Saturday, March 14, 2009


For two months my oldest cat has been losing weight, no matter how much she eats. At 17 1/2, a certain amount of gauntness is to be expected, but this was rapid and apparently irreversible. She still had a great deal of energy, went in and out to test the porch for warmth and test the yard for seasonal changes-- and while fragile was not frail by any means. She still had attitude and could still tell off the new guy in language I never want translated. Some old ladies know a LOT of words and aren't shy about using them.

But over time she has become more vague, getting into corners and unable to work her way out of them, and more and more uncertain in her walking. Yesterday I had her put down.

We had her for all but seven weeks, when she came here with Mama, so she was truly Our Cat.
One of the things you do when you take on a new cat or dog or any pet, is acknowledge the reality that you are now all they have. Just like an infant, they are utterly dependant on you for food, shelter, and attention. And part of that responsiblity is to know when they are too ill or too old or too much in pain to continue as they are. There is no next year, or next month, and you have to understand that at the beginning. It's part of the deal.

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