Loki‘s condition seems to be stable now. I wish I could report he was back to his normal evil self, but that’s simply not the case. His personality is subdued along with his energy level. He still plays, but not as much and certainly with less vigor than he has for the last decade. He’s completely stopped being acrobatic and unbelievably agile. He still purrs, although I now have to temper inducing that activity because too hearty a purr sends him into asthmatic conniptions. His energy is easily drained. He focuses more and more on affection and just “being with me” than he does the violent play that once marked me with wounds and filled the hours with delight. His stamina is much reduced and requires that I monitor his activity more closely so I can intervene if he’s pushing himself too hard.
As I recently told Jenny, I can’t fault him for the changes in his personality now that he’s struggling to get the oxygen he needs. He has attacks almost every day, but some days are worse than others. There are times when I have to use the emergency inhaler upwards of four times in a day; there are others when it’s not used at all. The difference in his breathing is always obvious, however, and I pay special attention to it.
For a very long time, I felt Loki would enjoy the longest life imaginable given his unconquerable health and overwhelming vitality. To witness all of that taken from him in such a short period of time has been troubling and emotionally draining. Each of the other cats suffers from one malady or another, but not Loki. He has been the bastion of strength and physical representation of indomitable spirit. That feline is no more. I’m not saying his quality of life has diminished so much that it is no longer worth protecting. What I am saying is that his life has changed so dramatically that I find it disturbing and heartbreaking. Of course he still plays and runs and enjoys the wonderful life he has. It’s just that he’s lost something I never thought could be taken away.