Back in October, I noticed Lexington looking a little less brawny, and he didn’t seem his usual lively self. He was getting older and was in the beginning stage of renal failure, but I sensed something else was brewing and took him to the vet.
Blood work indicated inflammatory issues, and an ultrasound revealed a mass in his liver. My vet strongly suspected cancer. Getting a tissue biopsy would provide a definitive diagnosis, but would be too risky between Lexington’s weakened condition and age—about 16 years. Treatment options were limited. Steroids would reduce inflammation, but would cause serious, potentially fatal complications. I suggested cannabidiol “CBD” derived from the cannabis herb, known for its anti-inflammatory, immune boosting, pain killing, and appetite stimulant properties. My vet was not legally permitted to prescribe CBD, but he concurred with my suggested modality, asking to see Lexington for a follow-up visit in two months or sooner if his condition worsened.
Within hours of giving Lexington CBD oil, his appetite came back, along with his sweet and playful personality. The two-month visit resulted in no changes—he was maintaining. And I maintained hope that what ailed him was something benign.
By mid-May, Lex’s appetite started to wane and he looked even thinner. He also had a hard time transitioning from standing to reclining. I took him back the vet. This time the diagnosis was definitive. A cancerous tumor had developed off of his liver. My vet advised that Lex had a few weeks to a couple of months to live, suspecting the cancer was aggressive. What a blow to my heart. I hated that my sweet Lexington was suffering. Besides that, he was old, but without this malignancy, Lexington would have been able to advance into his golden years. Instead, he was facing palliative care.
When we got home from the vet’s office, I gave Lexington a higher dose of CBD hoping to alleviate the increased discomfort he was experiencing. His appetite returned. Over the next few days, I observed that he still gingerly lowered himself to a reclining position, but his walk was more purposeful. He ventured off the bed and into the living room, and managed to hoist himself onto the sofa. He was feeling better. I don’t know how long the CBD will keep him going, but it’s clearly helping.
I had planned on attending a writer’s retreat in Palm Springs, which was scheduled three weeks from the day I learned about the tumor. I called the facilitator of the retreat to tell her I would not be able to attend. Rather, I took that week off from work and lavished Lexington with extra love. He got lots of “brushies” (he loves to be brushed), lots of porch time, and lots of time by my side while I wrote, read, listened to podcasts and sipped tea.
It’s been about a month since the diagnosis. Lexington and I will be on a roller coaster ride with the good days and the bad days that will lead to the last day. But for now, Lexington is doing pretty good. He just gobbled down his favorite dinner, baked chicken.
Soon he’ll be sleeping next to me, and I’ll pet him as I fall asleep, and pray that tomorrow he will have another good day.
I so hope you will have many more good days with Lex! It does sound like the CBD oil is helping. And I know that being in your loving care is helping him, too.
It’s certainly a good combo! Thank you for your thoughts and support. 🙂
So beautiful and heartwarming to see how you take care of the lovely Lex. Wishing you a lot of good days together.
Herman, thank you so much. It’s so easy to care for this sweet boy…hugs to Mr. Bowie.
Sweet Lexi. Hoping for more good days. Love Mom
Awwwe, thank you, Mom! xoxo
I love this blog. Very heartfelt and beautifully expressed.
Thank you, Marilyn. 🙂 So happy it touched your heart.
oh my this has me in tears. I pray that Lexington will have many, many more good days with you. What an amazing kitty mama you are. Lexington knows that too which is exactly why he is sticking around. (((hugs))))
Caren, thank you for your kind support. And you may have a point…in the past couple of weeks I sense that Lexington is NOT ready to go just yet. He’s doing pretty good considering his ailing health.
Purrayers and POTP to sweet Lexington and you as well.
I have been discussing CBD oil with various vets & cat people. I have a cat beginning kidney failure and wnt to help him, so this information is good to red .
I love it–purrayers–thank you! I used CBD on my kitty Topper who passed in December of 2017, and saw pawsitive results with him in his last few weeks of life. This stuff may not kill the cancer, but it sure provides a less stressful and painful time.
Lex is also in kidney failure and I give him subcutaneous fluids a couple times a week (which I’ve done with two other kitties) and it helps immensely. I also use a flower essence based formula for kidney support that I purchase from Cat Faeries. 🙂
Ohhh, this is such a meaningful and well-written piece. My heart goes out to Lexi and his Mama. These are the hardest days when he is absolutely dependent upon you for everything as, no doubt, he is fully aware he is about to transition. What a wonderful time you have shared with him all these years. So much love to you both.
Thank you so much, Gail! It’s so hard, but so rewarding to know that he’s comfortable and being able to truly enjoy these days that will lead to his transition. As I write this he’s louging on the patio in the sunshine and I can see how content he is, which just warms my heart.
Sending you love and blessings. It’s so hard when they get older. I’m going to try CBD oil with my kitty who has lymphoma. I am also considering trying a product called Celloquent, which is from Vitality Science. I have been reading some anecdotes about that helping cats with cancer, including a write up on naturalcatcareblog.com. Best wishes to you both, I hope you have a lot of good times left with each other.
Thank you, Karen, and thank you for the information about Celloquent. Let me know how it works with you baby–sorry to hear that you have a kitty with lymphoma. Best wishes and a big hug to you!
Very heart-felt blog about Lexington!
I hope you many more good days together.
Lexington is lucky to have such a nurturing & loving mother.
Love all the Lexington photos!
You can see in the photos that he loves his mama so much!
Thank you, so much. It’s a joy to be a caretaker for such a precious kitty. I hope to give him all that he needs to make a peaceful, and hopefully painfree transition.
Lexi is such a handsome boy….My heart goes out to you and Lexi, both in my prayers…I have been where you are so many times and it never is easy…..Sounds like you are a really good mama….xo
Thank you, Sena, he sure it! And what a sweet personality to boot. Thank you for reading, and for your words of support!
Here’s to hoping for more good days! I’m glad the CBD oil is helping, too.
Amen to that, thank you!
Lots of love to you and your baby.
Thank you, Robin. xo 🙂