Meet Ziggy and our adorable family!

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by Ziggy's Mom (GA), Jan 3, 2018.

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  1. Ziggy's Mom (GA)

    Ziggy's Mom (GA) New Member

    Dec 31, 2017
    Hello everyone! I'm Tiffany, I'm brazilian and I'm Ziggy's human. I wanna apologize in advance for any grammar/spelling mistakes, English isn't my first language.

    The older cat is Dylan, an adorable grumpy black cat who was adopted when he was 2 months old. One Saturday I went to the grocery store, to get some beer for the weekend, and stopped by a small adoption fair. I saw that ugly little guy on a cage, and he came and bit my finger. It was love at first sight, so I came home with a beer pack, a small cat, a litter box and a bag of cat food. When Dylan was 4 months, I decided it was time for him to have a brother. I found Ziggy at a local shelter, he was two weeks younger than Dylan and I fell in love with his blue eyes, his fragile-looking face and his strong personality. They became the closest brothers, sharing lots of love and the same cardboard box.

    Two years later, when I was still dating my now wife Rose, a friend found a dog in a park, who had just had 7 puppies, but none of them survived, neither the mom did, except for a golden fattie one - the strongest in his pup broot. He looked like a potato with four sticks as his legs, and barely could walk - he was 14 days old when we took him in. We spent a full month bottle feeding him every two hours - no sleep for mama! We named him Diego and he grew to a beautiful shepperd-mix, a little anxious but a people-lover who kisses a lot. Diego and Rose then asked us (me and the two cats) to move in with them.

    A year later, we were at a Pride Walk and saw a homeless guy walking around with three puppies in a shopping cart. We asked to adopt them, but he wanted to sell the puppies for a lot of money. People began to crowd around us and donate money, we ended up buying the three of them for 90 bucks. The two boys were adopted by other families, and Mafalda, the only girl, come to our house. She was afraid at first, but ended up blending in pretty nicely. She's the most caring little girl, she hugs us like a tiny human and climbs up on furnitures like a giant cat.

    Sharing a house with two cats and two dogs can be hectic, but they found their own systems and learned to love each other. Rose and I got married on November and officialy became the Rossi-Castilho family.

    So, about a month ago, Ziggy started losing weight, was drinking lots of water, eating a lot and using his litter box all the time. After some reading, we began to think of diabetes. Long story short, our family's vet (who is a WONDERFUL vet, but not so knowledgeable about cats) was most worried about his kidney and didn't care much about diabetes. We took him in the morning for blood work and on the same day he began to show his sickness. The doctor gave him antibiotics and put him on IV, then sent him home. At night he wasn't eating or swallowing, his skin was yellow, his body temperature was too low, he didn't respond to any kind of touching or handling, his third eyelid wasn't retracting, his blood pressure was too low, he was inconcious and dehydrated. We didn't believe he would make it through the night, and we had the hardest, sadest decision to make: wait for him to die with us, or take him to the hospital for intensive care, risking he died alone in a cold cage in the middle of the night, but with an almost non-existent chance of surviving.

    At 3am we decided to drive him to the hospital, we thought we should take the smallest chance of recovering him. We left there crying, just waiting for the call informing he was dead. We were already getting ready for the bad news, we felt like we left him there to die.

    Then the morning came, with the first visit, on Christmas Eve, and our little boy made it through the night. He started to recover slowly, every visit he was a little bit better. They decided to test him for diabetes, and tah-dah: a cat in ketoacidosis. We put him on a feeding tube when he was strong enough for anestesya, but he was eating on the next day - think about a hungry little guy. He spent a week at the hospital, and we brought him home last Friday. The staff was amazing and saved his life. Everyone, from doctors to nurses, loved him and talked to us a lot. And Ziggy showed himself as a super strong cat.

