training to be more gentle for him to start with. And this is still a few years off, we are just looking for options at the moment now and getting ideas on how much it will cost. If ds had his way he would adopt all the horse...and dogs... and cats... lol Thanks for the tip though. That's good to know. ;-)

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2 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Tell him to watch Clinton Anderson. A lot of Clinton Anderson. A horse is never too old to be broken or better trained fwiw.  But you definitely do need to be a solid,  good  rider before you try to even move forward with a green broke horse. It is a young, bendy persons game breaking horses. 🙂 Lot of work to finish them too, but generally a lot less risk of hitting the ground! At least on some horses. 

He loves Clint Anderson lol! That's what got him started on wanting to learn ;-)

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1 hour ago, sweet2ndchance said:

 

We are looking for an already broken horse that just needs some more training to be more gentle for him to start with. And this is still a few years off, we are just looking for options at the moment now and getting ideas on how much it will cost. If ds had his way he would adopt all the horse...and dogs... and cats... lol Thanks for the tip though. That's good to know. 😉

Good luck to him!  I prefer Mark Rashid and Buck Brannaman over Clinton. They have a different approach and are more about being in tune with your horse and building a bond. My horses have responded well to their teachings, and I would highly recommend any of their books or videos. Another great book is Zen Mind, Zen Horse: The Science and Spirituality of Working With Horses by Allan J. Hamilton.

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14 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

 

Personally, I'd keep the cat and do what I could to keep it as comfortable as I could that I could afford, but not go to extremes either. I wouldn't send it back. I wouldn't go broke either. I'd look for a practical vet who understands the situation is at no fault your dd's, but it's going to fleece her either.

 

 

Unfortunately, broken teeth are going to be very painful, and a source of infection, so need to be removed. But broken teeth (rather than just rotten) are a total pain in the you know where to get out. It can be a long, difficult procedure to pull them, so it likely will be expensive no matter what. There just isn't another option other than to pull them, and it just isn't easy to do. It's a lot of time under ansethesia, some of which may be digging out pieces if if breaks apart. Ugh. so not fun. 

14 hours ago, Pen said:

Second opinion on medical needs? Does cat seem in distress about her teeth?

Cats won't show signs of distress. I've seen cats with mouths that looked like raw hamburger from gum issues, they just aren't going to whine and tell you about it. so can't go by that. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Update:

Teeth not done due to vet limiting surgeries due to coronavirus.

Daisy (the cat) was not eating so $700 later  they think she has a heart murmur plus redid blood test to check for other issues and sent her home with antibiotics.

Adding to the stress is my daughter is a nurse in the hospital during this very difficult time.

Good thoughts appreciated.

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