Friday, July 2, 2010

Tears for Neala

I wanted to leave Neala's original blog up in its original format and not sully it with discussions of her loss or the issues about her care...

People keep asking me how I'm doing... To be honest, I'm lost. I cannot wrap my mind around Neala dying yesterday. I cannot manage to convince myself that she is truly gone. We fought so hard- all of us, alongside Neala- and to lose her over something besides her surgery is just too boggling for my mind to comprehend.

I am not interested in suing the vet hospital. I'm not interested in filing a report with the veterinarian board AS LONG as they respond to my letter I have wrote to them, detailing her journey to their hospital and the mistake made in her care with compassion and the willingness to make amends. The horrible thing is- there can be no true amends made when the result is the loss of a beautiful soul. If they offer a refund, we will donate the monies that we, in turn, were donated to the Winn Foundation to help provide more research in cat health. As we found during our research into PRAA, our beloved cats have been given the short end of the stick when it comes to medical research... Dogs- there is a plethora of information about them. Cats- if you ever have a rare condition diagnosed in a cat, good luck finding anything that will help you make the right decisions along the way.

As of today, I am sad. And mad. I am comforted, however, by the fact that Neala was loved- oh, she was so cherished by so many different people. So many people cried with me yesterday- for every tear that fell, during my long lonely drive home with an empty cat carrier at my side, believe me- I cried alongside you.

I know that she is not suffering is a comfort, but I can't help but ask- if she had been fed the correct diet, would she have been suffering if she was home with me? We could have beat the Persistent Right Aortic Arch- in fact, as far as I'm concerned, Neala DID beat it. Her spirit and punkiness came through. The night after her surgery, she was talking to the vet techs from her cage, telling them how happy she was to have made it! If only she wasn't being fed Science Diet Kitten Food during this critical time, which eventually formed a bulge in her esophagus and crushed the very air out of her lungs! Basically, her esophagus was so distended from the kitten food (that would not pass) that it was pushing into her lungs- making her unable to breathe.

I'm sad because she suffered too... Although I knew her surgery would cause her pain, I also knew that a week of pain for a lifetime of happiness was worth the cost. However, the whole idea of her starving to eat and then eating, only to have pressure applied to her lungs and cause her not to be able to breathe PAINS me in my heart so badly. It just hurts to know she suffered so.

But this is my blog to say how I feel... I will keep it updated with any response from the vet hospital... Thank you, all of you, for enveloping Neala into your hearts.


  1. When we lose a beloved pet, there is shock, always shock. It is a terrible time. Explanations, apologies, admissions by professionals and compassion go a long way to helping us out of that shock so that we may grieve properly and safely.

    I hope the vet responds to your letter and acknowledges the failings the tech made in feeding little Neala correctly and safely. It can be very hard to get vets and human doctors to understand that you need honesty from them and are not seeking to harm their practice. You need resolution to what has been a traumatic time.

    Make sure you take good care of yourself during this time.

    We all send you hugs and love.


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  3. Oh Trish, this is so hard... I look at her, and think how can that be? why? How crazy... How unfair...
    This is just so so heartbreaking... She went so far... She did so well through the surgery... and then something so simple as to feeding the correct food can just take it all away just like that...
    I too have a mix of emotions - I am sad, I am mad, I am confused... I am just heartbroken, for her and for you...
    I am so so so sorry Trish... Please hang in there, and try to take care of yourself.
    I do hope that the person who made this mistake takes the responsibility for it, and never ever ever harm another kitten again...
    Many hugs from us,
    Happy Cat Family

  4. We still can't believe that Sweet Neala is gone. We truly cried with you yesterday and it still pains our hearts to think about her and you. WE don't have too many furless friends, but in the short time we got to know her we loved her. We misss her and will always remember her courageous fight to beat this and your heoric efforts to save her. YOu did your best, you did all you could do for her. Spot, Fiona and I send you hugs, purrs and prayers that it may help comfort you some what. Blessings to you. Please keep us posted.

  5. There were uncountable tears shed yesterday by so many over little Neala's passing. It is heartbreaking to lose a furry, but it is harder when such an ignorant mistake was made by a professional working with sick animals in a vet clinic.

