update: Thanks so much for the kind words and good thoughts, everyone. We’ve had news from his imaging and it isn’t good. Kero has severe heart disease and is already in heart failure - which isn’t to say that’s killing him right now, and it is still somewhat treatable in theory, but not for the long term. Which isn’t even relevant unless he makes it through the saddle thrombus dissolving, which is likely to happen over the next 40 hours. They say he’s comfortable and they’re going to be monitoring him really closely to make sure he stays that way, and will call me if that changes, even if it’s the middle of the night. So for now we’re still waiting, hoping we’ll be able to give him a little more time if he pulls through the next few days.
The world is kicking my ass right now. I mean, I know it’s kicking everyone’s ass right now, and mine less than many in that sense, but... We woke up this morning to my poor baby Kero crying and dragging his back legs. We had hoped he jumped off something high and managed to break a bone. We weren’t so lucky.
It’s a saddle thrombus, basically a clot cutting off all the blood to his legs. They evidently have no way to treat this in cats that won’t result in throwing a bunch of smaller clots all over, so they can only medicate him for the pain and to try to reduce the risk of further clotting, and monitor him in hopes of seeing it break up. But when it does, he could go into acute heart failure from all the backed-up blood rushing back into his arteries full of free radicals or whatever. And, the fact that he got the thrombus in the first place strongly suggests that he has heart disease, so that’s a whole other thing.
Absolute best-case scenario, he comes out of this with some function in his hind legs (not even a concern to me right now, we’ll get him wheels!) and they’ll have determined that either he’s in the 1% that managed to get a thrombus without having heart disease, and he takes some blood thinners and he’s fine, or that he has early stage, manageable heart disease and he takes meds and has a few more good years in him.
The odds of those scenarios happening are pretty astronomical. The vet basically told me to not even hope that he’d get through the clot, that she’d literally only seen one cat survive this, but to be fair, it was because owners normally euthanized before that point (I suspect due in large part to the expense of keeping their pet hospitalized.) We got pet insurance this year and we can’t be positive they won’t find some reason to not cover this, but they should help. Either way, we’re doing everything we can as long as it’s not making him suffer just for our sakes. But all we can do now is wait. I hated leaving him. He was fine last night, he was totally normal in every way. I’m just in shock I think.
Hug your furbabies tight for me.