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My daughter and I volunteer at a local cat rescue and it was love at first sight when we saw Nani. She was an adorable cuddle bug with giant polydactyl feet and big blue eyes. We had to convince my "I am not a cat guy" husband to let us adopt her. He grumbled but eventually agreed. Nani quickly won him over and became his princess. He is now a total "Cat Guy".
When we first adopted Nani in August of 2019 her gums were red and the skin around her eyes was a little red. Her Veterinarian gave her an antibiotic and prednisone and her symptoms improved. She received her last kitten vaccine a few weeks later in mid September 2019. Nani was an eating machine up until the end of September when her behavior completely changed. She stopped eating, became lethargic, developed a fever and her coat became unkept. We took her to the Veterinarian and spent the next week trying to get a diagnosis. They gave her subcutaneous fluids, a Cerenia injection, a Convenia injection and Ofloxian Ophthalmic. Two days later they gave her Orbax and Prednisolone eye drops. During this time she developed Uveitis and her beautiful blue eyes became cloudy and glazed over. We were told that they thought it was FIP and there was no cure and she was going to die. I could not accept this and took to the internet to find cure. I discovered Dr. Pedersen's drug trial on GS at UC Davis and reached out to him for advice. I was thrilled and shocked when I got a reply. I tried presenting the information Dr Pedersen sent me to my Veterinarian and he was not open to even reading the information and eventually banished me from his practice after calling to yell at me several times. I was not asking him to help with injections just give Nani supportive care if necessary. I was not going to give up though. My Veterinarian was only offering death I had to give GS a try. I reached out to FB FIP Warriors and was able to get some GS that night.
My husband and I loaded Nani in the car and drove two hours to get the GS and learn how to give an injection. A total stranger opened his home to us and helped us out at one of our lowest moments. Little did I know what wonderful selfless people this awful disease would bring into my life. I like to call these people Nani's Angels and there have been several of them. The morning after Nani's first shot her fever broke and she began eating again and even started playing a little.
The next two nights my husband and I tried to give the injections on our own and it was horrible. I didn't sleep after the shots fearing I had messed it up and hurt Nani. I reached out to our local cat chat group and someone, I had never met, offered to come to our home every night and give the injections. Cat people are the best people! She is truly an Angel.
I set up a FB fundraiser to help pay for Nani's treatment and was again touched by the generosity of people I had never met. Through the fundraiser I met the person who first rescued Nani from a terrible hoarding situation. Nani was one of about 40 cats rescued and there were many more dead cats and kittens in the house. This was another one of Nani's Angels. Nani's first Foster Mom reached out to me too and both her and her husband donated to help Nani get treatment. She gave Nani so much love while she had her and is a Nani's Angel. The person that runs the rescue where we adopted Nani has been very supportive and helped give me the courage to to try GS. Giving black market drugs is definitely outside of all of our comfort zones.
Today will be injection #42 we are halfway through. You would never know Nani is sick. We have found a new very supportive Veterinarian. Nani has gained almost 3 pounds, her eyes have cleared and are a beautiful blue again, her coat is soft and shiny, she has never had another fever and she runs around the house and gets into kitten mischief all day. All her levels are back in the normal range on her latest CBC and chem panel. She hates the injections and we stress out everyday at injection time. I have promised her a Ziggy Doo Ferris Cat Exercise Wheel when she is cured and she will hold me to it. FIP has forever changed our family. I am so grateful to Dr Pedersen and all the wonderful people who have made this cure possible. I look forward to the day we can prevent FIP. This journey is an emotional rollercoaster. I felt so hopeless and cried so many tears the first couple weeks. I am now hopeful that Nani will beat FIP and live a long happy life.