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Kitty Star of the Week for January 21 - 27, 2001.

Sometimes our precious cats cannot stay with us, and sometimes they leave us far, far too soon.

This was Poe, his mom's dear, sweet angel. He was a Chocolate Point Himalayan, born on August 14, 2000. He went home with his humans when he was 8 weeks old, and they fell in love with him immediately. And Poe loved them too; he was so cuddly and wonderful. He played well with his two feline siblings who were about the same age. Poe lagged behind them in growth, but not too much, and no one thought this was a problem because he was so playful.

But in early December, Poe was sleeping a lot and not gaining any weight. The veterinarians did not know what was wrong with him. His blood test showed no signs of FIV or FeLV, or other serious illnesses. He was given antibiotics, but nothing seemed to help and he got weaker. He began to have trouble walking. Poe went back to the vets, and he tested positive for worms, so he was de-wormed. He was also given more antibiotics and given fluids to combat dehydration. Poe seemed to recover his energy, and his humans felt such joy that their little boy might be getting better.

However, the next day, he was falling down again while trying to walk. His mom took him back to the vets and they said they suspected Poe had a birth defect called a Liver Shunt, a condition in which a blood vessel went around his liver, bypassing it. And since it bypassed the liver, the liver couldn't filter out the toxins and they just stayed in Poe's blood. They did an urine test and Poe had crystals in his urine, a sign that he might have a liver shunt. Poe was given medicine to clear out the toxins, but that night he began having seizures.

After a severe seizure, his humans rushed him to the emergency animal hospital, where the veterinarian told Poe's mom he was barely breathing and about to go into cardiac arrest. Poe had no chance of recovering. His mom knew her precious baby was suffering. She had to make the hardest decision ever, and she had to sign the release form to end his pain.

She had one last chance to say goodbye to him. She writes," I petted him and kissed him and told him how proud of him I was and how much I love him. Once he saw me he started purring. ... He just wanted to be with me. He loved me so much....He was so sweet and loving and gave me more love than I could have hoped for. But he was so young, only 4.5 months old, he went away too early."

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