Is this pet abuse or not?

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Question by : Is this pet abuse or not?
Say there’s a 16-year-old cat, Samantha, that, for about a month, refuses to eat and has persistent bowl-control issues. Her leavings are diuretic and reddish. However, she still often wanders around the house, up and downstairs, and jumps on and off the couch–so, seemingly she’s still lively.

(Also, for some reason, Sam only does her business in specific areas… on hard-floor areas, tile, linoleum, cement–never carpet or the litter-box. Surprisingly she frequently goes on the tile around the litter-box downstairs (unless I put down large flat disposable diapers in the area…she’ll avoid those too) or the floor in the upstairs bathroom.)

Extra info: just before she was having digestive issues, Sam was biting at the fur on her side for a few months (the skin was eventually bare in that area) and the owner fed her baby aspirin twice a day (at the direction of someone from Petco) in an attempt to alleviate it. I doubt it helped, but she stopped feeding Sam the aspirin just after the recent development started.

I asked the owner why she didn’t take the cat to be seen by a Vet for the recent digestive issues. She replied, “That’s what happens when animals die, she doesn’t have long now. She probably has cancer.”

Two of her previous pets, one a cat, the other, a maltese dog, where both diagnosed with cancer. She just let those pets pass on too, but at least they had minimal treatment.

The thing is, I love Sam, and to me it would be horrible if she just died out of neglect and misconceptions. I mean, I realize nothing lives forever and trying to fight old age is often costly and futile…but she doesn’t have that sluggish, apathetic behavior that I’ve seen with a lot of other elderly pets. But then I’m out of the house most of the day so I don’t see her that often.

So here’s my question:

I’m wondering if this cat is truly dying of old age and I should just try and accept it…or is this something that’s common and treatable and worth maybe reporting the owner for animal abuse?
After a relentless argument, she still seems to think that comparing this situation to those of others is better than getting a professional opinion, and that any treatment of an older cat is a complete waste of time and money.
However, I at least managed to convince her to take Sam to the vet’s office tomorrow morning. So I’m crossing my fingers that the doctor gives her a thorough examination. (I suspect the owner may not necessarily be completely forthcoming when mentioning the symptoms, but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.)

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Answer by fooku
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8 comments on “Is this pet abuse or not?

  1. Take care of your teeth

    This is called neglect not abuse. Call up a local vet and ask them their opinion or call a shelter and take her cat to a shelter or call animal control. The woman should bring her cat to a vet and not just assume that the cat’s behavior is normal! Cats can live into their 20s if properly cared for!

  2. NEVER EVER GIVE A CAT ASAPRIN !!!!!! Asapirin can kill a cat.only give under a vets care.Please stop with the asa.the cat could have a simple uti and could be cleared up with antibiotics or some other infection than can be cleared only a vet can make that dicission.PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get the cat to the vet asap.if not it is cruel.you do not know what is wrong to the VET ASAP lets us know please no asapirin.that will poisin het,

  3. Courtney Curoso

    its best for any pet with a terrible condition to be euthanized. its hard to let go of a pet but its for their own good. why let them suffer especially if owners are not going to pay the expenses? a tumour may be removed but the odds of the cat still having cancer cells in other parts of their body is high and its just too much surgery for any pet to handle. i work at an animal clinic and some families let their kittens go if they develop tumours. theyre just kittens!
    samantha is 16 years old, shes lived a long life! i hope the owner makes a good decision thats best for her pet

  4. Well she should take to vet to see whats really wrong and why its not eating…I dont believe in euthanizing unless the pets in pain…And pets should NEVER be given aspirin! I have had sick pets before and if they stopped eating I bought soft canned food and added little water so I could syringe feed the cat couple times a day very slowly….until they could eat on their own….otherwise the cats liver will shut down without food and it will die and Yes it sounds like NEGLECT..if its not eating its suffering a slow death….SERIOUS!

  5. The cat is probably eating food from trash cans,out side and other places so put somthing in front of all your trash cans and close all doors and for the poddy problems cats “go” where they smell they have gone befor so try to get rid of all the Oder that might be left and she may have a skin dessese so see if there is such thing as cat lotion or somthing try and moisturize it’s skin … hope that helps
    Joe joe

  6. In my opinion, that is neglect and abuse.

    Taking the cat to a vet would do one of two things.

    Either they could help the cat, and it wouldn’t be suffering any more.

    Or it might be time to put the cat out of its misery, and it wouldn’t be suffering any more.

    Right now, by letting the cat just waste away, the cat is in pain and suffering and that’s not right. We take a responsibility for them to do what is right for them, they trust us to do it and we should step up to that when needed, as hard as it may be.

    I believe anyone who knowingly lets a cat suffer and won’t do anything about it is being abusive and neglectful.

    And in many places it is illegal to not get a pet proper vet care when it needs it.

  7. Not taking a pet to a vet and shelling out hundreds of dollars for treatment is not abuse.

    If your grandma is on her death bed, and she needs to be in the intensive care unit for 45 days, but she’ll die anyways, ending up with a $ 700,000 USD hospital bill…
    She says she doesn’t want to be there, do you force her to be there?
    Her children and grand children will be $ 700,000 USD in debt.
    She could pass away peacefully at home instead.

    You could just put her in a warm blanket, hugs and kisses, home cooked meals and baths, until she passes.

  8. Well 16 years is really old for a cat but the owner should take the cat to the vet and if she is dieing of old age she should be put down by a vet and not have to suffer.

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