Written by Michelle Kretzer
PETA's Emergency Response Team received
an e-mail from a woman wondering what to do for her ailing cat, who had been
diagnosed with feline leukemia (FeLV) and was losing weight, acting lethargic, and not eating anymore (common
symptoms of this ravaging disease). We responded immediately and learned that
her young cat, Tigger, had been diagnosed two weeks prior when she took
him to the vet because of dramatic weight loss. Two different veterinarians had
recommended euthanasia as the most compassionate option for Tigger, but his
guardian was reluctant to take their advice.
In light of Tigger's diagnosis and
alarming condition, we gently counseled his guardian about the prolonged
suffering that FeLV causes, including further weight loss, fever,
gastrointestinal problems, difficulty breathing, and a compromised immune
system that could lead to secondary infections.
Tigger's guardian finally agreed that
merciful euthanasia was the kindest thing she could offer her beloved animal
companion, and she rushed him to a veterinarian that afternoon. The next day,
PETA received a phone call from Tigger's guardian to tell us that she was
relieved that he was finally free from his suffering. It had been hard to let
go, but once she convinced herself to do it, she realized that it was the
The once frisky, playful cat quickly deteriorated
If someone you know is struggling with the
deteriorating illness of an animal, please urge them to consult a veterinarian
to ensure that the animal doesn't languish. If you've recently lost an animal, setting up a True Friends
can be a special way to honor your animal companion's memory.
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.