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Doc Sara
Doc Sara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 952
Experience:  I am a dog and cat veterinarian with a lifetime of experience in our family veterinary hospital.
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My cat was killed yesterday evening. we 't know who or how.

Customer Question

my cat was killed yesterday evening. we don't know who or how. we wrapped her in a tarp an buried her. could I or should I take her to someone to determine what the cause of death is?
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Doc Sara replied 5 months ago.

Hi there, I'm Dr. Sara. I'm a licensed veterinarian who works exclusively with cats and dogs. I'm so sorry for your loss - I'm sure that FiFi will be greatly missed.

The question on whether or not to take her somewhere for a necropsy (the veterinary word for autopsy) is a very personal one. It is really up to you depending on how much you want to know about FiFi's death. I will caution you, though, that we aren't always able to identify a definitive cause of death in these guys. In fact, more often than not, without investing a significant amount of money in diagnostics, we won't get an answer. There are even cases where we run every test in the book and still come up empty handed because some diseases don't leave evidence that we can find afterward. Be prepared to invest a couple to a few hundred dollars if you want to pursue an answer. Most clinics have a fee for the necropsy itself but that doesn't include the cost of any tests that might need to be sent out to the lab like toxicology or histopathology. On rare occasions, we are able to tell what happened from the necropsy without sending out any additional tests. If you do plan on having her examined, it's best to get her into cold storage (refrigeration or freezer) as quickly as possible - the longer she is gone but not refrigerated or frozen, the more decomposition goes on and the more difficult it will be to interpret her necropsy results.

Once again I'm so sorry for the loss of your kitty FiFi. Take care and let me know what other questions I can answer for you.

~Dr. Sara

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