Updated: Jan 26
A wonderful story about a cat's renewed life after its owner administered cannabis.
My story is about Eric, my moggie.
Eric came to us at 8 weeks old. Eric was almost delicate in his own way, but always knew what he wanted. If he wanted to curl up on a book, he would do just that.
He was diagnosed with a hereditary genetic disorder at about 18 months. This disease makes his immune system hyper-active attacking his skin, separating the layers and into which fluid would fill, making him very uncomfortable. He would often scratch the affected areas such as his ears. He would scratch them till they bleed, then his wounds would become infected. The vets prescribed him a cortico-steroid to suppress the inflammation, and the pills would work like a charm, but he would often have flareups every three to four months.
Soon after Eric turned six years old. He began vomiting a few times a day on a daily basis. With him not being able to hold down his food, his weight dropped. I cooked fish and chicken to entice him but he would never eat enough. A blood test at the veterinary clinic gave the results that he was at IRIS Stage 4 renal failure, which was not far from being End of Life. The vets who were present at the time were ready to give him a lethal injection to relieve him of his suffering right there and then. However, Eric had other ideas. He was not ready to give up, and neither was I.
Knowing that cannabis is used in cancer patients as an anti-emetic, I wanted to let him try it, but all that was available to us legally were CBD pastes and oils. I gave him the CBD by applying that on his ear flaps, since the taste is strong and he hated it. As soon as he received the CBD, the vomiting stopped. I cooked chicken for him daily and fed him his special diet in separate meals. He was not interested in the renal specific pouches and we had probably thrown away more than what he did actually eat, as his appetite was unpredictable.
Out of desperation and in intense fear, I resorted to cultivating cannabis, thinking that the THC in conjunction with the bought CBD oils would perhaps help with his appetite. After all the vets were ready to put him down on the spot, what was a little THC going to do against him?
His blood work deteriorated with elevated nitrogen in his blood that was multiple times of the healthy limit, but he behaved like any other cat and looked fine, with a sparkle in his eyes.
He continued to receive THC/CBD for about a year and a half, until one day he looked confused and his feet were unsteady. His coat became a little sparse, and his immuno-disorder was becoming harder to control, I knew that his time was close. I scrambled for information on making cannabis suppositories and gave him that. The onset of effects was quick, his feet became steady again and he was no longer in a “brain-fog”. But after two days he made it abundantly clear that there was absolutely no way that he would take another suppository. I resorted to giving him the THC oil, which I made with dried cannabis flowers lightly simmered in coconut oil, in his food.
Much to my surprise he accepted that. He would eat his “spiked” food and keep it down. In a mere seven weeks, he was no longer hiding away, he was keen to eat. He has gained weight, and his coat even regained a shimmer. In the past, when he scratched off his scabs, there would be wounds and they would get infected. The scabs on his skin now come off cleanly with healthy skin underneath and new fur.
Eric is now nearly two years from that initial diagnosis where not one but two vets in their trained, professional opinion, were ready to put him down. But Eric is still here with us. He eats, sleeps, drinks, plays, sits at the windows, meows for food, sleeps at the foot of my bed etc. The only vomiting he does now, are hairballs.
I understand that there will come a time when this fairy-tale-like story would come to an end, but until then Eric will continue to get his medicine. I am also well aware that some animals respond badly to cannabis, so he gets the cannabis in small doses, and slowly. We have been very fortunate that we live in a country where cannabis seeds are not only legal, but carry modern poly-hybrid high-yield, high-potency genetics; and that people caught with cannabis do not face execution. I sincerely hope that the healing and restorative properties of cannabis can be studied in a much more scientific and controlled manner, and that those who need it will have access to it without the fear of being made a criminal, or cost them more than what they can afford.