I Don’t Know What to Do!

First, I thought Finney was going to get a ct scan today, but it was a consult only. If I do the minimum, get a ct scan and proceed with surgery to try to get the tumor but no amputation, the cost I was quoted was: $6,921.51. Seven thousand dollars, basically. The ct scan part of that cost is $2,998.72. Or, three thousand.

I didn’t ask what the cost would be for amputation, because we’re looking at a major, major, major amputation and he said it was a very aggressive cancer, meaning the chance of a good outcome is low, and a good outcome is at best six months to a year or two.

Removing the tumor alone, however, may not work at all. Without spending the $3,000 for the ct scan to see how much it has spread I don’t even know if this is an option, but even if it is, it might buy him a couple of months or more, or it may buy him nothing. I’d go into debt for nothing.

So, I started looking into going out on Long Island for the ct scan and surgery, because I’m sure it’s less expensive out there. But even if I could find someone to do it at a more reasonable rate, do I want to put him through something that does not have a good chance of working?

The point is, I have no good options.

Finney in his carrier waiting for his consult.


Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

6 thoughts on “I Don’t Know What to Do!

  1. Oh No. I haven’t checked in in a while and this is of course the last thing I wanted to read about Mr. Finney. Oh jeez. As a cat-herder myself I know how dizzying and sickening this situation is. Look at that sweet noble face . . . I know he knows that you are there for him, and that he’s in loving hands and that you only want nothing but comfort and a nice warm place to dream away the days with him. However many days that may be.

  2. It is hard having a pet because we so often outlive them. I had a german shepherd golden retriever mix who, at 15 developed a sarcoma. Spent $1000 on surgery and in just under a year, it was back again, even more aggressive. Spent another $1000+ on a second surgery and it was back before the stitches came out. That’s aggressive. I had a pet oncology consult which gave me the information that I would have to go down to half time work, would cost a fortune and probably wouldn’t give him more than a year of life. Plus putting him through the sickness of chemotherapy. I chose to keep him home until he was no longer able to get up and then took him to the vet and stayed with him while he was put to sleep. Very difficult.
    I’m sure you could find a cheaper cat scan. But is it worth it to put Finney through the surgery and the recovery for how much time will you have left with him? A hard decision.

  3. I wasn’t sure if I should weigh in on the horrible decision you have ahead of you – you haven’t actually ASKED for anyone’s opinion, and yet, by posting about it, you probably know that you’re going to get opinions, no matter what.
    So, here’s mine: if Finney was my cat, I would spoil him like crazy, and give him as much affection as he can handle, for as long as he is comfortable & pain-free, but not go ahead with the surgery. If you do go ahead with any surgery, you know there will be pain & discomfort involved during recovery. We can’t make our pets understand what has been done to them, why it hurts, and how long it’s going to last, and that we HOPE they might feel better. That’s the kind of thing that I would want to avoid for any pet of mine. You could give Finney a few wonderful days (or weeks? Month or 2?) and not do the surgery. He knows you love him with every scratch behind the ear or under the chin. And he loves you back and tells you whenever he stares into your eyes. It’s one of the toughest decisions you’ll ever make. Whatever you decide to do, you’ll probably always second guess yourself. But I hope you will eventually find some peace with your decision. So sorry the 2 of you are having to go through this now.

  4. My 2 cents: I agree with Nora. I’m reminded of that book about the
    nursing home cat, Oscar, who quietly sat on the bed when a patient was near death indicating to loved ones that the end was near. So return the sentiment and just be with Finney until the time comes to get him relief from all pain.

  5. I agree with Nora and Rebecca. And I am so sorry this is happening.

    I’ve been practising gratitude lately and it involves a lot of love. Spend your love on Finney.

  6. Thank you everyone. I can’t tell you how much I need all this feedback, even though at the moment I’m leaning towards trying surgery. I’m about to post about where I am with this decision today.

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