    He tooks lots of lab tests at the hospital, and his liver was pretty damaged. Nobody, neither the hospital vets, nor our family vet, knew what was wrong with him. They told us to go to a cats specialist, and we went to the best in the country. He said Ziggy had a small survival chance, but he did it. He said the worst already have happened, and we could calm down. He diagnosed Ziggy as a diabetic cat, and explained how the liver damage happened due to diabetes and will heal as he is treated. He prescribed him with 2 units of Lansus once a day, potassium pills (his levels were too low at the hospital, and insulin has made it worst) and gave him an antibiotics shoot that will last 2 weeks in his blood system, for preventing infection on the feeding tube incision. He also forbid dry food, and told us not to measure his glucose yet. We are returning there this week to discuss further steps on his treatment.

    I know diabetes is a hard disease, but we were asking for him having something treatable, even if chronic. Something he had the chance to live a long life with the proper treatment. We were so afraid he had something terminal, something that would require surgery, something that would make him die slowly, that we were more than relieved when we got the diagnosis.

    He's now recovering at home, not eating so much but we are almost sure the tube is making him uncomfortable. He's still weak, but he's been exploring the house, wanting to play with the dogs, getting sun at our small backyard, fighting us when we try to handle him and meowing at us like he always did. We ended up with a HUGE hospital bill, and also the cats specialist bill - he is the best in the country and he surely charges as that. We don't know yet how we're gonna pay for it, but we have amazing people who have been helping us how to figure it out - unfortunately not with money, everyone we know is broke lol. But they are people who understand when someone say "let's do it and figure out later how we're gonna pay for it" for everything that will save and improve their pet's lives.

    Thank you so much for reading this huge wall of text. I've attached pictures of our family ♥

    Last edited: Jan 3, 2018
  2. Kris & Teasel

    Kris & Teasel Well-Known Member

    Aug 17, 2016
    Welcome to you and your wonderful family! It's obvious that you love your pets a lot. They're lucky to have you. :) This is a wonderful place for you to get help with Ziggy's diabetes treatment. Please post any questions you have on the main health forum. If you start a thread there, just copy and paste the link to this page over there so people can read the history.
  3. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

    Aug 16, 2015
    Welcome! How wonderful that you adopted your beautiful babies! We have lots of money saving tips. Come to the Main Health forum and ask any questions you have.
  4. Anne-Callie

    Anne-Callie New Member

    Aug 31, 2017
    You have a beautiful family.I totally agree with you about doing everything for your pets. Hopefully,Ziggy will continue to get better.Welcome and good luck.
    Critter Mom likes this.
  5. FurBabiesMama

    FurBabiesMama Well-Known Member

    Jul 6, 2017
    Welcome and thanks for sharing your family!
  6. Myagi (GA) and Heidi

    Myagi (GA) and Heidi Well-Known Member

    Oct 30, 2017
  7. Veronica & Babu-chiri

    Veronica & Babu-chiri Well-Known Member

    Aug 5, 2016

    And thanks for sharing your wonderful family with us.

    Diabetes is definately treatable and his liver will recover with time, most vets tell us not to start testing right away mainly so that the owner doesn't stress up but is the best thing you can do to help him control his diabetes and is much cheaper if you do it than having the vet doing it and also less stressing for him, you could consider starting with it.

    Most of the people here use human meters because the strips which is the expensive part are cheaper than the pet meters ones, in my case, I live in Mexico, there are no pet meters here so human there is.

    I hope he keeps feeling better and in the meantime keep asking as many questions as you need, post them in the main health forum where a lot more people will see them and don't worry about your grammar or spelling mistakes people here are wonderful and very understanding even when what I say doesn't make much sense (English is not my first language either)
  8. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

    Jun 8, 2016
    Welcome! Super cute!
  9. Tracey&Jones

    Tracey&Jones Well-Known Member

    Dec 12, 2016
    An absolutely beautiful family! Hi hope Ziggy makes a quick recover but I know that a DKA can take a couple of weeks to get over.
  10. nmveasey

    nmveasey Member

    Nov 15, 2017
    Welcome! You have a beautiful family. I hope Ziggy continues to get better!
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