It took a long while for me to be able to post this, since so many people were following the Possum kittens, and giving them up was very difficult. They continued to decline and it seemed it was going to be a long while before we got answers. They were no longer interested in playing, and had begun hissing at one another when they cuddled up--seeming to indicate they were in pain if the one kitten laid on top of the other. My veterinarian agreed it was time for them to be released from this adventure. Whatever they had was clearly quickly progressing, and no matter what answer we might receive from genetic testing, it was very unlikely it would be reversable. The advancing incontinence could have been pressure on the spinal cord from their misformed bones, which likely meant they were experiencing other neurological issues as well that would not have overt signs (neuropathy, etc.) They were the cutest, most fun little dudes, and they were still happy right up to the end, which is why the decision was so difficult. Waiting until they were entirely unhappy with the lives they had, was not an option for me.
I would have preferred to bring them home to the Memory Garden, however after all we had gone through, it seemed important to get answers, so after euthanasia, they went to Cornell to the veterinarian who had been willing to do the initial genetic testing (and follow up exam and treatment, had they not declined so rapidly) for necropsy and further testing. It probably will be months before we have an answer if one is available.
Thank you to everyone who has followed and asked about them. Once we get an answer, I will post the results in a blog post title with links to all of their posts and videos, so if someone else should experience the same issue with kittens in their care, hopefully it will come up in search engines. In the meantime, I, and everyone who visited them, were blessed to enjoy their silly presence while they were here.
I made a little place in the Memory Garden for them anyway, with some plants I had moved from my mom's garden, and a little statue I had purchased a long while ago while antiquing with my sister Linda. It seemed fitting for them.
I think I should end their long strange adventure with a smile, so I'm including my very favorite photo of them.