1. The story from Carrickfergus
Your Stories My sweet boy had a rough start to his life. He was found by hikers in the foothills that border my city with his four siblings mewling in some sagebrush, looking for their mum. Sadly, she had died a little ways away from them, clear signs of a coyote. I like to think that she died protecting her babies. Being unfamiliar with people, the kittens were very skittish, not even coming out from under the bed of their foster home. Fortunately, the foster was a veterinarian and also my friend, so she called me over to meet the kittens and to try to get them used to people so that they could become adoptable. At first none of them would come out, but after a little while this tiny orange boy crept out, purring so loudly I could hear it from across the room. He and I played and I pet him and he eventually would come to eat—the best part about it all was that he led by example and showed the other kittens that it was all right. They all were adopted, that very same orange boy by me. I named him Carrickfergus (in the old Irish Gaelic Carraig Fearghais) after a song, and a place, and my ancestral home, but also because it means “rock of strength”. He is my little fluffy rock, and for the past ten years we have given each other strength.
What a touching story. We never know why or how, but cats like Carrickfergus can touch our lives in so many ways. Thank you for sharing!- ViviPet
2. The story from Raider
We had a wolf named Koda.. Koda kept every critter away.. Towards the end of his life.. We noticed Koda would leave some food in his bowl out back... He slept indoors.. Well.. Koda passed away.. And there was this black kitty hanging around.. My husband said.. Yeah.. I've seen him outback eating Kodas food.. That kitty decided it was safe and banged on the front door till we let him in.. That was 6 years ago.. His name is Raider ..and we believe Koda sent him!
3. The story from Snickers
Snickers and his sister Cupcake were born on 8-8-15. I brought them home on 10-8-15. They were so sweet. By Decemcer Snickers growth spurt decreased dramatically. After I brought him home from being neutered he never fully recovered. He slept all the time. His sister Cupcake continued to grow and played non stop. I brought Snickers back to the vet at the end of February. He had not gained any weight since December was sleeping more with a slight head tilt. The vet found nothing wrong with him. By the end of April he was getting worse, I brought him back to the vet again. This time they diagnosed him with dry FIP. We took him in for a fine needle biopsy and the growths were definitely not cancer. we were told that it was most likely dry FIP. we lost our precious angel on May 29, 2016. We miss him so much. We are praying his sister never develops this horrific disease.
Thank you for sharing this important story! This is exactly why we support FIP research through our platform. We hope Cupcake is still doing well! -ViviPet
4. The story from Jenn Trof
Never heard of FIP until 1 day before I lost my Jinx. I came home from a vacation on December 16, 2014 and noticed he had a small seizure. The next day I took him to the vet. We thought he had epilepsy and started treating him right away for that. Unfortunately his seizures got worse to the point that I had to isolate him when I went to work from my other 3 cats. I came home from work on Dec 25, working the midnight shift, and noticed that during one of his seizures that his urine now had blood in it. I called the vet immediately and got the number for the emergency vet. I took him in right away. He was comatose at this point. When I left for work, he was walking around in the bathroom and did not want to be by himself. Big different in 12 hours. The emergency vet ran blood work, hooked up an iv, and had no answers until the bloodwork came back. The next morning after work I went in to visit him. There was no change. He was still comatose. The vet told me there was no indication on his bloodwork of what was wrong and the only thing they could think of was FIP. They kept the IV running, antibiotics and whatever else they could think of. I called the very next day when I left work, now the 27th. I was told there was no change at all in his condition. He was still comatose. I told them that I would be in shortly to say goodbye. I couldn't let him stay like this without knowing why. We originally thought it was epilepsy so me and my normal vet never ran his bloodwork back on the 16th. But since he most likely had neurological FIP, there was probably nothing that could be done for him at that point anyway. His symptoms took 11 days to take his little life from me. He was only 8 months old. My original vet has since been researching FIP more and not just going with the easiest diagnosis for others. Hopefully it will help someone else in the area.
We understand the pain to losing Jinx because ViviPet was founded on battling this deadly disease. Thank you for sharing your story! -ViviPet
5. The story from Tater
I lost my beautiful baby boy Tater to FIP almost a year ago. It was the most heart wrenching thing to experience. I took him to see a vet because his gums had turned yellow and I thought he had jaundice. Turns out it was the wet form of FIP. My heart couldn't handle the news so I took him to another vet to get a second opinion and they said the same thing. He passed away a little over two weeks later. He was only seven months old. He wasn't ready to go. But he was drowning in his own body. Fluid coming out of his nose and mouth constantly. He has to be put to rest. Even my vet cried because he was the most incredible little guy. I hope to one day see a cure. Because it's seriously the most heart breaking thing to witness.
We Agree, this is a terrible disease and it is heart retching to watch. Thank you for sharing your story so that others will understand the importance of FIP research- ViviPet
6. The story from Toulouse & Bleu
One wet, one dry. Bleu took a big chunk of my heart...his brother is like my guardian angel following me everywhere...
Cats are guardian angels! Thank you for sharing your story.-ViviPet
7. The story from Riesling
Riesling was Petipaw's baby. He was found on the streets of Woodland CA at about 6 months and brought to Yolo County SPCA to be fostered. He went to Picnic Day that year, then came home with me and never left. Riesling was diagnosed with dry fip. Dr Heather Kennedy was able to help me keep him comfortable for some time but eventually the time came and I had to say goodbye.
