Sweet Shelby is Sick

Shelby is my very sweet, 19 year-old cat. She and Goliath were best buddies, and she was kind of like a mother to him. She has a hyperthyroid, and is in kidney failure. But, both of those were being managed with medication and diet. We had just gotten the right dosage figured out for her thyroid medication, the prescription kidney health food was helping, and she was doing really well, considering.


TraciBunkers.com - Shelby-3


Then Goliath disappeared. When that happened, she quit eating. Not all together, but she wasn’t eating very much. And considering she has a hyperthyroid and only weighed 5 lbs, that wasn’t good.

Then, the kitten that I had decided to adopt for Goliath, about a month before he disappeared, was big enough to bring home. I think the stress of a rambunctious kitten, along with the loss of Goliath, was too much for her.

Wednesday morning, I saw her fall over and start kicking her back legs. I couldn’t tell if she was trying to get up, or was having some sort of seizure. By the time I rushed her to the vet, she was ok. But the vet gave her fluids because she was dehydrated, and sent us home with pain medication and an appetite stimulant.

That night the same thing happened again, so she had to be hospitalized. They noticed her heart was skipping a beat. She literally has a broken heart. She has been very sensitive to my pets dying in the past. About 5 years ago when my dog Sophie died, Shelby was so distraught, she became very ill and had to be hospitalized then as well. So I was very concerned about her when Goliath disappeared (and unfortunately, has not been found).

The vet did some tests, but nothing was really figured out. Even the heart tests didn’t really match up with what the vet was hearing when he listened to her heart. And now, she’s unable to walk for some reason. When I took her to be hospitalized, that wasn’t the case. She’s back home, and I’m keeping a careful eye on her and trying to keep the kitten away from her. Even though she can’t walk, somehow she drug herself outside the other night, which is pretty amazing considering my pet door is a double door.

I’ve been hanging out with her, trying to find a balance between spending time together and letting her be alone if it seems that’s what she wants. (Crawling under the bed is a pretty big way to let me know she just wants to be alone.) I’ve been taking some pictures while we hang out, and playing with photo apps while she rests. I just discovered a new free photo app called Pixlr-o-matic.


TraciBunkers.com - Shelby-1


I’m hoping I can nurse her back to health, and that she hasn’t decided that without Goliath here, she’s ready to move on. I told her that if she’s ready to go, I understand and I’m okay with that. But I was lying. Losing two pets in one month would be a little more than I can take. But at the same time, if she doesn’t recover from this, I don’t want her to have to continue in this condition. So I’m praying for a miracle. It would be so wonderful if Goliath would show up, and that would perk her back up. But at this point, Goliath has been missing for a month and sadly, I don’t see that happening.

On top of trying to take care of Shelby, this weekend I had to deal with some crazy drama over Goliath. Friday night I saw that someone called, but didn’t leave a message. I called the number and the person said he worked at a health club downtown, and a couple came in with a cat they had found that looked like my cat on the flyer. They used his cell phone to try to call me, but when they couldn’t get me, they left with the cat & the flyer, but didn’t leave any contact info. I was on pins & needles hoping the couple would call me since I had no way of getting in touch with them.

Then at 12:30am, after I had gone to sleep, a police officer left a message saying a couple found a cat that looked like my cat from the flyer, and the cat bit them. So I needed to call the police station. I didn’t get the message until 6am, when I had to get up from the kitten crying. (I have to keep her in the bathroom at night to keep her from bothering Shelby & to keep her from discovering the pet door and wandering outside.) I couldn’t imagine that Goliath would bite anyone, but I was hoping he did if that’s what it took for us to be reunited.

It took awhile to reach someone, because the officer gave me the wrong number. When I finally did, I was told I had to call animal control, but they didn’t answer phones until 8am. Then at 8 when I called animal control, there was a recording to call the police dispatch, which is who told me to call animal control in the first place. It was so frustrating. Finally animal control called me and said I needed to go to the animal shelter, but they didn’t open until 9am.

At 9, I went there, but unfortunately, it wasn’t him. It really did look like him though. And I have no idea if the couple who stopped in at the health club who found a cat was the same couple who got bit. And oddly, I didn’t have any flyers around the area of the health club. So that whole story is very odd.


TraciBunkers.com - Shelby-2


So along with the expenses from trying to find Goliath, I now have the vet bills from Shelby I had to pay. (I am positive she got sick from being heartbroken over him disappearing. She was great until he disappeared.) I raised the amount of my chip in to add those in. Hopefully I won’t have any more vet bills for Shelby (for now) and I can nurse her back to walking on my own.

I appreciate everyone’s donations to my ChipIn, and all of the kind messages. Every little bit helps–even a dollar or two. Add if you can’t chip in, there are other ways to help, whether it’s by sharing the link to my chip in & blog posts with the story on your blog or facebook, using my affilaite links for Amazon or Dick Blick when you need to buy something (I get a very tiny commission when my affiliate links are used), or from buying from my online shop. It all helps. And thanks so much to everyone who has already done so. The help & support is heart warming in such trying times for me, and also helps me feel not so alone going through this.

Posted in pets and tagged , , , , , .


  1. Oh Traci, I can’t even imagine how you feel! I have lost pets but that was when I was a kid and was able to be distracted much easier…I wonder if Goliath was fixed. Then that could be the reason why he is gone and may return as one of your blog reader’s cat did. Hopefully that is the case. I hope that Shelby makes a quick recovery. Take care of yourself too! There is a kitten that needs your attention and can probably help you from falling into depression…God bless you…

  2. Traci I want to give you my most heartfelt sympathy. Years ago I walked in your shoes. I lost my precious kitty to old age and a month later my dog passed. It was a very difficult time. There really isn’t anything I can say that will make it easier for you but know you have my prayers. I went through a similar story with my cat Trouble (yes, his name) when he disappeared for months. I was heart-broken. Six months later he mysteriously showed up on the back porch smelling like a french brothel. Take one day at a time, cherish what time you have with Shelby. Take care of yourself too.

  3. Sending you even more love and energy than before. Push has really come to shove for you. It makes me so sad. Please don’t give up hope, Traci! There is still a good chance that Shelby recovers, and Goliath returns. I’m sure many, many people are hoping for exactly that to happen, and are praying and keeping their fingers crossed for you and all of your pets!

  4. Traci, I just found your posts and I was hoping the couple had found Goliath! If you can get to a health food store that has Bach Remedies, give Shelby STAR OF BETHLEHEM for shock, and HONEYSUCKLE for grief. I have also heard there’s a homeopathic remedy if you can get her to take it for Grief, Ignatia. They come in these little white balls you can crush up and sneak in food.
    There’s way too much being dumped on you to handle right now.

    • Hi Ronni, yes, I was also hoping that couple had found Goliath, but no such luck. I have some Bach flower essences, and hadn’t even thought of using them on Shelby. That’s a great idea. And I’ll get some of the homeopathic remedies too. The problem is, she is eating, but only tiny amounts at a time. She’s doing a little better, but it seems she should be doing better than she is. I should give her some Rescue Remedy. I wonder how much I should give her . . . I’ll have to google it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *