RazMaTaz and Breezie Boyardee
Here are our premature kittens, miracles born and kept alive by Morgana.
and his little sister...
You really should read Morgana's amazing story first, then return here (you can use your back button).
They were born about two weeks premature. Breezie was about the size of my thumb, Raz a touch bigger. Their mother, Morgana, incubated them by holding them between her stomach and back legs. They were true miracles.
They've always been tiny. When RazMaTaz was neutered, he weighed only 6.4 pounds, and was almost a year old. Breezie, who was spayed two weeks later, weighed in at 5.3 pounds. I guess they never will get much larger.
And what a joy they both are! Breezie is still a little shy, as is her mother. But she loves belly rubs and since she is so tiny I call her my "Squirrel Baby."
Raz loves Renato, and Renato truly loves this little guy. Every morning, and every night, they play Chase the Flashlight Beam VBG!
In fact every cat in the house, old and young, seem to care for them both. Never are they hissed at, never swatted away, always romping and playing! I can't imagine life without them.
Raz is the kitten on the front, right side of tub looking up. Breezie is in the other rear corner. The tub is a Fun Place!
Update - March 16, 2002
*tears* I must imagine life without Raz, who was taken ill and within two days had followed Zoe to the Bridge.
He seemed just fine after he was neutered, on March 2. He did seem to take a couple of days to recover, but no other sign. Then on Wednesday evening, March 13, he just acted like he felt bad. He didn't want to play Flashlight, however he had eaten a good supper, and also shared some roast beef with me. By the next morning however, we were so concerned that Renato called work and told him he would be late. We got Raz to the Vet as soon as they were open. As soon as Dr. O. looked in his mouth, she exclaimed, "This baby is anemic! He wasn't when I operated on him!"
After a series of blood tests, we learned that his PCV was only 9%! He had almost no red blood cells. All other tests were negative - for FIV and FeLuk. She then ran a test for what is known as FIA - Feline Infectious Anemia aka Hemobartonellosis caused by a microscopic parasite called Hemobartonella felis. It showed that his blood was infested with this parasite, which is transmitted when an infected flea bites a cat.
If you've read his Mother's story, you'll know we couldn't even touch her when we brought her in, and it was over four weeks before we could treat both kittens for fleas *sigh* I kept things as clean as possible, did many things to help (I won't bore you with those details), but still, yes, they started life with a few fleas. And at least one carried this terrible parasite.
Our vet was very upbeat, and was even successfully treating another cat with FIA. Raz was given a double dose of an antibiotic and a steroid, to help him start the long road to recovery. We brought home meds for a month, including an iron tonic for cats.
That day, and that night, we force fed him diluted baby food. He really did lap up the yogurt and cottage cheese however. He was drinking water, cleaning himself too. The steroid was making him feel better. We were very positive that we could beat this.
At midnight Raz was doing okay. I saw him cleaning again, after a big drink of water and a trip to the litter box. I felt it was okay to finally go to bed too. But by 4:15 AM, he was almost as ill as the morning before. *tears* We forced fed him, and gave him water. I told Renato to go on to work and I would call the Vet and we could take him back after he got home from work (I no longer am able to drive alone, and we only have one car).
I called the vet at 8 AM, and when she returned my call, it was the other Vet, Dr. R. (the clinic owner, older, wiser, gruff but very loving once you know her). The first thing she said was, "He should have had a transfusion yesterday, you'll have to take him to _____ (a very expensive referral only clinic). Then she said, after a moment, "But honestly, it will only give him a few days with you. You should bring him in and we'll put him to sleep."
I didn't cry, weep, wail - though I know not how - but I did ask her, "Can't we check his blood again and see if it's improving?" Yes, she agreed, come in as soon as possible.
I called Renato and I can honestly tell you I did break down. I was on my knees, wailing into the phone that "I Can't Do This Again!"
We had lost one of Frick's kittens, Anuk, at the end of January, to an uterine infection. We had helped Zoe to the Bridge at the end of February, now this. And he was so extra precious to us both *tears*
My poor husband was as upset as I. He came home right then and we drove back downtown to the Vet. After another blood test, we learned that not only was his PCV still 9%, his white blood cell count was doubled in only 24 hours.
However, Dr. R. gave him another steroid shot and said, "Let's not do something we can't undo. Take him home, pray for a miracle and come back tomorrow. This Might turn the tide for him."
We had seven more hours with RazMaTaz. He had been a miracle all his life. By four PM, we knew he was dying in Renato's arms. There would be no last minute reprieve. We didn't want him to lay almost comatose, barely breathing, eyes open, but not seeing us, so we called Dr. R. and asked if we could come back in and help him through that Bright Door to the Rainbow Bridge.
He went quietly and swiftly, my kisses and tears in his soft dark fur, Renato at his side.
My last words to him were..."Go find Zoe!"
We spent Saturday building the RazMaTaz Memorial RompRamp for all the kitties, in loving memory of gentle Raz.
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