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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk fast98dodge's Avatar
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    Default Cat predicts people's deaths

    PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Oscar the cat seems to have an uncanny knack for predicting when nursing home patients are going to die, by curling up next to them during their final hours.

    His accuracy, observed in 25 cases, has led the staff to call family members once he has chosen someone. It usually means they have less than four hours to live.

    “He doesn’t make too many mistakes. He seems to understand when patients are about to die,” said Dr. David Dosa in an interview. He describes the phenomenon in a poignant essay in Thursday’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

    “Many family members take some solace from it. They appreciate the companionship that the cat provides for their dying loved one,” said Dosa, a geriatrician and assistant professor of medicine at Brown University.

    The 2-year-old feline was adopted as a kitten and grew up in a third-floor dementia unit at the Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. The facility treats people with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease and other illnesses.

    After about six months, the staff noticed Oscar would make his own rounds, just like the doctors and nurses. He’d sniff and observe patients, then sit beside people who would wind up dying in a few hours.

    Dosa said Oscar seems to take his work seriously and is generally aloof. “This is not a cat that’s friendly to people,” he said.

    Oscar is better at predicting death than the people who work there, said Dr. Joan Teno of Brown University, who treats patients at the nursing home and is an expert on care for the terminally ill.

    She was convinced of Oscar’s talent when he made his 13th correct call. While observing one patient, Teno said she noticed the woman wasn’t eating, was breathing with difficulty and that her legs had a bluish tinge, signs that often mean death is near.

    Oscar wouldn’t stay inside the room though, so Teno thought his streak was broken. Instead, it turned out the doctor’s prediction was roughly 10 hours too early. Sure enough, during the patient’s final two hours, nurses told Teno that Oscar joined the woman at her bedside.

    Doctors say most of the people who get a visit from the sweet-faced, gray-and-white cat are so ill they probably don’t know he’s there, so patients aren’t aware he’s a harbinger of death. Most families are grateful for the advanced warning, although one wanted Oscar out of the room while a family member died. When Oscar is put outside, he paces and meows his displeasure.

    No one’s certain if Oscar’s behavior is scientifically significant or points to a cause. Teno wonders if the cat notices telltale scents or reads something into the behavior of the nurses who raised him.

    Nicholas Dodman, who directs an animal behavioral clinic at the Tufts University Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine and has read Dosa’s article, said the only way to know is to carefully document how Oscar divides his time between the living and dying.

    If Oscar really is a furry grim reaper, it’s also possible his behavior could be driven by self-centered pleasures like a heated blanket placed on a dying person, Dodman said.

    Nursing home staffers aren’t concerned with explaining Oscar, so long as he gives families a better chance at saying goodbye to the dying.

    Oscar recently received a wall plaque publicly commending his “compassionate hospice care.”
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  2. #2
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    I think I'd want a cat hatin' dog chained to my bed!

  3. #3
    Sinner's Swing! Bullwinkle's Avatar
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    "N-n-n-n-nice k-k-k-kitty. N-n-n-n-nice kitty. G-g-g-go away! Go away!"

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk FORD's Avatar
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    John Asscrotch was right, motherfuckers! I really AM an agent of Satan!
    Last edited by FORD; 07.25.07 at 09:07 PM.
    Eat Us And Smile

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  5. #5
    Super Duper Frontman track 5's Avatar
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    I know when I go I don't want some rat eatin' cat fucking with me on my death bed. Which brings up a point. I'd be rasing some serious hell if a fucking cat was roaming the halls of a nursing home That I went to visit. Nasty bastards.

    I'm reminded of a line in the great Steve Martin movie, The man with two brains. "Get that cat out of here!" Out.
    Last edited by track 5; 07.25.07 at 10:31 PM. Reason: I felt like it.
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  6. #6
    Atomic Punk onefootoutthedoor's Avatar
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    "Those things are like snakes with fur".
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  7. #7
    Sinner's Swing! InTheBeginning's Avatar
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    A little more volume in the headphones please.

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk edwardv's Avatar
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    wise men say...stay away from bad pussy.

  9. #9
    Baluchitherium sisca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onefootoutthedoor View Post
    "Those things are like snakes with fur".
    nice paulie-ism.
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    then ill build it from the mexican side. -my reply.

  10. #10
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    ...and when the feline foreshadower of doom shows up in Gertrude's room, looks like it's "Death Cat For Trudy".

  11. #11
    Watch the hair!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy007 View Post
    I think I'd want a cat hatin' dog chained to my bed!
    LMAO.

    As someone who is a cat lover and has a relative with Alzheimer's I actually found this story extremely heart-warming. I'd hope my relative when the time comes is able to pass on in comfort like some of these people that were visited by the cat. But, for the record, I would like to state emphatically that I personally do not want to be visited by that cat anytime soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by FORD View Post
    John Asscrotch was right, motherfuckers! I really AM an agent of Satan!
    Exhibit A of you and your unhealthy obsession with the Bush administration. Somehow an interesting story about a cat in Providence, RI, prompts a John Ashcroft reference?!? WTF?!? Weren't you implying in the other thread that was closed in Main that you don't regularly post Bush and so-called BCE references in unrelated threads?!? Just another one of your long track record of lies.