  6. I too cried yesterday while I was at work. Neala was a very beautiful little sweetie. I cannot imagine the pain you are going through over such an error. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  7. Neala has indeed touched many hearts throughout her beautiful life. She lives on here. You and your family are in my thoughts. Thank you for sharing her life with us here in blogworld.

    Take care

  8. I was brought up to be a cat lover & rescuer by my family. I began the Teenage Mutant Ninja Kitty Horde back in 1987 with Christopher T. Cat (named after my very first cat Christopher) as an adult. I've never been much of a fan of the hairless cats until I 'met' up with Harry & Fiona.

    Then there was Neala. I prayed for her. I lit candles. And then I cried. It's always sad when you lose a companion. But harder, sadder when you lose a kitten... who looked forward to a life of so much joy.

    When I read about the error I was worried. I hope and pray that you will get a good response from your letter. I agree so much about the lack of research in cats vis a vis dogs. (kinda like women vs men!) Please keep us updated! And hang in there.

    The Teenage Mutant Ninja Kitty Horde & their Feeders are still sending you purrs & prayers.

  9. I don't know what to say - I am so sad for your loss, and so sad for Neala, the little fighter, and so angry that this happened. But this isn't about me - it is about you and Neala, and how sucky and unfair it is for both of you. I honestly don't know what to say because saying "I know how sad and angry you must be" isn't true - I am sure it is hundreds of times more sad and angry then all of us here, because we knew her a short time, through a blog - and while we really did truly love this little kitten we never met you were her mom, so you really knew her. All I can do is offer you and comfort I can and tell you that we are thinking and praying for you to find some. Anything we can do we will - just let us know. I cried yesterday for Neala, I cried today, and I will probably cry for a long time - but it will never be close to the tears you will cry and sadness you will feel. This little girl really brought a lot of people together - maybe together there is something (what I am not sure) that we can do that will I don't know do some good so this doesn't happen to anyone or any kitten again.

  10. We are so heartbroken to just now learn of darling little Neala's passing. We are so sorry for you. You are in our thoughts and prayers. What a little trooper she was.


  11. It is sad when we lose a beloved animal companion through carless negligence but we all have to remember that the vet staff is human and do make mistakes. No one is perfect. I am so sorry their mistaek cost you Neala but maybe she was not meant to live a long life - look how much she impacted all of us in just a few short months. Thanks for letting us know wha tis going on with you. We do care!

  12. We were so upset yesterday when we heard the news. Neala touched a lot of hearts in her short time on earth. We'll never forget her.

    Sniffie and the Florida Furkids

  13. I, too, am a breeder (of Cornish Rex) and go above and beyond for my cats and their healthcare (I am the only breeder I know who heart scans my breeding cats every year, tests them for fcv, toxo, giardia etc, and still I often second guess myself and my vet often (I also have been a vet tech sin 1972).

    When I read of Neala being fed regular food, and of her being discharged so soon...I questioned both of those actions and of course, they loomed to the forefront when she died.

    I hope you get some answers and culpability from the hospital, and that, like you said, this never happens to another PRAA kitty, but even if you get now resolution, you will know in your heart that you did all you could, truly.

    If they do refund all or part of your money, donating it to the Winn Foundation would be a wonderful legacy for Neala's memory. I know you are crushed right now. Please reach out and seek (and give) comfort to those around you, both human and feline, because they are all in sorrow too, along with you.

    Please call me if you need to talk...I am there for you. Just email me from my blog,


  14. Our hearts are breaking for you and sweet Neala. We were so happy when she made it through surgery and the outlook for her recovery looked bright. For her to die in pain because someone feed her the wrong food is awful.

    We are sending comforting purrs to you.

  15. We saw this yesterday but as Mombean is still weak from her surgery on Wed, we did not comment. It is however very hard to accept and even learn from mistakes esp a one so simple and that could have been avoided.

    We agree with Teri. There are responsible breeders, vets and owners. Mombean also has heart scans done on her kitties. She is one of the few Russian breeders worldwide to start doing this because HCM is beginning to appear in Russians.

    Donating to Winn Foundation is also a great idea. Alexi did a post about the Winn Feline Foundation awhile back. You can go to her bloggie and find a link, I believe.