The Idaho Humane Society does not want cats to be euthanized simply because they’re diagnosed with chronic kidney disease (CKD) — a disease that does not cause great suffering. We firmly believe these cats should enjoy what time they have left in loving adoptive homes, not in a shelter environment. In an effort to give cats with CKD a good quality of life, we are looking for hospice adopters who are willing to let these cats live out their last days at home with minimal intervention. CKD is very common in cats, but also occurs in dogs.
Chronic kidney disease is an incurable condition that mainly afflicts middle-aged and older cats. It occurs when 75 percent or more of functional kidney tissue has been destroyed and replaced by scar tissue. Unlike acute renal failure, the onset and progression of this condition—called interstitial nephritis—is gradual, extending over many months or even years.
The early indications of failing kidneys include a marked increase in water consumption (polydipsia) and in urination (polyuria); weight loss; apparent decline in appetite; and, in some cases, occasional vomiting.
As a hospice adopter, you will be responsible for making sure the animal eats appropriate veterinary diet food and drinks enough. We will provide support in the form of food, advice, and euthanasia when the time comes. All other care, if you elect to do that, will be your responsibility.
Hospice Care Information for Adopters
The Idaho Humane Society defines hospice care as the care of patients with a life-limiting illness that is not responsive to curative treatment or where curative treatment is not available or not applicable due to concurrent medical conditions, age, and other risk factors.
IHS began the hospice care program as a means to provide support and care for cats diagnosed with CKD. A hospice case is expected to have a shortened lifespan and may only have a few weeks or months to live.