Everyday ethics: Financially strapped owner with a suffering cat

McCulloch, S P (2011) Everyday ethics: Financially strapped owner with a suffering cat. IN PRACTICE, 33 (6). pp. 297-298.

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Abstract

A two-year-old male cat has presented out of hours at a private clinic for depression and straining to urinate. Handling and being picked up in particular causes it to vocalise. Examination reveals a blocked bladder and the signalment, history and clinical presentation together suggest urolithiasis. Unfortunately, the owner does not have the £600 to £1000 required to stabilise, catheterise and hospitalise her pet for the weekend. The owner is upset because if she could afford the treatment, her pet would likely live a full life afterwards. It is also a difficult situation for the veterinary surgeon, who may have to euthanase the animal for these reasons, but what other options could the practitioner consider?