Raz crossed over to the Rainbow Bridge on Friday, May 24, just 39 days after her diagnosis of an aggressive fibrosarcoma. In her last few days, she was showing more signs of pain, and the tumor was growing back quickly. I was hoping I could wait until Monday, take the weekend with her. But with the exponential speed that it was growing and the increased pain signs, I knew I couldn’t wait three more days.
I know other people have their animals for 10, 15, even 20 years, and Raz was only 4. But Raz was my first pet I had on my own, and she was the sweetest girl. I miss her so much. Her last meal was chip dip and MANY treats that the vet had. She LOVED those treats! It incited a little guilt that she was still eating and obviously enjoyed eating, she was still pooping until the end, and she even did a trick, moments before she passed! But she was having so much pain, and the tumor was growing so quickly. It was time.
Six days before we returned for the final visit, we saw the vet who has been most helpful throughout this whole process. When I first asked a few weeks ago, she had been hesitant to say that the cancer had been brought on by vaccines. But on that second-to-last visit, she told me she had looked at Raz’s kitten records and has changed her mind. Apparently she received too many vaccines all at once.
I adopted her from Lake Haven Shelter in West Michigan, and I’m trying to get in touch with them about her vaccine records there, if she received any. I do have her vaccine records from the vet clinic I brought her and Kho to in their first year, in Mississippi. I have a hard time understanding the records, and I’m not convinced they were written accurately (twice they have listed that she received her “second” ___ vax). I’m still digging. And to be clear, I am definitely all about vaccinating your kids and your pets! But there are guidelines and recommendations for safer vaccines, and for the schedule of them. I know cancer can choose anyone for any reason, but if its preventable and shouldn’t happen based on “new” (20 year old) recommendations, it’s absolutely unacceptable.
Raz’s body was donated to the Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary. I hope that the students can learn from her, and perhaps she will provide important information in solidifying answers for other kitties.
I spoke with one of the doctors at the vet office in Mississippi where she got the vaccinations that allegedly triggered this cancer. He was surprisingly receptive to my concerns and asked for the contact information for my vet here in Massachusetts. I have reached out to one of the oncology doctors at the Cummings School in the hopes that I’ll receive confirmation that she will be studied. Maybe it’s selfish of me, but I want to know that she will make a difference.
Kho has been immensely comforting these last couple of days. He has made many biscuits for me (on me…), and has snuggled right up against my face a few times. Friday night we had our neighbor and her puppy over for a visit. It was Kho’s second interaction with a dog…the first one who visited a couple years ago was loud and annoying. This one was just SO ENERGETIC. It was therapeutic for me and my roommates, and Kho was very curious. He did bop the poor puppy on the nose once, but it was harmless. He stared at the puppy the entire time she was over, and watched her slobber and chew on all his toys. It was great!
Anyways, I’ll keep you all informed if I learn anything on the vaccines and if I hear back from the Cummings Vet School. Thank you for all your support during our brief journey with our sweet tripawd, Raz.
Kho (still a monkeybutt)
Raz (totally whole now, an angel at the Bridge)
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