And now there are two…

Our eldest cat, Emma, went to heaven this morning. At least, I expect that she did. She was, after all, a meek and mild cat, hardly ever mean.

Emma is in the middle between Belle (front) and Dave (back).

Emma is in the middle between Belle (front) and Dave (back).

I think I’ve written before that Belle (in front) showed up starving and sweet-tempered. As she got stronger, she changed and ended up chasing the other cats out of the house.

Emma decided to live the back yard. Truthfully, the space has a pool with growies around it, rather than being a ‘yard’, but Emma had a very nice set-up in the shed. She loved lying in the pool chairs, moving with the sun. I think she enjoyed her 1 1/2 years of being the primary owner of the space.

About 2 weeks ago I noticed that she was very thin. We took her to the vet who ran tests but at the $400 mark the best he could say was she probably had cancer and it was a toss-up as to what he could do from there. I didn’t think that Emma was up for extensive cancer treatments so we took her home with extra-special food and did what we could to make her happy. Since Emma ‘happy’ looks like Emma napping, it was not hard to do. She was still a little perky then, looking happy to be alive.

I got home Sunday from California and Emma had lost more weight, she had not been eating at all, and she no longer looked perky. So, this morning, Steve and I took her in to have her… put to sleep? euthanized? killed? The words are tricky.

I’m not one for dressing up words for death. We all die, and that’s the word I usually use. It is to be hoped that we end up in a happy place, but that happens after we do the dying part. However, with that thought in mind, the phrase ‘passed on’ makes more sense. I’ve never particularly liked it, but that sums up what happened with Emma today. She passed on from this existence to the next.

We got a little teary-eyed but Dr. Locke assured us that we did the right thing. A mass had grown on her back in the space of a week and he said that whatever she had, he would not have been able to stop it. She never seemed to be in pain and the process went very smoothly. She seemed happy—or at least not unhappy. There are so many worse ways to go.

Emma is now planted in the front yard near Spike and Walter. I miss seeing her at the back door but she will live on in our memories.

Now it’s Dave’s who has a problem. It’s not a lethal problem, but he’s losing the hair on his face. Dr. Locke thinks it’s an allergic dermatitis. If Dave could see himself, he’d be very unhappy—but he can’t see himself! There are times when it’s nice to be blissfully unaware of circumstances you cannot change, don’t you think?

14 thoughts on “And now there are two…

  1. When we had to put down our dog of 16 years a few summers ago, the Humane Society gave us a poem about our pet going “over the rainbow”. A nice way to think about it…

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  2. So sorry for your loss. My husband and I have 5 rescue cats, that one by one, showed up on our door step over the years. It’s tough losing one, because they all end up finding that special place in your heart.

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  3. I am so sorry about your kitty. I have been the Mother of 4 dogs and 2 cats, and whatever name we use for their passing, it is heartbreaking. I lost my oldest kitty 3 years ago. She was almost 21, so we had been together longer than some people are married. She just got old, didn’t eat very much, and died one night. We buried her under a rose bush because she loved to eat the rose blossoms when I made an arrangement. She helped us raise 3 dogs, and she let everyone know she was the ALPHA everything. I still miss her. So we are a one dog family now, and since we travel a lot, we will probably stay that way. I am glad you have other kitties to help you through your grief. Thanks for writing such an interesting blog about your life and travels. I now must go wipe my eyes and blow my nose. A big Hug to you.

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  4. Your post brought tears to my eyes as it brought back on the memories of the sweet cats and dog who have “passed on”. That is the risk we take when we open our hearts to these sweet creatures, but it never stops hurting. Most have had to be euthanized because of painful, terminal diseases. One cat died, presumably of a heart attack, after I had cuddled him for quite a while and then left to answer the phone. When I came back, he was gone, presumably walking to his bed. One had a stroke and , during a long night of cuddling, died in my arms. I’m not Catholic, but I will forever love Pope Francis for telling a grieving little boy that his pet would go to Heaven…contradicting centuries of Catholic teachings stating that animals have no souls and so cannot go to Heaven. Whatever anyone believes, I have loved and been loved by too many sweet animals not to believe that they are rewarded for their kindness.
    Please forgive the long post and also accept my sympathies on your loss…your beautiful writing hit a nerve with me and I miss my sweet, loving companions.

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    • No need to apologize for the long comment! It’s good to read what others have to say. Pets are an important part of our lives. Where I’m right now, Emma would usually be at my back, outside, snoozing on a chair on the deck. If her little cat spirit is hanging around, that’s where she is :-). And she feels better now than she did yesterday.

      >

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  5. Becky, I’m so sorry you had to say goodbye – it helps to know they’re at least “not unhappy” when the time comes. Beautiful story, and your cats are adorable. Probably even Dave, lol. Brenda

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  6. I am so sorry about your cat. It is always hard no matter how they pass away. I hope to see my sweeties after I am gone. I can only hope. Hugs,

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  7. Yes, it is sad to say good bye, I still think about all my kitties who gave me so much joy and companionship. Sending you hugs, Felicia from M N

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  8. Emma had kindness and sensitivity until the end. That’s what we all want for those we love. What an appealing little lady she is in her picture.

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  9. Isn’t it lucky that we can take our beloved cats/dogs/horses/whatever to the doctor’s and help them pass on? We have to suffer through all of it.
    Birgitt

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  10. So sorry, pets, especially cats make big spaces in our hearts and leave big holes when they leave. Both our cats “passed” as well as the very best softest golden retriever, Harley, in this last year. House seems very empty. Less laughter! A time will come to start creating space in our hearts for more critters. How lucky we can end suffering in our animals. that is a gift. blessings on you and all your household
    Barbara

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  11. So very sorry about your kitty, Becky. It is hard to lose them when you have had them for a while. We just lost our 15 y-o female the end of April. Miss having her around every day and our male cat who is the same age misses her, too.

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