Riesling is lucky to have found you and vise versa. Thank you for sharing -ViviPet
8. The story from Titus Tinytoes
Titus Tinytoes was a foster kitten of Yolo County SPCA. He developed fip one day and went very quickly. He was sweet and loving and I am happy that he knew love in his foster home.
We need more foster parents like you! Thank you for sharing Titus' story.-ViviPet
9. The story from Madison Dexter
I have always had cats! But I never even heard of FIP. After my beloved Buster passed away at 15 years old, I decided to get a kitten. I found a kitten (Dexter) at a rescue center and quickly realized he needed a friend! Went to another rescue center and fell in love with a ball of orange fluff (Elliot) . Soon after, Dexter started to get sick, after trying so many meds and tests it was determined he had FIP and two weeks later he was gone. Elliot was devastated with out his friend and two Vets told me that FIP was not contagious and to get another kitten. I was told the cat must have a mutation in order to get FIP. Once again I went to another rescue center and found (Madison). For some reason this kitten was bonded to me from first sight and I was more than in love with him.( A month later) on Thanksgiving day he developed a fever and with in two weeks FIP had taken over his body to the point he could not go on. Now I really began to wonder........ did I bring Madison into a home with the corona virus ????? How could this happen again?????? So I read everything I could,had my house professionally cleaned, bought all new cat climbers, toys and dishes and waited almost 8 months to get another buddy for Elliot. I am happy to say it has been more than two years now and Milo and Elliot are happy healthy indoor cats. FIP is horrible and I want nothing more than to see a cure!!!! I will continue to donate and hope others will too. Pictured are Elliot and Milo!
We are happy to hear Milo and Elliot are happy and healthy.-ViviPet
10. The story from W.C. Fields Vernau
I first met Fields as a 6 week kitten at the City of Sacramento, Front Street Animal Shelter when I was asked to examine him because he was walking funny. I am Veterinary Neurologist, and volunteer to help whenever possible. I was happy to examine this little guy along with my 14 year old daughter Lindsey to help.
Fields purred through the entire examination, and before I was even finished, Lindsey announced that Fields was coming home with us to foster. I knew that Fields had a condition called "Cerebellar Hypoplasia" where the back part of the brain doesn't form normally because of a viral infection, before the kitten is born, but that he wouldn't get any worse with time. All this meant for him was that he walked with an unsteady gait, and he didn't seem too worried about that at all.
And so, Fields came home with us, and his care was transferred to the wonderful Yolo SPCA. He lived in Lindsey's bedroom with the other foster kittens, but it was clear that he and Lindsey had a special bond. If Lindsey was in the house, Fields was with her. She was fostering 4 other very sweet kittens at the time, and was trying to decide which kitten she wanted to adopt. She'd been saving her own money to pay for the adoption, and was taking her time decided which kitten was "the one". Fields had a lot to say and definitely seemed to think that the decision was obvious--it was him, but she had to make her own decision.
I left for a conference on a Friday when Fields was 9 weeks old, and Saturday, or course, while I was away and could not help, got a frantic call from my husband that Fields wouldn't stop throwing up. They rushed him into the ER at UC Davis and he was diagnosed with a string caught in his intestines, after several hours of testing. He needed to have emergency surgery right away. Lindsey was devastated, and knew that the he might not make it through the surgery. She waited to hear patiently from the surgeon, and when she did --the news was good--they'd successfully removed the dental floss from his intestines, and Fields would make a full recovery. Lindsey was relieved and decided right then and there, that she and Fields would stay together. They would go to college together, and she estimated that she'd be old (30 years old) by the time Fields got old. Once Fields had recovered from surgery and all of the dental floss was removed from the house, she adopted Fields.
We adopted another kitten as a friend for Fields named Marlin, and the two were inseparable, and hung out with Lindsey. Where ever Lindsey was, Fields and Marlin were together nearby.
When Fields was 5 months old, we noticed that he was less active than he usually was, and that his tummy started to get big. He was diagnosed with FIP shortly thereafter at UC Davis, and our family mission was to make him as comfortable as possible. The FIP clinical trial at UC Davis was no longer enrolling patients, even though we begged and pleaded with Dr. Pedersen. Fields loved to be warm, he loved comfortable fleecy beds, and he loved Lindsey. We bought enough heating discs for an army, and brightly coloured fleece to make comfortable cats beds for him. We lay the warm kitty beds in path from the litter box, to the food dish to the top of the stairs, so that Fields could watch the family action on top of his comfy warm bed. Lindsey stayed by his side whenever she was home from school and he was happy--purring all of the time. After 6 weeks our boy stopped eating and purring, and we knew it was time to say goodbye to our beloved Fields.
After surviving a viral infection before birth, and emergency surgery for "string gut", it seemed to be cruel and unusual punishment that beautiful, beloved Fields died from FIP. We miss him everyday. Fields made a contribution to Dr. Pedersen's group's research, so that hopefully, if we all work together, a cure or even better, a way to prevent this horrible disease can be found.
We needed tissues for this story. Thank you so much for sharing!-ViviPet
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