We got Kiwi about a year and a half after I moved back to Wisconsin. I was in a foul mood pretty much all the time, having had the massive amount of unpleasantness and the falling out with my roommates. I was, let's face it, an asshole for pretty much all the time. Mom thought I could use something in my life that would love me unconditionally, and I was missing the late and much beloved katrinathebunny (who I hope was a psychopomp for Kiwi to the Rabbit Hereafter), and so we found Kiwi in the paper at the local Humane Society. He looked a lot like Katrina, and I was smitten.
We initially housed him in the basement, with a space heater at night, but eventually we moved him upstairs. About a year after we adopted him, we noticed him staring at his reflection in a china cabinet door and thought he could use a friend. We adopted Lily shortly thereafter, and the two bonded almost immediately. Kiwi doted on Lily, Lily took it as her due. I'm really worried about how Lily will adjust now.
I've already called work and told them I'm cashing in vacation time for a personal day. I was already useless today when Kiwi was still alive and I was just worried about him not eating.
Monday, January 30th we hit the vet with Kiwi in tow. Kiwi's appetite had been dwindling for the last week or so. He was reluctant to eat anything save for his papaya tablet and soft, fresh foods like his herbs and lettuce. We were shocked to feel his backbone while petting him the other day, so in to the vet he went.
He had some malocclusion going on, which was a shock, as he's always had such good teeth. He also had irregular heart sounds on the right side; the vet said his "lub-dub" is more of a "lub…dub." He said it could be an enlarged heart or just an issue with the electrical impulse in that ventricle. The vet prescribed a low dosage of enalapril twice daily.
Kiwi started Tuesday strong, eating a syringe and a half of Critical Care (think powdered hay and other nutrients added), thought some went down his chin, as well as his heart med, and was pretty darn feisty. He got really sluggish shortly after that, which is a side effect of the heart med.
We got some more Critical Care and the second dose of his heart med into him later this afternoon/early evening, but he'd been refusing all his tasty treats (dill, parsley, blackberries) all day long. He did seem to perk up for the soaked hay, and ate a fair amount of that. But shortly after that, he really deteriorated quickly. His breathing became shallow, he would run halfway across the room and then just sink down, his chin on the floor. We picked him up and held him, trying to get him comfortable, trying to show him how much he was loved and to give him what comfort we could. Every now and then his head would pop up and he'd look around for a moment, but then it would sink down again. Eventually, he seized for a few seconds, and then he just slipped away. I think his little heart just gave out. It was shocking how fast it's all happened, from diagnosis to losing him.
We put his body down for Lily to see, and she sort of crept up and sniffed at him, and then turned away. Obviously not as broken up as we are. My poor boy looks so undignified, with the Critical Care mess still on his chin.
I'm just useless right now. I'm bereft and depressed and self-medicating with medicinal whiskey and I have no one to talk with and I'm just low, man. I'm just so fucking low right now. And every day when I see Lily, that dagger's just going to go through my heart again and I'm going to remember all the wonderful things Kiwi did, and it'll just hurt fresh all over again. And that's the price I pay for taking in a rabbit (or two) from the shelter and giving them a wonderful life. And while I know it's worth every bit of the heartache, it's still hard to see the balance right now. The pain and the loss is still too fresh.
I miss my rabbit terribly, and I've only been without him for 3 hours.