Many of you might not have heard of Stromboli before or know that she was a guest at our Sanctuary. She was only with us for about six days, and even part of that was spent at the vet hospital. Though her time with us was short, we still think it’s important to give tribute to Stromboli and share her story in loving memory of her.
We first met Stromboli at one of our low-cost vet clinics held for Manchester senior residents. We heard she was a bit fractious and “spicy”, therefore we were prepared to make the visit as quick as possible to get her home safe and sound. Yet upon arrival, we found this petite gray cat immobile, lethargic, and it was noted that she hadn’t eaten in 3-5 days. She barely moved when unknown people approached to put her in the carrier. As our vet was completing a physical exam, she knew that Stromboli was far too sick for just a regular wellness clinic and recommended she heads to a vet hospital where they can run further tests. Our Companions took responsibility of Stromboli and rushed her to the nearest vet hospital for evaluation.
Though there were several factors contributing to her condition, an x-ray at the hospital revealed that 4lb Stromboli was severely constipated and about a pound of stool was compacted in her intestines. They began to assist with treatment and we suggested she stay overnight for further observation. The next day, Stromboli was feeling much better and she was able to return home with a specific diet and supplements to help prevent further constipation. The cause of Stromboli’s constipation was unknown, though we suspected the other cat in the home might’ve caused tension, like guarding the litter box. Given the severity of Stromboli’s condition, we stayed in close contact with her owner to ensure Stromboli was given the care she needed to prevent another incident like this from happening again. She was aware of our programs, like our rehoming program, if she found that caring for Stromboli proved to be too difficult, which she appreciated. She wanted to try and make things work in the home. She had Stromboli since she was a kitten, she’s now 10, and couldn’t imagine life without her spicy sweetie.
We continued to stay in close contact with Stromboli and her family, including visits to the home, providing food, helping with meals and getting updates on the phone. All was well for about two months until we received a call letting us know that Stromboli wasn’t eating again. Her owner ultimately decided to surrender Stromboli to us so that we can give her the care she desperately needed. It was a difficult decision, but her owner knew that it would be the best for Stromboli.
At the vet, Stromboli was indeed constipated again and underwent treatment. Her bloodwork also didn’t look good and she was given some medications to help. Once a room was open at the Sanctuary, Stromboli was at the top of the list to be entered into our care. She was obviously a bit nervous and we finally experienced a bit of that spicy side of her as the Cat Team tried to administer her meds. She refused to eat and even at 4lbs, it was difficult to make sure she got her medications. Though after only a couple days, she surprisingly warmed up to staff and even showed a playful side! It was sweet to see this side of Stromboli’s personality since usually our interactions have been when she was sick. As the days went on, she still wasn’t eating or looking well and we began to worry given her already fragile state. After several attempts of getting her to eat, we decided to take Stromboli back to the vet for evaluation to see what else we can do to help this poor girl. After additional tests and her bloodwork not improving, the vets were left with little options. The next step would be to give her a feeding tube, but at this point her tiny body had been through so much already. Given their expertise, the vets knew Stromboli was nearing the end of her life and suggested they help her pass. It was a difficult decision, but already knowing all that she’s been through, we know it was the right decision to end any more suffering or illness.
The end of Stromboli’s life wasn’t easy, but we hope we were able to make the end of the road a little less bumpy for her. We know she had many wonderful years with her owner prior to her getting sick and had a few fun days with our staff before it was her time. Getting involved with these special cases can be difficult, but being able to provide the love and care that they so desperately need gives us a sense of comfort, even though the end of the story might not be a happy-ending. We’re grateful that Stromboli came into our lives and we were able to help give her a bit more time of enjoying her last few days on Earth. This spicy sweetie will be missed dearly.