    BTW, changing his name to "John Asscrotch" is just "top-notch" humor. It's certainly the type of "joke" one would expect from someone in their 40s.
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  12. #12
    Atomic Punk FORD's Avatar
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    Surely you have heard of Ashcroft's archaic religious superstition that cats are demonic agents of Satan?

    And no, I'm not kidding. But in either case, it really wasn't worth you being an asshole and starting another bitchfest about it, was it?

    And don't slander me any further, if you know what's good for you.
    Eat Us And Smile

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  13. #13
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    This can pretty fairly settled by simply not placing an electric blanket on the "soon to be deceased". If the cat still jumps up in their laps, the "electric blanket" theory can be eliminated.

    It's highly doubtful the cat is the harbinger of doom. The animal very well could merely be attracted to the decaying aura of the nearly dead. It is pointed out in the article that the patients are often unconscious (and thusly ignorant of the animal's presence), so the theory that the animal is offering any sort of altruistic comfort can be discounted by this.

    Is it odd? Certainly. Beyond belief? Of course not. Animals have sensitivities to things that modern science is at a total lost to explain. For example, remember that herd of elephants attempting to drag drag folk to safety hours before that tsunami hit Thailand?

    Did Thai elephants sense pending tsunami?
    Deseret News (Salt Lake City), Jan 11, 2005 by Jeremy Meyer Denver Post
    KHAO LAK, Thailand -- Chain Usak Jongkrit pointed halfway up an elephant's body, showing how high the rising water reached two weeks ago when the massive Asian tsunami flooded his camp.

    Eight elephants live in the camp that sits 500 yards from the Andaman Sea. They are used for tourist trekking businesses.

    Hours before the Dec. 26 tsunami, the elephants were trying to warn people, Jongkrit said. But few seemed to listen.

    The elephant is Thailand's most revered mammal, symbolizing wisdom, strength and good fortune. Elephants today have lost most of their habitat, are endangered and reduced to being used for tour companies like this one.

    They and other animals have been credited over the centuries for sometimes being able to sense earthquakes, storms and other disasters before humans do.

    Chinese scientists began seriously studying this in 1975, when snakes crawled out of their holes and other animals behaved oddly prior to a magnitude 7.3 earthquake in Haiching.

    In 2001 and again in 2004, scientists in Florida noted that electronically tagged black-tipped sharks bolted for deeper water before the approach of a hurricane.

    Now, the South Asia earthquake and tsunami are adding to the speculation.

    At Yala National Park in Sri Lanka, for example, few animals appear to have died in the surging water that killed tens of thousands of people in that country. After the tsunami, reports circulated in Thailand that elephants became superheroes, performing miraculous feats when the waves hit, snatching up people with their trunks and pulling them from harm's way.

    The owners of these eight elephants near one of the worst hit areas on Thailand's southwestern coast say they saw no pachyderm heroics. But Jongkrit believes they may have tried to warn people of the impending disaster.

    "Around 4 a.m., early in the morning, they started making an unusual sound," Jongkrit said through an interpreter.

    He never heard the beasts make such a loud scream. It woke him up because he thought someone was beating the animals. He ran outside and found one of his colleagues, who also didn't know what to make of the noise. People working on a nearby rubber tree plantation also heard the screams.

    "It scared them because they had never heard such a horrible noise," Jongkrit said.

    The bellowing occurred about six hours before the tsunami hit the coast of Thailand, where more than 5,200 people died. Jongkrit now believes the elephants, which for centuries thrived in this region, have a sense of the sea that shouldn't be ignored. Some scientists think that elephants, as well as other animals, can tune in low- frequency vibrations that might precede a tsunami.

    Five minutes before the tsunami hit the coast, the elephants, secured by chains around their front ankles, began screaming again. One of them broke free and ran uphill. Another one carrying tourists on its back also bolted...

    More at:http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4188/is_20050111/ai_n11503538

    Copyright C 2005 Deseret News Publishing Co.
    Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved.
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
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  14. #14
    Atomic Punk
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    For centuries cultures around the world have believed that cats, and other animals as well, are able to see beyond the third dimension and that they are able to see our aura and essence rather than just our physical body. It is believed that it is our essence they react to and that cats can sense things before we can because of their acute ability to sense what is occurring outside of our normal realm of existence. It's not surprising at all that this cat would have an awareness about these people about to die and that it sat next to them to accompany or perhaps guide their spirits into the next level existence. It could be the cats role in that environment, to act as a sort of guide for these people as they make their journey into their next experience...whatever it may be. This isn't something that gets talked much about in our culture, but it is something very sacred to many others.

  15. #15
    Eruption
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    Quote Originally Posted by FORD View Post
    Surely you have heard of Ashcroft's archaic religious superstition that cats are demonic agents of Satan?

    And no, I'm not kidding. But in either case, it really wasn't worth you being an asshole and starting another bitchfest about it, was it?

    And don't slander me any further, if you know what's good for you.
    use the internets FORD.

    use the the internets
    not another dime from me, fellas...

    tinzen

 

 

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