Six Toes

Six Toes
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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Story of Six Toes

Greetings cat lovers.  This is the story of my mutant kitty, Six Toes.  How is he a mutant?  Simple.  He's got deformed eyelids, a really messed up heart, and six toes (hence his name).  He's seven months old now, but I got him when he was just two weeks old.  Seems his mom left Six Toes and his brother Buddha (whom I also own) after she was run off by a dog.  They were brought to me because they really needed help.

Six Toes was and is a character.  He was the biggest of the two kittens.  He ate the most.  Six Toes had a habit of sucking off his brother Buddha's chest while he slept because he missed his mommy so much.  I cleaned them up and kept them warm (fortunately it was summer).  Buddha was in bad shape, being a lot smaller with a massive hernia on his tummy.  I took both kittens to the vet.  She didn't give Buddha much chance to live, but Six Toes, she said, was darn near indestructible.

So I fed them, kept them warm and let them walk out in the sun on the grass.  Buddha got better and his hernia healed.  Today he's a very quiet and thoughtful cat.  And Six Toes got bigger too, getting into mischief at every turn.  He developed a habit of sitting with me, wanting pets.  He's always been there whenever I sat down to sew. He became my buddy.

Transition to this week.  I took Six Toes in to the vet to get his shots when the vet, after listening to his heart, looked up at me.  "He's got a heart murmur."  She listened again.  "A bad heart murmur."  She listened a third time.  "I'm really sorry..."

In my mind, I thought 'It can't be that bad.'  So I said "What do you mean?" 

"He's got a really bad sounding heart murmur.  I recommend we do a cardiac workup on him as soon as possible.  We might be able to put him on medications that could help, but aside from that, there's nothing we can do."

Again, my mind was slow to take this in.  "Are you saying he could die?"

The vet was slow to respond.  "I don't know.  A lot can happen.  I've seen cats live a long time with a murmur like that and others die from cardiac arrest pretty quickly.  I won't know until we get him checked out."

You can understand how I felt.

So I started this blog to follow the life of my cat, Six Toes, however long that may be.  Because, well, he's Six Toes.  My mutant kitty.